By: April Carson
A study published today in Nature Astronomy has found that our galaxy's black hole has created two enormous bubbles around it. The bubbles are full of gas that has been heated to millions of degrees, and they extend out for thousands of light-years.
A slew of new discoveries may help explain why our Milky Way galaxy is encircled by enormous bubbles, which will shed light on a mystery that has perplexed scientists for decades.
The study suggests that our galaxy's supermassive black hole has been blowing bubbles around it for millions of years.
In 2020, scientists utilized an X-ray telescope named eROSITA to capture photographs of the two enormous bubbles. Scientists have disputed about how they might have emerged.
Many people had stated that the bubbles – named for the telescopes that discovered them, after Fermi and eROSITA, which were in fact two of the original names for these stars – might have been produced by a nuclear starburst. That is when a star goes supernova and expels material.
They were manufactured, the new study claims, by a strong jet that erupted from the galaxy's supermassive black hole. The black hole is situated at the center of the Milky Way and is 4 million times bigger than our Sun.
When material falls into a black hole and does not cross the event horizon, the outflows occur. Some of that material is then thrown back into space, preventing black holes from growing too quickly - and the energy disrupts the matter around the black hole, causing it to bubble up.
The bubbles are 36,000 light years tall, or 11 kilometers wide. That means they are more than a third the width of the Milky Way in diameter.
Around 2.6 million years ago, that plane began to release debris, and it continued for roughly 100,000 years before stopping.
“We want to understand how black holes interact with the galaxies they live in because this interaction allows them to grow in a controlled manner rather than expanding uncontrollably,” says University of Michigan astronomer Mateusz Ruszkowski, one of the study's co-authors.
“You can start answering these profound questions if you believe in the model of Fermi or eROSITA bubbles being driven by supermassive black holes.”
The bubbles are intriguing since they're so nearby. Because the black hole is so near, astronomers may accurately determine how much energy it emits and other dimensions of it with great precision.
“We can establish a much tighter constraint on the parameters that are required to produce similar images or something very comparable to what's in the sky, within the supermassive black hole model,” Ruszkowski added.
“We can better control aspects such as how much energy was pumped in, what's inside these bubbles, and how long the energy was injected to generate them.”
The study's results were published in the journal Nature.
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About the Blogger:
April Carson is the daughter of Billy Carson. She received her bachelor's degree in Social Sciences from Jacksonville University, where she was also on the Women's Basketball team. She now has a successful clothing company that specializes in organic baby clothes and other items. Take a look at their most popular fall fashions on bossbabymav.com
To read more of April's blogs, check out her website! She publishes new blogs on a daily basis, including the most helpful mommy advice and baby care tips! Follow on IG @bossbabymav
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