What happens if a black hole disappears from the center of our Galaxy?


At the center of our galaxy is a supermassive black hole — Sagittarius A with a mass of 4.3 million solar. It was discovered relatively recently as a result of observations of the motion of stars and other objects in the region of the center of the galaxy. And similar to the movement of the Moon around our planet, or the movement of the Earth around the Sun, the entire solar system moves around the center of the Milky Way. At first glance, the situation with the disappearance of a black hole from the center of the galaxy is similar to the disappearance of the Sun from our system, but everything is not so simple.

A black hole or a star cannot just disappear, but let’s simulate such a situation for ourselves. If the Sun disappears, then this promises us the disintegration of the entire system, because the mass of our star is 99% of the mass of the entire system, and it was it that kept the planets and other bodies in their orbits. If it disappears, the planets will scatter in straight lines in the directions where they were moving at the moment of the disappearance of the Sun.

It is logical to assume that similarly, if Sagittarius A disappears from the center of our galaxy, then the total destruction of the Milky Way will occur: the stars will simply fly in all directions. However, there is a significant difference between the galaxy and the solar system: despite the rather large mass of the black hole, it is negligible compared to the mass of the entire galaxy (less than 1%).

Thus, the supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy is not the main source of attraction in it and the stars do not revolve around Sagittarius A. Therefore, the disappearance of the supermassive black hole from the center of the Milky Way will not have a significant effect on the galaxy. But what, then, holds the galaxy together?

The answer to this question is quite simple — she herself. That is, the total gravity of all stars and dark matter, which makes up the lion’s share of the entire mass of the galaxy, holds all the stars of the galaxy inside it. After all, this total gravity is much stronger than the gravity of a single black hole, even if it is supermassive.

Therefore, a more relevant and interesting question would be: what will happen to the galaxy with the disappearance of dark matter, but it is difficult to answer such a question, because we still do not know the exact nature of its interaction with itself and with ordinary matter, or even a global map of the distribution of dark matter. matter within the Milky Way.

Author: Vladislav Kigim. Edited by Fedor Karasenko.

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