Saturday, November 05, 2022

read about the nearest black hole

Spotted an intriguing press release on NOIRLab site, issued yesterday.

Entitled: Astronomers Discover Closest Black Hole to Earth.

Scientists using the Gemini North telescope on Hawai‘i found a stellar-mass black hole in our cosmic backyard. It is called Gaia BH1. It is located about 1600 light-years away in the constellation Ophiuchus.

It is a dormant black hole about 10 times more massive than the Sun.

artist rendering of Sun-like star and small black hole

The discovery represents the first unambiguous detection of a Sun-like star in a orbit around a stellar-mass black hole.

While exciting, it has reveals gaps in our knowledge. The system is not easily accommodated by standard binary evolution models. 

As usual, a question answered leads to more questions.

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