Astronomers Use Annihilated Star to Clock Black Hole’s Spin

Posted on January 11, 2019 11:44 am
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URL https://www.newswars.com/astronomers-use-annihilated-star-to-clock-black-holes-spin/ 

Astronomers have discovered a surprisingly long-lived X-ray pulse from the debris of a shredded star as it inexorably spirals closer to a black hole’s mouth.

The pulse’s timing appears to be tied to the black hole’s spin and indicates that the black hole twirls at a speed at least 50% that of light.

MARK GARLICK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY / Getty

Spin is one of the fundamental parameters that describe a black hole, like the stats on an ID card. It’s immensely hard to measure; we only have spin measurements for about 30 supermassive black holes, determined

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