Image of the Day: The Brightest Object in the Universe

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Quasars, thought to result from matter falling toward supermassive black-holes, are the brightest objects in the universe, so bright they can be seen from across the universe. The above false-color picture shows a central quasar embedded in an unusual elliptical galaxy. The galaxy is being gravitationally distorted by a neighboring galaxy. Recent evidence indicates that most quasars live near the centers of large, elliptical galaxies – even those quasars where no host galaxy could be found before.

Image Credit: J. S. Dunlop, R. J. McLure (U. Edinburgh), HST, NASA

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