A double black hole has been discovered by NASA’s Hubble telescope. According to Gizmodo, the phenomenon is located six hundred million light-years away and is the very first confirmed double black hole ever. Inside the binary system houses a “starburst galaxy,” something else that makes it truly rare and quite remarkable.
“Black holes are usually lone wolves, devouring light and matter at centers of their galaxies. But when galaxies collide, two black holes can in theory become locked in a gravitational embrace, much like a binary star. This is the first confirmed instance of the phenomena.”
The double black hole was found in Markarian 231, according to the Canada Journal. Called Mrk 231 for short, this galaxy is the closest to earth that has a quasar (qausi-stellar radio sources).
NASA isn’t the only organization that is thrilled about the new discovery.
“We are extremely excited about this finding because it not only shows the existence of a close binary black hole in Mrk 231, but also paves a new way to systematically search binary black holes via the nature of their ultraviolet light emission,” said Youjun Lu of the National Astronomical Observatories of China.
Check out some of the photos of the double black hole below.
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The double black hole has been around for an unknown amount of time. As previously reported by the Inquisitr, NASA scientists made the discovery while they were looking over some archived information collected by the Hubble telescope. But what caused them to look deeper?
As they were studying the information, they noticed ultraviolet radiation was being emitted and thought it didn’t look “normal.” They, of course, were right.
“If only one black hole were present in the center of the quasar, the whole accretion disk made of surrounding hot gas would glow in ultraviolet rays. Instead, the ultraviolet glow of the dusty disk abruptly drops off toward the center. This provides observational evidence that the disk has a big donut hole encircling the central black hole. The best explanation for the donut hole in the disk, based on dynamical models, is that the center of the disk is carved out by the action of two black holes orbiting each other.”
[Photo by NASA via Getty Images News]