Fermi Bubbles Image Credit: NASA
Nearly 13 years after their discovery, the origin of these two massive objects remained uncertain, and there was no logical way to explain their origin and the role they played in our galaxy. As they were discovered by the mighty Fermi Space Telescope in gamma rays, they got the name “Fermi Bubbles,” a name they much honor, since our galaxy seems to have been playing with stellar material (cosmic gas and dust) and shooting these clusters out as two giant bubbles.
Schematic representation of Fermi bubbles. Image credits: NASA Goddard
These giant globules are located in the center of our galaxy (shown in the image above), and they can be seen to extend above and below the plane of our galaxy, spanning a length of more than 25,000 light-years. Although it is still not entirely clear where it came from, it is known for certain that it emits radiation of the highest energy, that is, gamma rays.
According to a recent statement from the IceCube Neutrino Observatory, a supermassive particle detector located in Antarctica, 10 ultra-high-energy neutrinos originating from giant Fermi bubbles have been detected, making these objects an even more mysterious subject.
When high-energy particles containing cosmic rays interact with gas and dust, they produce gamma rays that shine brightly within our galaxy. The Fermi Bubbles emit gamma rays of higher energy than the rest of the galactic body.
Origin of giant bubbles
The Fermi Bubbles are thought to be closely related to the massive release of energy by the supermassive black hole (called Sagittarius A) at the center of our galaxy. Well, it is known that in other galaxies, black holes that suck in huge amounts of matter expel jets of high energy.
This hypothesis is supported by the spatial orientation of the Fermi Bubbles, which extend perfectly above and below the plane in the center of the galaxy.
Added to this initial hypothesis, two possible sources of energy from which these bubbles are formed are proposed:
It is likely that several million years ago, Sagittarius A absorbed a huge amount of matter, which heated up and due to the interaction of large physical forces (electric and magnetic), part of this matter managed to escape from the event horizon, in the form of a particle. From the high energy they dispersed and softened, but it maintained its active state until the present time.
The second hypothesis suggests that it is also possible that a giant star very close to Sagittarius A collapsed violently, emitting high-energy gravitational particles in one act, which led to the formation of these bubbles.
These are some possible explanations for this amazing phenomenon.
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