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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Q is for Quasars


Q is for Quasar by Stephen Tremp


Many astronomers believe that quasars are the most distant objects yet detected in the universe. Quasars give off enormous amounts of energy - they can be a trillion times brighter than the Sun! Quasars are believed to produce their energy from massive black holes in the center of the galaxies in which the quasars are located. Because quasars are so bright, they drown out the light from all the other stars in the same galaxy.

Despite their brightness, due to their great distance from Earth, no quasars can be seen with an unaided eye. Energy from quasars takes billions of years to reach the Earth's atmosphere. For this reason, the study of quasars can provide astronomers with information about the early stages of the universe.

The word quasar is short for "quasi-stellar radio source". This name, which means star-like emitters of radio waves, was given in the 1960s when quasars were first detected. The name is retained today, even though astronomers now know most quasars are faint radio emitters. In addition to radio waves and visible light, quasars also emit ultraviolet rays, infrared waves, X-rays, and gamma-rays. Most quasars are larger than our solar system.

You can visit Stephen Tremp at his Web site
Breakthrough Blogs.

Reference:
NASA

38 comments:

  1. Fascinating stuff. The best part about the beginnings of the universe is taht I've ben told we are made of stardust. Wow! That's awesome.

    http://francene-wordstitcher.blogspot.com

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  2. I never knew the meaning behind quasars before, and how powerful they are. Didn't they used to have Quasar brand TV's? Interesting post and thanks for doing a great job co-hosting A to Z! Julie

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  3. It is impossible for me to wrap my head around the fact that it takes billions of years for the energy from quasars to reach the Earth's atmosphere. (I'll take your word for it, though!)
    http://gail-baugniet.blogspot.com Theme: A World of Crime

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  4. Makes me feel smaller and even more insignificant. (;
    Seriously, fascinating post. I love Astronomy stuff.

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  5. Never thought quasars were so brilliant. Thanks for sharing.

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  6. I wrote an essay on quasars for my finals. The name itself is pretty darn cool.

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  7. Love the word 'quasar'. Heard the word before but didn't know what it was. Fascinating :)

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  8. Cool Q post! I've seen Quarks and Quantums and now Quasars. A lot of people are taking the science approach today.

    My own Q is "Quoth the Raven, Nevermore!"

    It is a post about Edgar Allen Poe history in Richmond, VA

    http://mainstreetarts.blogspot.com/2012/04/quoth-raven-nevermore.html

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  9. Hello.
    Who knew? Fascinating information. Thanks for sharing.

    Quicksand

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  10. Beyond our atmosphere there is so much going on. The universe is shifting rolling growling ..and..emitting radio waves. Who knew?

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  11. Great Q word, Stephen. I've always wondered, but never bothered to look it up. I'm an avid star gazer (one of my favorite parts of camping). Thanks for sharing your expertise.
    Tina @ Life is Good
    Co-Host of the April A to Z Challenge
    Twitter: @AprilA2Z #atozchallenge

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  12. Who would have known? Thanks.

    Beth
    http://bethlapinsatozblog.wordpress.com/

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  13. wow--i remember learning about them--but didn't realize how large they are--fascinating stuff

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  14. Great information about the Quasar

    Thanks for the month of A to Z we appreciate all of you who are hosting

    ladys knight

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  15. Pondering the limitlessness of space overwhelms my brain. Scientists know so much about what's out there, and at the same time they know nothing at all.

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  16. Wow! I wake up to all these really cool comments. Thanks everyone for stopping by!

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  17. Quasars, huh? The radio waves and X-ray transmission, etc. is interesting to learn but their size, being larger than our solar system is what really blows my mind.

    ~Nicole
    Blog: The Madlab Post
    *Rockin' the A to Z Challenge!*
    @MadlabPost on Twitter

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  18. Hi Steve .. fascinating - I hadn't known they are the furthest thing from earth .. though I think I realised that their energy once researched by scientists might tell us more of our own beginnings ..

    Excellent information .. cheers Hilary

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  19. How neat is that! I enjoy Stephen and so it's fun to read up on information....Q words were certainly limitied but it's all been fun!

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  20. Fascinating post, Stephen! I love learning about space. :)

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  21. I think Q is an amazing letter. Quantum is another word that has endless possibilities. I'm glad so many people find things like quasars interesting. Our universe is filled with so many awe-inspiring wonders!

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  22. I'm feeling very ant-like about now...
    Thanks for the info!

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  23. I've always science, especially astronomy. Thanks for this fantastic post!


    Elizabeth
    A to Z co-host

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  24. I can add this most interesting lesson on quasars to the many other things I've learned during A_Z, Thanks Stephen!

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  25. I thought quasars were something out of Star Trek, or maybe that was Phasers? I don't know.

    http://dpfinnie.com

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  26. I encourage anyone and everyone to visit NASA's Website. There is so much information there. You can spend an hour navigating through the site and walk away a much smarter person.

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  27. Great Q word! And I visit the NASA site often and encouraged my son to use it for one of his school projects this year.

    Erin

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  28. When I was a kid, I was really into astronomy. Quasars were one of my favorite things. Probably by the time I was 12-14, I'd decided that quasars were exit ports for black holes. That wasn't actually a theory at the time, though. I was gratified about a decade later when that became an actual hypothesis.

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  29. Glad I hopped over here to read some more science stuff to fill my brain with.

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  30. That's a good one for Q, and it fits here. Every little fact or assumption about our universe, is amazing to me.

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