Wish you had X-ray vision? An extraordinary new map showcases the universe in striking, X-ray radiation.
Scientists created this stunning X-ray map of the universe using eROSITA (Extended Roentgen Survey with an Imaging Telescope Array), an instrument on the German-Russian satellite mission Spectrum-Röntgen-Gamma, or Spektr-RG.
The scientists completed a full sweep of the sky over the course of about six months, looking for sources of X-ray radiation — a type of high-energy electromagnetic radiation. These X-ray sources include black holes, galaxy clusters and leftover remnants from supernova explosions.
In scouring the skies, eROSITA spotted over a million sources of X-ray radiation from all across the cosmos, with most of the sources being active galactic nuclei, or the luminous, compact region at the center of galaxies. This number of sources roughly doubles the number of known X-ray sources that have been discovered over the 60-year history of X-ray astronomy, according to a statement from the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE) in Garching, Germany. By studying clusters of galaxies with this new, detailed map, researchers hope to track how these cosmic structures grow.
"This all-sky image completely changes the way we look at the energetic universe," Peter Predehl, the Principal Investigator of eROSITA at MPE, said in the same statement. "We see such a wealth of detail — the beauty of the images is really stunning."
Because it is not only stunning but incredibly detailed, this new X-ray map could "revolutionize" the way that we look at the cosmos, Kirpal Nandra, head of the high-energy astrophysics group at MPE, said in the same statement.
"With a million sources in just six months, eROSITA has already revolutionized X-ray astronomy, but this is just a taste of what's to come," Nandra said. "This combination of sky area and depth is transformational. We are already sampling a cosmological volume of the hot Universe much larger than has been possible before. Over the next few years, we'll be able to probe even further, out to where the first giant cosmic structures and supermassive black holes were forming."
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My note *the beauty of the images*, I am glad the Earth is not orbiting close to any of these high energy X-ray sources :) It does raise questions. Lifetime of such high energy X-ray sources compared to the Hubble time as an example.
The cosmic background radiation observations cover the whole sky and is usually presented in an all-sky Mollweide projection https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosmic_microwave_background#Microwave_background_observations ].
The eROSITA is also all-sky and presented similarly, see the image. It is a map "of X-ray radiation from all across the cosmos, " Just Read The Instructions.
Or maybe you meant something else?
Here's the question: What is the current thinking about what happens when x-ray radiation hits the boundry (if that's even the right word) of the universe?
All I had to do to come up with this implied promotion was to read the title of the article.
I was afraid the Expanding Universe would be the answer. I struggle a bit with that concept. But, no matter, I gather that there is currently no credible alternative to the Expanding Universe that can explain our observations.
The idea that nothing is being displaced as the universe expands does not fit well with my limited observations on the planet earth. Same holds for the ultimate contraction.