Strong magnetic fields surround Milky Way’s black hole – Science & Tech.

EHT Reveals Mysterious Ring of Magnetic Fields Surrounding Sagittarius A* Black Hole in Milky Way

Astronomers have recently made a groundbreaking discovery about powerful magnetic fields surrounding the black hole at the center of our Milky Way galaxy. According to the European Southern Observatory, a new image from the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) revealed, for the first time in polarized light, a ring of magnetic fields surrounding the Sagittarius A* black hole. These magnetic fields are said to be similar to those observed around the M87* black hole at the core of the M87 Galaxy.

The new discovery shows that strong, twisted and organized magnetic fields exist near the black hole at the heart of our galaxy. This was made possible through polarized light images, which enabled astronomers to isolate the magnetic field lines of the black hole.

Supermassive black holes, which are found at the center of galaxies, are significantly larger in mass compared to the Sun, with masses ranging from millions to billions of times greater. Despite their immense size and early emergence in the universe, their origins remain a mystery due to their immense gravitational pull that prevents anything from escaping directly. However, with EHT capturing images of M87* in 2019 and Sagittarius A* in 2022, researchers were able to view the halo of light that forms due to inflow and outflow of matter and gas around black holes.

Angelo Ricarte, a member of Harvard’s Black Hole Initiative and co-lead on this project emphasizes how significant it is imaging polarized light emitted by hot gas surrounding black holes as it allows researchers to directly understand their structure and strength. Mariafelicia De Laurentis adds that this discovery suggests that strong magnetic fields may be common among all supermassive black holes


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