How does a black hole form?
A black hole forms when any object reaches a certain critical density, and its gravity causes it to collapse to an almost infinitely small pinpoint. Stellar-mass black holes form when a massive star can no longer produce energy in its core. With the radiation from its nuclear reactions to keep the star "puffed up," gravity causes the core to collapse. The star's outer layers may blast away into space, or they may fall into the black hole to make it heavier. Astronomers aren't certain how supermassive black holes form. They may form from the collapse of large clouds of gas, or from the mergers of many smaller black holes, or a combination of events.
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