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Astronomers are closer to the black hole's image of the Milky Way



For a long time researchers wanted to draw a direct picture of a black hole. Thanks to the APEX Radio Telescope in Chile, they come closer to you. The data from the Atacama Pathfinder Experiment (APEX) in combination with the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) could create the ultimate image of the black hole and reveal new details about the structure of Sagittarius A *, a supermassive black hole in the center of the Milky Way galaxy , Other instruments have been able to observe the effects of a black hole on visible matter such as stars and planets. But so far nobody has seen the supermassive Black Hole of the Milky Way.

Researchers used a method called VLBI (Very Long Baseline Interferometry) to connect a group of radio telescopes spread across the globe. VLBI measures the time difference between the arrivals of the radio signal at different telescopes. The participating telescopes are at high altitude. So they can record desired radio waves under a flood of background noise. The radio source Sgr A * was detected with all stations, but the participation of APEX improved the image quality considerably.

"We worked hard at an altitude of more than 5000 meters to prepare the APEX telescope for VLBI observations at 1

.3 mm wavelength," said Alan Roy, who heads the VLBI team at APEX. "We are proud of the good performance of APEX in this experiment."

The black hole in the center of our galaxy is embedded in a dense interstellar medium that may have influenced the activity of electromagnetic waves along the line of sight. Researchers believe that future observations with more telescopes could be used to eliminate ambiguity.

The new effort focused on investigating supermassive black holes with sufficient resolution to directly observe the event horizon. Event Horizon is a region around a black hole from which nothing (not even light) can escape.

"We started to figure out what the horizon-scale structure might look like rather than just drawing general conclusions from the visibility" We sampled that, "said lead author Ru-Sen Lu of the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy (MPIfR) in Bonn. "It is very encouraging to see that fitting a ring-like structure is very consistent with the data, although we can not exclude other models. For example, a composition of bright spots. "


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