Astronomers Spot “Unprecedented” Bright Flashes in our Galaxy’s Black Hole

Astronomers Spot “Unprecedented” Bright Flashes in our Galaxy’s Black Hole

Astronomers Spot “Unprecedented” Bright Flashes in our Galaxy’s Black Hole

 

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?”

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