NASA / STSCI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / STSCI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Hubble Space Telescope. Earth. The estimated mass of the black hole is about 100 million times the mass of our Sun. The optical light seen in the image is from the stars in the galaxy. The bright spots in X-ray and radio emission on the outer edges of the galaxy, near the ends of the jets, are caused by extremely high energy electrons following curved paths around magnetic field lines. They show where a jet generated by the black hole has plowed into clumps of material in the galaxy. Much of the energy of the jet goes into heating the gas in these clumps, and some of it goes into dragging cool gas along the direction of the jet. Both the heating and the dragging can limit the fuel supply for the supermassive black hole, leading to temporary starvation and stopping its growth. This feedback process is thought to cause the observed.
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