Space – Amazing NASA Pic Shows What Happens When A Black Hole Eats A Nearby Star
Ever wondered what black holes feasting on stars looks like? Worry not, we have you covered. In a new NASA rendition, scientists reveal what the bright cosmic process would look like.
The research studying black holes was undertaken by Sixiang Wen from the University of Arizona Steward Observatory.
How was the cosmic event captured?
Researchers used x-rays released by the event to record the measurements of the black hole’s mass and its spin.
The event wherein a black holes gobbles down a star is known as a “tidal disruption event”, and this one is officially known as “J2150”.
When a star is being killed by a black hole, an intense amount of radiation is released. According to Phys.org, this radiation is sometimes capable of outshining the combined light emanating from every star residing in the host galaxy of the black hole for years, depending on the size of the event.
Also read: Scientists Prove Stephen Hawking’s Prediction Of Black Hole Features 47 Years Later
The black hole that devoured the star is an elusive one (classified as an “intermediate-mass black hole), for its assessments has been difficult by scientists. But this event helped scientists observe its properties.
Using complex theoretical models and by analysing the x-ray data, scientists ascertained that an unlucky star did fall into the mouth of this black hole.
The black hole in question has 10,000 times the mass of our central star, the Sun.
Why is this a big deal?
While observing tidal disruption events is relatively common for supermassive black holes, it’s not that easy for intermediate black holes. In fact, there is very little to no data on intermediate black hole’s capability to eat a star, i.e., cause a tidal disruption flare.
Whenever a star comes too close to a black holes, it is ripped apart into a streak of gases by gravitational forces, causing a tidal disruption event. During this process, high amount of energy is released.
Also read: Astronomers Find New Kind Of Supernova Formed By Black Hole Eating A Star From Inside
Many scientists claim that intermediate black holes serve as seeds for supermassive black holes to grow. If true, such observations could help shed light on the lifespan of black holes in our universe.
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