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Astronomers Find Evidence of Thousands of Black Holes at the Center of Our Galaxy

Astronomers have long predicted that as many as 20,000 black holes could be hiding in our galaxy’s centre, but so far no one has been able to spot them. Until now. Read More >>

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Could Higgs Bosons and Primordial Black Holes Explain Dark Matter?

Without an actual discovery, it can be difficult to convince us laypeople that there’s really such a thing as “dark matter.” It seems to interact with our universe solely through gravity, and no experiment has detected it here on Earth yet. So what if there’s an explanation to what’s causing dark matter using physics that already exists, like Higgs bosons and black holes? Read More >>

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Physicists React to Stephen Hawking’s Passing

Stephen Hawking passed away yesterday in his home at age 76. Hawking popularised the deepest questions of the universe and became a pop culture icon thanks to his writing and work. His personality and ideas had a profound impact on scientists and science fans alike. Read More >>

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Could the Weirdness of Quantum Physics Produce a New Kind of Star?

It would be silly to think that scientists and astronomers have spotted all of the different kinds of weird things that exist in space. After all, we’re pretty sure the universe is mostly composed of dark matter and dark energy that we haven’t directly detected. But new research seems to imply that there are entirely different kinds of stars hiding in the laws of physics—and that’s something quite surprising. Read More >>

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Incredibly Detailed Image of Our Galaxy’s Centre Shows How Things Move Around a Black Hole

There’s a black hole called Sagittarius A* at the center of our galaxy. It has 4 million times the mass of the sun, but is only around the size of Mercury’s orbit. It’s 26,000 light years away, but let’s say some unfortunate mishap brought you within a light year or two of that behemoth. What would happen? Read More >>

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New Results Challenge Basic Ideas of Supermassive Black Holes

Galaxies have supermassive black holes at their centres—our Milky Way, for example, has its own 4-million-solar-mass one, Sagittarius A*. Some astronomers have previously thought that there’s a simple relationship between the galaxy’s size, the black hole’s mass, and how much light the black hole spits out while it eats up the things surrounding it. But a pair of papers studying the biggest star-eating behemoths imaginable seems to bust up that assumption. Read More >>

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Scientists Create Miniature Gamma Ray Bursts to Study Black Holes

Scientists are attempting to model some of the most powerful explosions in the universe by miniaturising them into lab experiments. Read More >>

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New Evidence That Supermassive Black Holes Eventually Suck the Life out of Big Galaxies

At the core of each large galaxy lies a supermassive black hole with the mass of 1 million suns. New research shows that these celestial hoovers do more than just devour nearby objects—they also grow to a size that eventually suppresses a galaxy’s ability to churn out new stars, effectively rendering them sterile. Read More >>

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2017’s Best Space Explosions

Astronomers spend their days looking at the sky. Maybe some crazy complex new telescope is helping, or some form of AI is teasing the complexities out of vast piles of data. It’s still just the sky. The sky isn’t immutable, though. Some of the most interesting science happens when brief blips pass into and out of existence. These dots send their light in the form of radio waves, microwaves, visible light and gamma rays into measuring apparatuses and tell us something new about the universe. They might even send space itself rippling with gravitational waves. Read More >>

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Black Holes Slamming Together Officially ‘Routine’

Well, this is it. We’ve finally gotten to the point where observing two black holes slamming together, possibly the most way-out physics-based idea one could wrap their head around, has become “routine.” How did we get here? Read More >>

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Can Scientists Figure Out Where Colliding Black Holes Come From?

When distant black holes (or neutron stars) collide, there’s a lot scientists can tell from the way they send gravitational waves rippling through space. That includes their masses, their distance, or how their spins line up with one another. But one question they’re still trying to figure out is, well, where are they? Read More >>

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Observatories Across the World Announce Groundbreaking New Gravitational Wave Discovery

Vicky Kalogera, a Northwestern University physicist, took her week of much-needed vacation in Utah this past August. She promised her family she’d stay off of email for a week. It wasn’t a real promise, of course, but she was going to try. She’d arranged the perfect day for August 17. Her husband was going to take the kids hiking in Arches National Park while she’d spend the whole day at the spa. Right as she left her room, she just had to give her email a peep. The deluge brought the news: Telescopes and detectors across the world were making a monumental observation. Read More >>

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Astronomers Think They Discovered the Missing Link in Black Hole Evolution

Science fiction doesn’t exist to make movies about the stuff we know about—it explores the unknown physics, astronomy, biology and chemistry where real uncertainty about topics can lead to compelling, believable stories. That’s what makes black holes such a popular subject; light can’t escape them, maybe they’re portals across space and time, and they seem to break the rules. But who needs fiction when there are already incredibly strange mysteries in the real world? Read More >>

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Incredible New Observation Shows Supermassive Black Holes Orbiting Each Other

You think our galaxy is special? Ha. Our boring pinwheel of gas and dark matter might be a nice hangout for humans. But 750 or so million light years away, there’s an elliptical galaxy, Galaxy 0402+379, whose two supermassive black holes are orbiting each other from a distance of only 24 or so light years. Their combined mass is around 15 billion times that of our Sun. Read More >>

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Mind-Blowing New Theory Connects Black Holes, Dark Matter, and Gravitational Waves

The past few years have been incredible for physics discoveries. Scientists spotted the Higgs boson, a particle they’d been hunting for almost 50 years, in 2012, and gravitational waves, which were theorised 100 years ago, in 2016. This year, they’re slated to take a picture of a black hole. So, thought some theorists, why not combine all of the craziest physics ideas into one, a physics turducken? What if we, say, try to spot the dark matter radiating off of black holes through their gravitational waves? Read More >>