Articles about black holes

SMBH: Astroboffins reveal how to stop pop(ping) stars in a supermassive galaxy

The mass of the supermassive black hole at the centre of galaxies controls star formation and determines how it evolves over time, according to new observations published in Nature. Galaxies are made out of clumps of interstellar dust, gas, stars, black holes, and dark matter all gravitationally bound together. As they age, …
Artist's view of a binary black hole. Pic credit: NASA, ESA and G Bacon (STScI)

Boffins on alert: Brace yourselves for huge gravitational wave coming within a decade

The most violent gravitational waves in the universe from supermassive black hole prangs will be detected to within ten years, according to research published on Monday. Gravitational waves were predicted by Albert Einstein and finally discovered in 2015, a century after his theory of general relativity was formalized. Ripples …
Katyanna Quach, 13 Nov 2017

Physicists win Nobel Prize for spotting ripples in fabric of space-time

The 2017 Nobel Prize in physics has been awarded to three researchers crucial to the first detection of ripples in the fabric of space-time – gravitational waves. Half the prize went to MIT physicist Rainer Weiss and the other half to California Institute of Technology physicists Barry Barish and Kip Thorne. They're all …
Andrew Silver, 3 Oct 2017
Artist's view of a binary black hole. Pic credit: NASA, ESA and G Bacon (STScI)

Riddle of cannibal black hole pairs solved ... nearly: Astroboffins explain all to El Reg

Astrophysicists are one step closer to understanding how pairs of merging black holes form in the far reaches of the cosmos. The dramatic melding of two black holes produced the first gravitational waves detected by the Earth-based Advanced Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO). While these waves confirmed …

Blast from the past: Mass birth of early supermassive black holes explained at last

The earliest supermassive black holes have always puzzled astronomers. These ancient voids – about a billion times the mass of the Sun – were discovered more than a decade ago and formed only 800,000 years after the Big Bang. It should take millions of years for black holes to accumulate that much mass, so finding these giants …
Katyanna Quach, 14 Mar 2017

Let's grow a baby universe in a supercomputer, watch black holes collide

Physicists have created simulations that predict the rate at which gravitational waves from the collision of monstrous supermassive black holes may be detected. The results are due to be announced later today at the Royal Astronomical Society's National Astronomy Meeting. In a monumental discovery, gravitational waves were …
Katyanna Quach, 27 Jun 2016
Artist's impression of Cygnus

Reg photography special: Get a better snap of a BLACK HOLE

MIT boffins have developed an algorithm to help astrophysicists see the unseen, improving the resolution of black hole “images”. Working with Harvard University collaborators, the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) researchers' algorithm improves the imaging quality of the international-scale Event …
Black hole

Ginormous HIDDEN BLACK HOLES flood the universe – boffins

Pics NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) X-Ray telescope has observed a cluster of massive black holes that were hidden from Earth's view by interstellar dust clouds. Crucially, the findings indicate that there many more holes dotted around the universe than first thought. The black hole spotted by Durham …
Iain Thomson, 7 Jul 2015
Interstellar movie black hole special effects

Interstellar sci-fi WORMS its way into spinning black hole science FACT

Vid Boffins who worked alongside Hollywood film-makers on the Oscar-nominated sci-fi flick Interstellar reckon they've come up with new discoveries that reveal the "powerful effects" of black holes – all thanks to the computer code that was used for the movie. As The Register reported back in October, theoretical physicist Kip …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Feb 2015
Stephen Hawking, weightless and happy

Prof Stephen Hawking: 'There are NO black holes' – they're GREY!

Brit uber-boffin Prof Stephen Hawking has quietly published a new paper proposing a radical rethink of the nature of black holes, which have been a major part of his life's work. Hawking's paper [PDF], Information Preservation and Weather Forecasting for Black Holes has been submitted for peer review and attempts to apply both …
Iain Thomson, 25 Jan 2014
Black hole

Dark HEAVY METAL star fires up jets, vomits hot ROCK into space

A black hole has been spotted spurting out streams of iron and nickel, seeding the universe with heavy atoms that are part of the building blocks of planets, asteroids and stars. Black hole First I pull it in, then I spit it out ... Artist's impression of the hole in action Typically, black holes put out jets of charged …
Iain Thomson, 13 Nov 2013
CSIRO Parkes radio telescope

Black hole boffins close in on gravity waves

While the world looks for ways to directly observe gravity waves, boffins at Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) say they've used information about the Einsteinian prediction to examine huge black holes in space. In what they call a “new chapter in astronomy”, post-doctoral CSIRO …
The Register breaking news

Black holes bigger than first thought

A bit of “astronomical shorthand” applied to make galactic mathematics easier to deal with might have to be abandoned, according to researchers from Swinburne University. According to Professor Alister Graham from Swinburne’s Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing, the decade-old assumption that black holes account for a …
The Register breaking news

Gamma ray telescope uses 'blazars' to map GLOWING COSMIC FOG

Scientists operating the Fermi gamma wave telescope have published the results of a four-year study into the light that shines in the universe from current and past stars. The experiment measures the light from the first stars formed after the Big Bang, the so-called extragalactic background light (EBL). This acts as a "fog" …
Iain Thomson, 2 Nov 2012
Supermassive black hole

Black hole radiation could provide insight into quantum gravity

The evaporation of black holes could provide a way to what’s known as the “loop quantum gravity” theory. Loop gravity is one of the many theories proposed as a way to unite general relativity with quantum mechanics, but it’s not easy to test; as Aurélien Barrau of the French National Institute of Nuclear and Particle Physics …
The Register breaking news

Supermassive surprise: the biggest black holes EVER

Here’s a genuine record-breaker: a black hole with nearly ten billion times the mass of our Sun, an event horizon that would stretch five times further than the orbit of Pluto if we had the misfortune to have it drop in, and a gravitational sphere of 4,000 light-years. With such a huge mass and long reach, it’s no surprise …
The Register breaking news

Chandra tags ancient black holes

Black holes may have been all over the early universe, according to new findings announced by NASA. A starfield gathered by its Chandra X-ray observatory, known as Chandra Deep Field South (CDFS), and analyzed in conjunction with the Hubble Space Telescope, has turned up a mass of previously-undiscovered black holes from when …
The Register breaking news

Astroboffin says 'black holes murder galaxies'

About 25,000 light years from earth, nestled in the center of our galaxy, lurks a supermassive black hole. Luckily for us, our galaxy's matter-sucking hub is far less active than those at the core of many other galaxies. If it weren't, we'd all be dead. Or, more likely, our earth would never have come to be in the first place …
Rik Myslewski, 18 Apr 2010

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