January 10, 2012

Here is another variation on the whole ‘black hole’ thing.   This publication from NASA describes that an international team of astronomers has identified the moment when a black hole in our galaxy launched super-fast knots of gas into space

Unlike the Gamma ray emissions from SGR 1806-20 in December 26, 2004, this event was watched from start to finish!  This was a tiny PUFF from a small black hole that shows that actual event occurred 2 days (48 hours) before we got the radio waves.

Until now, astronomers had associated the onset of the radio outburst with the bullet ejection event. However, based on the VLBA data, the team calculated that the bullets were launched on June 3, about two days before the main radio flare. A paper on the findings will be published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

(Credit: J. Miller-Jones, ICRAR-Curtin Univ.; C. Brogan, NRAO)



(Credit: NRAO and NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center)

At least they mention the elephant in the room…

A super-sized version of the same phenomenon occurs at the center of an active galaxy, where a black hole weighing millions to billions of times our sun’s mass can drive outflows extending millions of light-years.
"Black hole jets in binary star systems act as fast-forwarded versions of their galactic-scale cousins, giving us insights into how they work and how their enormous energy output can influence the growth of galaxies and clusters of galaxies," said lead researcher James Miller-Jones at the International Center for Radio Astronomy Research at Curtin University in Perth, Australia.

The satellite  that was used for this survey, ended operation January 2012.