Chandra Helps Astronomers Discover a Surprisingly Lonely Galaxy

The most recent Chandra press and image release “Chandra Helps Astronomers Discover a Surprisingly Lonely Galaxy” was released on 3/8/23. A distant — and lonely — galaxy appears to have pulled in and assimilated all its former companion galaxies. This result made with NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and the International Gemini Observatory may push the limits for how quickly astronomers expect galaxies to grow in the early universe. The unexpectedly solo galaxy is located about 9.2 billion light-years from Earth and contains a quasar, a supermassive black hole pulling in gas at the center of the galaxy and driving powerful jets of matter seen in radio waves. The environment of this galaxy, known as 3C 297, appears to have the key features of a galaxy cluster, enormous structures that usually contain hundreds or even thousands of galaxies. Yet 3C 297 stands alone.

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