What is a Black hole?
- A black hole is a celestial monster with gravitational field so intense no matter or light can escape.
- Black holes are extraordinarily dense entities formed when very massive stars collapse at the end of their life cycle.
- As black holes do not allow light to escape, it makes viewing them difficult.
- However, space telescopes with special tools can help find black holes.
About Event Horizon Telescope Project
- The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) is a large telescope array consisting of a global network of radio telescopes and combining data from several very-long-baseline interferometry (VLBI) stations around the Earth.
- It’s a visionary international project to take the first photograph of a black hole.
- Aim: To observe the immediate environment of the supermassive black holes Sagittarius A* and Messier 87.
- Project: The scientists will be looking for a ring of light around a region of darkness representing the actual black hole. This is known as the black hole’s shadow or silhouette.
Supermassive Black Holes
- Supermassive black holes are the largest kind of Black holes, devouring matter and radiation and perhaps merging with other black holes.
- The researchers has targeted two supermassive black holes for the project:
- Sagittarius A*: It is situated at the center of our own Milky Way galaxy, possessing 4 million times the mass of our sun and located 26,000 light years from Earth.
- Messier 87: It resides at the center of the neighboring Virgo A galaxy, boasting a mass 3.5 billion times that of the sun and located 54 million light-years away from Earth.
Very Long Baseline Interferometry, or VLBI: In brief
- Very Long Baseline Interferometry, or VLBI, links together widely separated radio telescopes and allows astronomers to see the universe in more detail than ever.
- This is a very powerful technique in radio astronomy which is helpful in observing black holes, map the surfaces of stars, and even track the drift of continents right here at home.
Section : Science & Tech