Fellow stargazers can now rejoice because they can now witness a rare astronomic event. Japanese astrophysicists stated that the nearby black hole is visible through a backyard telescope.
Stargazing can be a relaxing activity, but it becomes rather tedious if one is to look at the same star formation each night. But now we have something entirely new to look at, thanks to the extensive research performed by the scientists from Japan.
A tag-team formed by JAXA, Japan’s National Laboratory and the University of Hiroshima, has discovered that the nearby V404 Cygny black hole binary is so luminescent, that one can pierce through its shroud using nothing but a 20 cm backyard telescope.
According to their study, it would seem that repetitive orbits have contributed more to the discovery of this amazing space phenomena than the accretion rate.
And if this news was not amazing enough, according to the same scientists it would seem that what we are seeing are outbursts in magnitude, internal black hole processes which are quite rare.
In fact, the whole phenomenon is so unique, because this is the first time in 26 years that the black hole registered activity. Indeed, according to their observation, the star-swallowing giant lay dormant for approximately 26 years, before giving off these outbursts of energy.
The V404 Cygny, alias the sleeping giant, has woken up from its slumber, and might we add that he is quite hungry. In fact, the energy patterns observed by the Japanese researchers are X-Rays, emitted when a celestial body falls inside the mouth of a Black Hole.
A nearby black hole is visible through a backyard telescope because the X-ray radiation heats up the outer rim of the disk. Being heated by outbursts of X-ray radiation, the disk emits high quantities of optical rays, which are visible without the need of specialized equipment.
In their research of the sleeping giant, the team of Japanese scientists observed several repetitive patterns and were actually capable of measuring the disk’s temperature.
The internal temperature of the accretion disk is estimated to be around 10 million degrees Kelvin. Moreover, the Japanese team was not alone in its endeavor to map and study the awoken hungry giant.
According to Daisuke Nogami, a co-author of the study, it would seem that the never before seen phenomenon was observed from several locations around the world, some of them being in different time zones.
With the help of other researchers, the Japanese team was able to piece together a comprehensible database of the V404 Cygny binary black hole, which is located at nearly 8000 light-years from Earth.