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Seyfert 2 Galaxy Markarian 463
Obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope Faint Object Camera

A cone of illuminated material is seen in this false color ultraviolet image of the Seyfert 2 galaxy Markarian 463 obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope Faint Object Camera. The spot nearest the center is the Seyfert 2 nucleus, the only obvious structure in ground-based images. This spot is a decoy diverting attention from the true quasar-like nucleus at the cone's apex [marked by a plus sign].

The true nucleus is blocked from direct view by an opaque ring of dusty material. Its light escapes only along the ring's axis, forming the bright wedge seen here. Light scattered off dust or electrons is polarized perpendicular to its direction of travel. Polarizing filters in the Faint Object Camera were used to observe the polarization direction [the short white lines] and deduce the location of the light source, seen here to be at the apex of the cone.

PHOTO CREDIT: Christina Tremonti, Johns Hopkins University. Presented at the American Astronomical Society meeting in Toronto, Canada on January 13, 1997.

Return to "Power Source Hidden in Galaxy Backs Theory on Quasars"

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