Orbits of stars around black hole at the heart of the Milky Way

This simulation shows the orbits of stars very close to the supermassive black hole at the heart of the Milky Way. One of these stars, named S2, orbits every 16 years and is passing very close to the black hole in May 2018. This is a perfect laboratory to test gravitational physics and specifically Einstein's general theory of relativity.

Research into S2's orbit was presented in a paper entitled “Detection of the Gravitational Redshift in the Orbit of the Star S2 near the Galactic Centre Massive Black Hole“, by the GRAVITY Collaboration, which appeared in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics on 26 July 2018.

Credit:

ESO/L. Calçada/spaceengine.org

About the Image

Id:eso1825d
Type:Simulation
Release date:26 July 2018, 14:00
Related releases:eso1825
Related announcements:ann19005
Size:4096 x 2500 px

About the Object

Type:Milky Way : Galaxy : Component : Central Black Hole
Category:Quasars and Black Holes

Image Formats

Large JPEG
2.2 MB
Screensize JPEG
213.2 KB

Zoomable


Wallpapers

1024x768
292.7 KB
1280x1024
467.9 KB
1600x1200
647.7 KB
1920x1200
739.5 KB
2048x1536
975.2 KB

 

Also see our