Mergers and Acquisitions

This is a simulation of a black hole eating a neutron star. The blue pattern represents the gravitational waves emitted by the event.

Video Credits—
Numerical relativity simulation: S.V. Chaurasia (Stockholm University), T. Dietrich (Potsdam University and Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics)
Scientific visualization: T. Dietrich (Potsdam University and Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics), N. Fischer, S. Ossokine, H. Pfeiffer (Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics)

NGC 4993

On 17 August, 2017, the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory detected gravitational waves from a neutron star collision. Within 12 hours, observatories had identified the source of the event within the galaxy NGC 4993 and located an associated stellar flare called a kilonova. Hubble watched as the flare of light from the kilonova faded over the course of 6 days. The inset images show the decreasing brightness in observations taken on the 22nd, 26th, and 28th.

Image Credit: NASA / ESA / STScI