Swift X-ray Telescope Update for GC
Swift X-ray intensity observations of the Galactic center as of February 22nd (415 days of data)
News update by: Paul LaViolette, February 22, 2014
As of February 22nd, we see that the Galactic core is still in its quiescent mode. Comparing the most recent data (right side) to the earlier baseline (left side) we see a slight upward shift which is due to residual X-ray emission coming from the nearby magnetar which experienced an outburst almost one year ago (around day 110). Both the magnetar and the Galactic core fall in the same field of view and so cannot be separated in the net data plot.
Additional Swift Telescope data updates can be found at the following Swift site: http://swift-sgra.com/.
Estimated date when the G2 cloud reaches pericenter is around April 1st, plus or minus 3 weeks. Hence we should begin to watch closely from March 10th to April 21st because that is when something could begin to happen: such as a star being tidally stripped off from a possible binary system hidden within G2, with a wait of some weeks thereafter for the companion star to reach its tidal break-up distance as it approaches the core.
A Project Camelot interview updating the G2 cloud situation is scheduled for Tuesday, March 4th. It should be posted in the Sphinx Stargate news section within a day of that time.