Radio galaxy Centaurus A: black hole as a gigantic particle cannon

they are something like cosmic vacuum cleaners, and particle cannons in a super mass-rich Black holes at the centers of galaxies can only attract matter. A port

Radio galaxy Centaurus A: black hole as a gigantic particle cannon

they are something like cosmic vacuum cleaners, and particle cannons in a super mass-rich Black holes at the centers of galaxies can only attract matter. A portion of the energized Gas is thrown back in huge "Jets" again to All. The reason for this lies in the dynamics of the attracted matter, which heats up when one spin is enormous. In this hot Plasma is a complex Interaction of magnetic fields ensures that the two form a tightly collimated, counter-rotating beams of particles, thousands of light-years into space may extend. Exactly how these Jets form and propagate, however, it is yet little known and is an important missing piece of the puzzle of modern astrophysics, because such Jets are an essential part of the cosmic radiation responsible.

A team of researchers from the H. E. S. S. consortium ("High Energy Stereoscopic System") has now made a surprising discovery which seems to throw some of the old assumptions about the heap. In "Nature" the scientists describe that you have monitored your telescope system, the radio galaxy Centaurus A, a total of 200 hours in the field of gamma radiation is extremely high energy electromagnetic radiation, which is many orders of magnitude more energetic than x-rays. Centaurus A shows two extended radio lobes, which are driven by the two Jets from the Central Black hole. Their high luminosity in the Radio and also in the gamma area is the galaxy that the black hole is particularly active and highly matter-devouring. Centaurus A is at a distance of about twelve million light-years, the nearest radio galaxy and thus making it ideal for detailed monitoring studies.

Telltale Tracers of cosmic gamma-quantum

Although some radio galaxies as a strong gamma-ray sources known. But so far, never managed the Jets in the gamma range are closer in their spatial structure to dissolve. Due to the large cosmic distances, they were handlers with the appropriate tele only as to detect point sources. This is because gamma radiation is not easy to visually represent, such as radiation in the visible, infra-red or radio range. The H. E. S. S. Team, consisting of 200 researchers from 13 countries, had to exploit, therefore, the special technique of your telescope system – the currently most powerful Observatory of this kind – to the limits of its performance.

your Observatory consists of a plurality of telescopic trays that look but not to All, but in the upper atmosphere. One of the rare, extremely high-energy gamma quanta of cosmic radiation on the top layers of air, for a brief moment, a light track record, these telescopes from different observation angles, and thus, the origin direction of the gamma quantum can be determined.

until now, astrophysicists assumed that high-energy gamma comes radiation mainly from the Central region of the galaxy directly in the vicinity of the Black hole. This seemed to be the fact to follow, that the strength of the Gamma-ray emissions can vary in time from minutes. This is only possible if the emission region is spatially limited.

shock waves of galactic Jets

"As we are now for the first Time were able to determine, the high-energy gamma-quantum, but not only in a small area, but over thousands of light-years in the Jet," said Mathieu de Naurois of the École Polytechnique in Palaiseau. In order to reach the achieved sharpness of the image in the gamma range, and to extract as much information as possible from the data, the researchers had to develop a very sophisticated analysis programs.

The discovery that the Gamma Emission extends transversely on the Jet, is for the research of cosmic rays is very revealing, because the gamma-quantum, in such a Jets secondary products. The strong magnetic fields accelerate electrons to extreme energies – far higher than the energies with earthly particle accelerators possible. The electrons transfer part of their energy in the Form of gamma radiation. However, since high energy electrons lose their energy on a distance of about 100 light-years by scattering effects with the interstellar matter and background radiation, it means that even far out in the Jet is still highly effective acceleration mechanisms must work.

Updated Date: 28 June 2020, 19:19

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