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W49B

W49B is a supernova remnant located about 26,000 light years from Earth towards the constellation Aquila. The distortion of the remnant, much more barrel shaped than most, and the odd distribution of elements indicates an asymmetrical explosion. Usually, supernova remnants are mainly spherical. In W49B, however, material near the poles was ejected at a much higher speed than at the equator.

An examination of the remnant found no evidence of a neutron star, the usual core of a supernova remnant. This indicates that the explosion may have produced a black hole instead. If so, it would be the youngest black hole formed in the Milky Way at only about 1000 years old as seen from Earth, not including light travel time.

Image from NASA, information from NASA and Chandra X-Ray Observatory.

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