Keck Observatory Donor Salon Talk: A Stretching Gas Cloud and Other Dusty Objects that Orbit Close to the Galactic Black Hole
Science Operations Lead
W. M. Keck Observatory
The Supermassive Black Hole (SBH) at the center of our Milky Way Galaxy is surrounded by a dense cluster of stars embedded in a complex structure of gas and dust. Randy will unveil recent study results on the more prominent dust and gas features that include both compact objects that likely have stellar cores, called “G-Objects,” and an elongating gas structure called “X7.” These features are distinguished by their significant motion and acceleration near the SBH as measured with two Keck Observatory instruments – the integral-field spectrometer OSIRIS, and the direct imager NIRC2. Both instruments use laser guide star adaptive optics that enables studies in unprecedented detail of these features’ evolution over a 20-year time span.
The staff and management of the W. M. Keck Observatory wish to offer our deepest gratitude to our Astronomy Talk Series sponsors, Rob and Terry Ryan.