Galaxies

Map of high-energy Gamma Rays (Image NASA/DOE/Fermi LAT Collaboration)

An article published in the journal “Nature Astronomy” describes a research that indicates the origin in an anomalous gamma-ray source detected for the first time in 2009 by the NASA’s Fermi gamma-ray space telescope. One of the hypotheses concerned collisions of dark matter particles, instead according to a team of astronomers there are millisecond pulsars in the nucleus of the Milky Way whose emissions mixed up in the signal detected by Fermi.

The magnetic field at the center of the Milky Way (Image E. Lopez-Rodriguez / NASA Ames / University of Texas at San Antonio)

An article published in the journal “Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society” describes the detailed mapping of the magnetic field around Sagittarius A*, also known simply as Sgr A*, the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way. A team of researchers used the CanariCam infrared camera installed on the Grand Telescopio Canarias to obtain the data needed to reproduce the magnetic lines of gas and dust that orbit around the center of the galaxy. The structure of the magnetic lines gives the result a style that reminds of Vincent Van Gogh’s paintings.

Emissions from WISE1029 (Image ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO), Toba et al.)

An article published in “The Astrophysical Journal” describes a research on gas outflows from the center of an active galaxy. A team of astronomers used the ALMA radio telescope to observe highly ionized gas outflows caused by the supermassive black hole at the center of a dust-obscured galaxy (DOG) known as WISE1029+0501 or simply WISE1029 achieving surprising results. In fact, they detected the “signature” of carbon monoxide associated with the galactic disk but also discovered that the carbon monoxide gas in the galaxy isn’t influenced by the outflow of the strongly ionized gas launched from the galactic center, contradicting the models that seemed more plausible.

Supermassive black holes in the Chandra Deep Field-South (Image NASA/CXC/Penn. State/G. Yang et al and NASA/CXC/ICE/M. Mezcua et al.; Optical: NASA/STScI; Illustration: NASA/CXC/A. Jubett)

Two articles currently being published in the journal “Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society” describe two researches on the connection between the development of supermassive black holes and the galaxies that host them. Two separate teams used observations from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and other telescopes, concluding that supermassive black holes grow faster than new stars form in their host galaxies. This contradicts previous models that suggested a growth proportional to star formation in the galaxies.

M77's active galactic nucleus with the gas moving in the inset (Image ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO), Imanishi et al.)

An article published in the journal “Astrophysical Journal Letter” describes the best observation ever made of a ring of gas and dust surrounding a supermassive black hole. A team of astronomers used the ALMA radio telescope to observe the active galactic nucleus (AGN) of the M77 spiral galaxy that emits the intense electromagnetic radiation detected. This is the definitive proof of what was initially proposed as a theoretical concept for which increasingly clearer evidence was collected over time up to that presented in this research.