Dozen black holes found at galactic centre

Distant star Icarus captured by the Hubble Space Telescope in galaxy

Now we found out that the visible part is slowly but constantly growing as the formation of new stars on the edge of his disc. Or so it was supposed until now because the accumulation of objects in the area confused astronomers trying to find out what happens in that key region of the galaxy.

"This finding confirms a major theory and the implications are many", Hailey continued. Black holes consuming a dying star emit low-energy X-rays compared to other stars or objects, so they were able to isolate them omitting other, high-energy X-rays.

They searched for X-rays emitted by a subgroup of low-mass black holes that have captured a passing star in their gravitational grip, creating a "black hole binary". In the journal Nature, the team now says they spotted a dozen black holes paired with stars all within just a few light-years of the central supermassive one.

A view of Sagittarius A*, the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way, taken with the Chandra X-ray Observatory (circled in green).

What's more, the very center of our galaxy surely has far more than these dozen black holes that were just detected.

Scientists are already aware of the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way, and now they have discovered thousands more black holes surrounding it. Scientists have speculated that black holes tend to sink to the center of the galaxy and now they may have found proof.

One way to find the elusive objects is to look for bursts of X-rays that are produced when a black hole feeds off a companion star. "They would already have submerged their planets", Charles Hailey explained.

Scientists have long thought that circling in the centre of galaxies, including ours, were lots of stellar black holes - collapsed giant stars where the gravity is so strong even light doesn't get out.

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The study appears to vindicate predictions from theorists such as Mark Morris, an astrophysicist at the University of California, Los Angeles, who in 1993 penned a key paper predicting tens of thousands of stellar-mass black holes would form a disk around the galactic center. Scientists say that the light of these galaxies is also stretched by the expansion of the universe making the light redder.

Charles Hailey from Columbia University in NY and colleagues used archival data from Nasa's Chandra X-ray telescope to come to their conclusions.

According to the expert there are only about five dizen known black holes in the entire galaxy, which spans an incredible width of 100,000 light years. By the time we see the light from these galaxies, they are vastly different than how they are in this ancient light we now observe. It consists of around several hundred billion stars along with large quantities of gas and dust. Furthermore, all black holes in the nearby vicinity of Sagittarius A* are held close by its massive gravitational pull.

Astronomers poring over old x-ray observations have found signs of a dozen black holes in the inner circle of the Milky Way.

An artist's impression of a black hole binary. "So you have to separate out the boring X-ray sources from the fun stuff-the black holes".

The astounding black hole discovery comes hot on the heels of scientists announcing the Milky Way is expanding faster than the speed of sound.

Hailey said the new findings could significantly advance research into one of the most exciting fields of astronomy right now: gravitational waves.

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