Hubble captures massive collision inside black hole [video]

An amazing video of two high-speed chunks of matter colliding has just been released by scientists working with the Hubble Space Telescope.
By Aaron Sims | May 28, 2015
The Hubble Space Telescope has just sent researchers at NASA and the ESA a stunning video of a high-speed collision inside of a massive black hole. According to Science Codex, the rear-end collision between two high-speed knots of space matter was discovered by astronomers as they pieced together frames from a time lapse of photos taken of the black hole.

The black hole is located in a galaxy 260 million years from earth, and the collision was likely caused by an extragalactic jet emanating from the middle of the galaxy. Particles inside of these extragalactic jets are so highly energized that they shoot out of the black hole at breakneck speeds; the particle that collided into the other one was traveling at nearly seven times the speed of light. The other particle, while moving much slower in relative terms, was still traveling well above the speed of light.

Scientists have long had trouble understanding these extragalactic jets, as they appear to transport energized plasma in a confined "tractor" beam from the middle of a host galaxy. The photos have astronomers wondering how the jets are able to transport such highly energized plasma and convert some of this energy into radiation.

The video of the collision has been assembled from over two decades' worth of photos of the distant galaxy, NGC 3862. This is one of the brightest known galaxies, and one of the only ones that displays such extragalactic jets with visible light.

The "shock collision" caused by the two blobs of energy caused a significant increase in visible light and radiation. Collisions like this one are believed to occur regularly, though this one is special because it is the first to be captured with the use of an optical telescope.

According to Eileen Meyer of the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, Maryland, "Something like this has never been seen before in an extragalactic jet."

You can watch the video of the collision here:


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