Harvard scientists find way to take sharper images of black hole

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Harvard scientists find way to take sharper images of black hole
Harvard scientists find way to take sharper images of black hole

New Delhi : Scientists at Harvard University have discovered ways which can help in producing sharper images of black hole as compared to old blurry pictures available so far.

Last year, the international coalition of scientists, who run the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT), revealed the first-ever image of a black hole's shadow.

According to the new study, the scientists have calculated and predicted an intricate internal structure within black hole images caused by extreme gravitational light bending.

The study has been published in Science Advances. In this, the lead author Michael Johnson of the Center for Astrophysics Harvard and Smithsonian has described how the swirling ring of photons around a black hole could be the key to unlocking sharp photos.

"The image of a black hole actually contains a nested series of rings," Johnson tells IFLScience. "Each successive ring has about the same diameter but becomes increasingly sharper because its light orbited the black hole more times before reaching the observer. With the current EHT image, we’ve caught just a glimpse of the full complexity that should emerge in the image of any black hole."

By stacking images of a black hole’s “subrings,” we may one day be able to create a much sharper complete photo of what a black hole looks like.

"What really surprised us was that while the nested subrings are almost imperceptible to the naked eye on images—even perfect images—they are strong and clear signals for arrays of telescopes called interferometers," Johnson tells Phys.org. "While capturing black hole images normally requires many distributed telescopes, the subrings are perfect to study using only two telescopes that are very far apart.

"Adding one space telescope to the EHT would be enough."