How are black holes found?

  • Black holes have so much gravity that even light can't escape from them. If we can't see them, and the suck up all electromagnetic radiation, then how can we find them?

  • user8

    user8 Correct answer

    9 years ago

    To add to John Conde's answer. According to the NASA web page "Black Holes", detection of black holes can obviously not be performed by detection any form of electromagnetic radiation coming directly from it (hence, can not be 'seen').

    The black hole is inferred by observing the interaction with surrounding matter, from the webpage:

    We can, however, infer the presence of black holes and study them by detecting their effect on other matter nearby.

    This also includes detection of x-ray radiation that radiates from matter accelerating towards the black hole. Although this seems contradictory to my first paragraph - it needs to be noted that this is not directly from the black hole, rather from the interaction with matter accelerating towards it.

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Content dated before 7/24/2021 11:53 AM

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