Image: Starbursting in the galaxy M82

Feb 03, 2014
Credit: Josh Marvil (NM Tech/NRAO), Bill Saxton (NRAO/AUI/NSF), NASA

(Phys.org) —Messier 82 (M82), the galaxy in which the nearest supernova in decades recently exploded, also is the closest galaxy that is undergoing a rapid burst of star formation, known as a starburst. About 12 million light-years away, it is seen nearly edge-on, as shown in the larger, visible-light image from the Hubble Space Telescope.

The inset is a new radio image, made with the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA), that reveals fresh information about the central 5,200 light-years of the galaxy.

The radio emission seen here is produced by and by fast-moving electrons interacting with the interstellar magnetic field.

The bright dots are a mix of star-forming regions and , the debris from stellar explosions; analysis of the VLA data tells scientists which of these are which.

Scientists also are studying the faint, wispy features, many of which were previously unseen, to investigate their relationship with this galaxy's starburst-driven superwind.

Supernova 2014J is located outside the inset, to the right. VLA observations to date show that, like all other supernovae of its particular type, SN 2014J has not yet been found to be emitting radio waves.

Explore further: NASA spacecraft take aim at nearby supernova

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

NASA spacecraft take aim at nearby supernova

Jan 24, 2014

(Phys.org) —An exceptionally close stellar explosion discovered on Jan. 21 has become the focus of observatories around and above the globe, including several NASA spacecraft. The blast, designated SN 2014J, ...

A galaxy with two hearts

Jan 09, 2014

This new Hubble image shows the spiral galaxy Messier 83, otherwise known as the Southern Pinwheel Galaxy. One of the largest and closest barred spirals to us, this galaxy is dramatic and mysterious; it has ...

Image: Hubble looks at Messier 65 and its history

Jan 27, 2014

(Phys.org) —The first day of March 1780 was a particularly productive night for Charles Messier. Combing the constellation of Leo for additions to his grand astronomical catalog, he struck on not one, but ...

Hubble catches stellar explosions in NGC 6984

Nov 08, 2013

Supernovae are intensely bright objects. They are formed when a star reaches the end of its life with a dramatic explosion, expelling most of its material out into space.

Surprising image provides new tool for studying galaxy

Nov 14, 2013

Astronomers studying gas halos around nearby galaxies were surprised when detailed studies with the National Science Foundation's Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) showed that one of their subjects is ...

A multi-wavelength view of radio galaxy Hercules A

Nov 29, 2012

(Phys.org)—Spectacular jets powered by the gravitational energy of a super massive black hole in the core of the elliptical galaxy Hercules A illustrate the combined imaging power of two of astronomy's ...

Recommended for you

Image: Chandra's view of the Tycho Supernova remnant

18 hours ago

More than four centuries after Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe first observed the supernova that bears his name, the supernova remnant it created is now a bright source of X-rays. The supersonic expansion of ...

Satellite galaxies put astronomers in a spin

Jul 24, 2014

An international team of researchers, led by astronomers at the Observatoire Astronomique de Strasbourg (CNRS/Université de Strasbourg), has studied 380 galaxies and shown that their small satellite galaxies almost always ...

Video: The diversity of habitable zones and the planets

Jul 24, 2014

The field of exoplanets has rapidly expanded from the exclusivity of exoplanet detection to include exoplanet characterization. A key step towards this characterization is the determination of which planets occupy the Habitable ...

User comments : 0