Black holes are regions of space that have such a strong gravitational force that not even light can escape from them. And if even light, the fastest movement in the universe, could not get rid of the uncontrollable hunger of these cosmic beasts, then one could get an idea of the strength of their attraction.
Recently, the world received the first real image of the supermassive black hole in the center of the Milky Way, called Sagittarius A *. Black holes are constantly orbiting as gas flows around them, in the so-called event horizon. However, moving images capable of showing all this turbulence have never been recorded – something scientists believe may one day be possible from this discovery.
No wonder the study of black holes so fascinates researchers of the universe. All the mystery surrounding these phenomena makes the desire to discover more and more of them irresistible and to be able to unlock all the secrets that they hide.
Professor at the Federal University of Rio Grande (UFRN) and Professor in the Graduate Programs in Physics at UFRN and State University of Rio Grande (UERN), Leonardo Andrade de Almeida, MA and Physician in Astrophysics from the National Research Institute (INPE), is one of thousands Scientists around the world who aspire to it.
And he already has another reason to be proud, in addition to his remarkable curriculum, which has worked in important educational and research institutions in Brazil and abroad, such as Johns Hopkins University and the Telescope Institute of Science in the United States and the Royal Observatory in Edinburgh in the United Kingdom.
Almeida is the first author of a study published in 2017 in the scientific journal Astronomy and astrophysicswhich was the raw material for the project.” Tarantula’s Giant Binary WatchLed by PhD astrophysicist Hugues Sana, it aims to study in detail 100 binary systems consisting of the most massive stars in the Tarantula Nebula region, in the Large Magellanic Cloud, a neighboring galaxy to the Milky Way.
The discovery of a dormant black hole has collected nearly 20 years of observations
These investigations led to the discovery of VFTS 243, which contains the first “dormant” stellar-mass black hole ever discovered outside our galaxy. In an interview with digital appearanceAlmeida shared how he contributed to this amazing discovery.
“Our paper refers to 51 single-line spectral binaries—systems of two components, but with a signature on the spectral lines, or ‘electromagnetic signals’, of only one of them—that are present in the sample. Of the 100 binary systems,” the researcher explained.
According to him, it is from these results that post-doctoral fellow in astrophysics Tomer Schnarer and his collaborators have applied the spectral decoherence method, which is used to separate the contributions of the two elements of the binary system. “The goal was then to characterize the invisible component of the 51 systems, and only VFTS 243 did not provide any signature coming from the hidden component.”
The research used spectroscopic data captured by the European Southern Observatory’s (ESO) Very Large Telescope (ESO), obtained between October 2008 and March 2014, as well as photometric data from the Gravitational Optical Lens Experiment (OGLE) project collected Over the course of 19 years (between 2001 and 2020).
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