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What does a black hole sound like? NASA shares (terrifying) audio clip

A NASA team that searches for other planets and life outside of our galaxy shared the clip, and explained why there’s a misconception there’s no sound in space.
/ Source: TODAY

NASA shared a video this week that gives us a glimpse into what a black hole sounds like — and it's terrifying.

NASA's Exoplanets team, a group of researchers that search for planets and life outside of our solar system, reposted a video NASA originally published in May, sharing audio of sound waves it had previously identified, but were inaudible — until now.

The Exoplanets team shared the ominous 34-second clip on Twitter and explained why there's a misconception there's no sound in space.

"The misconception that there is no sound in space originates because most space is a ~vacuum, providing no way for sound waves to travel," the NASA team said. "A galaxy cluster has so much gas that we’ve picked up actual sound. Here it’s amplified, and mixed with other data, to hear a black hole!"

TODAY hosts Hoda Kotb, Craig Melvin, Al Roker and Tom Llamas reacted on Tuesday to the video, which comes from a black hole 250 million light years away from Earth.

Hoda's jaw dropped while listening to the clip, while Al explained how scientists were able to create the audio.

"Well, it picked up the sound because of the amount of gas that a galaxy cluster has," Al said while laughing.

"Don't, Al, I'm begging you," Hoda responded, trying to hold in her giggles.

"So, so, so ... there's that," Al continued with a smile.

NASA says the video features a "sonification" of the black hole at the center of the Perseus galaxy cluster, which has grappled astronomers after they previously discovered pressure waves in the black hole could be translated into one, inaudible note.

The issue with the note is it is about 57 octaves below middle C, meaning humans can't hear it, NASA says. But researchers produced a new sonification, or a translation of astronomical data into sound, for Black Hole Week earlier this year.

The video went viral this week after the NASA Exoplanets team reshared the clip, leading many on the internet to fear ever hearing the noise in real life.

"According to NASA, a black hole sounds like billions of souls wailing in anguish from the depths of hell," one tweet read. "Neat! I didn’t plan on sleeping anytime in the foreseeable future, anyway..."

"Turns out the sound of black hole is 100 times more frightening than you could have imagined," another tweet read.

"Hey @NASAExoplanets it’s not #halloween yet we don’t appreciate this early delivery of nightmare fuel," joked another.

NASA also made waves earlier this year when it released the first image of the supermassive black hole at the center of our own galaxy, captured by the Event Horizon Telescope.