Astronomers in Chile and Hawaii were able to observe the flashing of a massive black hole that sits in the center of our Milky Way galaxy.
CNN reports that the supermassive black hole, known as Sgr A*, is the closest black hole ever seen from Earth at 26,000 light-years away. The black hole has been seen before in multiple wavelengths of light, but for a four day stretch in April and May, astronomers were able to observe it in near infrared, which is the optimal way to observe a black hole.
What scientists saw was “unprecedented.” Specifically, the black hole was erupting and unleashing bright radiation.
Astronomer Tuan Do of UCLA, who has been studying Sgr A* for years, said the infrared readings were the brightest ever seen for the black hole. Do also asked rhetorically on Twitter: “Is Sgr A* waking up?”