Gas bubble chases around core of Milky Way
Astronomers have discovered a hot gas bubble rotating clockwise around the black hole Sagittarius A* – the core of our Galaxy. However, this bubble has not been found directly, but via an accompanying phenomenon: flares in the X-ray range, which have been detected again and again, starting from the black hole Sgr A*. Since nothing can leave the black hole itself, a phenomenon in the immediate vicinity must be responsible – the gas bubble.
“We suspect that we are dealing with a hot gas bubble orbiting Sagittarius A* in an orbit similar in size to that of the planet Mercury, but completing a full orbit in only about 70 minutes. This requires an incredible speed of about 30 percent of the speed of light,” said Maciek Wielgus of the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, who led the study published in Astronomy & Astrophysics. It is likely that the flares are caused by magnetic interactions in the very hot gas.