Today’s Image of the Day from the European Space Agency shows an X-ray view of an ancient galaxy cluster captured by astronomers using the XMM-Newton space observatory.
The X-ray glow of hot gases from the cluster XLSSC006 appears purple in the image.
According to the ESA, the massive cluster is home to hundreds of galaxies, large amounts of diffuse, and even larger amounts of dark matter. Overall, XLSSC006 has a mass that is equivalent to 500 trillion solar masses.
The galaxy cluster is so far away from us that we are viewing the structure as it appeared when the Universe was only about nine billion years old.
The X-ray data was combined with optical and near-infrared data from the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope, revealing a multitude of other galaxies.
Image Credit: European Space Agency