May 20, 2019
April was a huge leap for astrological advancements when the Event Horizon Telescope project (EHT) made the first image of a black hole. The project did this through an international effort to link radio telescopes across Earth by building a planet-sized telescope with precise angular resolution. This discovery has sparked a new era of Gravitational Astronomy.
A black hole is an area in space that has a gravitational field so intense that matter or radiation cannot escape. Blackholes can range from being as small as one atom, to being 20 times bigger than the mass of the sun. They cannot be seen by the human eye, but the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) has helped develop a clearer understanding of what black holes actually look like. Scientists believe that the smallest black holes were formed when the universe began, and this helped construct the Milky Way into what it is today. Now that scientists have seen the first black hole, the space community is even more excited about upcoming space missions which can help researchers learn more about them.
One mission, LISA (Laser Interferometer Space Antenna), started by NASA and the European Space Agency is a space operation that will measure gravitational waves at lower frequencies with an arm length expanding over 2.5 million km. LISA is made up of three satellites that will form a near-equilateral triangular formation, and a high precision interferometer will be used to sense gravitational waves detecting differences inside the spacecraft. Gravitational waves are essential in identifying distortions in spacetime, which helps give scientists more knowledge about the sheer size and history of black holes. Learning more about gravitational waves will help guide a better understanding of how the universe was constructed. LISA is planned to launch in 2034 and Newton is proud to have worked on the LISA project. We are excited to see what new discoveries this project will bring.
To learn more about the LISA Mission, https://lisa.nasa.gov/