Reference Resource Roundup: Astronomers Capture First Image of a Black Hole
The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) — a planet-scale array of eight ground-based radio telescopes forged through international collaboration — was designed to capture images of a black hole. Today, in coordinated press conferences across the globe, EHT researchers reveal that they have succeeded, unveiling the first direct visual evidence of a supermassive black hole and its shadow.
This breakthrough was announced today in a series of six papers published in a special issue of The Astrophysical Journal Letters. The image reveals the black hole at the center of Messier 87 , a massive galaxy in the nearby Virgo galaxy cluster. This black hole resides 55 million light-years from Earth and has a mass 6.5 billion times that of the Sun.
“We have taken the first picture of a black hole,” said EHT project director Sheperd S. Doeleman of the Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian. “This is an extraordinary scientific feat accomplished by a team of more than 200 researchers.”
Washington DC Press Conference
European Commission Press Conference
This research was presented in a series of six papers published today in a special issue of The Astrophysical Journal Letters, along with a Focus Issue:
Paper II: Array and Instrumentation
Paper III: Data processing and Calibration
Selected Resources About Project
- Event Horizon Telescope Project FAQ
- Event Horizon Telescope Project Infographics
- Event Horizon Telescope Videos (via YouTube)
- Event Horizon Telescope on Twitter
- ALMA and the Event Horizon Telescope: Tip Sheet (via National Radio Astronomy Observatory)
- Black Holes Special Report: Exploring Black Holes (via NSF)
- Taking the First Picture of a Black Hole (via European Southern Observatory)
SXSW 2019 Panel (Recorded March 2019): “A Planetary Effort To Photograph A Black Hole”
Last Updated: April 10, 2019 (3:30pm EDST)
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Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com. Gary is also the co-founder of infoDJ an innovation research consultancy supporting corporate product and business model teams with just-in-time fact and insight finding.