“You’re basically looking at a supermassive black hole that’s almost the size of our solar system,” or 38 billion kilometers in diameter, said Sera Markoff, an astrophysicist at the University of Amsterdam about today’s picture of the supermassive black hole at the center of elliptical galaxy M87 shown above.
“We are delighted to report to you that we have seen what was thought to be unseeable,” said Shep Doeleman, Harvard University senior research fellow and director of the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT), at the announcement at Washington’s National Press Club. “We now have visual evidence. We know that a black hole sits at the center of the M87 galaxy.”
On Wednesday, astronomers from the Event Horizon Telescope released the first image of the M87 supermassive black hole:
In the NSF video below, Avery Broderick from the Perimeter Institute and University of Waterloo explains the image of the supermassive black hole at the center of the Messier 87 galaxy.