SS 433 Radio / X-Ray Star

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About this Image

SS433 is an object known as an X-ray binary. X-ray binaries are systems of a "normal" star in orbit around a very dense massive compact object, a black hole or neutron star. In these systems there is frequently matter transfer from the normal star onto the compact object. This interaction of matter with the intense gravitational field of the black hole or neutron star causes the matter to heat up and produce X-rays, hence the name X-ray binary. SS433 is special because it is one of the few in this class to also exhibit jets of material ejected at speeds close to the speed of light on opposite sides of the system. This images shows four radio images of radio/x-ray star SS 433 made with the VLA in January, February, March, and April 1981. By examining differences in these images, astronomers infer that there are twin jets of material moving outwards from the central star system at speeds of 180 million mph, one fourth the speed of light.

Investigator(s):  R.M. Hjellming, K.J. Johnston

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Technical Data

    Telescope VLA 
    Date of Observation 1981-02-18 
    Type of Observation Continuum Observations 
    Center of Image RA: 19:11:50.00, Dec: 04:58:58.00 (J2000)  
    Field of View 0.0036 x 0.0036 degrees  
    Technical Caption The VLA was in the A-configuration using about 25 antennas.  

  • Astronomical database entries for SS433
    • Query SIMBAD for more SS433 data


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