NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope Captures Galaxy Centaurus A Twisted Into A Parallelogram-Shaped Structure of Dust

Li Ming

PureInsight | July 12, 2004


NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has captured in unprecedented detail the spiral galaxy, Centaurus A, as it twisted into a parallelogram-shaped structure of dust.

Scientists have previously tried to observe Centaurus A with other telescopes; however, they saw no more than a long and irregular bar of dust. Through Spitzer Space Telescope's ultra sensitive infrared "eyes," scientists saw clearly Centaurus A's strangely geometric structure for the first time.

Centaurus A is an elliptical galaxy. It is one of the brightest sources of radio waves in the sky. It suggests that there may be a massive black hole in its center. It is believed that Centaurus A may have consumed a smaller elliptical galaxy, which continues to stir in the core of Centaurus and triggers the birth of new stars.

Source: Science Daily: "Spitzer Spies Parallelogram-Shaped Galactic Meal"

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