Curated by RSF Research Staff
Star in Closest Orbit with Black Hole
More often than not, stars come in pairs, orbiting a common centre of mass in a dynamic interdependent dance. In cases when one, or both, of the stars are not easily observable in the optical wavelength i.e. neutron stars or black holes, these dynamic duos allow us to infer the nature and characteristics of the ‘unseen’ companion.
A team of astronomers, observing in the X-ray and radio wavelength ranges, have recently discovered what they believe to be the tightest orbit of a black-hole binary in orbit with its companion star – in this case a white dwarf.
Studying such systems allow us to observe black holes up close and personal – revealing the dynamic behavior and improving our understanding of what happens near the event horizon.