The winds of change blow, even around a black hole, researchers just made an interesting discovery about the “winds” that “influence how the super-dense interstellar bodies”.
A new Canadian-led research has peered into the strange world of black holes to discover they’re girded by electromagnetic winds that not only influence how the super-dense interstellar bodies gobble up anything that gets too close but also how they affect vast areas of space around them.
“These winds are telling us two things,”
Greg Sivakoff, a physicist at the University of Alberta and a co-author of the paper said,
“They’re changing our perception of how rapidly black holes might grow. The other is it’s going to be affecting the local environment.”
Black holes consume anything that gets too close, but might also affect vast areas around them.
As particles fall toward the black hole, they gain energy — just as a figure skater’s spin speeds up as they pull their arms toward them. That energy causes the disc to heat up and emit X-rays.
“We use the X-rays to trace what’s going on,” Sivakoff said.
“We were watching how rapidly they decayed from their peak emission back down to when the disc is more stable. We were surprised to see that the discs were evolving more rapidly than we thought they should.
“The X-ray emissions were dropping too quickly.”
Scientists think the formation of galaxies is linked to the formation of these giant black holes. Sivakoff’s conclusion that black holes do affect their environment opens up new lines of inquiry into how galaxies are made.