“Space Hand” is scary.  NASA celebrates Halloween

NASA’s Chandra Space Telescope observed the pulsar PSR B1509-58 for the first time in 2021. That’s when astronomers noticed that the Wind Nebula (MSH 15-52) looked like… a hand. The structure is located in the Circela constellation, at a distance of approximately 17,000 light-years from Earth Therefore, it was called the “Cosmic Hand” or even the “Hand of God.” It has become a topic of interest to researchers.

Also because scientists do not know exactly how it took this form. What we do know is that PSR B1509-58 is a magnetized neutron star about 20 kilometers in diameter located in the bright central region.. This pulsar rotates at a rate of 7 revolutions per second, while simultaneously sending huge amounts of energy into the space surrounding it. The source of the radiation it produces is a magnetic field approximately 15 trillion times greater than the magnetic field produced by our planet. Perhaps this is what allows the creation of structures that the human eye can interpret, for example, as a large hand reaching for light.

Now, with the help of the Chandra X-ray space telescope, which was launched in 1999, researchers have been able to… Visualization of the “bones” of the magnetic field of the “hand”. impact? Perfect for Halloween today, because in the new photos MSH 15-52 looks like a scene from a Hollywood production, when suddenly a skeleton’s hand emerges from the grave.

Latest sObservations of MSH 15-52 lasted about 17 days, and according to NASA, this is the longest period of telescope observations on a single object since its launch in 2021.. By combining telescope data, astronomers have shown that, thanks to a stream of energetic particles and antimatter, supernova remnants survive for about 1,500 years after the star exhausts itself and collapses.

New data It detects, for example, a bright stream of X-rays extending from the hand down along the wrist. Although the polarization is low where it starts, perhaps due to turbulence and mixed magnetic fields, it straightens and brightens, showing a much higher polarization in the outer region where the hand is “cut off.”

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