Home > Astronomy, Astrophysics, Black Holes, General Astronomy > Close Encounter: Gas Cloud Swings Around Galactic Centre Black Hole

Close Encounter: Gas Cloud Swings Around Galactic Centre Black Hole


Recent observations from April this year of the galactic centre have revealed that parts of the in-falling gas cloud, which was detected in 2011, have already swung past the black hole at the heart of our Milky Way. Due to the tidal force of the gravity monster, the gas cloud has become further stretched, with its front moving now already 500 km/s faster than its tail. This confirms earlier predictions that its orbital motion brings it is close to the black hole, that it will not survive the encounter. With the new, detailed observations, the astronomers from the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics can now also place new constraints the origins of the gas cloud, making it increasingly unlikely that it contains a faint star inside, from which the cloud might have formed.

Full Story: http://www.mpe.mpg.de/2189104/News_20130717

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