Sagittarius A* and supermassive black holes

Raptor

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Well, how about some exciting scientific discoveries? Event Horizon Telescope recently released a radio spectrum image of the center of our Milky Way, Sagittarius A*. It's a supermassive black hole.

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This is actually the second black hole image that Event Horizon Telescope released, since 3 years ago they released a picture of the even more massive Messier 87.

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Messier 87 absolutely dwarves Sagittarius A*. Put it this way, if Sagittarius A* is the size of a soccer ball, Messier 87 is the size of the stadium. They have comparable apparent brightness because Messier 87 is much further away.

https://www.space.com/milky-way-m87-black-holes-compared-eht
As a side note, with the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope, I'm really excited to see what it can discover. The difference in clarity between it and the preceding Spitzer is astonishing.
 
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Aaron

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Yes, I've been watching these developments with great interest. The advancements in imaging science are amazing. The EHT team is saying that, within a few years, they'll have animations/video of the M87 black hole, which is just crazy. I feel bad that Stephen Hawking couldn't hang on long enough to see this stuff. Granted, it's more a validation of General Relativity than of his own work, but the guy contributed so much to the quantum-physical theory of black holes that he deserved to see one.

And I'm definitely looking forward to a summer of JWST imagery. After launch, they were playing up all of the possible failure modes so much that I couldn't believe it when the thing actually deployed successfully. It seems ready to live up to the hype, so... Crossing all digits....
 
are there still plans to put one of those large array telescopes on the moon surface? i remember several years ago, NASA saying they were in partnership talks to place an array on the lunar surface in the 2020s decade.
 

Raptor

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Hopefully they will point the JW telescope at the Black Hole and get an even better image.
I don’t think JWST will be able to capture these kinds of images. The Event Horizon Telescope is essentially multiple radio frequency receivers spread across the globe to capture these images. JWST on the other hand is an infrared telescope (see the recent NIR images), a distinctly different band. I’m sure JWST will make amazing discoveries in its own right, but it’s not meant to capture the same bands as the Event Horizon Telescope.
 
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Indeed, JWST is not a radiotelescope. Plus, to capture a black hole of this size, you normally need a telescope the size of the Earth. They compensated this by creating a network of radiotelescopes such as the EHT to "recreate" a picture afterwards. So, even if JWST were a space radiotelescope, it couldn't get an image of the black hole alone.
 
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