In celebration of NASA’s Chandra X-Ray Observatory’s 15th year of operation, the mission team has selected some highlights from Chandra’s vast dataset covering the high-energy universe. This is one of six new images selected to highlight Chandra’s contribution to understanding the universe by combining mission data with images at other wavelengths.
This image shows Hercules A, an active galactic nucleus that appears an ordinary elliptical galaxy in visible light. In this multiwavelength image showing the bright galaxy core in visible light, radio data (in blue) reveals jets of particles streaming away from the core, stretching almost a million light-years across. Chandra X-ray data is shown in purple, delineating a cloud of gas at multimillion degree temperatures. The gas has been heated by energy generated as matter falls into the supermassive black hole at the centre of Hercules A.