Scientists prepare to show the first photo of a black hole, a landmark for astrophysics


Scientists prepare to show the first photo of a black hole, a landmark for astrophysics

Scientists could reveal Wednesday's first photograph of a black hole, a breakthrough in astrophysics that would provide information on celestial monsters with gravitational fields so strong that neither matter nor light could escape them.

The National Science Foundation of the United States convened a press conference Wednesday in Washington to present an "Outstanding Horizon Event Telescope (EHT) project," an international association that was formed in 2012 to try to observe the atmosphere of a black hole.

Simultaneous press wheels are planned in Brussels, Santiago, Shanghai, Taipei and Tokyo.

The event horizon of a black hole, one of the most violent places in the universe, is the point of no return in which anything (stars, planets, gas, dust, all forms of electromagnetic radiation, including light) is irremediably absorbed

The research will test one of the foundations of modern science: Albert Einstein's theory of general relativity, according to University of Arizona astrophysicist Dimitrios Psaltis, an EHT project scientist.

The 1915 theory explains the laws of gravity and its relation to other forces of nature.

The researchers pointed out two huge black holes. The first – called Sagittarius A * – is in the center of the Milky Way – our galaxy – is 4 million times as massive as the Sun and is 26,000 light-years from Earth.

The second – called M87 – is at the center of the nearby Virgin The galaxy, has a mass 3,500 million times greater than that of the Sun and is 54 million light years from Earth.

Black holes have different sizes, but they are all extraordinarily dense entities that form when very large stars collapse at the end of their life cycle. The larger ones devour matter and radiation, and perhaps merge with others.

Psaltis described a black hole as "an extreme deformation of space-time," a term referring to the three dimensions of space and the unique dimension of time united in a single four-dimensional continuum.


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