Black Hole Image 2019 and What It Means

''It’s amazing to be able to say, here’s the black hole, the size of our solar system, and bigger, and it has the mass of six and a half billion suns,'' says Harvard science professor Peter L. Galison

The month of April had many events and highlighting stories but one of the most major occurence is the images of Black Hole that finally came to existence. Scientists announced last week that they had, for the first time ever, been able to capture a photograph of a black hole, and the image they unveiled appeared bright orange and doughnut-shaped and yet, mesmerized every single one of us.

Black holes, by their nature, are impossible to see with the naked eye since they are so dense that no light can escape them. Instead, any images that will be released will be the silhouette of a black hole, an outline against all of the super bright, hot gas that is thought to surround these weird celestial objects.

The black hole itself does not emit or radiate light, or any other electromagnetic waves that can be detected by instruments built by human beings. But the area just outside the boundary of the black hole — referred to as event horizon — which has vast amounts of gas, clouds and plasma swirling violently, emit all kinds of radiations, including even visible light.

Black Hole Image 2019: Why this was so important to everyone

Getting all of this data isn’t easy. In fact, the reason it’s taken so long to mount a project of this scale is that the telescopes gather so much information — about one petabyte, or a million gigabytes — of data each night of observing. It’s the largest amount of recording of any other experiment in physics or astronomy, says Psaltis.

Scientists have been using computer-simulated images of black holes for several years to study these regions. For the first time, they have an actual image. While they appear quite similar, scientists will now start looking closely at the actual image to see whether it differs from the computer-simulated images in the details, and whether these differences could be explained by instrumentation, observation or other errors. This can provide a test for existing theories of the universe, and lead to a better understanding of black holes and the nature of the universe itself.

This black hole image, indeed, made history. And Einstein's theory was proved right, which is a win for all of science and scientific history.


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