Black Hole Nine Times Larger Than the Sun Is Pulling in Space and Time
Astronomers have noticed a black hole, known as V404 Cygni, 8,000 light years away that is pulling space into itself, according to a new study published by Nature and reported by CNN.
The black hole is nine times larger than the sun and its jets of plasma clouds – which are normal to come out of the poles from black holes – are shooting out in various directions at completely different rates, which is uncommon.
“This is one of the most extraordinary black hole systems I’ve ever come across,” lead author of the study and associate professor from the Curtin University’s International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research, James Miller-Jones said in a statement.
“Like many black holes, it’s feeding on a nearby star, pulling gas away from the star and forming a disk of material that encircles the black hole and spirals towards it under gravity,” he continued. “What’s different in V404 Cygni is that we think the disk of material and the black hole are misaligned. This appears to be causing the inner part of the disk to wobble like a spinning top and fire jets out in different directions as it changes orientation.”
The black hole’s gravitational pull is so intense that overall its pulling space and time right into itself, which is known as frame-dragging.
“This is the only mechanism we can think of that can explain the rapid precession we see in V404 Cygni,” Miller-Jones said. “You can think of it like the wobble of a spinning top as it slows down, only in this case, the wobble is caused by Einstein’s general theory of relativity.”
Avengers: Endgame’s Chris Evans posted the news of the black hole study on Twitter, where he shared his amazement for the vastness of the universe.
— Chris Evans (@ChrisEvans) May 1, 2019
A recent discovery last December had shed new light on our knowledge of black holes when an astronomer saw wind gusts blowing from a supermassive black hole 228,000 light years away from its surrounding galaxy.
For more Space news, check out the gamma-ray constellations that NASA named after Marvel’s Avengers, the TARDIS from Doctor Who, and more.
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Jessie Wade is a news writer at IGN and is fascinated by the universe. Chat with her on Twitter about astronomy @jessieannwade.
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