Black HolesFeb 9th, 2013 • Category: Science & the Environment
By THEO YANOS, age 10
On November 27, 2012, a group of astronomers led by Remco van den Bosch from the MPIA (Max Planck Institute for Astronomy) made an amazing discovery. In a galaxy called NGC 1277, they found a supermassive black hole with a mass 17 billion times the Sun’s mass. NGC 1277, this black hole’s galaxy, is almost totally made of black holes. This supermassive black hole is 14 percent of its galaxy’s mass, which is inconsistent with the current model where the one supermassive black hole in every galaxy is approximately 0.1 percent of its galaxy’s mass.
A black hole is formed when a very massive star dies, causing it to collapse under its own weight, shrinking the star to a very small pinpoint called a black hole. Scientists believe that this supermassive black hole is probably a primordial black hole, a black hole possibly formed before the big bang. This means that scientists believe that this supermassive black hole likely formed before most other matter in the universe formed.
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