April 10, 2019 (UPI) — An international team of scientists shared the first image of a supermassive black hole captured by the Event Horizon Telescope on Wednesday morning.
“This is an extraordinary scientific feat accomplished by a team of more than 200 researchers,” EHT project director Sheperd S. Doeleman said in a news release.
Researchers with the Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration presented the “groundbreaking result” during a series of simultaneous press conferences.
“Scientists have obtained the first image of a black hole, using Event Horizon Telescope observations of the center of the galaxy M87,” officials with EHT project announced on Twitter. “The image shows a bright ring formed as light bends in the intense gravity around a black hole that is 6.5 billion times more massive than the sun.”
The collaboration involved the efforts of astronomers from all over the globe. Multiple teams worked to coordinate the observations of eight radio telescopes using Very Long Baseline Interferometry.
“This technique of linking radio dishes across the globe to create an Earth-sized interferometer, has been used to measure the size of the emission regions of the two supermassive black holes with the largest apparent event horizons,” according to EHT.
Six press conferences were held simultaneously by involved teams of astronomers in Brussels, Belgium; Santiago, Chile; Shanghai, China; Taipei, Taiwan; and Tokyo. In the United States, scientists with the National Science Foundation will present the Event Horizon Telescope’s groundbreaking result at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.