Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Black holes are close to Earth, lurking 150 light-years away


By Amira Shehata

Wednesday, September 13, 2023 03:00 AM

A team of astronomers thinks it may already be Two black holes Or three that are more than 10 times as close at 150 light-years away, astrophysicist Stefano Torniamenti of the University of Padua in Italy led a study that examined hundreds of stars visible to the naked eye at the heart of the galaxy. Taurus.

According to the British newspaper Daily Mail, the group of stars is called the open cluster Hyades and shares the same age, appearance, chemical properties and motion through space.

The researchers chose the Hyades, which is thought to be 625 million years old, because it explains why black holes are expected to be there because more collisions and mergers occur in open cluster environments.

Perhaps the problem is that they don’t emit any light until they eat stellar material, so it can be hard to find them, so Torniamenti and his team decided to take a stealthy approach.

They modeled the masses and motions of the stars with the help of data from the Gaia space observatory, which is currently mapping the 3D locations and velocities of stars in the Milky Way.

The researchers ran a series of simulations to see if they could reproduce what Gaia was seeing, and simulations involving two or three black holes to see what the cluster looked like.

“Unless there are some black holes at the center of the cluster today (or even recently), our simulations cannot match the mass and size of the star cluster simultaneously,” Torniamenti said.

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Although the researchers couldn’t pinpoint exactly where the mysterious objects were located within the star cluster, they said the black holes could still be inside the cluster or could have been ejected 150 million years ago.

But even though this cluster is now thought to be home to our nearest black holes, we have nothing to worry about on Earth, as these black holes are moving at speeds of up to 1.8 miles per second (3 km/s). , a. Even if it moves in our direction at speed, it will take a very long time to approach our planet.

However, the discovery is hoped to help better understand the number of black holes lurking in the darkness throughout the Milky Way, which is estimated to contain between 10 million and 1 billion objects.

Astrophysicist Marc Giles from the University of Barcelona said: “This observation helps us understand how the presence of black holes affects the evolution of star clusters and how star clusters contribute to sources of gravitational waves,” adding, “These results also give us insight into how these objects are distributed.” Mysteries Across the Galaxy.”

Stuart Wagner
Stuart Wagner
"Professional coffee fan. Total beer nerd. Hardcore reader. Alcohol fanatic. Evil twitter buff. Friendly tv scholar."

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