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ALMA provides a fresh look at a cosmic jellyfish

30 Sep 2019, 15:50 UTC
ALMA provides a fresh look at a cosmic jellyfish ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO), P. Jachym (Czech Academy of Sciences) et al.

Galaxies plowing through the gas and dust permeating vast clusters can leave trails in their wakes made up of material torn away in a process known as ram-pressure stripping. A spiral galaxy known as ESO 137-001 is a well-known example of this spectacular phenomenon, taking on the appearance of a jellyfish trailing long tentacles through space. The Hubble Space Telescope sees hints of the stripped-away material while the Chandra X-ray Observatory reveals an enormous stream of hot gas streaming away into space. Now, the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, or ALMA, radio telescope, working in concert with the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope, has allowed astronomers to map out cold molecular gas in the trailing clouds.

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