Dance star near a black hole proved the correctness of Einstein

Albert Einstein was right again: the first observations using a Large telescope at the European southern Observatory (ESO) VLT showed that the star, which rotates around a supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy, moving as predicted by the General theory of relativity (GTR) Einstein. In this case its orbit has the shape of a “socket”, and not an ellipse, as predicted by Newton’s theory of gravitation. Supermassive black hole Sagittarius a* located in the center of the milky Way at a distance of 26 thousand light years from Earth and is surrounded by hot radio-emitting gas cloud. As in the moment of Sagittarius A* is “dormant” and does not absorb matter, it does not emit energy and red-hot matter, the jets. For this reason a black hole is not visible to most telescopes, and there are dozens of stars and large clouds of gas. For the past 27 years, astronomers have monitored the star S2 as it moves around the black hole at a distance of less than 20 billion kilometers. Thus S2 revolves in a circular orbit, and processes — this means that the location closest to the black hole of a point changes with each turn of the star. As a result of this trajectory orbit of S2 follows the shape of the “socket”.

The orbit of the star S2 moves as predicted by Einstein’s General relativity

Albert Einstein was one of the first physicists in the world who decided to build theory on the basis of new experimental data

At the end of December 2019, astronomers reported that a few stars that rotate around supermassive black hole Sagittarius A*, have put their thinking on the fact that near a black hole might be a wormhole. However, today we are talking about the star called S2, which is located closest to this cosmic monster. Learn more about this, read our material. Then the same observations found that the maximum distance at which a star approaching a black hole – in may 2018, amounted to not less than 20 billion kilometers and the rotational speed reached approximately 25 million kilometres per hour. Only now scientists were able to confirm that S2 is moving according to Einstein’s General relativity.

While driving the S2 accelerates to 10% of the speed of light. Year on the surface of the star lasts for 9.9 earth years, and a complete revolution in its orbit it does for 16 years. The experts also found that when the star is suitable as close to a black hole, it is able to accelerate to 3% of the speed of light. And it is very, very fast.

The authors of a new study remind us that this effect was first observed by the example of mercury’s orbit around the Sun. Moreover, the discovery confirmed that the mass of Sagittarius A* is four million times the sun. However, since S2 is not the only star, located near the Sagittarius A*, scientists have developed a computer simulation of the orbits of stars that revolve around a black hole at the center of our galaxy. Just look at the image below:

Looks like a work of art

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What is a “Dance star”

As the authors of a study published in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics, General relativity predicts that the orbit of one object around another are not confined, as in the Newtonian theory of gravity, and precess – this means that the position of the point of its smallest distance from a supermassive black hole is changing with new turn – each turn of the orbit of the star is rotated relative to the previous from a certain angle. Together, these windings form something like a “socket” or flower, and the movement of stars around the cosmic monster resembles a dance.

This effect, known as the "precession of the Schwarzschild", never previously measured for stars located close to a supermassive black hole.

According to CNN in the course of work on the study, while scientists observed the behavior of S2, they amounted to about 330 estimates the speed and position of the stars using just a few instruments telescope VLT. Let me remind you that for the first time this famous effect was observed on the example of the orbit of mercury around the Sunthat until now was the first experimental confirmation of General relativity.

S2 describes an orbit that is shaped like a flower

What do you think, are there really stars that can rotate closer to the black hole? Share your opinion with the participants of our Telegram chat and in the comments to this article

The authors hope that in the future with Extremely Large ESO Telescope (ELT), they will be able to see even more invisible stars, which revolve yet closer to the black hole.

If we’re lucky, we will be able to detect stars that are very close to Sagittarius A*. In the future this will allow to determine the rotation parameters of such stars, or back.

Andreas Eckart from the University of Cologne.

In this case, astronomers will be aware of two key parameters, the mass and spin. They determine the behavior of supermassive black holes and the properties of space-time around it. Thus, we can have a completely different level of verification of the theory of relativity, so we wish the researchers good luck.

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