Visible-Light and X-Ray Composite Image of Galaxy Cluster 1E 0657-556

Stsci_2009-18d_1024

stsci_2009-18d April 21st, 2009

Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/M.Markevitch et al. Optical: NASA/STScI ; Magellan/U.Arizona/D.Clowe et al. Lensing Map: NASA/STScI ; ESO WFI; Magellan/U.Arizona/D.Clowe et al.

This composite image shows the galaxy cluster 1E 0657-556, also known as the "bullet cluster." This cluster was formed after the collision of two large clusters of galaxies, the most energetic event known in the universe since the Big Bang. Hot gas detected by Chandra in X-rays is seen as two pink clumps in the image and contains most of the "normal," or baryonic, matter in the two clusters. The bullet-shaped clump on the right is the hot gas from one cluster, which passed through the hot gas from the other larger cluster during the collision. An optical image from Magellan and the Hubble Space Telescope shows the galaxies in orange and white. The blue areas in this image depict where astronomers find most of the mass in the clusters. The concentration of mass is determined by analyzing the effect of so-called gravitational lensing, where light from the distant objects is distorted by intervening matter. Most of the matter in the clusters (blue) is clearly separate from the normal matter (pink), giving direct evidence that nearly all of the matter in the clusters is dark. The hot gas in each cluster was slowed by a drag force, similar to air resistance, during the collision. In contrast, the dark matter was not slowed by the impact because it does not interact directly with itself or the gas except through gravity. Therefore, during the collision the dark matter clumps from the two clusters moved ahead of the hot gas, producing the separation of the dark and normal matter seen in the image. If hot gas was the most massive component in the clusters, as proposed by alternative theories of gravity, such an effect would not be seen. Instead, this result shows that dark matter is required. Comparing the optical image with the blue emission shows that the most of the galaxies in each cluster are located near the two dark matter clumps. This shows that the galaxies in each cluster did not slow down because of the collision, unlike the hot gas.

Provider: Space Telescope Science Institute

Image Source: https://hubblesite.org/contents/news-releases/2009/news-2009-18

Curator: STScI, Baltimore, MD, USA

Image Use Policy: http://hubblesite.org/copyright/

Image Details

Image Type
Observation
Object Name
1ES 0657-55.8
Subject - Local Universe
Galaxy > Grouping > Cluster
Cosmology > Phenomenon > Dark Matter

Distance

Universescale3
3,400,000,000 light years
Stsci_2009-18d_128
 

Position Details

Position (FK5)
RA = 6h 58m 19.2s
DEC = -55° 56’ 43.4”
Orientation
North is up
Field of View
7.4 x 5.4 arcminutes
Constellation
Carina

Color Mapping

  Telescope Spectral Band Wavelength
Blue Hubble (ACS/WFC) Optical (B) 435.0 nm
Green Hubble (ACS/WFC) Optical (V) 606.0 nm
Red Hubble (ACS/WFC) Optical (I) 814.0 nm
Spectrum_base
Blue
Green
Red
Stsci_2009-18d_1280
×
ID
2009-18d
Subject Category
C.5.5.3   C.6.2.3  
Subject Name
1ES 0657-55.8
Credits
X-ray: NASA/CXC/M.Markevitch et al. Optical: NASA/STScI ; Magellan/U.Arizona/D.Clowe et al. Lensing Map: NASA/STScI ; ESO WFI; Magellan/U.Arizona/D.Clowe et al.
Release Date
2009-04-21T00:00:00
Lightyears
3,400,000,000
Redshift
3,400,000,000
Reference Url
https://hubblesite.org/contents/news-releases/2009/news-2009-18
Type
Observation
Image Quality
Good
Distance Notes
Distance in lightyears
Facility
Hubble, Hubble, Hubble
Instrument
ACS/WFC, ACS/WFC, ACS/WFC
Color Assignment
Blue, Green, Red
Band
Optical, Optical, Optical
Bandpass
B, V, I
Central Wavelength
435, 606, 814
Start Time
Integration Time
Dataset ID
Notes
Coordinate Frame
FK5
Equinox
2000.0
Reference Value
104.5801777559999977, -55.9454011750000006
Reference Dimension
3000.0000000000000000, 2168.0000000000000000
Reference Pixel
2000.9117736799998966, 1054.2204589800001031
Scale
-0.0000413238623185, 0.0000413238623185
Rotation
0.0267502842685314
Coordinate System Projection:
TAN
Quality
Full
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
STScI
URL
http://hubblesite.org
Name
Space Telescope Science Institute Office of Public Outreach
Email
outreach@stsci.edu
Telephone
410-338-4444
Address
3700 San Martin Drive
City
Baltimore
State/Province
MD
Postal Code
21218
Country
USA
Rights
http://hubblesite.org/copyright/
Publisher
STScI
Publisher ID
stsci
Resource ID
STSCI-H-p0918d-f-3000x2168.tif
Resource URL
https://mast.stsci.edu/api/latest/Download/file?uri=mast:OPO/product/STSCI-H-p0918d-f-3000x2168.tif
Related Resources
http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2009/18
Metadata Date
2022-07-06T00:00:00
Metadata Version
1.2
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Detailed color mapping information coming soon...

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Universescalefull
3,400,000,000 light years