The heart of every great galaxy is said to contain a supermassive black hole – a place where everything, including light, can be swallowed to a point where there is no return.
For years scientists have been struggling to capture one of these deadly masses with the camera, as the lack of light makes them almost impossible to see.
Now, for the first time, a group of scientists from the event Horizon Telescope (EHT) international project is expected to reveal to the public a photograph of a black hole.
Read More: The observation of an & # 39; overwhelming & # 39; Telescope has shown that there is no return for the black hole of our galaxy began in 2006 to collect information about black holes. The picture published on April 1
Like all black holes, oppressive holes form when stars collapse at the end of their life cycle. On average, they are millions of times more massive than the sun.
The April 10 image shows one of two supermassive black holes: Sagittarius A * from our Milky Way or M87 from the neighboring Virgo A galaxy. Sagittarius A * is said to be 4 million times more massive than the Sun and about 26,000 light-years from Earth. M87 is said to be 3.5 billion times the size of the Sun and about 54 million light-years from Earth.
Our understanding of these black holes has so far been based on renderings or models by artists and scientists. Although scientists may not be able to see a black hole alone, they can detect the stars and gas they orbit and emit radio waves that can be captured by a high-powered telescope.
This has shaped our general view of a dark sphere surrounded by a luminous ring or crescent of light.
"When a gas cloud approaches the black hole, they accelerate and heat up" Josephine Peters an astrophysicist at Oxford University, told Business Insider in October. "It gets brighter the faster and hotter it gets, and eventually the gas cloud gets so close that the pull of the black hole draws it in a thin arc."
Two of the most notable theories about black holes come from physicists Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking. Before Hawking died in 2018, Hawking claimed that "black holes are not as black as they are painted" because certain particles could escape.
But according to Einstein's general theory of relativity, a black hole is so massive and spins so fast that it distorts space-time and ensures that nothing can dissipate its appeal. The theory also states that these forces create a unique shadow in the form of a perfect circle, i. H. The dark ball in the center. EHT photography could confirm or dispute this longstanding assumption.
Although black holes are not close enough to endanger the earth, they remain a window into some of the greatest mysteries of science. Determining how they look in real life is an unprecedented step in understanding the nature of our universe.