Space

Closest Black Hole to Earth Discovered Right in Our Cosmic Backyard

By Aazam

Black holes are terrifying and powerful and may sound a bit scary due to their reputation for gravitational pull.

So strong that even light cannot escape. So let's give a grand welcome to Gaia BH1, the closest new black hole to Earth.

Gaia BH1 is dormant, 10 times more massive than our Sun and located about 1,600 light-years away in the constellation Ophiuchus.

The team says it is three times closer to Earth than the previous winner, a black hole located in the constellation Monoceros.

Gaia BH1 is so close that the National Science Foundation's NOIRLab Astronomy Center considers it "in our cosmic backyard."

Astrophysicist Karim al-Badri said in a NOIRLab statement on Friday, "However, there have been several claims of such systems.

"This is the first clear detection of a Sun-like star in a wide orbit around a stellar-mass black hole in our galaxy."

Unraveling the black hole, the bubble is found around the black hole with 'mind blowing velocity' from the 'catastrophic' formation to the dark void within.

El-Badri is lead author of a paper on black holes published this week in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society journal.

The co-author list shows how complex and challenging the study was. Finding this black hole was a triumph of many-layered science.