The existence of stellar cusps in dense clusters around massive black holes is a fundamental, decades-old prediction of theoretical stellar dynamics. Yet, observational evidence has been elusive so far. With a new, improved analysis of high-angular resolution images of the central parsecs of the Galactic Center, we are finally able to provide the first solid evidence for the existence of a stellar cusp around the Milky Way's massive black hole. The existence of stellar cusps is not only of theoretical importance, but has a significant impact on predicted event rates of phenomena like tidal disruptions of stars and extreme mass ratio inspiral events, which are expected to be strong sources of gravitational wave emission.
The stellar cusp around the Milky Way's central black hole