Scientists detect a middle weight black hole devouring a star out in deep space

Astronomers have detected a black hole devouring a star nearby its location from more than one million light years away from Earth, out in deep space.

1 minute & 12 seconds read time

Scientists have detected a black hole more than a million light years away from Earth engulfing a star, causing what researchers refer to as a "Tidal Disruption Event".

The new study published in the scientific journal Nature Astronomy details that Tidal Disruption Events happen when a black hole sucks up a nearby star, essentially shredding all of its available matter and energy much like a paper being put through a shredder. Throughout this process a blast of radiation and energy can be released by the black hole and that's exactly what caught astronomers' eyes when this middle-weight black hole consumed a star within the distant dwarf galaxy.

Researchers believe that measuring the blast of radiation will allow them to learn more about black holes and their relationship within dwarf galaxies. In particular, the researchers say that blast caused by the Tidal Disruption Event can provide insight into how researchers measure black hole in the future as well as how black holes go about consuming nearby stars.

"Tidal disruption events, the luminous flares produced when a star strays close to a BH and is shredded, are a direct way to probe massive black holes (BHs). The rise times of these flares theoretically correlate with the BH mass. Here we present AT 2020neh, a fast-rising tidal disruption event candidate, hosted by a dwarf galaxy," wrote the researchers.

If you are interested in learning more about black holes, or would like to check out the study for yourself, you can read it here.


Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science, space, and artificial intelligence news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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