First ever picture of a black hole

Katie Ramirez
April 18, 2019

Numerous traits possessed by supermassive black holes continue to puzzle researchers, including the unusual cases when some of them can release jets loaded with material even if they are inescapable objects and the feat should be impossible. Captured by a global network of ground-based telescopes, the image showed a dark abyss at the center of a glowing ring of super-heated gas.

The picture is taken of the center of the Messier 87 galaxy within the Virgo cluster, which is 53.49 million light year away and around 6.5 billion times the mass of the sun.

Black holes have fascinated science lovers and the wide public alike since the first modern solution for characterizing them in 1916 by the German physicist Karl Schwarzschild. By analyzing the X-ray radiation researchers can learn more about the particles which are close to the event horizon and they can be measured with the help of select telescopes.

The image, he said, aligns with expectations of what a black hole should look like based on Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, which predicts how space-time is warped by the extreme mass of a black hole. As this field progresses further, and images of higher and higher resolution become available, we will be able to distinguish between the different underlying theories. This is known as the black hole's shadow or silhouette. This gives us a new and more direct way to estimate the black hole parameters.

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Last week, scientists dazzled the world with the first picture of a black hole - an object never before directly imaged. "It could have easily have happened that the picture was much less clear and symmetric".

What we actually see in the photograph is a bunch of hot gas spiraling into the black hole - kind of like water that circles around the drain in a bathtub - and the friction is causing the gas to heat up and emit radiation like radio waves.

The proven fact that black holes don't permit lightweight to flee makes viewing them tough. This use of the focus also deepens the blacks, which improves the quality of the black holes center.

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