Ultra-Luminous X-Ray Source in NGC 5408 (2014)

Yes, the wild-looking magenta blob is the x-ray source, as you’ve hopefully already guessed. Previously I complained that I didn’t know how to obtain x-ray data to add to this picture even though I knew it was out there. Well, now I know how! These data were given to me by Joe who I already mentioned in the Vela Pulsar image but he also showed me WebChaSeR which is Chandra’s equivalent to the Hubble Legacy Archive. Anyway, I will be able to disentomb those on my own now (supposedly).

I know that x-ray imagery is strange and foreign with the exception of its uses for broken bones and dentistry but I think it is incredibly important to understand and look at the Universe in with all of the electromagnetic spectrum, not only to further our knowledge but I also have the hope that one day people will be able to appreciate the aesthetics of these invisible light rays. This time it’s just a dot, but it’s no less wonderful than any other point source such as a star. Think of it like a rare and elusive creature. There thousands of stars in this picture but only one bright x-ray source.

Click here to see this image without x-rays.

Red: WFC3/IR F160W + hst_11987_29_wfpc2_f656n_wf_sci
Green: Pseudo
Blue: WFC3/IR F105W
Magenta: merged, broad-band (0.5-7.0 keV) data from 9 observations (via Joseph DePasquale)

North is up.

Copyright information:
Hubble data is public domain, but I put a lot of work into combining it into beautiful color images. The minimal credit line should read: NASA / ESA / J. Schmidt

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.