'Violent Universe' map gets updated
London: NASA's Fermi space telescope has updated its catalogue of the Universe's most violent neighbourhoods, listing the sources of the highest-energy gamma rays ever observed.
Some 65 of the 514 sources of the gamma rays are "unassociated" sources that may turn out to be completely new astronomical objects, researchers said.
Fermi telescope catches gamma rays, the most energetic light, spewing from nature's most extreme physical processes.
The "all-sky map" represents all of the gamma-ray detections above 10 gigaelectronvolts that the Fermi telescope has seen in three years' worth of data, 'BBC News' reported.
The updated map will help outline which of the known sources of other kinds of electromagnetic radiation - such as visible light, or radio waves, or X-rays - are also emitting at this higher range of gamma-ray energies.
That will help scientists find out exactly what is happening in these violent corners of the cosmos, where processes are going on that we will never be able to mimic in laboratories.
The telescope scans in every direction, gathering gamma rays from the whole the whole universe every three hours.
"The idea is to have some sort of bridge catalogue between the typical catalogue done by Fermi... Which contains thousands of sources, and the domain of the Cerenkov telescopes that have been operating over 20 years," lead author of the new catalogue, David Paneque of the Max Planck Institute for Physics in Munich, Germany, said.
"It represents another step in what we can do with Fermi, extending our reach in energy in more than an order of magnitude, and being able to see an entirely different picture of the sky," NASA's deputy project scientist on the Fermi mission, Dave Thompson, said.
The catalogue will be published in the Astrophysical Journal.