Independent re-analysis of data from radio observations of the center of the galaxy M87

(ORDO NEWS) — An independent re-analysis of observations of the center of the elliptical galaxy M87, which were collected using the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) telescopes, made it possible to distinguish new structures in the obtained images.

This new study is an example of open science, which means free access to data and research methods to increase the reliability of the results obtained.

These radio observations of the center of the elliptical galaxy M87 were obtained using the Event Horizon Telescope observatory in April 2017, and the data analysis methods used were published and made available to the world scientific community.

Researchers outside the EHT project team conducted a new, independent analysis of these data and the methods used, thereby verifying the conclusions made earlier by the EHT project team.

A team led by Makoto Miyoshi of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan reanalyzed data from the M87 galaxy and studied the nature of the data.

Instead of the ring structure observed by members of the EHT project team, the new images show a “core” at the center of the galaxy, as well as an astrophysical jet departing from the core and “nodes” that are likely part of the jet structure.

Many supermassive black holes emit astrophysical jets; the jet emanating from the center of the M87 galaxy has been known to astronomers for more than 100 years and has often been studied in various aspects.

Miyoshi’s research team believes that the new analysis made it possible to distinguish the base of this jet in the images.

The team points out that the observations of the 40-arcsecond ring structure in the EHT images are likely due to the lack of spatial resolution of the images taken with fewer EHT telescopes during the observation period.

In order to gain new data on the structure of the M87 galaxy, Miyoshi’s team is planning a deeper reanalysis of the data collected with the EHT observatory, the study of the methods used, as well as additional observations of this galaxy.

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