At the center of our galaxy, there is a supermassive black hole that can be compared to a cozy pub’s center, the hearth of it. The place is a warm, bright gathering, and the quotidian life of the Milky Way galaxy swirls going around it. On the 20th of March, a new study has been published in the journal Nature, and it talks about new structures that the researchers called galactic “chimneys.”
The X-ray emissions seething out of the galactic center of the Milky Way has been analyzed in a recent study thanks to which researchers noticed two structures looking quite unusual. These are two columns made out of superhot plasma, which emit X-rays. They have bee seen billowing out of the galactic center one flowing south and one rising north for hundreds of light-years in either direction.
A researcher at the National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF) in Italy, the lead study author Gabriele Ponti, told Live Science that they “call these the chimneys. Looking at them, we see clear evidence for a strong outflow of plasma from the galactic center.”
Galactic “chimneys” are made of plasma and emit X-Ray
This evidence has been found by the lead author Ponti along with his colleagues by analyzing more than 750 hours of X-ray observations the XMM-Newton and Chandra telescopes had taken.
The team was helped by these observations to create an X-ray map of the center of the Milky Way galaxy which you can see below, the near-symmetrical chimney plumes being included. These structures are emanating from either side of Sagittarius A which is a bright font made out of radio waves believed to shroud the supermassive black hole of our galaxy.
Both the southern and the northern galactic “chimneys” stretch for about 522 light-years over the center of the galaxy, and each gets denser and hotter depending on their position to Sagittarius A.