Latest Supermassive black hole Stories

2008-06-18 21:15:00

The biggest black holes may feed just like the smallest ones, according to data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and ground-based telescopes. This discovery supports the implication of Einstein's relativity theory that black holes of all sizes have similar properties, and will be useful for predicting the properties of a conjectured new class of black holes. The conclusion comes from a large observing campaign of the spiral galaxy M81, which is about 12 million light years from Earth. In...

2008-04-02 09:40:00

Omega Centauri has been known as an unusual globular cluster for a long time. A new result obtained by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and the Gemini Observatory reveals that the explanation behind omega Centauri's peculiarities may be a black hole hidden in its center. One implication of the discovery is that it is very likely that omega Centauri is not a globular cluster at all, but a dwarf galaxy stripped of its outer stars, as some scientists have suspected for a few years.Omega...

2008-01-10 00:00:00

A dramatic new Chandra image of the nearby galaxy Centaurus A provides one of the best views to date of the effects of an active supermassive black hole. Opposing jets of high-energy particles can be seen extending to the outer reaches of the galaxy, and numerous smaller black holes in binary star systems are also visible. The image was made from an ultra-deep look at the galaxy Centaurus A, equivalent to more than seven days of continuous observations. Centaurus A is the nearest galaxy to...

2008-01-09 14:02:28

If the latest simulation of what happens when black holes merge is correct, there could be hundreds of rogue black holes, each weighing several thousand times the mass of the sun, roaming around the Milky Way galaxy. "Rogue black holes like this would be very difficult to spot," says Vanderbilt astronomer Kelly Holley-Bockelmann, who is presenting the results of the supercomputer simulation at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society on Jan. 9 in Austin, Texas. Much of the research was...

2007-10-30 09:55:00

Cambridge, MA -- Using two NASA satellites, astronomers have discovered a black hole that obliterates a record announced just two weeks ago. The new black hole, with a mass 24 to 33 times that of our Sun, is the heftiest known black hole that orbits another star. The record-breaker belongs to the category of "stellar-mass" black holes. Formed in the death throes of massive stars, they are smaller than the monster black holes found in galactic cores. The previous record holder for largest...

2007-07-31 10:50:00

An international team of astronomers using NASA's Swift satellite and the Japanese/U.S. Suzaku X-ray observatory has discovered a new class of active galactic nuclei (AGN). By now, you'd think that astronomers would have found all the different classes of AGN "” extraordinarily energetic cores of galaxies powered by accreting supermassive black holes. AGN such as quasars, blazars, and Seyfert galaxies are among the most luminous objects in our Universe, often pouring out the energy of...

2007-07-24 12:56:10

Supermassive black holes have been discovered to grow more rapidly in young galaxy clusters, according to new results from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. These "fast-track" supermassive black holes can have a big influence on the galaxies and clusters that they live in. Using Chandra, scientists surveyed a sample of clusters and counted the fraction of galaxies with rapidly growing supermassive black holes, known as active galactic nuclei (or AGN). The data show, for the first time, that...

2007-05-30 18:00:00

Evidence for an awesome upheaval in a massive galaxy cluster was discovered in an image made by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. The origin of a bright arc of ferociously hot gas extending over two million light years requires one of the most energetic events ever detected. The cluster of galaxies is filled with tenuous gas at 170 million degree Celsius that is bound by the mass equivalent of a quadrillion, or 1,000 trillion, suns. The temperature and mass make this cluster a giant among...

2007-04-12 00:25:00

A remarkable eclipse of a supermassive black hole and the hot gas disk around it has been observed with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. This eclipse has allowed two key predictions about the effects of supermassive black holes to be tested. Just as eclipses of the Sun and moon give astronomers rare opportunities to learn about those objects, an alignment in a nearby galaxy has provided a rare opportunity to investigate a supermassive black hole. The supermassive black hole is located in...

2007-03-12 12:40:03

By casting a wide net, astronomers have captured an image of more than a thousand supermassive black holes. These results give astronomers a snapshot of a crucial period when these monster black holes are growing, and provide insight into the environments in which they occur. The new black hole panorama was made with data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, the Spitzer Space Telescope and ground-based optical telescopes. The black holes in the image are hundreds of millions to several...

Latest Supermassive black hole Reference Libraries

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Microquasar -- Microquasars are smaller cousins of quasars. They are named after quasars, as they have some common characteristics: strong and variable radio emission often seen as radio jets, and an accretion disk surrounding a black hole. In quasars, the black hole is supermassive (millions of solar masses) as in microquasars, the black hole mass is a few solar masses. In microquasars, the accreted mass comes from a normal star and the accretion disk is very luminous in optical regions...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Black Hole -- Black holes are objects so dense that not even light can escape their gravity. They are believed to form from the gravitational collapse of astronomical objects containing two or more solar masses. Astronomical observations suggest that the center of most galaxies, including our own Milky Way, contain supermassive black holes containing millions to billions of solar masses. Black holes are predictions of Einstein's theory of general relativity. In particular, they occur...

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Word of the Day
  • A 'bachelor seal'; a young male seal which is prevented from mating by its herd's older males (mated bulls defending their territory).
This comes from the Russian word for 'bachelors.'