Black holes binaries but mostly black holes have been the topic of all kinds of science fiction movies, shows and books. Recently, non-fictional scientists have theorized for years that black hole binaries, or double black holes, are formed when two galaxies are merging. Also recently, two galaxies were detected by astronomers at the University of Maryland, College Park, start to travel together into such a configuration, they believe they have discovered firm evidence that a black hole binary is being created via this galactic merger.
Black Hole Binaries Brought Together by Gravity’s Pull
Black hole binaries are when two black holes are orbiting each other. According to current scientific belief, most of the universe’s galaxies have a giant black hole in the middle of them, and it’s a logical conclusion that if two of the galaxies travel and merge together, that it creates black hole binaries.
In the past, there hasn’t been any direct evidence to prove this theory–until now. The study put out by the researchers at the University of Maryland shows that the two galaxies being observed have black holes that are putting out gravitational waves, which is one of the pieces of evidence to suggest they are turning into a double black hole according to Einstein’s theory of general relativity.
The black hole system the scientists are watching has been dubbed PSO J334.2028+01.4075, and they believe the two galaxies there are close to the end of the galactic merger travel that would cause the black hole binary to occur, according to the paper’s first author, Tingting Liu. The study was released in the Astrophysical Journal Letters.
Black Holes Detected by Quasars
Regular single black holes suck in matter all around them, which then gets hotter and goes faster, thus it puts out electromagnetic energy and can be seen via a glow in the sky that acts like a beacon the scientists can home in on and thus see it. If there are black hole binaries like the scientists predict, the matter around them would be sucked in at regular intervals that could be measured, and the resulting quasar or beacon would also light up and go dim at regular, recordable intervals.
To test this theory, the researchers looked for this type of quasar through the Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response Medium Deep Survey. They found the previously mentioned PSO J334.2028+01.4075, and confirmed that it puts out a signal via a quasar every 542 days. Now, they are watching and waiting as the two galaxies continue their travel closer together to see if they indeed merge into what would be one of the rare black hole binaries the scientists want to see happen. The researchers aren’t sure they will actually be able to see the two black holes merge to form black hole binaries, but they hope so as this will help confirm their theory of how black hole binaries are actually created.