Wednesday, December 19, 2007

INTERGALACTIC WAR UPDATE!


video

Your pal Beadle just emailed his astronomer friend David Gasson (a programmer at the University of Arizona's National Optical Astronomy Observatory ) the link regarding this galactic-feud-of-the-centuries and just got a response!

yes this is legit. Here's the official NASA press-release: http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2007/dec/HQ_07280_Death_Star_Black_Hole.html The Times of India put a rather, er, dramatic headline to it, didn't it ;-)? Most galaxies (including our own) have so-called supermassive black holes at their center, and these black holes can power a wide variety of interesting phenomenon including jets. These jets are streams of very high energy particles emitted by matter as it "rubs against itself" while falling into the black hole. The energies involved are absolutely titanic--some of the highest in the universe. It's also typical for galaxies to form in groups and therefore to be able to interact with each other (google "Antenna Galaxy" if you want to see a good example). So it stands to reason that somewhere, sometime, one of these galaxies with jets will cross the path of another galaxy. And that's what's happening here. The universe is a dangerous place. Google "supernova", "hypernova" or "gamma ray burst" if you want to learn more about the many ways we could die ;-). Isn't truth stranger than fiction? Cheers, David

There's a whole wack-load of groovy images and videos HERE!

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