Eating Neutron Stars Detected in Black Holes – “Like Pac Man”
For the first time, scientists have discovered black holes consuming neutron stars, “like Pac Man,” in a discovery chronicling the clash of the Universe’s two most extreme and enigmatic objects.
The Virgo gravitational-wave observatory in Italy and the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory () in the United States have both captured the from the death spiral and merger of a with a. The results were just published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters.
The researchers claim that their findings will aid in the unraveling of some of the Universe’s most vexing mysteries, such as the origins of matter and the workings of space and time.
The world-first detections involved over 1,000 scientists, with many from Australia, including The, leading the way.
Distinguished Professor Susan Scott, a co-author of the paper and a member of the Centre for Gravitational Astrophysics at the Australian National University, said the events happened roughly a billion years ago but were so massive that we can still see their gravitational waves today.
“These collisions have shook the Universe to its core,” she continued, “and we’ve observed the ripples they’ve sent flying through the universe.”
“Each collision is more than the meeting of two big, dense objects. It’s like Pac-Man, with a black hole devouring its neutron star companion whole.
“These are incredible events, and we’ve been waiting a long time to see them.” As a result, ultimately capturing them is fantastic.” A black hole nine times the mass of our sun and a neutron star two times the mass of our sun were two of the events. A black hole around six times the mass of our sun collided with a neutron star 1.5 times its mass in the other event.
Professor Scott, who is also the Chief Investigator at the Australian Research Council’s (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Gravitational Wave Discovery (OzGrav), said the multinational team had previously documented several occurrences involving two black holes colliding and two neutron stars colliding.
“With the first confirmed observations of gravitational waves from a black hole and a neutron star merging, we’ve finished the last piece of the puzzle,” she said.
The two detections were made on January 5 and 15, 2020, according to Dr. Johannes Eichholz of the ANU Centre for Gravitational Astrophysics and an Associate Investigator of OzGrav.
“Detections like these… Brinkwire News Summary