Astronomers Made Use Of Planet-size Telescope To Take the First Picture Of A Black Hole


The Black hole is at the heart of our galaxy which is almost impossible to spot. But this impossible thing is made possible by the astrophysicist by building a planet-size telescope called as Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) that can take the picture of a black hole. “Black holes are basically the most mystifying objects in the cosmos,” said Shep Doeleman, an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. We could most probably see the direct image of the black hole through EHT.

The reason why we were not able to detect a black hole till now is that the supermassive black holes in the centre of galaxies are comparatively tiny. The largest black hole in the sky is in the centre of the Milky Way. An astrophysicist at the University of Arizona, Dimitrios Psaltis said, “Taking picture of the black hole is much similar to taking a picture of a DVD on the surface of the moon.” Black holes are surrounded by different hot and glowing matters due to its heavy gravity. Hence, the black hole appears more and more dark and so it’s invisible. The black hole named Sagittarius A* was spotted by the Event Horizon Telescope.

The working of “Event Horizon Telescope”:

In the case of other conventional optical telescopes, we make use of bigger mirrors to observe the smaller and farther objects in the Universe. The Event Horizon Telescope would also function in a similar way but the only difference is that it will create a virtual telescope as the size of the entire Earth. Radio telescopes from eight locations right from Hawaii to South pole would be affiliated to Event Horizon team allowing them all to observe Sagittarius A for a couple of days.

Once they get a result after observing the black hole for 5 nights, all the astronomers across the globe will forward their findings and research to the supercomputers situated at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Max Planck Institute in Germany.