black hole at the center of the Milky Way galaxy swallowed a cloud of gas




At the center of our galaxy lies a supermassive black hole whose mass is, according to preliminary data, exceeds the mass of the Sun four times. It is worth noting that the Milky Way is not the only galaxy with a black hole in between. A recent study center of the Milky Way galaxy, scientists have witnessed a rather interesting phenomenon – what they saw as the black hole “ate” a huge cloud of interstellar gas.

Despite the fact that the known as the “star of Sagittarius A” black hole is located at a distance of 25,000 light-years from Earth, scientists were able to consider in detail the process of absorption of its huge amount of matter. Mass of the black hole is so big that it has cleared all the space around them from a different space debris. Weight of a gas cloud, which was named G2 , approximately three times larger than that of the Earth.

The first observations showed that the black hole under the force fully absorb a cloud of gas, but a photo with a 20-minute exposure made telescope VLT, shows that only a part of the cloud was absorbed G2 “Archer.” Most of the clouds accelerated in the opposite direction due to gravitational effect .

In 2004, scientists have observed a similar phenomenon, but then the gas cloud was spherical and accelerated directly toward the black hole.

In recent years, the cutting edge of cloud stretched forward faster than the rear, which can be explained by the gravitational gradient. In astrophysics, it is called instant effect (the effect of the vertical stretching and horizontal compression of objects). As a result of this effect cloud acquired oblong shape. At the point of closest approach distance between the cloud and the black hole, which referred the “runaway” matter a huge amount of energy was 25 billion kilometers. The front part of the gas cloud, which managed to “survive”, currently flying toward Earth at a speed of 10 million km / h That’s about 1 percent of the speed of light.

The masses, who could not escape from the clutches of “Sagittarius”, will soon be swallowed by the black hole. Astronomers are equally interested both processes. The above video demonstrates the appearance of gas clouds and the trajectory in space.

Scientists have the unique opportunity to test a number of theories as to how exactly gravity processes in supermassive black holes affect the matter. During the year, telescopes will not “keep an eye” with the center of the Milky Way galaxy, as the process is still ongoing. In fact, the process occurred 25,000 years ago, but the consequences of this event is only now reached Earth.
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