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The Bruce Murray Space Image Library

The galactic center

The galactic center

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X-ray: NASA / CXC / UMass / D. Wang et al.; Optical: NASA / ESA / STScI / D.Wang et al.; Infrared: NASA / JPL-Caltech / SSC / S. Stolovy

The galactic center
A composite image of the center of the Milky Way taken with three space-based telescopes. X-rays detected by the Chandra X-ray Observatory are represented in blue and violet, near-infrared light seen by the Hubble Space Telescope is yellow and infrared light captured by the Spitzer Space Telescope is red. The image covers one-half of a degree in the sky, about the width of the full moon. The bright blob of X-ray light in the picture's center-right is Sagittarius A, which contains a suspected supermassive black hole.

Original image data dated on or about November 10, 2009

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