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Runaway star might explain black hole's disappearing act

Dragon
Dragon
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Runaway star might explain black hole's disappearing act Empty Runaway star might explain black hole's disappearing act

Post by Dragon Sat Jul 18, 2020 3:35 am

At the center of a far-off galaxy, a black hole is slowly consuming a disk of gas that swirls around it like water circling a drain. As a steady trickle of gas is pulled into the gaping maw, ultrahot particles gather close to the black hole, above and below the disk, generating a brilliant X-ray glow that can be seen 300 million light-years away on Earth.

These collections of ultrahot gas, called black hole coronas, have been known to exhibit noticeable changes in their luminosity, brightening or dimming by up to 100 times as a black hole feeds.

But two years ago, astronomers watched in awe as X-rays from the black hole corona in a galaxy known as 1ES 1927+654 disappeared completely, fading by a factor of 10,000 in about 40 days. Almost immediately it began to rebound, and about 100 days later had become almost 20 times brighter than before the event.

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Dragon
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Post by Dragon Sat Jul 18, 2020 3:37 am

Runaway star might explain black hole's disappearing act Runawaystarm
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

This illustration shows a black hole surrounded by a disk of gas. In the left panel, a streak of debris falls toward the disk. In the right panel, the debris has dispersed some of the gas, causing the corona (the ball of white light above the black hole) to disappear.

Source / Image Courtesy


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Post by Dragon Sat Jul 18, 2020 3:38 am



Black Hole’s Corona Disappears in An Event Never Witnessed Before

Now you see it, now you don’t. Scientists saw a black hole corona totally disappear, only to find it brighten again later. They say it was so strange, they thought it was a mistake in the data at first.


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