Astronomers find a “mini-mouse” in deep space

Using the MeerKAT radio telescope, a team of European astronomers discovered a new radio nebula. The object was named “Mini Mouse”. 

Radio nebula “Mini Mouse”. Source: Motta et al., 2023.

The discovery was made during the study of a system of two black holes, known under the designation GRS 1915+105. During the observations, the MeerKAT telescope detected a previously unknown radio nebula. It is very similar to the “Mouse” radio nebula discovered in 1987. Because of this similarity, the researchers have given the newly discovered object the name “Mini Mouse”, which is consonant with the name of the Disney character Minnie Mouse.

The “Mini-Mouse” nebula is generated by the activity of the pulsar PSR J1914+1054g. Such objects are highly magnetized rotating neutron stars, which are the source of periodic pulses of radiation.

PSR J1914+1054g is located at a distance of 26.7 thousand light-years from Earth. It was formed as a result of a supernova outburst that occurred about 82 thousand years ago. The MeerKAT images show faint traces of its remains. The pulsar formed during the explosion gradually leaves the place of its birth, moving at a speed of 320 – 360 km/s. This process is accompanied by the formation of shock waves in the surrounding matter, forming radio nebulae.

Earlier we talked about how scientists investigated giant galactic bubbles.

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