October 2, 2023

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Researchers pick up on the sound of a black hole swallowing a star; Hear

Published on 05/04/2022 18:01

The moment a black hole pulls star gas and dust inside – (credit: Aurore Simonnet and NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center)

A group of astronomers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) managed to transform the moment when Black hole Swallow a star. In audio provided on Monday (2/5) by the Foundation, it is possible to hear a strong bass that varies between low and high pitch, which is in fact reproducing the echoes of light emitted by large gravitational wells as gas and dust are sucked up from a spinning star. Listen:

Recording is the reproduction in sound waves of emitting light echoes, called X-ray echoes, that are produced at a time when black hole Swallow the star. The conversion to sound waves was done with the help of music and education researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

How was captured and converted

To capture the moment, the scientists used the Nicer telescope, a high-resolution X-ray device aboard the International Space Station. The device picked up 26 x-ray machines from black holes 10 of them were so close to the telescope that they were chosen for observation, as they were in an ideal position to pick up and distinguish the echo.

Eight of the ten systems were previously unknown. Movements are clearly captured. First, the black hole, dark and devoid of light, rises and causes a halo of high-energy photons with a jet of particles – the beginning of a light resonance; Then the gravitational well emits a high-energy flash and then the phenomenon returns to the “soft” low-energy state and returns to black.

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The flash is the end of the devouring process and causes the region of high-energy plasma to expand outside the black hole. Then the scientists converted this echo process into sound waves.

In the audio simulation video, the white circle is the location of the black hole’s event horizon and the light echo is the color waves. Each color represents echoes of light, according to the force emitted by the black hole. Low-frequency echoes have a lower pitch and those with higher frequency have higher pitch.

The discovery is part of another project

The study that allowed a black hole to reproduce the moment it devours a star is part of a research conducted to search satellite data for signals from black hole echoes to reconstruct the immediate vicinity of these gravitational wells.

By observing the explosions of black holes, scientists have realized that their role in the evolution of galaxies is fundamental, but modern astrophysics does not understand it much. “Interestingly, black hole binaries appear to be supermassive ‘small’ black holes, so by understanding explosions in these small nearby systems, we can understand how similar explosions in supermassive black holes affect the galaxies in which they reside,” explains the physics professor From MIT, Irene Kara.

In addition to Kara, Jingye Wand, a graduate student at the institute, Matteo Lucini and Ron Remillard also took part in the study. NASA also collaborated with the study.