NASA Scientists Discover Record-Breaking ‘Behemoth’ Black Hole

Not from the story. (John Moore/Getty Images)

Kay Smythe News and Commentary Writer
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NASA scientists recently discovered the oldest and one of the largest black holes in our cosmos, the agency announced Monday.

Using NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and the James Webb Telescope, the scientists were able to uncover the “telltale signature of a growing black hole just 470 million years after the big bang,” the agency said in a press release. The release was accompanied by a publication in the journal Nature Astronomy, detailing the evidence of the supermassive system.

“It’s just really early on in the universe to be such a behemoth,” study co-author Priyamvada Natarajan told the Associated Press (AP). “It’s astounding how this thing actually is sitting in place already with its galaxy so early on in the universe.”

The monster is located in the UHZ1 galaxy, some 3.5 billion light-years away from Earth. The data uncovered in the course of the research didn’t seem to answer many questions about how black holes form, instead prompting NASA to ponder how these things are even formed … or physically possible.

“We think that this is the first detection of an ‘Outsize Black Hole’ and the best evidence yet obtained that some black holes form from massive clouds of gas,” Natarajan said in the press release. “For the first time we are seeing a brief stage where a supermassive black hole weighs about as much as the stars in its galaxy, before it falls behind.” (RELATED: ‘Universe Breakers’: The James Webb Telescope Is Seeing Things That Shouldn’t Exist)

Far more research is required to finally figure out what black holes are, what creates them and how worried we should be about them. After decades of research, all we seem to know is that they exist. Everything else is still up for question.