Where is the Closest Black Hole?

Where is the Closest Black Hole?

Black holes are pretty dangerous, so it’s a good idea to keep an idea on where all the nearby ones are. How close is the closest one, anyway? Support us at: http://www.patreon.com/universetoday More stories at: http://www.universetoday.com/ Follow us on Twitter: @universetoday Follow us on Tumblr: http://universetoday.tumblr.com/ Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/universetoday Google+ - https://plus.google.com/+universetoday/ Instagram - http://instagram.com/universetoday Team: Fraser Cain - @fcain Jason Harmer - @jasoncharmer Susie Murph - @susiemmurph Chad Weber - weber.chad@gmail.com Created by: Fraser Cain and Jason Harmer Edited by: Chad Weber Music: Left Spine Down - “X-Ray” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4tcoZNrSveE&feature=youtu.be You know that saying, “keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer?” That advice needs to go right out the window when we’re talking black holes. They’re the worst enemies you could have and you want them as far away as possible. We’re talking regions of space where matter is compressed so densely that the only way to escape is to be traveling faster than the speed of light. And as we know, you can’t go faster than the speed of light. So… there’s no escape. Get too close to the black hole and you’ll be compressed beyond comprehension, perhaps into an infinitely small point. But you can be reasonably distant from a black hole too, and still have your day ruined. A black hole reaches out through the light years with its gravity. And if one were to wander too close to our Solar System, it would wreak havoc on all our precious planets. The planets and even the Sun would be gobbled up, or smashed together, or even thrown out of the Solar System entirely. And as we learned in a previous episode, black holes are unkillable. Anything you might try to do to them just makes them bigger, stronger and angrier. Your only hope is to just wait them out over the eons it takes for them to evaporate. It makes sense to keep track of all the black holes out there, just in case we might need to evacuate this Solar System in a hurry. Where are the closest black holes? There are two kinds of black holes out there: the supermassive black holes at the heart of every galaxy, and the stellar mass black holes formed when massive stars die in a supernova. The supermassive ones are relatively straightforward. There’s one at the heart of pretty much every single galaxy in the Universe. One in the middle of the Milky Way, located about 27,000 light-years away. One in Andromeda 2.5 million light years away, and so on. No problem, they supermassive ones are really far away, no threat to us. The stellar mass ones might be more of a problem. Here’s the problem. Black holes don’t emit any radiation, they’re completely invisible, so there’s no easy way to see them in the sky. The only you’d know there’s a black hole is if you were close enough to see the background starlight getting distorted. And if you’re close enough to see that, you’re already dead. The closest black hole we know of is V616 Monocerotis, also known as V616 Mon. It’s located about 3,000 light years away, and has between 9-13 times the mass of the Sun. We know it’s there because it’s located in a binary system with a star with about half the mass of the Sun. Only a black hole could make its binary partner buzz around so quickly. Astronomers can’t see the black hole, they just know it’s there by the whirling gravity dance. The next closest black hole is the classic Cygnus X-1, which is about 6,000 light-years away. It has about 15 times the mass of the Sun, and once again, it’s in a binary system. The third closest black hole, is also in a binary system. See the problem here? The reality is that a fraction of black holes are in binary systems, but that’s our only way to detect them. More likely there are more black holes much more close than the ones astronomers have been able to discover. This all sounds terrifying, I’m sure, and now you’ve probably got one eye on the sky, watching for that telltale distortion of light from an approaching black hole. But these events are impossibly rare. The Solar System has been around for more than 4.5 billion years, with all the planets going around and around without interruption. Even if a black hole passed the Solar System within a few dozen light years, it would have messed up the orbits significantly, and life probably wouldn’t be here to consider this fact. We didn’t encounter a black hole in billions of years, and probably won’t encounter one for billions or trillions more years. Sadly, the answer to this question is… we don’t know. We just don’t know if the closest black holes is a few light years away, or it’s actually V616 Mon. We’ll probably never know.

Will Our Black Hole Eat the Milky Way? Putting Supermassive Black Holes in Their Place

Will Our Black Hole Eat the Milky Way? Putting Supermassive Black Holes in Their Place

As soon as you learn about the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way, your next thought is: is that thing going to destroy our galaxy? In the short term, no, in the long term… maybe? Support us at: http://www.patreon.com/universetoday More stories at: http://www.universetoday.com/ Follow us on Twitter: @universetoday Follow us on Tumblr: http://universetoday.tumblr.com/ Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/universetoday Google+ - https://plus.google.com/+universetoday/ Instagram - http://instagram.com/universetoday Team: Fraser Cain - @fcain Jason Harmer - @jasoncharmer Chad Weber - weber.chad@gmail.com Created by: Fraser Cain and Jason Harmer Edited by: Chad Weber Music: Left Spine Down - “X-Ray” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4tcoZNrSveE Want to hear something cool? There’s a black hole at the center of the Milky Way. And not just any black hole, it’s a supermassive black hole with more than 4.1 million times the mass of the Sun. It’s right over there, in the direction of the Sagittarius constellation. Located just 26,000 light-years away. And as we speak, it’s in the process of tearing apart entire stars and star systems, occasionally consuming them, adding to its mass like a voracious shark. Wait, that doesn’t sound cool, that sort of sounds a little scary. Right? Don’t worry, you have absolutely nothing to worry about, unless you plan to live for quadrillions of years, which I do, thanks to my future robot body. I’m ready for my singularity, Dr. Kurzweil. Is the supermassive black hole going to consume the Milky Way? If not, why not? If so, why so? The discovery of a supermassive black hole at the heart of the Milky Way, and really almost all galaxies, is one of my favorite discoveries in the field of astronomy. It’s one of those insights that simultaneously answered some questions, and opened up even more. Back in the 1970s, the astronomers Bruce Balick and Robert Brown realized that there was an intense source of radio emissions coming from the very center of the Milky Way, in the constellation Sagittarius. They designated it Sgr A*. The asterisk stands for exciting. You think I’m joking, but I’m not. For once, I’m not joking. In 2002, astronomers observed that there were stars zipping past this object, like comets on elliptical paths going around the Sun. Imagine the mass of our Sun, and the tremendous power it would take to wrench a star like that around. The only objects with that much density and gravity are black holes, but in this case, a black hole with millions of times the mass of our own Sun: a supermassive black hole. With the discovery of the Milky Way’s supermassive black hole, astronomers found evidence that there are black holes at the heart of every galaxy. At the same time, the discovery of supermassive black holes helped answer one of the big questions in astronomy: what are quasars? We did a whole episode on them, but they’re intensely bright objects, generating enough light they can be seen billions of light-years away. Giving off more energy than the rest of their own galaxy combined. It turns out that quasars and supermassive black holes are the same thing. Quasars are just black holes in the process of actively feeding; gobbling up so much material it piles up in an accretion disk around it. Once again, these do sound terrifying. But are we in any danger? In the short term, no. The black hole at the center of the Milky Way is 26,000 light-years away. Even if it turned into a quasar and started eating stars, you wouldn’t even be able to notice it from this distance. A black hole is just a concentration of mass in a very small region, which things orbit around. To give you an example, you could replace the Sun with a black hole with the exact same mass, and nothing would change. I mean, we’d all freeze because there wasn’t a Sun in the sky anymore, but the Earth would continue to orbit this black hole in exactly the same orbit, for billions of years. Same goes with the black hole at the center of the Milky Way. It’s not pulling material in like a vacuum cleaner, it serves as a gravitational anchor for a group of stars to orbit around, for billions of years. In order for a black hole to actually consume a star, it needs to make a direct hit. To get within the event horizon, which is only about 17 times bigger than the Sun. If a star gets close, without hitting, it’ll get torn apart, but still, it doesn’t happen very often. The problem happens when these stars interact with one another through their own gravity, and mess with each other’s orbits. A star that would have been orbiting happily for billions of years might get deflected into a collision course with the black hole. But this happens very rarely. Over the short term, that supermassive black hole is totally harmless. Especially from out here in the galactic suburbs. But there are a few situations that might cause some problems over vast periods of time.

What If the Smallest Black Hole Entered the Solar System?

What If the Smallest Black Hole Entered the Solar System?

Hello and welcome to What Da Math! You can buy Universe Sandbox 2 game here: http://amzn.to/2yJqwU6 In this video, we will talk about a hypothetical scenario of the smallest blackhole entering our solar system. Patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/user?u=2318196&ty=h Enjoy and please subscribe. Other videos here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL9hNFus3sjE7jgrGJYkZeTpR7lnyVAk-x Twitter: https://twitter.com/WhatDaMath Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/whatdamath Twitch: http://www.twitch.tv/whatdamath The video introduction made by Daniel Bates His YouTube channel with more of his work is here: https://www.youtube.com/mroutrochannel The new music theme made by Bogdan Bratis Check out his work here: http://www.bratis.uk/

What Happens If You Fall Into A Black Hole? [CRAZY HYPOTHESIS]

What Happens If You Fall Into A Black Hole? [CRAZY HYPOTHESIS]

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Was the Big Bang Just a Black Hole?

Was the Big Bang Just a Black Hole?

Fraser "Asks a Spaceman" Dr. Paul Matt Sutter - why do we call the Big Bang a singularity, when we also call black holes singularities? Click here for Part II: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fb9ivmAi6rM Support us at: http://www.patreon.com/universetoday More stories at: http://www.universetoday.com/ Follow us on Twitter: @universetoday Follow us on Tumblr: http://universetoday.tumblr.com/ Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/universetoday Google+ - https://plus.google.com/+universetoday/ Instagram - http://instagram.com/universetoday Team: Fraser Cain - @fcain Jason Harmer - @jasoncharmer Susie Murph - @susiemmurph Brian Koberlein - @briankoberlein Chad Weber - weber.chad@gmail.com Kevin Gill - @kevinmgill Created by: Fraser Cain and Jason Harmer Edited by: Chad Weber Music: Left Spine Down - “X-Ray” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4tcoZNrSveE&feature=youtu.be The Universe is filled with coincidences. Like the size of the Moon and the Sun in the sky, even though they’re so far apart. Or the shape of the Pac Man Nebula or the Wizard Nebula. Or like the plot of Force Awakens and every other Star Wars movie, the coincidences are everywhere. But here’s a pretty strange coincidence, and it has to do with the nature of the Universe itself. Follow along with me here. Let’s consider black holes, a topic we’ve covered many times on this channel. If you’ve watched enough of our videos, you know a black hole is a region of space where matter and energy have been mashed so densely that the gravitational escape velocity exceeds the speed of light. We don’t know how big black holes are, but it’s possible that they’ve crushed down into an infinitely dense region, known as a singularity. Singularity, singularity… where have we heard that word before? Apart from Ray Kurzweil and his crew of technological singularitarians. That word comes up when we discuss the formation of the Universe; the Big Bang. Back at the beginning, 13.8 billion years ago, everything in the entire Universe was crushed down into a region of infinite density. And then, in a fraction of a second, everything expanded outward. Astronomers call this region of infinite density the Big Bang singularity. This can’t just be a coincidence, right? It’s the same word. It’s the SAME WORD! Was the Big Bang singularity just a really big black hole singularity? A black hole with all the mass of the Universe inside it? I’m going to admit, this question is a little beyond my paygrade. To fully explain the science, I thought I’d bring in a ringer. Dr. Paul Matt Sutter is an astrophysicist with Ohio State University and the Astronomical Observatory of Trieste. Paul specializes in cosmic voids, he also knows plenty about both the Big Bang and black holes. I’ve reached Paul on the set of his Ask a Spaceman podcast, and thrown this zinger right at him. Hey Paul, what’s the difference between the singularity that formed the Big Bang and a black hole singularity? Did the whole Universe start off from a really massive black hole? ----------- In our next episode, we look into the different ways stars can detonate as supernovae - all the different varieties may surprise you. Oh, and make sure you stick around for the blooper. I’ll just leave a link to part II of this episode: Are We Living in a Black Hole? Go ahead and click it. Speaking of bloopers, our Patreon community sees entire blooper reels, gets advanced access to all our videos, and sees no ads on Universe Today. Join the club of 496 amazing people who support us in making great space and astronomy content. The people who make these shows even possible. We’d like to thank Matt Woods, Blair Piggin and the rest of the members who support us in making great space and astronomy content. Members get advance access to episodes, extras, contests, and other shenanigans with me and the team. Want to get in on the action?

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