NASA has blended three views of our home galaxy’s turbulent core to produce a picture filled with scientifically significant snap, crackle and pop. And the deeper you go into the image, the more you learn.
The composite picture of the Milky Way’s center draws upon near-infrared data from the Hubble Space Telescope (shown in yellow), infrared readings from the Spitzer Space Telescope (shown in rich red) and the X-ray vision of the Chandra X-ray Observatory (shown in shades of blue and violet)
The result is an amazingly detailed, and amazingly colorful, multiwavelength view of our galaxy’s core, 26,000 light-years away in the constellation Sagittarius. Among the highlights are Sagittarius A*, the bright knot of material that surrounds the Milky Way’s supermassive black hole, and the “light echo” left behind by black hole blasts that faded away long ago.