Thursday, April 6, 2017

Mysterious Flash of Cosmic X-rays With 1,000 Times More Energy Than All Stars in Milky Way Galaxy!

April 5, 2017 - Mysterious Flash of Cosmic X-rays With 1,000 Times
More Energy
 Than All Stars in Milky Way Galaxy! What Was It?
“We may have observed a completely new type of cataclysmic event.”
- Kevin Schawinski, of ETH Zurich in Switzerland

Possible explanations include gamma-ray bursts (GRB) caused by the collapse
of a massive star; the merger of a neutron star with another neutron star or a
black hole; or the shredding of a white dwarf by a medium-sized black hole.
See: June 2017 Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.
Image credit: NASA/CXC/Pontifical Catholic Univ./ F. Bauer et al.

Prior to October 2014, NASA's Chandra X-Ray Observatory had never seen anything like this unique eruption that produced a thousand times more energy than all the stars in our Milky Way Galaxy — and has never been seen again. The Hubble and Spitzer Space Telescopes determined the source to be a small galaxy some 10.7 billion light-years from Earth in our 13.8 billion-years-old universe.