Noise from the black hole |  Science

Noise from the black hole | Science

The picture was only possible thanks to the cooperation of hundreds of astronomers from all over the world. They wired eight radio telescopes together in a network. This created a hypothetical telescope the size of the Earth itself: event horizon telescope. Take the leading image of the black hole at the center of the galaxy called Messier 87.

the size of the earth

The EHT is so special that I want to include it in the science collection as a museum director. But how do you put together a hypothetical Earth-size telescope? On Friday I received from the director of the EHT, Dutch professor of Hungarian radio astronomy Huib Jan van Langevelde, an essential part of the telescope: disc package. Basically nothing more than a package with eight hard drives, each containing 8 TB or 8000 GB of data.

The data encodes the noise coming from the center of the M87. This noise was observed by a Dutch-British radio telescope located in Hawaii. Only 0.1 percent of the noise comes from the black hole. To discover this small part, observations from the eight different telescopes must be cleverly combined. This happened, for example, at a research institute in Bonn.

half a ton

During each observation session, there are hundreds disc packages collected with data. It weighs about half a ton. But how do you transfer this data to the other side of the ocean? It is almost impossible to send that digitally. the disc packages So he flew to Bonn by plane via the physical route.

Then, it took until the summer of 2018 before the now iconic image of a black hole was made out of this. This is quite different from developing a roll of film in a dark room.

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Amitu Harhuis, Director of the Rijksmuseum Borhav

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