In this episode of The Debrief, we speak to two astronomers helping to create the most detailed map ever of the universe.
By observing the universe at low radio frequencies, astronomers can now specify with greater accuracy the number of new stars being formed in the early universe, establish a correlation between the brightness of galaxies on the low radio images and the rate of star formation as well as analyse emissions from around massive black holes or the collision of galaxies.
The two so-called GW190521 black holes, one 66 times the mass of the Sun, the other 85 times the mass, merged to form the new massive black hole, the first time such large black holes have been observed either by gravity or by electromagnetic observations.
The technique, which has already unearthed stars, allows scientists to see what is invisible.
The newly-discovered black hole, which researchers have called LB-1, is located 15,000 light-years from Earth and so far scientists have only known of black holes with masses below 50 times that of the sun.
Black hole hunter Dr. Monika Mościbrodzka who was involved in the project said the image “was captured by eight telescopes that created a virtual telescope the size of Earth.
The first rule for dealing with black holes is don’t get too close. That’s not stopping black hole astronomers in Poland and Lithuania though.