Huge black hole discovery stuns scientists

Huge black hole discovery stuns scientists

It's a big discovery that could enhance our understanding of black holes.

NASA’s Nuclear Spectropic┬áTelescope Array (NuSTAR) is enabling scientists to do something incredible: listen to the songs of black holes. And scientists have been able to use this amazing piece of equipment to listen to a chorus of songs from black holes, something they hadn’t really been able to do before like this.

What are these songs, they’re the radiation blasted out of a black hole as they gobble up matter. By using NuSTAR, astronomers are now able to fill in the high-energy X-Ray background. Scientists have gone from being able to resolve 2 percent of the background to 35 percent, according to a California Institute of Technology statement.

It’s a huge development that could allow scientists to better understand black holes and examine more of them using these X Ray songs.

“The results will ultimately help astronomers understand how the growth patterns of supermassive black holes change over time–a key factor in the development of black holes and the galaxies that host them,” the statement reads. “For instance, the supermassive black hole at the center of our Milky Way galaxy is dormant now, but at some point in the past, it would have siphoned gas and bulked up in size.

“As black holes grow, their intense gravity pulls matter toward them. The matter heats up to extremely high temperatures and particles get boosted to close to the speed of light. Together, these processes make the black hole surroundings glow with X-rays. A supermassive black hole with an ample supply of fuel, or gas, will give off more high-energy X-rays.”


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