Astronomers Detect Mysterious Structure in a Galaxy

Source: Pixabay.com
Source: Pixabay.com

The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) proves itself useful once again, as astronomers have been using it to detect a mysterious structure in the form of faint radio emission. The structure was found in the host galaxy of the quasar known as 3C 273, according to SciTechDaily.com.

The quasar is so far away from Earth that if you look at it, you would automatically look 2.5 billion years into the past. As you’ve already guessed, that means that the quasar is 2.5 billion light-years away from us.

The radio emission measures tens of thousands of light-years

Scientists are extremely delighted by the discovery. The radio emission is huge, measuring tens of thousands of light-years across. It seems to be generated by the gas that the central black hole creates. By studying the phenomenon, astronomers might even learn important stuff about star formation and galaxy evolution.

Shinya Komugi, an astronomer from the Kogakuin University, and his colleagues, released the following statements, as sci-news.com quotes:

A quasar is the nucleus of a galaxy believed to host a massive black hole at its center, which swallows its surrounding material, giving off enormous radiation,

Contrary to its bland name, 3C 273 is the first quasar ever discovered, the brightest, and the best studied.

It is one of the most frequently observed sources with telescopes because it can be used as a standard of position in the sky. In other words, 3C 273 is a radio lighthouse.

The scientists involved in the study also explained that quasars surrounded by radio emissions usually suggest the presence of synchrotron emission. Very powerful events are to blame here, such as bursts of star formation. The Virgo constellation where the 3C 273 quasar exists is the second-largest constellation known to astronomers.

The new study was published in The Astrophysical Journal.

Cristian Antonescu
Cristian is in love with technology as many of us. He has a vast experience as a content writer in the field. He's involved especially in the gaming area, where he covers the latest news in open-world, role-playing, and first-person shooter titles.