Black Holes

An artist's rendering of the quasar that set the record for the universe's brightest object, with its black hole at its center.

Astronomers Discover the Brightest Known Object in the Universe, Shining 500 Trillion Times as Bright as the Sun

The quasar—a glowing, active core of a galaxy—has a black hole at its center that consumes more than a sun’s-worth of mass each day

An artist's rendition of a LISA spacecraft.

This 'Game-Changer' Detector Will Hunt for Giant Ripples in Spacetime

Set to launch in 2035, the European Space Agency's LISA mission will listen for gravitational waves created by colliding black holes and neutron stars—and some might date nearly to the Big Bang

A picture taken by the Hubble Space Telescope that contains GN-z11, the galaxy with the newly discovered black hole at its center. When GN-z11 was first imaged, it was the farthest galaxy ever seen in the universe.

Astronomers Discover the Oldest Known Black Hole, Breaking a Record Set Last Year

The supermassive structure dates to about 400 million years after the Big Bang, and it’s particularly large for its age

A new musical piece is based on this composite image of the center of the Milky Way. The bright spot on the right is hot gas in infrared light, marking the approximate location of the galaxy's supermassive black hole.

Listen to the Center of the Milky Way Translated Into Sound

A new musical composition represents data from three NASA telescopes as a piece that was performed by an orchestral ensemble

The galaxy cluster Abell 2744, which lies in front of the galaxy containing the newly discovered black hole

Astronomers Spot the Oldest Black Hole Ever Seen, Shedding Light on the Early Universe

Dating to just 470 million years after the Big Bang, the ancient cosmic structure could help researchers understand how the first black holes formed

The Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico, one of the radio telescopes used to detect the pulses from pulsars in the new research. The telescope started to fall apart in 2020 and was decommisioned.

Gravitational Waves Create a Constant 'Hum' Across the Universe

Breakthrough research suggests the continuous ripples in spacetime could be caused by pairs of supermassive black holes, spiraling toward collisions

Illustration of a black hole pulling in surrounding gas.

Astronomers Identify the Largest-Ever Cosmic Explosion

The burst is ten times brighter than any known exploding star and has lasted for more than three years

The first image to show the shadow of black hole M87 as well as its jet

First-of-Its-Kind Image Captures a Black Hole's Shooting Jet

The finding could help reveal how black holes launch such high-energy ejections

The new image of the black hole in the Messier 87 galaxy.

See the Sharp New Image of a Supermassive Black Hole

Astronomers used machine-learning technology to improve a 2019 visualization of the M87 black hole, located some 54 million light-years away from Earth

An artist's rendition of the runaway black hole with the stream of stars trailing behind it. Its former host galaxy is in the upper right of the image.

Black Hole Hurtling Through Space Leaves a Trail of Stars in Its Wake

Researchers theorize a stream of stars 200,000 light-years long came from a black hole ejected from its galaxy

Astronomers and musicians have developed “sonifications” to bring the symphony of the cosmos to a wider audience.

What Does the Universe Sound Like?

The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory and other researchers have melded astronomy and music to offer a new oeuvre

An illustration of the event horizon of a black hole

A Space Flash Detected in February Was a Black Hole Devouring an Unassuming Star

The bright light was the result of a rare cosmic occurrence known as a tidal disruption event

The Milky Way’s black hole, Sagittarius A*

What the Image of the Milky Way's Black Hole Really Shows

This year’s picture of the swirling plasma around the massive object's edges will help to reveal more about the galaxy’s history and evolution

An artist's impression of the nearby black hole and the star that hinted to its existence. 

Astronomers Discover Closest Known Black Hole to Earth

Researchers believe there may be even nearer ones that have yet to be detected

The afterglow of the gamma-ray burst as captured by the Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory's X-ray telescope. 

This Powerful Gamma-Ray Blast Was the 'Brightest of All Time'

Astronomers are "in awe" of the high-energy explosion, probably caused by a giant star's death

A cluster of galaxies that Slayton created in Minecraft

This 18-Year-Old Recreated the ‘Entire Universe’ in Minecraft

From the video game's blocks, he built galaxies, a nebula, a black hole and the solar system

An digital illustration of a black hole in space

Hubble Space Telescope May Have Spotted a Moving Black Hole

Two teams analyzed data from NASA’s telescope and found a compact object, which may be either a black hole or a neutron star

The first-ever image of a black hole in the Milky Way

Here’s What the Black Hole in the Center of the Milky Way Looks Like

A team of scientists from around the world collaborated to get a visual peek of the supermassive object

Out of four known types of black holes, stellar-mass black holes are the most common and have masses less than 100 times the Sun.

Astronomers Spot First Lone, Free-Wheeling Black Hole in the Milky Way Galaxy

The massive void, zipping at 28 miles per second, may have been blasted into space by a supernova explosion

An artist’s conception of the James Webb Space Telescope at work.

The James Webb Telescope Successfully Launches Into Space

A rocket carrying the $10 billion dollar invention blasted off Christmas morning and powered up as planned, providing astronomers with a long-awaited gift

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