Friday, March 31, 2023

Scientists discover black hole that consumes the equivalent of 1 Earth every second

Scientists Discover Black Hole That Consumes The Equivalent Of 1 Earth Every Second

New Delhi:

A black hole swallowing a mass equal to one Earth every second has been observed by astronomers. It is the fastest growing black hole in the last 9 billion years. The discovery was made recently by an international team led by astronomers from the Australian National University (ANU).

According to lead researcher Dr Christopher Onken and co-author Christian Wolf, who led the team, the black hole is 7,000 times brighter than all the light from our own galaxy, making it visible to well-equipped backyard astronomers.

Both astronomers described the black hole as “a very large, unpredictable needle in a haystack.”

Astronomers have been hunting for such objects for more than 50 years, according to Onken, and surprisingly this “amazingly bright black hole” went unnoticed.

What has made researchers curious is that black holes have a mass of three billion suns, while others of comparable size stopped growing so rapidly billions of years ago.

“Now we want to know why it’s different — did something catastrophic happen? Maybe the two large galaxies crashed into each other, completely funneling material onto the black hole to feed it,” Onken said.

According to co-author Christian Wolf, assistant professor at ANU, the black hole is so big that he doesn’t believe another one will be found.

The black hole is easily visible to anyone with a good telescope in a very dark backyard because it has a visual magnitude of 14.5. Visual magnitude is a measure of how bright an object in space appears to an observer on Earth.

“It’s 500 times bigger than the black hole in our own galaxy,” said co-author and ANU PhD researcher Samuel Lai.

The research findings have been published in the arXiv database and submitted to Publications of the Astronomical Society of Australia.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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