Astronomers Spot a Massive Black Hole That’s Gone Rogue

‘A massive black hole that’s more than 100,000 times the mass of our sun has been detected in the outer regions of a galaxy located about 4.5 billion light years from Earth. Astronomers suspect that this “wandering” black hole was originally located at the core of a smaller galaxy, but it became dislodged during a merger with a larger one. Now homeless, it’s settled into the outer reaches of the usurping galaxy.

Black holes—objects so heavy that not even light can escape them—come in a range of sizes. Stellar black holes measure about 10 miles across, and are up to 20 times heavier than our sun. Massive black holes, or so-called intermediate black holes, are 100 to 100,000 times heavier than our sun. At the top of the scale are supermassive black holes, which have upper masses ranging between 100,000 to 10 billion times that of the sun.

Both intermediate black holes and supermassive black holes are parked at the center of their galaxies, but astronomers have theorized about the existence of “rogue” black holes—objects that have been jostled away from their galactic cores following a collision with a galaxy containing its own massive black hole. The stars, dust, and gas from the second galaxy would disperse through the first one—along with its now displaced black hole…’

Source: Gizmodo