astronomy black hole center of the galaxy galaxy science

What is in the center of this Galaxy?

In short, a super massive black hole is what awaits us at the center of our universe. We have named it Sagittarius A or Sgr A* for short. It is about 26,000 light years away or 150,000 trillion miles away. Surrounding this black hole is about 25 to 30 massive stars called Wolf-Rayet stars (For more information on Wolf-Rayet stars click here). These stars are being constantly pulled by Sgr A* and therefore eject part of their gases which collide with space dust and other gases, causing huge, super hot shock waves. Since these waves are so hot, they actually produce x-rays and we are able to see these reactions with the Chandra X-Ray Telescope.

So, how do we know there is a black hole in the center of our galaxy? Well, black holes are so dense, they cause reactions with stars and space dust around them, just like the Wolf-Rayet stars. These reactions cause an abundance of x-rays and radio waves, and with newer technology we are now about to detect these from so far away. Not only that, but we have visually seen the paths of stars orbiting something in such a way, that even though we cannot see it, it must be something as dense as a black hole.

To read more about how we found out about about the black hole in the center of our galaxy, click here.

For a 360 degree visual from NASA of the center click here.

- Admin Mike

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