The Spitzer Space Telescope website will be down on Tuesday July 29th from 9am PDT to 10am PDT for server maintenance. Thank you for your patience.

Download Video

Video Information

Subscribe to Series

06.01.04

Missing Host Galaxies Found in Infrared - 1

In a collaborative effort between NASA's three Great Observatories, astronomers have solved a cosmic mystery by identifying some of the oldest and most distant black holes.


This animation fades between images taken by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, Hubble Space Telescope and Spitzer Space Telescope in the field known as the Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey, or GOODS. In the first picture, observations from Chandra show high-energy emissions believed to trace the presence of supermassive black holes, which power the bright cores of distant galaxies.

The mystery emerges in the second image. While most of the black hole candidates observed by Chandra could easily be identified within host galaxies seen by Hubble, several of them, like the one pictured here, show no sign of a galaxy in visible light.

The third image, from Spitzer, shows the same region in infrared light. In this image, the otherwise invisible galaxies reappear. These unusually "reddened" objects may be shrouded in dense clouds of obscuring dust, or may be remarkably distant compared to other galaxies in the same field. Additional Spitzer observations later this year should help astronomers determine the nature of these unusual objects.

Browse Videos in Science Animations

2040100 per page

Details or Icons

Page-nav-left Page 2 of 4 Page-nav-right

Go to page

04.18.07

Infrared Rose

This movie begins by showing an optical image of the Rosette nebula, a turbulent star-forming region located 5,000 li...

Watch now

03.29.07

Two Suns Raise Family of Planetary Bodies

This artist's animation depicts a faraway solar system like our own -- except for one big difference. Planets and ast...

Watch now

02.21.07

Hot, Dry, and Cloudy (Artist Concept)

This artist's concept animation shows a cloudy Jupiter-like planet that orbits very close to its fiery hot star. NASA...

Watch now

12.18.06

Stars Spring Up Out of the Darkness

This artist's animation illustrates the universe's early years, from its explosive formation to its dark ages to its ...

Watch now

11.07.06

Hubble-Spitzer Orion

This video cycles between the Hubble view, the Spitzer view, and the combined Hubble-Spitzer view of the Orion Nebula.

Watch now

11.07.06

Making a Great Observatories Composite

This video shows how a Hubble image and a Spitzer image of the Orion Nebula were combined to create a new, multi-wave...

Watch now

10.30.06

Who Ya Gonna Call?

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope is a galactic ghost buster, spotting hidden massive stars and other monsters lurking i...

Watch now

10.26.06

Order Amidst Chaos of Star's Explosion

This artist's animation shows the explosion of a massive star, the remains of which are named Cassiopeia A. NASA's Sp...

Watch now

10.12.06

Fire and Ice Planet (without data plot)

This artist's animation shows a blistering world revolving around its nearby "sun." NASA's infrared Spitzer Space Tel...

Watch now

10.12.06

Fire and Ice Planet

This artist's animation shows a blistering world revolving around its nearby "sun." NASA's infrared Spitzer Space Tel...

Watch now

08.14.06

Journey to Orion

This movie begins with a visible view of the famous Orion constellation. Superimposed on the area near Orion's sword ...

Watch now

07.24.06

Stars Can't Spin Out of Control

This artist's animation demonstrates how a dusty planet-forming disk can slow down a whirling young star, essentially...

Watch now

06.05.06

Fade to Red

This animation shows the Andromeda galaxy, first as seen in visible light by the National Optical Astronomy Observato...

Watch now

04.05.06

Birth of 'Phoenix' Planets?

This artist's animation depicts the explosive death of a massive star, followed by the creation of a disk made up of ...

Watch now

03.16.06

Cigar Galaxy up in Smoke

This movie compares a visible-light view of the "Cigar galaxy" to an infrared view from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescop...

Watch now

06.09.05

The Cry of Cassiopeia A

This animation begins with a stunning false-color picture of the supernova remnant Cassiopeia A. It is made up of ima...

Watch now

06.02.05

Space Eyes See Comet Tempel 1

This artist's concept of Tempel 1 illustrates the comet's shape, reflectivity, rotation rate and surface temperature,...

Watch now

05.30.05

Carina in Context

This animation starts with an image of a larger but lower resolution image of the Carina Nebula from the Midcourse Sp...

Watch now

05.30.05

Pillars Behind the Dust

The movie begins with a visible-light picture of the southern region of our Milky Way galaxy then slowly zooms into t...

Watch now

05.04.05

A More Spectacular Sombrero

This movie shifts from the well-known visible-light picture of Messier 104 taken by the Hubble Space Telescope to inf...

Watch now