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Suzaku, Herschel Link a Black-hole 'Wind' to a Galactic Gush of Star-forming Gas

Suzaku, Herschel Link a Black-hole ‘Wind’ to a Galactic Gush of Star-forming Gas

03.25.15 – By combining observations from the Japan-led Suzaku X-ray satellite and the European Space Agency's infrared Herschel Space Observatory, scientists have connected a fierce “wind” produced near a galaxy's monster black hole to an outward torrent of cold gas a thousand light-years across. The finding validates a long-suspected feedback mechanism enabling a supermassive black hole to influence the evolution of its host galaxy.

“This is the first study directly connecting a galaxy's actively ‘feeding’ black hole to features found at much larger physical scales,” said lead researcher Francesco Tombesi, an astrophysicist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and the University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP). “We detect the wind arising from the luminous disk of gas very close to the black hole, and we show that it's responsible for blowing star-forming gas out of the galaxy's central regions.”

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Explorers News Continues
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02.19.15NASA, ESA Telescopes Give Shape to Furious Black Hole Winds
01.16.15NuSTAR Principal Investigator Receives Astrophysics Prize
01.15.15NEOWISE: A Yearlong Look at the Sky
01.08.15Will the Real Monster Black Hole Please Stand Up?
01.06.15‘Disk Detectives’ Find Over 1M Possible Planetary Habitats
11.20.14Swift Marks 10 Years of Game-changing Astrophysics
11.19.14Swift Probes an Exotic Object: ‘Kicked’ Black Hole or Mega Star?
11.07.14TESS Mission Cleared for Next Development Phase
10.31.14NASA Reveals Mysteries of ‘Interstellar’ Space

>> Explorers News Archive

Explorers 4 New Missions

NASA Selects Explorer Projects To Probe Earth's Upper Atmosphere
News Release 04.12.13 – NASA has selected a new satellite mission and a new space-based instrument to begin development as part of the agency's Heliophysics Explorer Program.
>> Find more on ICON

NASA Selects Explorer Investigations for Formulation
News Release 04.05.13 – NASA's Astrophysics Explorer Program has selected two missions for launch in 2017: a planet-hunting satellite and an International Space Station instrument to observe X-rays from stars.

NASA Taps the Power of Zombie Stars in Two-in-One Instrument 04.05.13 – NICER will not only reveal why neutron stars are the densest objects in nature, but also demonstrate navigation technology that could revolutionize…
>> Find more on NICER



The mission of the Explorers Program is to provide frequent flight opportunities for world-class scientific investigations from space utilizing innovative, streamlined and efficient management approaches within the heliophysics and astrophysics science areas.



The program seeks to enhance public awareness of, and appreciation for, space science and to incorporate educational and public outreach activities as integral parts of space science investigations.

Explorers Missions Status

  • Astro-H
    Launch Date: November 2015
    Phase C/D: Design & Development
  • GOLD
    Launch Date: 2017
    Phase B: Preliminary Design & Technology Development
  • ICON
    Launch Date: June 2017
    Phase B: Preliminary Design & Technology Development
  • NICER
    Launch Date: August 2016
    Phase B: Preliminary Design & Technology Development
  • TESS
    Launch Date: August 2017
    Phase B: Preliminary Design & Technology Development
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