Smallest black hole candidate ‘Heartbeat’ detected by NASA (Video)

By on Dec 16, 2011 in Astronomy, Science, World Comments

A smallest black hole candidate was recently detected by NASA and was nicknamed “Heartbeat” due its resemblance to an electrocardiogram. A NASA video below explains it further.

Artist sketch of smallest black hole candidate,
nicknamed Heartbeat

Image Credit: NASA video

According to a report by National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) on its official website on Thursday, December 15, 2011, the smallest black hole candidate has been identified by a team of international astronauts.

As revealed by NASA, black hole ‘Heartbeat’ was detected using the data from their Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) and the evidence came from a specific type of X-ray pattern that has been recorded in only one among the other black hole system.

Apparently, NASA first became aware ‘Heartbeat‘, which was named IGR J17091-3624, as a binary system in space back in 2003 during an outburst, with its latest occurrence was last February and is still ongoing.

“Just as the heart rate of a mouse is faster than an elephant’s, the heartbeat signals from these black holes scale according to their masses,” Diego Altamirano, an astrophysicist at the University of Amsterdam in The Netherlands, was quoted in the report, who is also the lead author of a paper describing the findings published at The Astrophysical Journal Letters last November 4.

The system was noted to be located in the direction of the constellation Scorpius, and although its distance is not well established, scientists said that it could be from 16,000 light-years to over than 65,000 light-years away from Earth.

Meanwhile, another record-holder for a wide-ranging X-ray variability is black hole binary system named GRS 1915+105, which was said to be unique in displaying over a dozen of highly structured patterns, typically lasting between seconds and hours.

Nevertheless, NASA emphasized that here is no direct evidence that IGR J17091 possesses a particle jet, but its heartbeat signature suggests that similar processes are in action and that it can be 20 times fainter than GRS 1915 and can cycle about eight times faster, in as little as five seconds.

NASA, detecting smallest black hole candidate ‘Heartbeat’
Video Credit: NASAexplorer/YouTube

Spread The News!

Tags: , , , , , , , ,


Related News

What's On Your Mind?