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Composite image of galaxy CID-42 in x-ray (blue) and optical (yellow).
Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/F.Civano et al. Optical: NASA/STScI

 

Big Rocks or Big Sparks?
Oct 12, 2010

Itís hard to explain lightning bolts when all you can imagine is rocks banging together. Itís even harder when your assumptions force you to locate the lightning bolts far, far away.

The object named CID-42 (above) has two spots that emit x-rays. From standard assumptions that redshift of the rays means velocity, which can be converted to distance, CID-42 is about four billion light-years away. That makes its x-ray emission brighter than what can be produced by any normal degree of crushing rocks together (as in the imagined conditions in the core of the Sun). Supernatural crushing is invokedóblack holesóto get the densities required for gravity to squeeze out that many x-rays. So the rock-bangers have little choice but to assert that supermassive black holes are recoiling from what must have been a merger of their host rock piles.

But if redshift does not mean velocity and cannot be converted to distance, as the trend of evidence since the discovery of QSOs paired across active galactic nuclei suggests, then CID-42 is much closer than assumed and therefore much less bright. A larger view is suggestive of a more coherent theory. CID-42 is a misshapen fragment of a galaxy in a field of torn and distorted fragments. A person familiar with plasma discharges can recognize a similarity with the wisps of ionized material thrown off in a high-energy discharge. The long tail of CID-42 stretches away in the direction of the dominant galaxies of the M96 group to the northeast.

Have CID-42 and the fragments around it been ejected from one of the galaxies in the M96 group? Is there a bridge of x-ray or radio emission connecting them? Are the QSOs in the vicinity aligned along the minor axis of CID-42, as the two bright spots seem to be?

If CID-42 is a plasma discharge, then the two bright spots are likely ejections of QSOs according to normal plasma-focus mechanisms. Their redshifts are near the Karlsson peak for intrinsic redshifts of z=0.3. They require no intervention of the supernatural, only a recognition of the electrical properties of plasma.

Mel Acheson


 

 
 

"The Cosmic Thunderbolt"

YouTube video, first glimpses of Episode Two in the "Symbols of an Alien Sky" series.
 

 

And don't forget: "The Universe Electric"

Three ebooks in the Universe Electric series are now available. Consistently praised for easily understandable text and exquisite graphics.
 
 
 
 
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