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NGC 4696 in the Centaurus Galaxy Cluster Animations
Animation of Black Hole in Elliptical Galaxy
Animation of Black Hole in Elliptical Galaxy
QuickTime MPEG
This artist's animation depicts a journey into the center of an elliptical galaxy. After traveling past stars in the outer part of the galaxy, the supermassive black hole located at the bright center of the galaxy becomes visible. This black hole is surrounded by hot gas shown in red and yellow, which acts as fuel for the black hole engine. Power generated by the engine flows away from the black hole via jets of high-energy particles.
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(Animation: NASA/CXC/A.Hobart)
Chandra, Infrared, and Radio Images of NGC 4696
Chandra, Infrared, and Radio Images of NGC 4696
QuickTime MPEG
This sequence of images shows NGC 4696, the elliptical galaxy at the center of the Centaurus galaxy cluster. At the galaxy's center is a supermassive black hole, one of nine black holes studied recently using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. An infrared image, in green, reveals the stars in the elliptical galaxy. Next, the blue radio image shows high-energy jets generated by the black hole. Finally, Chandra's X-ray image in red traces hot gas located around the center of the galaxy. Enormous cavities in this gas were created by jets from the black hole.
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(Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/Stanford U./S.Allen et al.; IR: NASA/ESA/McMaster Univ./W.Harris; Radio: NRAO/AUI/NSF/G.Taylor)
Chandra Images of Elliptical Galaxies
Chandra Images of Elliptical Galaxies
QuickTime MPEG
This set of Chandra images shows hot gas located in the nine different elliptical galaxies studied in this new work. Each of these galaxies shows evidence for cavities in the hot gas that were created by jets from the central black holes.
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(Credit: NASA/CXC/Stanford U./S.Allen et al.)
Sequence of Black Hole Illustrations
Sequence of Black Hole Illustrations
QuickTime MPEG
The first artist's illustration shows enormous cavities that have been created in the galaxy's hot gas by jets from the central black hole. The next illustration shows an area about a hundred times smaller, where gas is first attracted to the black hole. The final artist's illustration depicts a close-up view of a supermassive black hole, showing a view almost a million times smaller than the previous illustration. Gas becomes hotter as it approaches the black hole, turning from red to yellow to white. Most of the gas is swallowed by the black hole, but some is launched in jets away from the black hole at almost the speed of light.
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((Animation: NASA/CXC/M.Weiss)


Return to NGC 4696 in the Centaurus Galaxy Cluster (24 Apr 06)