Astronomers now have strong evidence about the presence of a supermassive black hole near the very center of the Milky Way.
The invisible monster is a superdense area of space with a mass equivalent to about 100,000 suns. It is hiding inside a cloud of toxic gases drifting near the center of our galaxy.
A black hole is an anomaly created when a celestial body, usually a star, runs out of fuel and collapses unto itself under the force of gravity. Over time, gargantuan amounts of matter are compressed into a relatively small area of space, creating a super-dense region with such colossal gravitational pull that not even light can escape. It is because of this trait that black holes are only revealed through special equipment and by observing the behavior of nearby space bodies.
In this case, the presence of the black hole was given away by the unusually fast-moving gases surrounding it. Astronomers in Japan observed that the elements wafting around this particular cloud formation, which is a gigantic gas behemoth 150 trillion kms. wide and is located about 200 light years from the heart of the Milky Way, were moving way quicker and at totally different speeds that those in similar clouds elsewhere in space. The researchers ran computer models based on the data gathered, and the most likely result was that the gases were being subjected to enormous gravitational forces exerted by an unseen object.
Further proof of the presence of a black hole was obtained when radio waves that typically originate inside these galactic anomalies were picked up.
This is the second largest known black hole present in the Milky Way, after Sagittarius A, a cosmic monster lurking at the very heart of the galaxy, 26,000 light years away from us.
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