sep 232013
Dating our Galaxy's Supermassive Black Hole

  A supermassive black hole lies at the heart of our galaxy. Fresh evidence suggests that it last erupted two million years ago. Astronomers have long suspected such an outburst occurred, but this is the first time they’ve been able to date it. An artist’s conception of a black hole generating a jet. Two million years [continue reading]

aug 302013
Massive Black Hole Finds Much of its Food Hard to Swallow

  Astronomers using NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory have taken a major step in explaining why material around the giant black hole at the center of the Milky Way Galaxy is extraordinarily faint in X-rays. This discovery holds important implications for understanding black holes. This composite image combines observations using infrared light and X-ray light that [continue reading]

aug 152013
New Pulsar Reveals Feeding Habits of Milky Way’s Black Hole

  A team of astronomers, including Heino Falcke (Radboud University Nijmegen/ ASTRON) and Adam Deller (ASTRON), has discovered radio pulses from a neutron star practically next door to the supermassive black hole which resides at the center of the Milky Way. Radio ‘pulsars’ are rapidly spinning neutron stars, ubiquitous in the rest of the Milky [continue reading]

mei 072013
Hot Gas on the Menu for Milky Way’s Black Hole

  ESA’s Herschel space observatory has made detailed observations of surprisingly hot molecular gas that may be orbiting or falling towards the supermassive black hole lurking at the center of our Milky Way galaxy. The environment at the centre of our Milky Way Galaxy. The Galactic Centre hosts a supermassive black hole in the region known as [continue reading]

apr 072013
Signs of Star Formation Near Milky Way's Black Hole

  Astronomers using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) have discovered signs of star formation perilously close to the supermassive black hole at the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. If confirmed, this would be the first time that star formation was observed so close to the galactic center. A combined ALMA and Very Large [continue reading]

nov 062012
The Milky Way's Black Hole is Suddenly Eating a Lot More

  As black holes go, Sagittarius A* is relatively low-key. The supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy emits very little energy for its size, giving off roughly as much energy as the Sun, even though it is 4 billion times as massive. This false-color image shows the central region of our Milky [continue reading]