Image: Jon Lomberg
Astronomers using the Gemini North Telescope on Hawaii’s Mauna Kea report that they have created a three-dimensional movie of a powerful, active galaxy located some 70 million light years away. The addition of a new instrument, the Integral Field Unit (IFU), to the Gemini telescope enabled the group to study light from the galaxy NGC1068 in much greater detail. From a single still of NGC1068, the IFU generated data on the physical conditions and velocities of galactic material throughout the image. This information, in turn, allowed the astronomers to create an animated picture that provides a fresh look at the workings of the galaxy, including an enormous pair of jets bursting out of a suspected black hole at its core. Two reports on these findings will appear in the Conference Series of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific.
The benefit of using the advanced Gemini telescope, the scientists say, stems from its capacity for capturing and refining light. In this case, the IFU transmits the enormous volume of light collected by Gemini through hundreds of tiny optical fibers, each of which bears a micro-lens at its tip. The optical fibers send the light to an advanced spectrograph, which produces a single spectrum for each fiber--1500 in all. From that data, the researchers can describe and track the motions of gas or stars at any point in the image. "When we play back our movie of the galaxy NGC1068, we see a three-dimensional view of the core," says Bryan Miller, the Gemini instrument scientist for IFUs. Of particular interest are the two jets that extend out from the galaxy’s center. Gemini scientist Jean-Rene Roy compares the shockwave-type effect the enormous jets inflict on the galaxy’s surrounding gaseous disk to that of "a huge wave smashing onto a galactic shoreline."
More advanced IFUs may provide better images still. Within the next two years, for instance, new optical and near-infrared IFUs will be used on both Gemini North and a sister telescope in Chile. These new systems should produce some of the highest resolution images obtainable by telescopes, enabling astronomers to study in even closer detail the dynamics of distant galaxies.
Greg Mone | Scientific American
From rocks in Colorado, evidence of a 'chaotic solar system'
23.02.2017 | University of Wisconsin-Madison
Prediction: More gas-giants will be found orbiting Sun-like stars
22.02.2017 | Carnegie Institution for Science
Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...
The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.
The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...
Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...
Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".
Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...
13.02.2017 | Event News
10.02.2017 | Event News
09.02.2017 | Event News
24.02.2017 | Life Sciences
24.02.2017 | Life Sciences
24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News