Earlier this month, a team of scientists set out with a seemingly impossible task, that of taking a picture of a black hole. This task was carried out as part of the Event Horizon Telescope mission.
To achieve their goal, the research team trained a network of telescopes towards a single particular spot of the night sky. This celestial area was followed over a period of ten days, which ended earlier this week. Nonetheless, this does not mean that they team has manged to capture an image of a black hole. Nor does it mean that they failed.
Instead, as the scientists themselves pointed out, it means that the image is still in the making. More exactly, this one photo will actually be a “composite” image. This means that this first image will be pieced together based on the observations gathered by the various telescopes.
The First Image Of A Black Hole Will Be Ready Sometime In The Next Few Months
The Event Horizon Telescope project is based on a network of telescopes which runs from Hawaii to Spain to even Antarctica. These were all trained towards the approximated location of the black hole at the center of our galaxy. This is located around 26,000 light years away, in an area called Sagittarius A or Sgr A*.
According to the research team, it will take a few good months to piece together the data obtained across these 10 days. However, if they will succeed, the results could mark a breakthrough. Such an image could help peel back some of the mysteries surrounding black holes. It may even help gather new data about the Universe and its creation and composition.
“The images will emerge as we combine all the data. But we’re going to have to wait several months for the result.”
This is according to Michael Bremer, the mission’s project manager, and an International Research Institute for Radio Astronomy astronomer.
Image Source: Wikimedia