Thu., March 21, 2013 10:02am (EDT)

Grant Helps Scientist Study Black Holes
By Associated Press
Updated: 1 year ago

ATLANTA  —  
The black hole at the center of this galaxy is part of a survey of 18 of the biggest black holes in the universe. Georgia State University’s Misty Bentz has received a five-year National Science Foundation grant of more than $862,000 to measure the distance to galaxies where astronomers have pinpointed masses of black holes. (Photo Courtesy of <a href=http://www.flickr.com/photos/nasamarshall/8285395726/>NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center via Flickr</a>.)
The black hole at the center of this galaxy is part of a survey of 18 of the biggest black holes in the universe. Georgia State University’s Misty Bentz has received a five-year National Science Foundation grant of more than $862,000 to measure the distance to galaxies where astronomers have pinpointed masses of black holes. (Photo Courtesy of NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center via Flickr.)
An assistant professor at Georgia State University has been awarded a grant from the National Science Foundation.

School spokesman Jeremy Craig says Misty Bentz received a five-year grant of more than $862,000. Craig says Bentz will use the grant to measure the distance to galaxies where astronomers have pinpointed masses of black holes. Black holes form when stars reach the end of their life, explode and collapse inward from the center.

Bentz says she wants to examine whether she can predict black hole masses in other galaxies, and says distance is one of the most difficult things to measure in astronomy.

Bentz says she is also working in partnership with the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta to offer astronomy and science education.