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Dark Matter: “Locking down an image of M87’s supermassive black hole at such distance is comparable to photographing a pebble on the Moon.”

Love must see all things that are
But not with any eye.
Dreams must rise from darkling waters,
Yet still gloss clear and dry.

The heart must mimic life lived large
In its sentences and fate;
Accepting time without an end,
And enter at the gateless gate.

The body, all it’s time undone,
Must yield itself to air.
The soul, a dream no longer dreamed,
Must freeze upon the spiral stairs,

That lead up to that heart of light
Which circles in that storm;
Where One eye sees all things that are,
Where that which is, is born.

for Tom Mandel

*Here’s how that epic black hole image was captured –  

Roughly 350 terabytes per day was captured by each of the eight telescopes, in fact. Rather than try to send that information digitally, the EHT team loaded the drives onto planes and flew them to the supercomputer locations.

With eight telescopes working in concert, the key was getting the data from each to line up exactly. Each one used an atomic clock to precisely log the time of each observation. These clocks use hydrogen masers for accuracy, which rely on individual hydrogen atoms to measure frequency.

The result is what the EHT project describes as “a virtual Earth-sized telescope.” Primarily it used radio telescopes, though at the same time observations were recorded in the X-ray and gamma-ray bands.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Rick April 18, 2019, 7:08 AM

    Cosmology is a wonderful discipline. You can propose any theory you like and no one can say with certainty that you’re wrong.
    We went on an astronomy field trip one night in college. We set up 3 or 4 telescopes on the roof of an old fort on the Atlantic in Charleston, SC. We gathered in groups to find targets and spent some time looking at the moons of Jupiter while waiting for Saturn to rise so we could look for its rings. One group found something they couldn’t identify so we all took a look and finally speculated that it had to be Mars because it had such a distinct orange glow. The professor finally came over and pointed out that what we were looking at was a glowing doorbell on a house 3 or 4 blocks away. So much for our theories.

  • ghostsniper April 18, 2019, 7:13 AM

    “…no one can say with certainty that you’re wrong.”

    That right there is why I made the comment I did before on this thing.
    There is no reason for me to believe that photograph is real.
    I read somewhere recently, possibly on the Woodpile, the existence of blackholes is just a theory.

  • Rick April 18, 2019, 1:25 PM

    So this could be the first photo of a theory! Makes about as much sense to me. They could start proving it by showing us the photo of that pebble on the moon. Should be a cakewalk

  • AesopFan April 18, 2019, 8:29 PM

    While you are watching the stars at night, you need a glass of milk and a cookie.