A few things kept me up, namely the Bermuda Triangle quicksand and black holes. Turns out as an adult these things are way less of a day to day problems than I thought they are now I’m lying awake at night, all over again because astronomers just found the closest black hole to us yet. And they suggest there could be even more lurking out there in the universe, finding black holes, is tricky with them capturing everything that strays too close, including light. they are unseeable by their very nature, and only the effects of their intense gravity, give them away. Space News Latest
They are the SAR lacks of space. The insatiable invisible ma of destruction. So, it’s a bit ironic, the researchers who found this nearby black hole weren’t even looking for the astronomers were looking at what they thought was a double star system called HR 6819, not the most fear inducing name I’ve ever heard but just this pair of stars is close enough that it can be seen from the southern hemisphere without any optical beads on a dark and clear night while observing the stars the astronomers noticed that what they were actually seeing was a free body.
The inner star appeared to orbit something once every 14 days, while the outer star orbited the air much farther away I assume out of a sense of self preservation. So how did the researchers know the object the inner star was orbiting was a black hole. Well, whatever it was orbiting was invisible, which is a pretty strong clue, but they could also use the inner stars orbit to determine the mass of its invisible partner, which they determined how to mass, about four times that of our sun, based on those two pieces of information. The third member of the stellar Tango is most likely a black hole. That makes hr 6819, the first star system with a black hole that can be seen with the naked eye.Space News Latest
Perhaps the most intriguing thing, or worrying thing depending on how paranoid you are is just how mundane this black hole is up until now we’ve only spotted a few dozen black holes in our galaxy and usually they stick out because how violently they interact with their surroundings. They’re syphoning off matter from companion stars and blasting x rays out in space. By contrast, the black hole in HR 6819 doesn’t seem to be doing much of anything. So it appears purely black. It’s just wildly waltzing with its partners minding its own business, but its very existence, it’s much more.
If we found one this close by and this easily. Then, in all likelihood, there are many more black holes, just like it throughout our galaxy. We’ve long suspected that throughout the history of the Milky Way, many stars must have lasted themselves and discovering this quiet black hole could explain why we haven’t seen more the astronomers who led this study estimate that there must be hundreds of millions of them out there. So, should you be terrified, there are scores and black holes around every corner waiting to get you like an Army of Darkness. Space News Latest
In all seriousness, no HR 6819 is about thousand light years away. For perspective, the nearest star to our solar system is a little over four light years. If anything, discovering this quiet black hole opens up opportunities to understand how large stars involved, or how three body systems can trigger black hole mergers and stellar collisions. And besides, if a black hole where to get you never see it coming. Well, sleep tight everyone.