NASA Shows Off Black Hole: Watch Live Online

NASA is hosting a news teleconference at 1 p.m. EST on Wednesday Feb. 27 to broadcast black hole observations. The observations have been taken from the Administration's new Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) telescope and the European Space Agency's XMM-Newton X-Ray telescope.

Participants in the conference will include Fiona Harrison, NuSTAR principal investigator, California Institute of Technology along with Guido Risaliti, astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics. Arvind Parmar, head of Astrophysics and Fundamental Physics Mission Division at the European Space Agency will also be present.

NASA's telescopes have produced many astounding visuals of black holes, and today's presentation should be no different. Images from the telescopes' will include the spiral galaxy IC342, which also goes by the name Caldwell 5. It is located seven million light-years from Earth in the constellation Camelopardalis. Two bright black holes, called extraluminous x-ray sources(ULXs) are known to exist in the galaxy.

Astronomers don't know why ULXs shine as brightly as they do. While they aren't as powerful as supermassive black holes, they are over ten times brighter than most black holes in our galaxy.

"High energy X-rays hold a key to unlocking the mystery surrounding these objects," Harrison says. "Whether they are massive black holes, or there is new physics in how they feed, the answer is going to be fascinating. Before NuSTAR, high-energy X-ray pictures of this galaxy and the two black holes would e so fuzzy that everything would appear as one pixel."

Also featured will be the supernova remnant Cassiopeia A, which is located about 11,000 light-years away in the constellation Cassiopeia.

"Cas A is the poster child for studying how massive stars explode and also provides us a clue to the origin of the high-energy particles, or cosmic rays, that we see here on Earth," says lead researcher Brian Grefenstette. "With NuSTAR, we can study where, as well as how, particles are accelerated to such ultra-relativistic energies in the remnant left behind by the supernova explosion."

If you want to check it out, visuals will be posted on http://www.nasa.gov/nustar at the start of the conference.

Audio will be streamed live at http://www.nasa.gov/newsaudio.

Audio and visual streaming will occur live at http://www.ustream.tv/nasajpl2.

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