3C 321

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Death Star Galaxy
"Death Star" Galaxy (Galaxy System 3C321). Credit: NASA/ESA, D. Evans (Harvard–Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics)
Observation data
Constellation Serpens
Right ascension 15h 31m 42.7s
Declination +24° 04' 25.00"
Redshift 0.0961[1]
Distance 1.2 billion light-years
(Light travel time)[1]
Apparent dimensions (V) ?
Apparent magnitude (V) ?
Notable features A galaxy gets in the way of lethal radiation from its neighbor
See also: Galaxy, List of galaxies

3C 321 is a system of two galaxies rotating around each other. They are notable for showing the first observed galaxy smiting another galaxy with a blast of energy, which is theorized to be from a supermassive black hole at the center of the former galaxy.

The larger galaxy, dubbed the "Death Star Galaxy" by NASA astronomers, has an energetic jet directed towards its companion. The discovery was announced by NASA Dec 18 2007. Observation of the enormous jet was possible due to the combined efforts of both space and ground-based telescopes.

Tools included NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, the Hubble Space Telescope, Spitzer Space Telescope, the Very Large Array-VLA, and the Multi-Element Radio Linked Interferometer Network.


  1. ^ a b "NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database". Results for 3C 321. Retrieved 2010-04-26. 

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