The gargantuan black hole which lives in the center of our milky way galaxy is no more a mystery to human beings.
A brief introduction about the black hole!
A black hole is a place in space where gravitational pulls are so dense that even light can not pass through. Gravity is so strong because matter has been squeezed into a tiny space. This can happen when a star is dying. Because no light can get out, people can’t see black holes. They are invisible. Space telescopes with special tools can help find black holes. The special tools can see how stars that are very close to black holes act differently than other stars. The size of the black hole may be as much as a size of an atom but is heavier than a large mountain.
Stellar and Supermassive are the two black hole types, Supermassive is the largest black hole so far discovered. Stellar is twenty times the mass of the sun. We live in the Milky Way galaxy which can have many stellars residing in it.
Supermassive has the mass of altogether One million Sun together. As per the scientists, every large galaxy contains a supermassive black hole in the center.
How is a Blackhole formed?
Stellar black holes are made when the center of a very big star falls in upon itself or collapses. When this happens, it causes a supernova. A supernova is an exploding star that blasts part of the star into space. The smallest black hole was formed when the Universe had begun.
The fuzzy colourized image was released by the international consortium behind the Event Horizon Telescope, a collection of eight synchronized radio telescopes around the world. As the Event Horizon Telescope collected data for its remarkable new image of the Milky Way’s supermassive black hole, a legion of other telescopes including three NASA X-ray observatories in space was also watching.
In the past, attempts have been made to capture a similar image but these failed as the black hole was found to be too ‘jumpy’.This is not the first image of a black hole. Earlier, the same group released an image of a black hole from a galaxy 53 million light-years away in 2019. The Milky Way black hole is about 27,000 light-years away.
Astronomers are using these observations to learn more about how the black hole in the center of the Milky Way galaxy – known as Sagittarius A * (Sgr A* for short) – interacts with, and feeds off, its environment some 27,000 light-years from Earth.
When the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) observed Sgr A* in April 2017 to make the new image, scientists in the collaboration also peered at the same black hole with facilities that detect different wavelengths of light. In this multiwavelength observing campaign, they assembled X-ray data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR), and the Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory; radio data from the East Asian Very Long-Baseline Interferometer (VLBI) network and the Global 3-millimeter VLBI array; and infrared data from the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope in Chile.
“The Event Horizon Telescope has captured yet another remarkable image, this time of the giant black hole at the center of our own home galaxy,” said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson. “Looking more comprehensively at this black hole will help us learn more about its cosmic effects on its environment, and exemplifies the international collaboration that will carry us into the future and reveal discoveries we could never have imagined.”
University of Arizona astronomer Feryal Ozel hailed the first direct image of the black hole in the center of our galaxy at a news conference in Washington. The picture shows a glowing red, yellow and white surrounding a darker center.
It’s their second such image after releasing in 2019 a picture of the giant black hole at the heart of another galaxy called Messier 87, or M87. That object was more than a thousand times bigger at 6.5 billion times the mass of our Sun.” But this new image is special because it’s our supermassive black hole,” said Prof Heino Falcke, one of the European pioneers behind the EHT project.