Washington, April 24 : Using the National Science Foundation's (NSF) Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) and a host of international telescope partners, a team of researchers has made the clearest observation yet of the innermost region of a black hole.
From the observations, astronomers found strong evidence that the enormous jets of particles emitted by supermassive black holes are corkscrewed in a way predicted by theory.
Telescope evidence suggests that the coiling is a result of twisted magnetic fields in supermassive black holes, which cause particle and energy jets to surge out in corkscrews.
Led by Alan Marscher of Boston University, the international team of researchers studied the galaxy BL Lacertae located 950 million light years from Earth.
By observing an outburst from the galaxy from late 2005 to 2006, the team observed bursts of photons oriented in a way predicted by theories about the twisted magnetic fields of black holes.