Seeing the Unseeable: Capturing an Image of a Black Hole

A Free Science Lecture

Led by Dr. Sheperd Doeleman, the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) project made history by capturing an image of the event horizon of a black hole, where gravity is so strong that even light cannot escape. You are invited to hear Dr. Doeleman speak about the results of this accomplishment and the steps it took to get there.

The lecture will be streamed live at 7:00 p.m. EDT on this page and on Facebook. It is free and open to the public. All are welcome.

If you have trouble watching the lecture, please view on Facebook.

Seeing the Unseeable

Black holes are cosmic objects so small and dense that nothing, not even light, can escape their gravitational pull. Until recently, no one had ever seen what a black hole actually looked like. Einstein's theories predicted that a distant observer might see a ring of light encircling the black hole, formed when radiation emitted by infalling hot gas is lensed by the extreme gravity near the event horizon.

The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) is a global array of radio dishes, linked together by a network of atomic clocks, that form an Earth-sized virtual telescope that can resolve the nearest supermassive black holes where this ring feature may be measured. On April 10, 2019, the EHT project reported success: we have imaged a black hole, and have seen the predicted strong gravitational lensing that confirms the theory of General Relativity at the boundary of a black hole. This talk will cover how this was accomplished, details of the first results, as well as some future directions. git