Feeds

NASA sniffs little black hole's 20-million-MPH wind

Flatulent fallen star farts supermassive-grade hurricane

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has caught a whiff of the fastest ever wind blowing from the gases around a stellar-mass black hole.

High speed winds from a stellar-mass black hole

Illustration of high-speed winds from the stellar-mass black hole. Credit: NASA/CXC/M.Weiss

The wind, which is moving at an awesome 20 million miles per hour, is nearly ten times faster than what's been previously detected from a hole of this size, and a space hurricane of this magnitude is more usually found blowing around a supermassive black hole.

Stellar-mass black holes are created by the collapse of pretty huge stars and typically weigh between five and ten times the mass of our sun. But supermassive holes are millions or billions of times bigger.

"This is like the cosmic equivalent of winds from a category-five hurricane," said Ashley King of the University of Michigan, lead author of the study. "We weren't expecting to see such powerful winds from a black hole like this."

Black holes like this one, catchily called IGR J17091-3624, pull in material from a companion star to form a disk of hot gas around it, and the wind is driven off this disk in all directions.

The high-speed wind blowing around this black hole is also carrying away more debris than the hole is sucking in.

"Contrary to the popular perception of black holes pulling in all of the material that gets close, we estimate up to 95 percent of the matter in the disk around IGR J17091-3624 is expelled by the wind," King said.

IGR J17091-3624 is found in the bulge of the Milky Way galaxy, about 28,000 light years away from Earth.

The research on the observations from Chandra and the National Radio Astronomy Observatory's Expanded Very Large Array was published in the 20 February issue of The Astrophysical Journal Letters. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Our LOHAN spaceplane ballocket Kickstarter climbs through £8000
Through 25 per cent but more is needed: Get your UNIQUE rewards!
LOHAN tunes into ultra long range radio
And verily, Vultures shall speak status unto distant receivers
EOS, Lockheed to track space junk from Oz
WA facility gets laser-eyes out of the fog
Volcanic eruption in Iceland triggers CODE RED aviation warning
Lava-spitting Bárðarbunga prompts action from Met Office
NASA to reformat Opportunity rover's memory from 125 million miles away
Interplanetary admins will back up data and get to work
LOHAN Kickstarter breaks NINETEEN THOUSAND of your EARTH POUNDS
That's right, OVER 9,000 beer tokens - and counting
Major cyber attack hits Norwegian oil industry
Statoil, the gas giant behind the Scandie social miracle, targeted
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.