VLBA observations key to 'complete description' of black hole (light, telescope, mysteries)
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Using several telescopes, both ground-based and in orbit, the scientists unravelled longstanding mysteries about the object called Cygnus X-1, a famous binary-star system discovered to be strongly emitting X-rays nearly a half-century ago. The system consists of a black hole and a companion star from which the black hole is drawing material. The scientists' efforts yielded the most accurate measurements ever of the black hole's mass and spin rate.
Here's a video that was released on the same date as the Eureka Alert article. I saw this at the time, then promptly fogot where I saw it. Anyway the gist of it is that it gets down to just two numbers to describe a black hole: The mass of the black hole and it's spin.
Oddly, I had never thought of the spin of a black hold having a limit.
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