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Black Holes Encyclopedia
Stats

Type

Supermassive

Location

In the constellation Vulpecula

Distance

190 million light-years (58.7 megaparsecs)

Mass

330 million times the mass of the Sun

Size

Discovery Methods

Description

Measuring the motions of stars

Because a black hole is both massive and compact, it exerts a strong gravitational pull on the material around it. Astronomers can deduce the presence of a supermassive black hole in the core of a galaxy by measuring the velocities of stars that orbit the black hole. A more-massive black hole will accelerate nearby stars to greater speeds, so the velocities of stars can reveal not only the presence of a black hole, but its mass as well.

More about black hole discovery methods »















This document was last modified: July 8, 2013.

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