New Era of Astro-Physics: First Image of a Black Hole

The astrophysicists at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge have just captured the first-ever image of a black hole on April 10. This is like a new era of Astrophysics has begun. They used a world-spanning network of telescopes called the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) zooming into the Galaxy M87 and created the first picture of a black hole.

Most Mysterious Object of Universe Revealed

The EHT Director, Sheperd Doeleman, said in a news conference that they have seen the unseen now and took a picture of a black hole. Their research was also published in in the Astrophysical Journal Letters.

The scientists have been studying black holes for long. And they believed that it’s very difficult to see them. Because their gravity is so extreme that even sunlight can’t escape across the boundary at the edge or event horizon of a black hole.

First picture of black hole
Image: EVENT HORIZON TELESCOPE COLLABORATION

However, there are some super-massive black holes dwelling in the centers of the galaxies. They are composed of accreting bright disks of gaseous materials. The first black hole image shows that it’s like a fuzzy, asymmetrical ring with a shadow on the accretion disk.

The Black Hole Image Aligns with Einstein’s Theory of Relativity

The EHT astrophysicists state that the black hole image aligns with the general theory of relativity by Einstein in which he predicted how space-time is warped by an extreme mass of a black hole.

Detecting black hole and capturing its shadow is a strong piece of evidence supporting the existence of the black holes and to verify general relativity.

With this image, the scientists are able to make a new measurement of the size and mass of the black hole. This has also resolved a long-standing controversy related to the mass measurements of the black hole.

The scientists used different techniques to measure the mass of the black hoke ranging between 3.5 billion and 7.22 billion times the mass of the sun. Now, according to the EHT measurements, the mass of the black hole is about 6.5 billion solar masses.

They have also determined the size of behemoth which stretches 38 billion kilometers in diameter. This image also revealed that the black hole spins clockwise. The scientists are determined to further analyze the data and look for more discoveries. This first image is just a glimpse of what the future is holding.

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