Say Cheese: Astronomers Aim To Take First Picture of Black Hole
Taking a picture of a black hole, an object so gravitationally bound that not even photons of light can escape, sounds like an oxymoron, but astronomers are attempting to do just that. What they’re hoping to glimpse is something called the “event horizon” — the swirl of matter and energy that are visible around the rim of the black hole just before it falls into the abyss.
The target for the shoot is the supermassive black hole that lives in the heart of our galaxy, the Milky Way. It’s about 4 million times as massive as the sun, but it’s extremely compressed and far away, nearly 26,000 light-years. To astronomers, it’s like looking at a grapefruit on the moon.