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Scientists have discovered the closest black hole to Earth

The closest black hole to Earth has been discovered, and it’s huge. | Font: SLOAN DIGITAL SKY VIEW / S. CH

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Opening black hole a monstrous stellar star, about 12 times the mass of the Sun and located at a distance of 1550 light-years from us, appears in Astrophysical journal.

“He’s closer to the sun than any other black hole known at a distance of 1,550 light-years,” says Sukanya Chakrabarti, professor of physics at the University of Alabama at Huntsville (UAH) and lead author of the study. “So it’s practically in our backyard.”

behind us

black holes they are considered exotic because, although stars and other nearby objects clearly feel their gravitational pull, light cannot escape from them. black hole, therefore, they cannot be seen in the same way as visible stars.

“In some cases, as in the case of black holes supermassive at the center of galaxies, they can control the formation and evolution of galaxies,” Chakrabarti said in a statement. “It is not yet clear how these black holes which do not interact affect the galactic dynamics in the Milky Way. If there are many of them, they can influence the formation of our galaxy and its internal dynamics.”

To find black hole, Chakrabarti and a team of US scientists analyzed data from nearly 200,000 double stars released over the summer by the European Space Agency’s Gaia satellite mission.

“We were looking for objects that were reported to have large companion masses, but whose brightness could be attributed to a single visible star,” he says. “So you have good reason to think your partner is dark.”

Interesting sources were followed by spectrographic measurements from various telescopes, including the Automatic Planetary Finder in California, the Giant Magellan Telescope in Chile, and the W. M. Keck Observatory in Hawaii.

“Attraction black hole a visible star like the Sun can be determined from these spectroscopic measurements, which give us line-of-sight velocity due to Doppler shift,” says Chakrabarty. Doppler shift is a change in the frequency of a wave with respect to an observer, for example, the pitch of a siren changes when an ambulance passes by.

“By analyzing the speeds on the line of sight of a visible star, and this visible star is similar to our Sun, we can conclude how massive the satellite of the Sun is. black hole, as well as the period of rotation and the eccentricity of the orbit, she says. “These spectroscopic measurements independently confirmed Gaia’s solution, which also showed that this binary system consists of a visible star orbiting a very massive object.”

Endless search

black hole must be deduced from the analysis of the movements of the visible star, because it does not interact with the luminous star. black holes Non-interacting objects usually don’t have a ring of dust accumulation and donut-shaped accompanying material that they interact with another object. Accumulation makes the interacting type relatively easier to observe optically, so many more objects of this type have been found.

“Most of black holes in binary systems, in X-ray binaries; in other words, they are bright in x-rays due to some interaction with black hole, often because black hole it devours another star,” says Chakrabarti. “When objects from another star fall into this deep well of gravitational potential, we can see X-rays.”

These interacting systems, as a rule, are in short-period orbits. “In this case, we are seeing a giant black hole, but it is on a long-period orbit of 185 days, or about half a year. It is quite far from the visible star and is not moving towards it,” he explains.

The methods scientists have used should also be applied to search for other non-interacting systems. “This is a new population that we are just starting to learn about, and it will tell us about the channel of formation black holes, so it was very interesting to work on it,” says Peter Craig, a PhD student at the Rochester Institute of Technology, on whose dissertation Chakrabarti is working.

“Simple estimates suggest that there are about a million visible stars that have counterparts. black holes There are massive stars in our galaxy,” says Chakrabarti. “But there are hundreds of billions of stars in our galaxy, so it’s like looking for a needle in a haystack. The Gaia mission, with its incredibly accurate measurements, made things easier by narrowing down our search.”

Scientists are trying to understand the ways of education black holes they don’t interact. “Currently, theorists have proposed several different routes, but black holes that don’t interact around glowing stars represent a whole new type of population,” says Chakrabarty. “So it will probably take us some time to understand their demographics, how they form, and how these channels are different or similar for the better. is a known population of interacting and merging black holes” (Europa Press).

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Source: RPP

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