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The Lonely Hole

from Astronomy

Astronomers detect first potential ‘rogue’ black hole

We’ve seen plenty of black holes tearing material off a companion, but not sitting alone in space. Now, we might have spotted one.

By Ashley Balzer

artist's impression of a black hole
A lone black hole gives off no light – but its gravity does distort the path of light traveling around it. Ute Kraus (background Milky Way panorama: Axel Mellinger), Institute of Physics, Universität Hildesheim

Each second, a brand new baby black hole is born somewhere in the cosmos as a massive star collapses under its own weight.

But black holes themselves are invisible. Historically, astronomers have only been able to detect these stellar-mass black holes when they are acting on a companion.

Now, a team of scientists has made the first-ever confirmed detection of a stellar-mass black hole that’s completely alone. The discovery opens up the possibility of finding even more — an exciting prospect, considering there should be around 100 million such “rogue” black holes drifting through our galaxy unseen.

[ click to continue reading at Astronomy ]

Posted on April 12, 2022 by Editor

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