Astronomers from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Massachusetts and the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Germany have confirmed their discovery recently reported in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. They made sure that the Milky Way in the constellation Ophiuchus really is an object invisible to the eye, which is 10 times more massive than the Sun. It is 1566 light years away. Which is very close by galactic standards. “Like in our backyard,” the researchers themselves figuratively put it. The mysterious object has been given the name Gaia BH1, after the European Space Agency’s Gaia space telescope, thanks to which the discovery was made.
Most of all, the object resembles a “black hole”. It revolves around a star like the Sun. And it is located at the same distance from it as the Earth is from the Sun. The observed deviation in the movement of a distant star helped to find an invisible body. Follow-up observations with ground-based telescopes – Chile’s Magellan Clay and MPG/ESO and Hawaii’s Gemini North and Keck 1 – have shown that something very heavy and dark is tugging at the star. If this something is indeed a “black hole”, then it is not clear how such a strange pair arose and why the black hole has not yet swallowed up a neighbor. Yes, and it looks like it won’t. In a word, the discovery is accompanied by a mystery that has yet to be revealed.
In total, less than two dozen “black holes” have been discovered so far in the Milky Way. All – interact with neighboring objects and give out their presence, for example, by hard X-rays. The closest was A 0620-00, 3300 light-years away from Earth.
It is possible that astronomers were quick to suspect that Gaia BH1 is a “black hole”. Something inactive. It may well be that the dark object will be the so-called wormhole (wormhole) or “wormhole” – a tunnel in the fabric of space-time, connecting very distant parts of our universe. A similar opinion is shared by Professor Thibault Damour from the French Institute for Advanced Scientific Research (Institut des Hautes E’tudes Scientifiques – IHE’S) and his colleague, Doctor of Physical and Mathematical Sciences Sergey Solodukhin from the Lebedev Moscow Physical Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (FIAN), who is now works at the German Bremen International University (International University Bremen).
Scientists believe, while theoretically, that from the side of the wormhole look exactly like “black holes”. But they can behave differently – not to absorb the surrounding matter, but only to deform the fabric of space-time.
The bottom line is that, diving into such a hole, you can almost instantly emerge somewhere in another galaxy, millions or even billions of light years away. At least from the calculations it follows that such a journey is possible within our universe. And if you believe Damur and Solodukhin, then you can emerge even further – in general, in another Universe. The way back doesn’t seem to be closed either.
From the “black hole” comes the so-called Hawking radiation. Wormholes don’t emit anything. The radiation of “black holes” is so weak that it is incredibly difficult to catch it against the background of other sources. And therefore, there are no ways yet to reliably distinguish space monsters from passages to other galaxies. But there is hope to find out. All this makes “black holes” incredibly interesting objects that are worth looking for and finding.
By the way, at one time Academician Nikolai Kardashev, who led the international project Radioaston, was going to look for “wormholes” using the space radio telescope of the same name installed on the Spektr-R satellite. And he believed that one of the wormholes could be near the Earth.