Black hole spreads its sphere of influence
- URL to an article from MSNBC
When I read this I tried to think of a science fiction story that had this
sheer scope, but I couldn't
First few paragraphs
By Robert Roy Britt
Senior science writer
Updated: 1:04 p.m. ET Dec. 1, 2005
Newfound plumes of material 300,000 light-years across are forced outward by
the explosive venting of a supermassive black hole, astronomers announced
Observations by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory revealed the energetic
plumes of particles associated with a massive galaxy cluster called Perseus. The
results provide evidence that a black hole can influence the space around it
to intergalactic distances, researchers said.
The Perseus cluster contains thousands of galaxies, all embedded in a giant
cloud of superheated gas. The gas alone has the mass of trillions of suns.
The plumes, seen clearly in _enhanced images_
X-ray data, are low-pressure regions in the hot gas extending outward from the
central galaxy, _NGC 1275_
(http://www.space.com/imageoftheday/image_of_day_030701.html) , which is one of the largest galaxies in the universe. The low
pressure is likely the result of the displacement of the gas by bubbles of
unseen high-energy particles, Fabian's team reports.
The bubbles appear to be generated by high-speed jets that shoot out from
the supermassive black hole anchoring NGC 1275. Individual bubbles in the inner
regions expand and merge to create vast plumes at larger distances.
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