This hole is depicted for the first time in the center of the Milky Way

The first image of the Milky Way supermassive cavity was unveiled on Thursday, providing the first direct visual evidence of the “subtle giant” at the center of our galaxy.

The photograph, which shows an oval void surrounded by a bright ring of incandescent gas, is only the second image of this hole, the first to show in detail a giant feature called Sagittarius A *. Milky Way kernel.

“For decades, astronomers have been pondering what lies at the heart of our galaxy, pulling stars into solid orbits through its enormous gravity,” said Michael Johnson, an astrophysicist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

Scientists now have the first straight line to prove that Sagittarius A * is indeed a hole.

The study was conducted by an international team of astronomers known as the Horizon Event Telescope, which consists of more than 300 scientists from 80 different institutions around the world.

The conclusions were published in a special issue on Thursday The Astrophysical Journal Letters:.

Sagittarius A * is about 27,000 light-years away, 4 million times more massive than Mars.

The cavity is completely dark, but the photo captured an incandescent ring around the center of the cover, which astronomers recognized as a shadow that indicates the cavity, said Ferial Ozel, a professor of astronomy and astrophysics at the University of Arizona. the team.

Observations show how cavities “eat” by swallowing nearby gas, bending light with its strong gravity, he added.

“The light coming out of the hot gas circulating around the cavity looks like a bright ring,” Ozel said. “The light, which is very close to the hollow, close enough to swallow it, finally crosses its horizon, leaving the dark emptiness in the center.”

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