The Milky Way’s eRosita bubbles: New study reveals surprising details

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Astronomers have discovered new information about the giant bubbles of high-energy gas that surround the Milky Way’s center.

The “eRosita bubbles,” named after the eRosita X-ray telescope that discovered them, are more complex than previously thought.

They are also much larger and energetic than their counterpart, the Fermi bubbles.

These galactic bubbles provide researchers with an opportunity to study star formation history and the origins of the Milky Way.

The Circumgalactic Medium

The bubbles exist in the circumgalactic medium, the gas that surrounds galaxies. The researchers aimed to learn more about this medium, which is crucial to understanding the Milky Way’s evolution.

The Temperature of the Gas

Previous studies suggested that the bubbles’ temperature was different from the area outside of them. However, this study found that the temperature of the gas within and outside of the bubbles was the same.

The bubbles are bright because they are filled with dense gas, not because they are at hotter temperatures.

The Analysis

The team analyzed 230 observations made between 2005 and 2014 using the Suzaku satellite, a collaboration between NASA and the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency.

This allowed researchers to characterize the electromagnetic radiation of the bubbles and the hot gases that surround them.

The Origin of the Bubbles

The origin of the bubbles has been debated, and this study suggests that they were formed due to nuclear star-forming activity rather than black hole activity at the galactic center.

The abundance of non-solar neon-oxygen and magnesium-oxygen ratios in the shells provides evidence for this conclusion.

Further Research

The team hopes to use data from other upcoming space missions to continue characterizing the bubbles’ properties and develop novel ways to analyze the data they already have.

By better understanding the bubble structure, scientists can constrain the temperature and emission measures they are looking for.

The research was conducted by scientists at The Ohio State University and was published in Nature Astronomy.

The study was published in Nature Astronomy.

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