Monday, October 29, 2012

Monster Galaxy's Core Is Biggest Ever Seen


The giant elliptical galaxy in the center of this image, taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, is the most massive and brightest member of the galaxy cluster Abell 2261. Image released Oct. 25, 2012.

A faraway galaxy's core is the largest ever seen, and it may have been puffed up by the merger of two black holes, a new study reports.

The core of the elliptical galaxy A2261-BCG is about 10,000 light-years across, astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope discovered. That's unexpectedly huge, even for a galaxy 10 times wider than our own Milky Way. The core is also strangely diffuse, without a concentrated peak of light around an obvious central black hole.

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