About Black Holes
Dark Giants of the Cosmos
A black hole is a place in space where gravity pulls so much that even light can not get out. The gravity is so strong because matter has been squeezed into a tiny space. This can happen when a star is dying. Because no light can get out, people can't see black holes. They are invisible. Space telescopes with special tools can help find black holes. The special tools can see how stars that are very close to black holes act differently than other stars.
This movie shows the first gravitational-wave signal detected by LIGO on September 14, 2015. This is a numerical simulation of two inspiralling black holes that merge to form a new black hole.
© numerical simulation: S. Ossokine, A. Buonanno (Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics), Simulating eXtreme Spacetime project; scientific visualisation: W. Benger (Airborne Hydro Mapping GmbH)
A computer simulation shows the collision of two black holes, a tremendously powerful event detected for the first time ever by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory, or LIGO. The simulation shows how the merger would appear to our eyes if we could somehow travel in a spaceship for a closer look.
This simulation was created by the multi-university SXS (Simulating eXtreme Spacetimes) project. For more information, visit http://www.black-holes.org. Image credit: SXS
Kip is the man to talk with when it comes to black holes, gravitational waves, cosmic strings and funny things to travel with: wormholes.
Reinhard Genzel is the man who revealed the supermassive black hole at the very centre of our own galaxy, the Milky Way.
© Numerical-relativistic simulation: S. Ossokine , A. Buonanno (Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics) and the Simulating eXtreme Spacetime project; scientific visualization: T. Dietrich, R. Haas (Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics)
The video shows a numerical simulation of o a binary black-hole coalescence with masses and spins consistent with the GW170104 observation. The strength of the gravitational wave is indicated by elevation as well as color, with blue indicating weak fields and yellow indicating strong fields.
© Numerical-relativistic simulation: S. Ossokine, A. Buonanno (Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics) and the Simulating eXtreme Spacetimes project; scientific visualization: T. Dietrich (Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics), R. Haas (NCSA)
The supermassive Black Hole in our own Milky way
Artist’s impression of a gas cloud after a close approach to the black hole at the centre of the Milky Way. The star orbiting the black hole are shown, along with blue lines that mark their fast, tight orbits. Credit: ESO/MPE/Marc Schartmann
Merger of two Black Holes
An artist's impression of the colliding black holes. Image: Image credit: LIGO/Caltech/MIT/Sonoma State (Aurore Simonnet)