(Picture credit score: NASA/ESA/A. Evans (College of Virginia)/Processing: Gladys Kober (NASA/Catholic College of America))
What it’s: ESO 420-G013, a particularly vivid face-on spiral galaxy harboring a hungry black gap
When it was taken: Jan. 30, 2024
The place it’s: 50 million light-years from Earth within the constellation Sculptor
Why it is so particular: This picture from the Hubble Space Telescope captures the darkish mud lanes of a uncommon type of spiral galaxy in opposition to the glow of 1000’s of stars.
The picture reveals a vivid core and brownish filaments of darkish mud, however the galaxy’s nearly completely spherical disk is its most notable function. That is as a result of Hubble, which has been in orbit round Earth since 1990, simply occurs to have a direct face-on view of ESO 420-G013.
In addition to being a effective instance of a spiral galaxy, ESO 420-G013 is a Seyfert galaxy. Named after American astronomer Carl Keenan Seyfert, who researched the objects in 1943, a Seyfert galaxy has a particularly vivid, point-like lively galactic nucleus powered by a supermassive black hole, based on a NASA statement. Deep inside ESO 420-G013, its hungry black gap is pulling in surrounding materials and sending out highly effective radiation. It is also forming new stars at a excessive price.
Seyfert galaxies like this one are seen within the infrared — wavelengths of sunshine past these seen to people within the electromagnetic spectrum — which Hubble can detect because of its Vast Area Digicam 3, which is delicate to ultraviolet, seen and infrared gentle.
What’s particular about ESO 420-G013 is its visibility. Most galaxies with lively galactic nuclei host black holes so vivid that their radiation solely obscures the sunshine of the host galaxy. Nonetheless, Seyfert galaxies corresponding to ESO 420-G013 are distinct, as a result of the encompassing galaxy construction could be clearly detected.
ESO 420-G013 was captured by Hubble as a part of analysis on luminous infrared galaxies, that are identified for his or her intense brightness within the infrared spectrum.