Understanding Black Holes

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Understanding Black Holes A Black hole is a theorized celestial body whose surface gravity is so strong that nothing, including light, can escape from within it's surface. Gravity is the key to a black hole's immense power. The black hole's strong gravity keeps captured material from escaping. For example, if Earth were the same mass it is now but had only one-fourth its present radius, the escape velocity of someone standing on its surface would be twice what it is now. Black holes have a power far greater than our minds can imagine. This report will go into further discussion on these massive holes in space. Now, though, astronomers have uncovered a much better candidate for a black hole in our galaxy. It lies in the constellation Monoceros some three or four thousand light-years away. Monoceros was discovered in 1975, when it emitted a shower of light and x-rays. Observations soon revealed that Monoceros was a binary consisting of an orange dwarf star and a dark companion. Astronomers continue to observe the object and other black holes like it. Despite its name, A0620-00, it is a better candidate for a black hole than Cygnus X-1.(Croswell 30-37) As I said before, gravity is the key for a black hole’s immense power. The black holes strong gravity keeps captured material from escaping. Of course, every moon, planet, and star has gravity. Earth has enough gravity that you have to travel faster than 11 kilometers per second to overcome the force of gravity. This number is Earth’s escape velocity. The gravity of Jupiter is even stronger: it’s escape velocity is 60 kilometers per second. A black h... ... middle of paper ... ...d is still far from unlocking the mind-boggling mystery of black holes. Bibliography: Works Cited Asimov, Isaac. “Black Holes.” Grolier Electronic Publishing. 1993 ed. 255 “Black Holes.” The World Book Encyclopaedia. 1994 ed. Cowen, Ron. “New Spin on Making a Black Hole.” Science News. 6 Feb. 1993: 86 Croswell, Ken. “The Best Black Hole in the Galaxy.” SIRS Researcher. Jan. 1992: 30-37 Dye, Lee. “Evidence of Massive Black Hole Discovered by Astronomers.” SIRS Researcher. 1995: A3+ Levitt, I. M. “Beyond the Known Universe.” New York: New York City, 1974 Powell, Corey. “A Black Hole is Identified in the Core of the Galaxy.” Scientific American. August 1991: 12 Sawyer, Kathy. “Is a Black Hole Eating the Milky Way?” SIRS Researcher. Mar. 1990: 38

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