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Black Holes Encyclopedia

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Newest Black Hole

NGC 6240
A supermassive black hole in the constellation Ophiuchus.

NGC 6240Like many merging galaxies, NGC 6240 offers not one supermassive black hole but two. Eventually, though, they will merge to form a single object. The two galaxies of NGC 6240 began their merger process about 30 million years ago (as seen from Earth). Gravitational interactions between the two disk-shaped galaxies pulled out great streamers of millions of stars that spread across hundreds of tho... More »


First Picture

A global network of radio telescopes has snapped the first image of a black hole, in the center of the galaxy M87, which is 55 million light-years from Earth. The black hole is about 6.5 billion times the mass of the Sun. The image was compiled by the Event Horizon Telescope, and used sophisticated computers to combine hundreds of hours of observations.
Event Horizon Telescope - April 10, 2019


Stretching Starlight

An observing campaign that has lasted for a quarter of a century has provided additional confirmation of the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way galaxy. The observations showed that the black hole's gravity shifted the light of a passing star to longer, redder wavelengths, as predicted by Albert Einstein's theory of gravity.
European Southern Observatory - July 26, 2018

Young Beast

Astronomers have discovered the farthest known supermassive black hole, a behemoth about 800 million times the mass of the Sun that we see as it looked just 690 million years after the Big Bang, or roughly 13 billion years ago.
NASA - December 5, 2017

Event Horizons Stick Around

A new study says that event horizons really do exist. Some astronomers had posited that massive stars collapse to produce objects with solid surfaces, but the new research suggests that, instead, they form the standard model of a black hole, with all of the mass concentrated in a singularity, which is surrounded by a boundary known as the event horizon -- the point of no return for any matter or energy that falls into the black hole.
University of Texas at Austin - May 30, 2017

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Video: Stranger Than Fiction

VideoThe concept of black holes has intrigued scientists for hundreds of years. For an introduction to the topic, watch "Black Holes: Stranger than Fiction," the latest video from the Texas Cosmology Center at The University of Texas at Austin.

Pop Culture

Check out our selection of some of the best — and worst — roles played by black holes in movies, TV shows, books, and music. More »



The Hole Story

Black holes are one of the busiest research topics in all of astronomy. Learn more about this cutting-edge research and get a peek at the backgrounds of some of the world's top black-hole researchers. More »

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