Presentation #211.03 in the session “Imaging the Nearest Supermassive Black Hole, Sgr A*, with the Event Horizon Telescope”.
In this talk, I present the first event-horizon-scale images of Sgr A* taken with the Event Horizon Telescope in 2017 April at a wavelength of 1.3 mm. Imaging of Sgr A* has been conducted through surveys over a wide range of imaging assumptions using the classical CLEAN algorithm, regularized maximum likelihood methods, and a Bayesian posterior sampling method. Different prescriptions have been used to account for scattering effects by the interstellar medium towards the Galactic Center. Mitigation of the rapid intra-day variability that characterizes Sgr A* has been carried out through the addition of a “variability noise budget” in the observed visibilities, facilitating the reconstruction of static full-track images. Our static reconstructions of Sgr A* can be clustered into four representative morphologies that correspond to ring images with three different azimuthal brightness distributions, and a small cluster that contains diverse non-ring morphologies. Based on our extensive analysis of the effects of sparse (u,v)-coverage, source variability and interstellar scattering, as well as studies of simulated visibility data, we conclude that the EHT Sgr A* data show compelling evidence for an image that is dominated by a bright ring of emission with a ring diameter of ~ 50 μas, consistent with the expected “shadow” of a 4 × 106 M⊙ black hole in the Galactic Center located at a distance of 8 kpc.