Scientists are about to announce to the world about something new and innovative in our galaxy – Teach Me About Science

A view of the supermassive black hole M87 in polarized light. (Credit: EHT Collaboration).

Those responsible for the first image of a black hole say they will make a groundbreaking announcement about something in the Milky Way. The new EHT findings about the Milky Way will be presented at a press conference of the European Southern Observatory (ESO) project and the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT).

The announcement will be made on May 12 at 15:00 CEST or 9:00 EST. The chosen venue is the Eridanus Auditorium, ESO Headquarters, Garching bei München, Germany. It will also be viewable online on the ESO YouTube channel. You can see it in the event below.

According to the ESO, the press release on the results presented on May 12 will be made public shortly after the start of the press conference, at 15:07 CEST or 9:07 am EST. Translations of the press release will be available in several languages, along with extensive audiovisual support material.

What is the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT)? The EHT is an international collaboration that has been formed to continue the long-term steady progress in improving the capability of Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) at short wavelengths in pursuit of this goal. This technique consists of linking satellite dishes from all over the world to create an interferometer the size of the Earth.

It has been used to measure the size of the emission regions of the two supermassive black holes with the largest apparent event horizons: SgrA* in the center of the Milky Way and M87 in the center of the Virgo A galaxy. In both cases, the sizes match those of the predicted silhouette caused by extreme lensing of light by the black hole. The EHT project includes theoretical and simulation studies that are framing long-standing questions at the black hole boundary that may soon be answered by observations.

The addition of key millimeter and submillimeter wavelength facilities at high-altitude locations has opened up the possibility of imaging these features and detecting the dynamic evolution of black hole accretion.

On April 10, 2019, scientists published the first image of a black hole, which revealed a bright ring-like structure with a dark central region—the black hole’s shadow. To peer into the heart of the galaxy M87, the collaboration linked eight telescopes around the world to create a virtual Earth-sized telescope, the EHT. The impressive resolution obtained with the EHT is equivalent to that needed to measure the length of a credit card on the surface of the Moon.

The whole world went crazy when the first image of a black hole was released. Interestingly they used the term “groundbreaking” back then, and now the same project says it will present “groundbreaking results” from the EHT’s Milky Way. What do you have prepared now? It’s very exciting just trying to guess.

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