The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) — a planet-scale array of eight ground-based radio telescopes forged through international collaboration — was designed to capture images of a black hole. In coordinated press conferences across the globe, EHT researchers revealed that they succeeded, unveiling the first direct visual evidence of the supermassive black hole in the centre of Messier 87 and its shadow. The shadow of a black hole seen here is the closest we can come to an image of the black hole itself, a completely dark object from which light cannot escape. The black hole’s boundary — the event horizon from which the EHT takes its name — is around 2.5 times smaller than the shadow it casts and measures just under 40 billion km across. While this may sound large, this ring is only about 40 microarcseconds across — equivalent to measuring the length of a credit card on the surface of the Moon. Although the telescopes making up the EHT are not physically connected, they are able to synchronize their recorded data with atomic clocks — hydrogen masers — which precisely time their observations. These observations were collected at a wavelength of 1.3 mm during a 2017 global campaign. Each telescope of the EHT produced enormous amounts of data – roughly 350 terabytes per day – which was stored on high-performance helium-filled hard drives. These data were flown to highly specialised supercomputers — known as correlators — at the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy and MIT Haystack Observatory to be combined. They were then painstakingly converted into an image using novel computational tools developed by the collaboration.

Spazio, prima storica foto di un buco nero.

Italia, il Governo dà il via libera al DEF. Coincidenze? Non credo…

– il buonmemeo –


Leggi le altre smorfie

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Come quella del grande e indimenticato Massimo Troisi... O, se volete, come quella di un bambino che non vuol mangiare la verdura. Oppure come quella del babbo che vuol far divertire i figlioletti. Magari come quella del paziente dal dentista... Prendete tutte queste situazioni, aggiungetene molte altre, diciamo tante quante l'attualità sa offrirne, assoldate una brigata di abili e cinici osservatori, mescolate ben bene gli ingredienti, concentrate il tutto in una sola battuta e guarnite con abbondante ironia: ecco pronta "La smorfia", da servire ogni giorno sulle pagine di "Odysseo". Da assaporare subito, appena sfornata.


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