“The Invisible Galaxy” –100 Million Black Holes Lurking in the Milky Way

 

LIGO Black Holes

 

Astrophysicists have discovered a dozen black holes gathered around Sagittarius A* (Sgr A*), the supermassive black hole in the center of the Milky Way Galaxy, supporting a decades-old prediction, opening up new opportunities to better understand the universe. After conducting a cosmic inventory to calculate and categorize stellar-remnant black holes, astronomers from the University of California concluded that there are probably tens of millions of the enigmatic, dark objects in the Milky Way – far more than expected.

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Last Week’s Top 5 Space & Science Headlines

 

ESO Headquarters Chile

 

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“Safe Haven” –ALMA Observatory Unveils Earth-Like Planet Creation in Alien Star Systems

protoplanetary disk

 

Astronomers have long puzzled over a paradox of planet creation: once dusty bodies grow to about one centimeter in diameter the dynamics of a smooth protoplanetary disk would induce them to fall in on their host star, never acquiring the mass necessary to form potentially habitable planets like Mars, Venus, and Earth.

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“Hidden from Sight” –Alien Planets Orbiting Young Stars

protoplanetary disks

 

“Most previous observations had been targeted to detect the presence of very massive planets, which we know are rare, that had carved out large inner holes or gaps in bright disks,” said Paola Pinilla, a NASA Hubble Fellow at the University of Arizona’s Steward Observatory. “While massive planets had been inferred in some of these bright disks, little had been known about the fainter disks.”

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“An Illusion?”–ESO Image of Milky Way’s Supermassive Black Hole

 

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