Catching a Glimpse of a Black Hole's Fury

Using the National Science Foundation's (NSF) Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) and a host of international telescope partners, a team of researchers has made the clearest observation yet of innermost region of a black hole.

From the observations, astronomers found strong evidence that the enormous jets of particles emitted by supermassive black holes are corkscrewed in a way predicted by theory. The researchers believe the coiling is a result of twisted magnetic fields acting on the particle streams.

The researchers reported their findings in the April 24 issue of Nature.

Led by Alan Marscher of Boston University, the international team of researchers studied the galaxy BL Lacertae located 950 million light years from Earth. By observing an outburst from the galaxy from late 2005 to 2006, the team observed bursts of photons oriented in a way predicted by theories about the twisted magnetic fields of black holes.

The VLBA is part of NSF's National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). A more detailed release–including graphics and a broadcast-quality animation–is available from NRAO at: http://www.nrao.edu/pr/2008/bllac

Additional images, explanations, data sets and even a related song are available at a Web site posted by Marscher: http://www.bu.edu/blazars/BLLac.html

Media Contact

Joshua A. Chamot EurekAlert!

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.nsf.gov

Alle Nachrichten aus der Kategorie: Physics and Astronomy

This area deals with the fundamental laws and building blocks of nature and how they interact, the properties and the behavior of matter, and research into space and time and their structures.

innovations-report provides in-depth reports and articles on subjects such as astrophysics, laser technologies, nuclear, quantum, particle and solid-state physics, nanotechnologies, planetary research and findings (Mars, Venus) and developments related to the Hubble Telescope.

Zurück zur Startseite

Kommentare (0)

Schreib Kommentar

Neueste Beiträge

New solar cells for space

Almost all satellites are powered by solar cells – but solar cells are heavy. While conventional high-performance cells reach up to three watts of electricity per gram, perovskite and organic…

Development of a novel membrane laser module for spectral measurement methods

The Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Solid State Physics IAF has partnered up with the start-up “Twenty-One Semiconductors” (21s) from Stuttgart to bring their unique laser concept from lab to practice….

Dissecting protein assemblies

Super-resolution MINFLUX nanoscopy, developed by Nobel laureate Stefan Hell and his team, is able to discern fluorescent molecules that are only a few nanometers apart. In an initial application of…