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Astronomy Picture of the Day

Posted By Editor On February 10, 2011 @ 10:08 pm In Photo Essays | Comments Disabled

Visit the NASA/JPL website to view more Astronomy Pictures of the Day [1]

hannyVWRP hst1 570x800 Astronomy Picture of the Day [2]

 

Hanny’s Voorwerp
Credit: NASA [3]ESA [4]W. Keel [5] (Univ. Alabama), et al., Galaxy Zoo Team [6]


Explanation: Hanny’s Voorwerp [7], Dutch for “Hanny’s Object”, is enormous, about the size [8] of our own Milky Way Galaxy. Glowing strongly in the greenish light produced by ionized oxygen atoms, the mysterious voorwerp [9] is below spiral galaxy IC 2497 in this view from the Hubble Space Telescope [10]. Both lie at a distance of some 650 million light-years in the faint constellation Leo Minor. In fact, the enormous green cloud is now suspected to be part of a tidal tail [11] of material illuminated by a quasar [12] inhabiting the center of IC 2497. Powered by a massive black hole, the quasar suddenly turned off [13], leaving only galaxy and glowing voorwerp visible in telescopes at optical wavelengths. The sharp Hubble image also resolves a star forming region in the voorwerp, seen in yellow on the side near IC 2497. That region was likely compressed by an outflow of gas driven from the galaxy’s core. The remarkable mystery object was discovered by Dutch schoolteacher Hanny van Arkel [14] in 2007 while participating online in the Galaxy Zoo project. Galaxy Zoo enlists [15] the public to help classify galaxies found in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, and more recently in deep Hubble imagery.


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URL to article: http://www.berthoudrecorder.com/astronomy-picture-of-the-day-8/

URLs in this post:

[1] Astronomy Pictures of the Day: http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/

[2] Image: http://www.berthoudrecorder.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/hannyVWRP_hst1.jpg

[3] NASA: http://www.nasa.gov/

[4] ESA: http://www.spacetelescope.org/

[5] W. Keel: http://www.astr.ua.edu/keel/

[6] Galaxy Zoo Team: http://www.galaxyzoo.org/

[7] Hanny’s Voorwerp: http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap080625.html

[8] about the size: http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2011/01/image/c/format/web/

[9] the mysterious voorwerp: http://hannysvoorwerp.zooniverse.org/the-story-so-far/

[10] view from the Hubble Space Telescope: http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2011/01/

[11] tidal tail: http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap100926.html

[12] illuminated by a quasar: http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2011/01/image/d/format/web_print/

[13] suddenly turned off: http://arxiv.org/abs/1011.0427

[14] Hanny van Arkel: http://www.hannysvoorwerp.com/

[15] Galaxy Zoo enlists: http://www.galaxyzoo.org/story

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