Talk:Galactic Center

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Black Hole[edit]

The second half of the article stated unequivocally that there is a black hole at the Galactic Center. The first half qualified this, and implied that there might not be.

There is a published article in the journal Nature that states there is no doubt that there is a black hole in the center. I edited this article to reflect that certainty. At this point (six years later) there are numerous confirming articles.

Any editor who wishes to change that must cite a reliable reference.

Nick Beeson (talk) 03:23, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

Notes for Editors[edit]

Two notes for future editors :-

  1. Capitalisation - it is the Galactic Center (capital G capital C) because it is the centre of a specific galaxy, namely the Milky Way, so it is a proper noun - just like Central Park, the Panama Canal, the Eddystone Lighthouse etc etc.
  2. Spelling - the originator of the article used the American English spelling "Center" so I have retained it throughout the article for consistency. -- Gandalf61
That's fair enough but we should mention that it can also be spelt "Galactic Centre". Jimp 09:46, 17 April 2014 (UTC)

Distance to the Galactic Centre[edit]

I find "It is located at a distance of about 8 kiloparsecs in the brightest part of the Milky Way, in the direction of the constellation Sagittarius" confusing, but I'm not sure how to clean it up. One step forward would be to indicate that the distance is from earth, and it's probably better to use light years instead of kiloparsecs. Could somebody who knows more about astronomy take a swing at it? Thanks! --William Pietri 08:15, 3 November 2005 (UTC)

actually, Rₒ - the scientific notation for the distance to the Galactic Center (please add this notation into the section about the distance) - is the distance from the Sun (not the Earth as is erroneously indicated in the first paragraph of the article - would someone please make the correction) to the Galactic Center. Naturally this is not really significant considering the margin of error at between 4 and 8% depending of the source, far more then the distance from the Earth to the Sun. You can read in "The Distance to the Center of the Galaxy" - (open pdf and read first two sentences of introduction) - that is an older paper then those cited below but the only one I was able to open and read into, the others have to be paid for.
Zigomar7 (talk) 16:42, 6 February 2014 (UTC)

Recent papers give a much larger uncertainty in the distance to the galactic center, e.g. 8.4 +/- 0.6 kpc (http://arxiv.org/abs/0902.3913), and even a range as large as 6-10 kpc (http://arxiv.org/abs/0907.4685). I don't agree with the above comment of using light years rather than kpc, since kpc is the natural unit for galactic sizes. Jcline1 (talk) 21:15, 29 October 2009 (UTC)

I've updated the distance given the best recent work (http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2009ApJ...692.1075G), though (http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2008ApJ...689.1044G) is equally applicable, and very similar. The two papers Jcline1 cites give less accurate (but consistent) values for the distance using different data, and the best data available should be used. Trefusius (talk) 13:01, 5 April 2010 (UTC)

Why not give figures for both light years and kpc? As a general reader the sentence " It is located at a distance of 8.33±0.35 kpc (~27,000±1,000 ly) ... " is utterly meaningless to me. I find this a problem with other entries on astrophysics. I want to know things like - how big is the galaxy? where are we located in it? how far is it to the centre? to the edge? etc. Simple stuff ... the stuff I expect to find in an encyclopaedia, rather than a scientific paper.

I predict that the opening paragraph means nothing to 99.9999% of Wikipedia readers.

(For that matter, what are ly? kpc? how about a link for them? I'm not against learning new notations etc., but I don't want to have to learn them to understand a wiki entry.)

the best and most recent estimates are by reid et al., 2014: http://arxiv.org/abs/1401.5377 . the parsec is the standard unit of physical distance in astronomy; light years is obsolete except when distances are stated on "star trek". — Preceding unsigned comment added by Macevoy (talkcontribs) 06:38, 28 May 2014 (UTC)

31.99.193.149 (talk) 21:40, 5 December 2011 (UTC)

It has a name[edit]

The name of the Milky Way's galactic center is the Shapley Center. I just added a redirect so that name redirects here. However, the name of this article should be about galactic centers in general. For instance, does the center of Andromeda Galaxy have a name?--Will 05:17, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

Though apparently used in Star Trek, I was unable to uncover any evidence the name Shapley Center had been used in scientific publications. I am quite confident therefore that simply calling it the Galactic Center is the most common name. Dragons flight 14:27, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
What can I say, Star Trek writers were able to search for information more effeicient than people armed by modern days search engines. Check this out. 195.137.203.137
Added a reference to this guy 195.137.203.137
It could be mentioned in a "popular culture" section, but this article doesn't have one. --ElPeski (talk) 23:34, 12 April 2009 (UTC)

Deleted Astrological Cr*p[edit]

Deleted Astrological Cr*p —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 194.176.105.40 (talk) 10:22, 2 March 2007 (UTC).

that's funny, because i came to this article looking for astrological crap, ie the mayan calendar coinciding with the alignment of the sun and galactic center in 2012. if it doesnt belong here, can there at least be a link to the info located elsewhere? 76.217.120.247 15:58, 6 July 2007 (UTC)


CAN I JUST SAY I AGREE!!!!! —Preceding unsigned comment added by 124.171.184.67 (talk) 00:23, August 30, 2007 (UTC)

If you really want to look up astrological information, try http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portal:Astrology. Not an astronomy article. Metaphysically (talk) 08:53, 30 April 2008 (UTC)

More pictures of the center[edit]

There are two good pictures (specifically this one and this one) that could be very useful within this article. However I've not been able to fit them without changing the aspect of the article too much. Someone else with a greater sense of order could do it.--ElPeski (talk) 23:42, 12 April 2009 (UTC)

Added using Wikipedia:Gallery tag. --Petersam (talk) 20:28, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
I also recommend this one (but it's a bit of self-promotion so I don't want to add it myself): [1] --Keflavich (talk) 21:47, 21 July 2010 (UTC)

Might there be?[edit]

Might there be something surrounding the core? In spore, there are The Grox, and they try to let you not go through to it. Is the great rift a clue in to something preventing us from seeing the center or something? DownAirStairsConditioner (talk) 15:15, 22 August 2009 (UTC)

Why Center with capital "C"[edit]

It seems more logical to me that the 'c' should not be capitalized. I'd be hard convinced that this is a proper name. __meco (talk) 13:46, 5 April 2010 (UTC)

It is a proper place name. By convention, Galactic Center (capitalized) refers to the center of the Milky Way. The generic galactic center article is "bulge (astronomy)" on Wikipedia. Galactic center (uncapitalized) should redirect there. --IanOsgood (talk) 17:57, 5 April 2010 (UTC)
I see. I changed that redirect target which you mentioned. __meco (talk) 18:15, 5 April 2010 (UTC)

nice reference website[edit]

http://www.astro.columbia.edu/~herrnstein/NH3/

Stellar cusp[edit]

I removed this text:

"even if that were true [that there is no density cusp] for the Milky Way's Galactic Center, realistic models of how stars distribute around massive black holes have shown that regrowth of the cusp would take place in a time shorter than the Hubble time"

In other words: we should believe someone's theoretical models, rather than the observations. The observations do not show a cusp, and it is silly to say that "the cusp must be there because my models predict it"! — Preceding unsigned comment added by 12.22.214.242 (talk) 15:37, 14 August 2013 (UTC)

Merger Proposal[edit]

I am proposing that Great Annihilator be merged into Galactic Center, as currently the GA article is one sentence long (and I can't see it getting much larger based on the research I've found). In my opinion it doesn't need a page to itself unless a major discovery happens. Primefac (talk) 16:34, 8 May 2014 (UTC)

Suggest a redirect since the term does occur and people are going to come looking for it, but we shouldn't encourage such foolish names. Consider redirecting to Sagittarius A* Lithopsian (talk) 17:22, 8 May 2014 (UTC)
If/when the sentence gets added here, I was going to have GA redirect here. The Great Attractor is not Sagittarius A*, though, so it shouldn't get redir'd there. Primefac (talk) 19:18, 8 May 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, but I disagree. A SIMBAD search for the object shows that many different professional studies have been done on it, and it thus meets clause #3 of WP:NASTRO, and should have a standalone article. There's plenty to write about it. StringTheory11 (t • c) 00:40, 9 May 2014 (UTC)
i agree with the previous. "great annihilator" is not a nickname for the galactic center but the moniker of a bright, pointlike xray source near the galactic center. it is a separate astronomical object. see http://iopscience.iop.org/0004-637X/520/1/316/pdf/39366.web.pdf Macevoy (talk) — Preceding undated comment added 06:29, 28 May 2014 (UTC)
Even so, until the Great Annihilator article produces more information, a separate article with just a single sentence is not justifiable. Until more information is produced, then the article can split on its own independently. KyuuA4 (Talk:キュウ) 06:49, 4 August 2014 (UTC)
WP:STUB 'a "definition" may be enough to qualify an article as a stub'. The reasons allowing merging or deletion of stubs given there do not apply: the subject is notable, and Google Scholar yields 200 hits, so there appears to enough verifiable information. Paradoctor (talk) 09:06, 4 August 2014 (UTC)
Added some sources to the article. If no further arguments come forward, I'll consider this propsal as rejected. Paradoctor (talk) 10:23, 4 August 2014 (UTC)