Black Hole: This is how a black hole sounds
Space lovers are frequently astounded by Nasa’s sonification attempts, and on Friday, the space agency made yet another attempt by turning the “light echoes” from the black hole into music. The sonification method used by NASA to turn the light reflections around the black hole into sound waves was shown in a movie. According to the organisation, the black hole in the video V404 Cygni is 7,800 light years away from Earth.
According to a description provided by NASA of the black hole’s location in the video, “A new sonification turns these ‘light echoes’ from the black hole called V404 Cygni into sound. Located about 7,800 light-years from Earth, V404 Cygni is a system that contains a black hole, with a mass between five and 10 times the Sun’s, that is pulling material from a companion star in orbit around it. The material is funnelled into a disk that encircles the stellar-mass black hole.”
Nasa posted on its official Instagram account, “Black holes are notorious for not letting light (such as radio, visible and X-rays) escape from them. However, surrounding material can produce intense bursts of electromagnetic radiation. As they travel outward, these busts of light can bounce off clouds of gas and dust in space, like how light beams from a car’s headlight will scatter off of fog.”
A starry background surrounds the red circular bands in the space agency’s film, which also shows blue bands highlighting the system’s lower and innermost black holes.
“Circular bands of red are surrounded by a starry background. Blue bands highlight the inner and lower portions of the black hole system. During the sonification, the cursor moves outward from the centre of the image in a circle. As it passes through the light echoes detected in X-rays (seen as concentric rings in blue by Chandra and red by Swift in the image), there are tick-like sounds and changes in volume to denote the detection of X-rays and the variations in brightness,” the video description read.
Speaking about the telescopes used to gather information about electromagnetic waves that echo, Nasa said, “In addition to the X-rays, the image includes optical data from the Digitized Sky Survey that shows background stars. Each star in optical light triggers a musical note. The volume and pitch of the note are determined by the brightness of the star.”
More than 4 million people have watched the video since it was shared a few hours ago, and that number is steadily rising.