Scientists Plan to Capture Image of Black Hole's 'Point of No Return'

The first-ever snapshot is set to be taken in 2017.

— -- Perhaps one of the biggest space oddities is the mysterious point of no return inside of a black hole. Scientists now believe they're on track to get the first-ever photo of the unexplored area -- called the event horizon -- by 2017.

Using a network of nine telescopes, a project called the Event Horizon Telescope is focusing on a black hole located at the center of the Milky Way called Sagittarius A*. The event horizon is the area around a black hole where gravity is so powerful, light and material cannot escape.

"We've run upwards of a million simulations, for many different configurations," Feryal Ozel, a professor at the University of Arizona, told the BBC.

Black holes are super massive -- and the event horizon of Sagittarius A* is predicted to be 17 times bigger than the sun. However, since the black hole is 25,000 light years away from Earth, it will appear incredibly small in the sky. As a comparison, Ozel told the BBC the disc takes up as much of the sky as a compact disc would sitting on the moon.

Aside from getting the first-ever image of a black hole's event horizon, scientists also said the project will enable them to study how black holes gain matter and grow in mass.