The quasar shines 500 trillion times brighter than the Sun, drawing its energy from a mysterious black hole

The quasar shines 500 trillion times brighter than the Sun, drawing its energy from a mysterious black hole

On Wednesday, February 14, scientists announced a revolutionary discovery.

They announced the discovery of the oldest black hole ever observed. Estimated to be 13 billion years old, it is active and devouring its host galaxy.

Which broke the record Quasar It shines 500 trillion times brighter than our sun.

The black hole powering this distant quasar is more than 17 billion times larger than our Sun, an Australian-led team reports in the journal. Nature astronomy.

The presence of this so early in the universe “challenges our assumptions about how black holes form and grow,” according to a statement from the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom.

Astronomers suggest that the newly discovered black hole may have been “born large,” or capable of consuming matter at a rate five times greater than previously thought, according to the University of Cambridge.

Astronomers made this discovery using… James Webb Telescope (JWST).

The James Webb Space Telescope was launched on December 25, 2021 from the European Space Agency's spaceport in French Guiana. This advanced telescope has a large 6.5-meter primary mirror and focuses on observations in the infrared spectrum, according to NASA.

In April 2019, the telescope captured an image of Bohi, the first black hole located at the center of the galaxy M87, 55 million light-years away. This supermassive black hole, which weighs 6.5 billion times the mass of the Sun, was detected through a collaboration with the Event Horizon Telescope, according to Center for Astrophysics, Harvard and Smithsonian.

How long can a black hole live?
Theoretically, the lifetime of black holes is related to the rate of Hawking radiation emission.

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Hawking radiation is a theoretical prediction of the physicist Stephen Hawking Which indicates that black holes are not completely black, but rather emit small amounts of thermal radiation.

“Black holes can gradually lose mass and energy over time through this process, which is a form of quantum mechanical radiation associated with the event horizon,” according to the theoretical work of Stephen Hawking.

For black holes that form as a result of the collapse of massive stars, the time scale for significant Hawking radiation and mass loss is much longer than the current age of the universe. Therefore, these black holes are actually stable and can exist for an astronomically long period, according to Hawking radiation.

Supermassive black holes, found at the centers of galaxies, are thought to have formed through different mechanisms and are much larger, according to the Center for Astrophysics at Harvard and the Smithsonian.

The time periods associated with Hawking radiation from supermassive black holes are longer, making them unusually stable in the universe.

Has a black hole collapsed before?
Once a black hole is formed, it does not collapse further, meaning it shrinks or disappears.

Black holes are remarkably stable objects, and their main properties are determined by their mass, spin and electrical charge, according to West Texas A&M University.

However, black holes can interact with other celestial bodies, leading to processes such as accretion or merging with other black holes, which can change the properties of the black hole but do not involve collapse, according to NASA.

Besides their celestial gravity, black holes play a crucial role in the formation of galaxies, providing scientists with invaluable insights into the fundamental mechanisms of gravity, space-time, and the life cycles of stars.

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Dalila Awolowo

Dalila Awolowo

"Explorer. Unapologetic entrepreneur. Alcohol fanatic. Certified writer. Wannabe tv evangelist. Twitter fanatic. Student. Web scholar. Travel buff."

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