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The black holes in general are a sort of giant “monsters” that devour everything in their path. However, we know that there are different sizes and voracidades. For example, the center of the galaxies tend to be supermassive black holes. The of the our, so-called Sagittarius , it has the mass equivalent to 4 million suns. But there are more great. And with more “hunger”. It is the case of J2157 , which has 34,000 million times the mass of the sun and swallows as much mass as our star on a daily basis.

that is why it Is just catalogued as the black hole of more rapid growth known in the universe, whose magnitude places it within the so-called ” black holes ultramasivos “. “If the black hole of our Milky Way, would like to fatten up so much, would have to swallow two-thirds of all the stars of our galaxy,” he says in a press release, the astronomer Christopher Onken , of the Australian National University in Australia, lead author of a study in the journal “Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society”.

It has been known since 2018

the discovery of The giant in question was announced for the first time in 2018 . This feeds a quasar in the center of a galaxy called SMSS J215728.21-360215.1 (J2157 for short) in the early Universe, billions of light years away. At the beginning of the discovery, we estimated its mass at about 20,000 million solar masses, placing it in the category ultramasiva (more than 10,000 million solar masses), and its rate of accretion (growth) in the middle of a solar mass daily.

But now, new measurements indicate that astronomers and astrophysicists had been timid in their predictions. In its mass the newly derived, the black hole J2157 would have a Schwarzschild radius -that is to say, the radius of its event horizon – of about 670 astronomical units (AU). Knowing that to Pluto it would have a distance of 39.5 AU from the Sun, it can be said that J2157 has over five times the size of the Solar System .

And it is not the largest

despite these amazing facts, J2157 it is not the biggest hole discovered for humanity: one of 40,000 million solar masses is located in the heart of the galaxy Holmber 15A, to about 700 million light-years away. But we also have the black hole ultramasivo that feeds the quasar TON 618 , a beast absolute with some 66,000 million solar masses to 10.400 million light-years away.

supermassive black holes are hard to understand , but the ultramasivos harbor more mysteries even if it is. Still not well known, the mechanism that forms both types of monsters, or how to grow both. But J2157, which was formed when the Universe was less than 10% of its current age , it belongs to a class of its own. Not only it is unknown the origin of its formation, but it is not known how he was able to grow so close to the moment of the Big Bang. “This is the biggest black hole in this early period of the Universe,” says Onken.

how supermassive black Holes are common at the beginning of the Universe?

however, recent studies suggest that the quasars hosting supermassive black holes not only exist in the early Universe, but that would have been quite common. This discovery is a great challenge to our cosmological models today , since according to these theories, an object such as J2157 should have devoured a lot of stuff in a long time , and with him the math does not add up . That is to say, on paper, there was not much “food” for this giant to grow so much in so little time. “What is this galaxy one of the giants of the early Universe , or black hole swallowed an extraordinary amount of matter of the surroundings?”, question Onken. “We have to continue investigating to discover”.