Seven countries’ astronomers have released a picture of a Supermassive Black Hole located in the center of the Milky Way galaxy that devours anything that comes within its gravitational field.
The image that was published from the Event Horizon Telescope collaboration on the 12th of May 2022, depicts an unnamed black hole in the central region of the Milky Way galaxy. This black hole is known as Sagittarius A* and is located near the boundary between Sagittarius as well as Scorpius constellations. It is four million times larger than the sun. The image was produced by eight radio telescopes synchronized all over the globe. (Event Horizon Telescope through AP)
Sagittarius A* is only the second black hole that has been photographed by astronomers.
The feat was made possible by the world-renowned Event Horizon Telescope team, which in the year 2019 unveiled the first-ever photo of a black hole within the distant galaxy. University of Massachusetts Amherst radio Astronomers Gopal Narayanan, as well as F. Peter Schloerb, and graduate student Sandra Bustamante, are part of the Event Horizon Telescope team.
“I believe that people are sort of intrigued by the idea of a black hole in music, literature, and in movies,” said Schloerb, director of the Five College Radio Astronomy Observatory in the wake of the streamed press conference.
First image of Supermassive Black Hole milky way
The image of the Supermassive Black Hole captured of Sagittarius A* close to the boundary of both the Sagittarius as well as Scorpius clusters involved a collaborative effort by eight radio telescopes from around the globe.
One of these telescopes that are called the Large Millimeter Telescope Alfonso Serrano is the largest single-dish telescope and played a significant part in the discovery process, Schloerb said. The Big Millimeter Telescope is operated jointly through UMass Amherst and the country of Mexico.
For the last period of a decade, UMass Amherst has been part of the efforts to record a photograph of a black hole in the middle of the galaxy. Narayanan stated.
Narayanan claimed that he and colleagues first came across the image of the Sagittarius A* one year back “but it was not fully developed for the public.”
Further information and verification were needed prior to sharing with the general public. said.
Astronomers believe that nearly all galaxies contain black holes in their core, which is where matter and light cannot escape, which makes it very difficult to capture photographs of them.
Sagittarius A* has 4 million times the solar mass and is located at 26,000 lights years away, which is approximately 5.9 trillion miles away from Earth. But it’s considerably lower than the size of the black holes in the Messier 87 galaxy, which was first photographed by the Event Horizon Telescope team in the year 2019. The black hole is 6.5 billion times the mass of the sun.
Messier 87 is in the constellation Virgo and is located 55 million light-years away from Earth.
The results will be presented during a press conference on May 12 at 6 a.m. PT / 9 a.m. ET, and you can follow along. It will be livestreamed on the US National Science Foundation website, and CNET is covering it live on our Highlights page.
UMass Amherst’s participation in the capture of images of the Messier black hole 87 led to it being awarded the Breakthrough Prize for Fundamental Physics which is sometimes referred to as “the” Oscars of science, in 2019. source
It was announced that the Sagittarius A* announcement was presented at simultaneous news conferences across the United States, Germany, China, Mexico, Chile, Japan, and Taiwan.
The project cost close to $60 million and $28 million of that came through the U.S. National Science Foundation.