[“Our Milky Way” series] Years in the works. The announcement had been anticipated for awhile. The big news was released today: First image of Black Hole at the center of our galaxy. Heart of the Milky Way, eh. This is about more than synthesizing an image from photos taken by “telescopes on high mountaintops” positioned… Continue reading A ringed darkness at our Milky Way’s center – EHT images Sagittarius A*
[Draft] [RIP series] So, this recent SciTechDaily article (below) about the “Singularity Problem” caught my attention today. Because it’s a reminder of what the much fictionalized / mythologized notion is really about. The need for a deeper understanding of nature. The representational limits (approximate character) of mathematical models. A theory’s domain of applicability.  As… Continue reading Singularities RIP?
Quote: “Always two there are, no more, no less.” – Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace  Well, stars do not always come in pairs (or triples, etc.). But binary stars – stellar pairs – are common. Estimates vary. Wiki uses an estimate “that approximately one third [33%] of the star systems in… Continue reading Stellar pairs – when the tango stops
So, it’s that time of year again: lots of recaps, lists of top this-and-that. Even milestones, discoveries, or breakthroughs in science. Here’s a YouTube video highlighting some progress in physics: • YouTube > Quanta Magazine > “The Year’s Biggest Breakthroughs in Physics” (Dec 23, 2020) YouTube description: This year, two teams of physicists made profound… Continue reading 2020 highlights
Yes, Virginia, there is a black hole in the center of our Milky Way . What might be expected if you asked, à la a Jay Leno “Jaywalking” segment, some random people this question: “Where’s the nearest black hole?” Well, tallying those that know what a black hole is  … those that know what… Continue reading Yes, Virginia, there is a black hole in the center of our Milky Way
[Communicating science series] Today my post celebrates another science communicator, Fraser Cain, and his YouTube channel by the same name. This week, I noticed his video “Two Supermassive Black Holes Orbiting Each Other. Stephen Hawking Was Right!” (May 11, 2020). Well-done visualization. His channel description says: Space and astronomy news from Fraser Cain, publisher of… Continue reading Black hole systems – communicating the cosmos
This Space.com article “NASA Unveils Amazing Cosmic Views as Chandra X-Ray Observatory Turns 20” (July 28, 2019) reminded me of the limited vision provided only with visible light. Consumer security (and other) cameras have accustomed more of us to regularly seeing infrared light (a longer wavelength part of the electromagnetic spectrum). And that “light” behaves… Continue reading Celebrating X-Ray Astronomy — Chandra, NuSTAR
One of the main themes of this blog is “What’s changed in the last 50 years?” — as far as our understanding of physics and the cosmos. For this post, let’s consider the last 100 years or so. There have been major changes in our cosmic perspective. Rather than adding the content of this post… Continue reading Cosmic retrospective — gamma ray bursts
As teased earlier this month, today the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) project announced and presented the first ever photographs of a black hole — “the last photon orbit.” Another epic story of big science and an international team. The interplay of models and simulations, data capture, and complex processing. And funding. Much news coverage. Here’s… Continue reading Photographing a black hole?
Regarding recent posts about black holes, here’s another YouTube video by The Science Asylum on the topic (published February 16, 2019): “Black Holes can SPIN?!?” I’ve previously highlighted The Science Asylum as a science communicator. This latest video is an interesting overview of black holes: non-spinning vs. spinning, the math vs. reality inside and outside… Continue reading Ergosphere – what?