Black Hole: Here is the first picture of our Milky Way’s dark hole
NASA reveals the first photo of a supermassive black hole
Scientists unveiled the first photo of a black hole on Wednesday. The supermassive black hole is at the center of the Messier 87 galaxy, which is 55 million light years away from Earth. It is a culmination of several years of work spanning facilities across the globe. As the photo was taken using an array of radio satellites around the world working together.
Check out the picture shared by Nasa here:
View this post on Instagram
In a historic feat by the Event Horizon Telescope and National Science Foundation (@NSFgov), an image of a black hole and its shadow has been captured for the first time. Several of our missions were part of a large effort to observe the same black hole using different wavelengths of light and collect data to understand the black hole's environment. Here's a look at @NASAChandraXRay Observatory's close-up of the core of the M87 galaxy and the black hole at the center of it. Credits: NASA/CXC/Villanova University/J. Neilsen #blackhole #EHTblackhole #galaxy #first
The background image, taken in infrared light, shows the location of our Milky Way’s humongous black hole, called Sagittarius A*, or Sgr A* for short. This black hole is 6.5 billion times the mass of the Sun. Catching its shadow involved eight ground-based radio telescopes around the globe, operating together as if they were one telescope the size of our entire planet.
As part of this effort, NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) and Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory space telescope missions, all of them attuned to different varieties of X-ray light, turned their gaze to the M87 black hole around the same time as the EHT in April 2017.
CNET too tweeted,
— CNET (@CNET) April 11, 2019
Paul Hertz, director of the astrophysics division at NASA Headquarters in Washington said, “This is an amazing accomplishment by the EHT team. Years ago, we thought we would have to build a very large space telescope to image a black hole. By getting radio telescopes around the world to work in concert like one instrument, the EHT team achieved this, decades ahead of time.”
A black hole is an extremely dense object from which no light can escape. Anything that comes within a black hole’s “event horizon,” will be consumed, never to re-emerge, because of the black hole’s unimaginably strong gravity. The black hole is never seen but the hot disk of material that encircles it shines brightly. Against the bright backdrop, a black hole appears to cast a shadow.
Truly a historic moment for the scientists involved in the work of capturing a black hole image.