Black Hole News

Astronomers Measure Black Hole Spin in the Nucleus of the Galaxy NGC 1365

June 27, 2014

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Using observations from NuSTAR and XMM-NEWTON, a team of astronomers examined the time-varying spectral shape of highly excited iron atoms in the nucleus of the galaxy NGC 1365. The nuclei of most galaxies contain a massive black hole. In our Milky Way, for example, the nuclear black hole contains about four million solar masses of […]

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Three Closely Orbiting Supermassive Black Holes Could Help in the Search for Gravitational Waves

June 26, 2014

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An international team of astronomers discovered three closely orbiting supermassive black holes that could help in the search for gravitational waves. An international team, including Oxford University scientists, led by Dr Roger Deane from the University of Cape Town, examined six systems thought to contain two supermassive black holes. The team found that one of […]

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Scientists Shed New Light on Black Hole Development

June 20, 2014

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Using a large array of satellites and space observatories, astronomers discovered that winds blowing from a supermassive black hole in NGC 5548 work to obscure observations and X-rays. The research sheds new light on the unexpected behavior of black holes. Blacksburg, Virginia – An international team of scientists including a Virginia Tech physicist have discovered […]

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Theoretical Physicists Reveal the Turbulent Nature of Black Holes

June 6, 2014

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A new study from the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics reveals the turbulent nature of black holes, showing that gravitational fields around black holes might eddy and swirl. Fasten your seatbelts – gravity is about to get bumpy. Of course, if you’re flying in the vicinity of a black hole, a bit of extra bumpiness […]

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New Study Measures the Strength of Magnetic Fields Near Black Holes

June 5, 2014

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New research from the Berkeley Lab systematically measures the strength of magnetic fields near black holes for the first time, revealing that the measured magnetic fields can be as strong as a black hole’s gravity. A new study of supermassive black holes at the centers of galaxies has found magnetic fields play an impressive role […]

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Fermi Reveals Distinctive Properties of Blazars

June 4, 2014

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A team of astronomers has used Fermi data to reveal how blazars are distributed throughout the universe and to show the distinctive properties that define each class of blazar. Astronomers studying two classes of black-hole-powered galaxies monitored by NASA’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope have found evidence that they represent different sides of the same cosmic […]

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New Data from NASA Conflicts with Black Hole ‘Doughnut’ Theory

May 23, 2014

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New data from NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer reveals a new feature about active black holes, leaving astronomers to reexamining a decades-old theory about the varying appearances of these interstellar objects. A survey of more than 170,000 supermassive black holes, using NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), has astronomers reexamining a decades-old theory about the […]

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Three Recent Black Hole Events and How They Shape Our Universe

May 20, 2014

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A new article from the Smithsonian Magazine takes a look at three recent black hole events and how they shape our universe. Near the middle of the Milky Way, there lives a supermassive black hole called Sagittarius A* (Sgr A) that any day now might eat a gas cloud (called G2) that’s floating towards it […]

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NASA Supercomputer Simulation Shows Neutron Stars Ripping Each Other Apart to Form a Black Hole

May 14, 2014

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A newly released video from NASA shows a pair of neutron stars colliding and ripping each other apart to form a black hole. This supercomputer simulation shows one of the most violent events in the universe: a pair of neutron stars colliding, merging and forming a black hole. A neutron star is the compressed core […]

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Astronomers Reveal Relationship Between the Color of a Galaxy and the Size of Its Bulge

April 22, 2014

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Using data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey to group together over half a million galaxies of all different colors, shapes, and masses, new research reveals a relatively simple relationship between the color of a galaxy and the size of its bulge – the more massive the bulge the redder the galaxy. The universe we […]

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Supercomputers Help Researchers Understand Black Holes

April 15, 2014

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Using supercomputers like Stampede at the Texas Advanced Computing Center and Kraken at the National Institute for Computational Sciences, researchers try to predict and better understand the observational signatures of events like black holes devouring stars. Somewhere in the cosmos an ordinary galaxy spins, seemingly at slumber. Then all of a sudden, WHAM! A flash […]

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Astronomers Ready for G2’s Encounter with Supermassive Black Hole Sgr A*

April 4, 2014

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As the gas cloud, called G2, edges closer to the supermassive black hole Sgr A*, astronomers at Northwestern University are hoping to learn new information on growth of supermassive black holes. Evanston, Illinois — Right now a doomed gas cloud is edging ever closer to the supermassive black hole at the center of our Milky […]

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