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The Youngest, Most Massive Black Hole Is A Puzzle For Astronomy

18 Dec 2017, 15:01 UTC
The Youngest, Most Massive Black Hole Is A Puzzle For Astronomy ESO/M. Kornmesser
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This is an artist’s impression of the quasar 3C 279. This quasar, as illustrated here, has a mass of over 1 billion Suns and is located about 5 billion light years away. Even more distant quasars have been found, but have exceedingly high masses that challenge our conventional view of cosmology. Image credit: ESO / M. Kornmesser.How do you get so massive so fast? The answer could be a big problem for our standard picture of cosmology.Out in the extreme distances of the Universe, the first quasars can be found.HE0435–1223, located in the centre of this wide-field image, is among the five best lensed quasars discovered to date. The foreground galaxy creates four almost evenly distributed images of the distant quasar around it. Image credit: ESA/Hubble, NASA, Suyu et al.Supermassive black holes at the centers of young galaxies accelerate matter to tremendous speeds, causing them to emit jets of radiation.While distant host galaxies for quasars and active galactic nuclei can often be imaged in visible/infrared light, the jets themselves and the surrounding emission is best viewed in both the X-ray and the radio, as illustrated here for the galaxy Hercules A. Image credit: NASA, ESA, S. Baum and C. O’Dea ...

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