The question whether we are alone on this universe has intrigued us for ages now! Until recently the NASA researchers have discovered a new sister galaxy located 30 million light years away from Earth. The Chandra X-ray Observatory has discovered a spiral looking galaxy, very similar to the Milky Way appearing purple in color due to hundreds of X-ray points of light.
The new found galaxy has been officially named NGC 5194 or Messier 51 (M51) with its preferred nickname of the “Whirlpool Galaxy.” Been located million of light years away, this galaxy has its spectacular arms stretched across and covered with stars and dust. It has a face on orientation to the planet Earth.
The astronomers have looked into the Whirlpool galaxy to understand things, which could be only detected in X-ray form. The composite image from the Chandra Observatory Centre shows the galaxy in shades of purple. The optical data obtained from the Hubble Space Telescope are however in red, blue and green colors.
The data obtained so far have lead scientists to believe that there is a presence a compact star, it could be either a neutron star or maybe a black hole along with that there is a capturing companion star present inside this galaxy. The source of X rays used, were X-ray binaries.
There is a strong gravitational field that is expected inside this Whirlpool, which is emitted by the compact star that is heated up to millions of degrees. The source of X-ray is believed to be that. The Chandra Observatory has also revealed that at least ten of the XRBs in this galaxy are bright enough to contain black holes.
The black holes in eight of the systems are humongous compared to the Sun. The X-ray emissions inside M51 are thought to be due to supernova explosions of these massive stars inside.
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