Jump to content

Welcome to Unexplained Mysteries! Please sign in or create an account to start posting and to access a host of extra features.

- - - - -

Astronomers Spy Strange Pairing

  • Please log in to reply
No replies to this topic

#1    Lionel



  • Member
  • 2,449 posts
  • Joined:01 Aug 2003
  • Location:Bangalore

Posted 21 October 2003 - 10:20 AM

Behind a thick cocoon of cold gas, scientists have discovered what might be a new class of astronomical objects in our galaxy. Made up of a very massive star and a compact object such as a neutron star or a black hole, the binary system is unique because it remained hidden behind a cloud of obscuring material for so long. A paper describing the discovery will be published in Astronomy and Astrophysics in November.

The European Space Agency launched the Integral gamma-ray space telescope nearly a year ago. In January, it detected a previously undiscovered object, which astronomers dubbed IGR J16318-4848. Early analysis suggested it was similar to the 300 known combinations of compact objects and their companion stars in the Milky Way. IGR J16318-4848 was different, however, because it had eluded detection for so long. Using the XMM-Newton space observatory, the researchers detected a dense cocoon of cold gas surrounding the pair. The researchers posit that material ejected from the companion star, its so-called stellar wind, is accreted by the black hole to form a dense shell around the pair. The diameter of this thick cloud is roughly equivalent to the distance between the earth and the sun.

Full Story

He who walks in another's tracks leaves no footprints. Joan Brannon

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users