Astronomers from Russia discovered why the brightest galaxy “blink”

Astronomers from Russia discovered why the brightest galaxy “blink”

MOSCOW, 27 Jun — RIA Novosti. Astronomers from St. Petersburg followed the brightest black holes in the Universe and find out why they periodically “blink”, lowering or raising brightness. Their findings were presented in the journals Astrophysical Journal and MNRAS.

Quasars are supermassive black holes at the centers of distant galaxies that have actively absorb matter and “spit” part of it in the form of narrow beams of matter accelerated to near-light speeds, and increase their flows of energy, whose luminosity in the tens and hundreds of millions of times brighter than the Sun.

Space lamps

If the quasar is turned to us, “face”, then it becomes particularly bright to observers on Earth because of what such objects are often called “blazare”. Brightness blazers is periodically changed dramatically, and the reasons remain a mystery and subject of debate among scientists in recent years.

Kirill Sokolovsky from Astro space center of Lebedev physics Institute in Moscow, as well as scientists from NASA, St. Petersburg, Crimean Observatory of Moscow state University, approached the solution to this puzzle, watching one of the brightest and most well-known blazers, galaxy 3C 279 in the constellation Virgo, and another object CTA-102, located in the constellation of Pegasus.

Both of these supermassive black holes were discovered more than 50 years ago, and scientists for quite a long time attracted by the fact that their brightness is very constant and varies in all ranges of electromagnetic waves. Recently, he and the other blazar has experienced several bursts of activity, the observation of which helped Sokolov and his colleagues to approach their understanding.