For the second time in history, NASA scientists have made an impressive discovery linking a rare particle called a high-energy neutrino to an object outside our galaxy.Using ground-based and space technologies, including NASA's neil gehrels swift Observatory, scientists directly tracked neutrinos to a black hole tearing apart a star.
The process of a black hole devouring a star is called a tidal destruction event, which is very rare. According to NASA, astrophysicists have theorized that tidal destruction may produce high-energy neutrinos, but this is the first time that high-energy particles have been linked to observational evidence. The event is called at2019dsg, and scientists point out that the event did not produce neutrinos at the time or in the way scientists expected.
This unexpected observation helped the team better understand how this phenomenon works. Neutrinos are called elementary particles. They outnumber all the atoms in the universe, but rarely interact with other matter. Astrophysicists are particularly interested in high-energy neutrinos because their energy is 1000 times higher than that produced by the most powerful particle collider on earth.
In this case, the tidal disruption event creates neutrinos. When a star is too close to the black hole, the tidal destruction event will occur. Gravity will produce strong tides to tear the star apart and produce a stream of gas. The tail of the flow escapes the system, while the leading part whirls around the black hole with a disk of debris. In some cases, black holes emit jets of rapidly moving particles. The researchers theorize that this type of event produces neutrinos during the peak brightness in the early stages of evolution.