The astronomers moved the center of the milky Way in virtual reality

Astronomers using NASA supercomputer and observational data of ground and space telescopes have created a new model of surroundings of a supermassive black hole located in the center of the milky Way. So that anyone who wants to feel like an observer near a black hole, scientists have revised the model for virtual reality helmets and laid out it in open access, reported on the website NASA.

The center of the milky Way presents astronomers a unique natural laboratory because it contains the closest supermassive black hole associated with the compact radio source Sagittarius A*. Its mass is estimated at 4.2 million solar masses. The data of numerous observations showed that a black hole surrounded by disks of hot and cold gas, unusual objectsthat may be interacting pairs of stars, the cluster’s stars, as well as dozens of massive hot stars of the class wolf-Rayet. Monitor objects in the vicinity of Sagittarius A* understanding how people interact with stars and gas clouds near supermassive black holes.

A team of astronomers under the direction of Christopher Russell (Christopher Russell) from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile showed a new computer model that shows the evolution of the environment of black holes within three light years from her for the last five hundred years. To create a model, we used the supercomputer of NASA HEC (High End Computing) and a large amount of observational data from space and ground-based telescopes in the infrared, x-ray and ultraviolet ranges, as well as the results of previous simulations. To allow everyone to be an observer near a black hole, scientists have revised the model to load in the virtual reality system. It was called “Galactic Center VR” and is available for free in stores Steam and Viveport VR.

In the model the size of a black hole was enlarged ten thousand times, so she was clearly visible, the actual size of Sagittarius A* is less than one pixel. In orbits around the black hole (shown by the gray lines) move 25 stars wolf-Rayet, which look like white dots. Blue and blue colors shows the flow of x-ray radiation resulting from the collision of the powerful stellar winds or with clouds of gas, which leads to intensive heating of the gas, and the red and yellow shown themselves stellar wind containing a cold gas. Purple color appears where the red and blue colors overlap each other.

Earlier we talked about how the supermassive black hole in the milky Way indicated on the relativistic effects for stars and helped the new born stars.

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