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Close-orbiting Stars at Milky Way’s Core October 5, 2012

Posted by stuffilikenet in Awesome, Brilliant words, Geek Stuff, Science, Uncategorizable.
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Look at that.

Damn.  That’s seventeen years of data taken by radio. The intersection of all those orbits is the black hole at the center of our galaxy. The track in yellow is 11.5-year track of S0-102’s orbit around the black hole. “The fruits of these observations include the measurement of the mass of the Milky Way’s central black hole: approximately four million times the mass of the Sun.”

Take a moment to digest that.

I stole that image from Ars Technica, where I also stole the following one, but it might not show as well, being animated and all (WordPress sometimes doesn’t show them well for me; YMMV):

orbits_anim_science_2012

They in turn stole the data from Science, 2012. DOI: 10.1126/science.1225506.

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