Gas Wind Streaming from Galactic Center

At the heart of the Milky Way’s Galactic Center lies a supermassive black hole, and surrounding it are regions of intense star formation. The black hole, the star-forming regions, or a combination of both are driving a million-degree wind of hot gas that flows outward above and below the plane of the Milky Way in two enormous plumes. The plumes can be detected across the electromagnetic spectrum, from radio waves to x-rays and gamma-rays.

This is an illustration created to display that phenomena – with clouds containing carbon monoxide (shown as the dark patches in the blow up) entailed in the other gasses and elements traveling out of the center of our galaxy.

Artist’s conception of molecular clouds entrained in the hot wind from the center of the Milky Way. Artist: Paul Vosteen for NSF/GBO

The illustration was created freehand in Adobe Photoshop. Related work.