NASA Infrared Mission Reveals Millions of Hidden Supermassive Black Holes
Follow the Daily Galaxy
Add Daily Galaxy to igoogle page AddThis Feed Button Join The Daily Galaxy Group on Facebook Follow The Daily Galaxy Group on twitter
 

« EcoAlert: New Climate-Change Threat? Immense Amounts of Methane Locked Under Antarctic Ice | Main | Image of the Day: Stunning New Views of Saturn's Titan »

August 29, 2012

NASA Infrared Mission Reveals Millions of Hidden Supermassive Black Holes

 

           Active black hole in eye of sauron

 

NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission has led to a bonanza of newfound supermassive black holes and extreme galaxies called hot DOGs, or dust-obscured galaxies. Images from the telescope have revealed millions of dusty black hole candidates across the universe and about 1,000 even dustier objects thought to be among the brightest galaxies ever found. These powerful galaxies that burn brightly with infrared light are nicknamed hot DOGs.

"WISE has exposed a menagerie of hidden objects," said Hashima Hasan, WISE program scientist at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "We've found an asteroid dancing ahead of Earth in its orbit, the coldest star-like orbs known and now, supermassive black holes and galaxies hiding behind cloaks of dust."

WISE scanned the whole sky twice in infrared light, completing its survey in early 2011. Like night-vision goggles probing the dark, the telescope captured millions of images of the sky. All the data from the mission have been released publicly, allowing astronomers to dig in and make new discoveries.

The latest findings are helping astronomers better understand how galaxies and the behemoth black holes at their centers grow and evolve together. For example, the giant black hole at the center of our Milky Way galaxy, called Sagittarius A*, has 4 million times the mass of our sun and has gone through periodic feeding frenzies where material falls towards the black hole, heats up, and irradiates its surroundings. Bigger central black holes, up to a billion times the mass of our sun, even may shut down star formation in galaxies.

In one study, astronomers used WISE to identify about 2.5 million actively feeding supermassive black holes across the full sky, stretching back to distances more than 10 billion light-years away. About two-thirds of these black holes never had been detected before because dust blocks their visible light. WISE easily sees these monsters because their powerful, accreting black holes warm the dust, causing it to glow in infrared light.

In two other WISE papers, researchers report finding what are among the brightest galaxies known, one of the main goals of the mission. So far, they have identified about 1,000 candidates. These extreme objects can pour out more than 100 trillion times as much light as our sun. They are so dusty, however, that they appear only in the longest wavelengths of infrared light captured by WISE. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope followed up on the discoveries in more detail and helped show that, in addition to hosting supermassive black holes feverishly snacking on gas and dust, these DOGs are busy churning out new stars.

"These dusty, cataclysmically forming galaxies are so rare WISE had to scan the entire sky to find them," said Peter Eisenhardt, lead author of the paper on the first of these bright, dusty galaxies, and project scientist for WISE at JPL. "We are also seeing evidence that these record setters may have formed their black holes before the bulk of their stars. The 'eggs' may have come before the 'chickens.'"

More than 100 of these objects, located about 10 billion light-years away, have been confirmed using the W.M. Keck Observatory on Mauna Kea, Hawaii, as well as the Gemini Observatory in Chile, Palomar's 200-inch Hale telescope near San Diego, and the Multiple Mirror Telescope Observatory near Tucson, Ariz.

The WISE observations combined with data at even longer infrared wavelengths from Caltech's Submillimeter Observatory atop Mauna Kea, Hawaii, revealed that these extreme galaxies are more than twice as hot as other infrared-bright galaxies. One theory is their dust is being heated by an extremely powerful burst of activity from the supermassive black hole.

"We may be seeing a new, rare phase in the evolution of galaxies," said Jingwen Wu of JPL, lead author of the study on the submillimeter observations.

All three papers are being published in the Astrophysical Journal.*

The Daily Galaxy via NASA/WISE

Image Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/CfA/J.Wang et al.; Optical: Isaac Newton Group of Telescopes, La Palma/Jacobus Kapteyn Telescope, Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA

Comments

Notice how the assumption about the existence of BH and SMBH has slowly but surely became a sort of fact, still devoid of any evidence like 50 years ago.

"A lie told loud enough and long enough becomes a fact"

It is obvious that the egg comes first.

This proves that so called "dark matter" doesn't exist. Astronimers have not found enough SBH's to make up for the missing matter in the universe.

Quote: "NASA Infrared Mission Reveals Millions of Hidden Supermassive Black Holes".

AD: No, Nasa reveals millions of dynamic cosmic swirls with funnels that are fundamental for all formation and reformation in the Universe.

What is "massive" is the swirling force in galactic centres and otherwhere that is caused by a mix of natural forces as atmospheric dynamics; thermodynamics; hydrodynamics; electrodynamics; magnetodynamics and nuclear dynamics.

"Gravity" has nothing to do in these cases of fundamental forces because they all describe a circular and spherical motion of eternal assembling and dissolving gas and matter, i.e. the directional movement of formation "goes both ways" and all around.

uh, let's go back to that asteroid...dancing ahead?

I have no clue what you just said.

Julie

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPMKgibr0YA is a youtube video of what the asteroid is doing. It is only an artist conception though.

As time goes on, more and more matter is being accounted for, (new black holes and lots of them, new nebulae, new mass in general) meaning less and less so called "dark matter mystery particles" will be "needed" to complete the universe's set of matter and energy. Super massive black holes are many times as massive as average sized stars so they concentrate perceived mass in such a small space that it's hard for our tech to "see" but this added sum of black hole mass adds greatly to the discovered mass of the universe.

No one is sure "dark matter" even exists. Dark matter was a term invented to denote missing matter according to modern parameters of what the universe's matter "should" be. Ditto for "dark energy", it's merely a catch box for energy that "should" exist but isn't accounted for yet.

Oops...do I smell some errors erupting from the septic tank of accepted theory here? That word, "accepted" gets upset almost daily now that very open minded physicists, and the whole field of astrophysics and particle physics and colliders are making such advanced strides.

So as the facts emerge, keep an open mind on practically everything. Is mankind about to acquire a base of entirely new physics and time/space knowledge? Likely, I'm muzing here, in the next 100 years of man's already 250 year old yet primitive science, will mankind discover how to use more space "bits" than time "bits" to "go" faster than C. "Warp 7 Scotty"


Post a comment

« EcoAlert: New Climate-Change Threat? Immense Amounts of Methane Locked Under Antarctic Ice | Main | Image of the Day: Stunning New Views of Saturn's Titan »




1


2


3


4


5


6


7


8





9


11


12


13


14


15

Our Partners

technology partners

A


19


B

About Us/Privacy Policy

For more information on The Daily Galaxy and to contact us please visit this page.



E