Contents page 1 — “The image quality will be better,” page 2 — “It is a pity that we see no reveal Jet” On a page

researchers read eight on the Globe, distributed telescopes have connected with you in the space looked and so the first real Image of a Black hole. Michael Kramer, Director at the Max-Planck-Institute for radio astronomy in Bonn, and one of the parties Involved, explains why these changes a shot so much.

Zeit ONLINE: What could describe the physicist Albert Einstein with his formulas, you have made with your colleagues is visible: a black hole. How does it feel?

Michael Kramer: Very good. It is excellent to be able to finally imagine how a black hole looks like. For the first time I saw the picture in the summer of 2018. Then, several Teams have independently verified that everything is correct, or whether there are measurement errors, which have led to particular effects, such as the differently strong lamp with a Ring. In addition, we did not want to create just a beautiful image, but also to understand whether the result with the theory matches. It’s a little creepy that the picture looks like the Simulation.

there it is! The first direct visual evidence for a supermassive black hole comes from the center of the huge galaxy Messier 87. © EHT collaboration

TIME ONLINE: Quite well, it’s not but, for example, it is a little blurry.

Kramer: That’s true. This is partly due to the fact that not all data have been incorporated, we have at our disposal. The image quality will be better in the next few years. It reminds me a little of Christiaan Huygens’ discovery of Saturn’s rings in the 17th century. Century. On which hardly anything was visible, but the step was important for the understanding of planet at the time.

TIME ONLINE: Why Black holes are to be so difficult?

Kramer: There is no light out of them shining and you are at the same time, against a black sky. So we had to use a Trick. We knew that there is in the center of the galaxy M87, large quantities of gas that will plunge into the Black hole and the while heating and a bright Background. He surrounds the hole and makes it visible.

Michael Kramer is Director at the Max-Planck-Institute for radio astronomy in Bonn, and a member of the Event Horizon telescope project. With two colleagues, he directs the Team of the BlackHoleCam, which has significantly contributed to the Success of the EHT project. © MESSAGE

TIME ONLINE: The image shows a dark circle surrounded by a flaming red-orange light ring. This is but one side is lighter than the other.

Kramer: We see an accretion disk falling into the Black hole. On one side of the ring, the Gas path is moving in on us, and on the other of us. There, where the Gas is coming towards us, to see more light. The gravitational force of the hole is also so strong that we can even see light from its rear side. So we have the shadow, a photon ring around it and the properties of the disc. In the result, we can now determine the mass of the hole much more precisely. Estimates that it is between 3.5 and 6.4 billion solar masses. Now we know: The larger value is correct, the Black hole in M87 is 1,000 times heavier than the milky way.

TIME ONLINE: you say that you can see the Black hole “”. This is, strictly speaking, a glance in the past.

Kramer: The Black hole is 55 million light-years away from us. That is, the imaged photons are about losgereist to the time when there were still dinosaurs on the earth, and they reached us just in time. At a time when our telescopes were ready.


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