back to article Astroboffins spy the most greedy black hole yet gobbling a Sun a day

Astronomers have spotted the greediest supermassive black hole going through the fastest growth spurt some 12 billion years ago. The humongous hole, codenamed QSO SMSS J215728.21-360215.1, is the staggering size of about 20 billion suns, and grows at a rate of 200 million suns over a million years. It has a voracious appetite …

Alien

Probably ate other black holes in it's youth

Yet apparently it's not its current growth, that seems in line with norms, it's its earlier growth that is blowing boffins minds, with earlier growth outstripping anything they had seen before.

But really it probably as a youth swallowed another couple of black holes, Scientists models cannot model what they do not enter into them, if they have no clue of black holes being swallowed then they cannot model it.

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Re: Probably ate other black holes in it's youth

But really it probably

Do you have any evidence which allows you to determine that your hypothesis is the probable cause?

Scientists models cannot model what they do not enter into them

Do you have reason to believe that this model hasn't been tested?

(Looks like I'm in a pedantic mood today.)

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Headmaster

Re: Probably ate other black holes in it's youth

That begs the question of how did it manage to gather up and eat all those other black holes in so little time. They've thought of that and it still doesn't pan out. The leading theory is that the initial black hole formed and fed in an environment of high-pressure gas before the deionization of the universe took place. The inward pressure was high enough that the outward pressure of its jets and radiation still couldn't blow the gas away so it was forced to guzzle for an exceptionally long time.

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Space is a time machine

The further you look, the "younger' things are. If we ever get big enough or sensitive enough equipment, we might just see something that formed at the beginning. In some way, it's too bad we can't see objects like the as they are today even in our own galaxy.

Maybe someday, we'll be able to see the light/energy from very early on and actually see a black hole being formed.

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Re: Space is a time machine

However you cannot go further than 320000 years after "The Fireball From Nowhere Is Everywhere" (aka. "Big Bang") because of the Ionization alluded to in the article: The Universe was opaque till that moment due to high density of inonized hydrogen.

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Re: Space is a time machine

or time is a space machine. Who plugged it in without setting the voltage switch first?

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Re: Space is a time machine

Except, maybe one day, using gravitational waves.

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Re: Space is a time machine

Except, maybe one day, using gravitational waves.

These must have been redshifted fiercely, probably now undistinguishable from background noise.

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Anonymous Coward

'..We don't know how this one grew so large, so quickly in the early days of the Universe.'

Bloody Heechees..with a time machine.

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Where was the Ed?

"at a rate of 200 million suns over a million years. It has a voracious appetite and gobbles a mass equivalent to twice that of our Sun every two days to sustain itself."

What's wrong with a little simplification?

If 2 x days growth = 2 x Sun.... why not just say a sun a day?

Why stop at 2 days? Why not make it a round 1,000? A hundred suns in a hundred days.

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Re: Where was the Ed?

Call me crazy but 200 million suns over a million years = 200 suns over a year, which equals one sun every two days, not two suns every two days.

But either way it eats suns like Trump eats big Macs.

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Paris Hilton

Re: Where was the Ed?

Also, "heat the accretion disk to temperatures hot enough, where it starts to emit electromagnetic radiation."

Everything at a temperature above 0K emits electromagnetic waves. Even black holes emit Hawking radiation.

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Re: Where was the Ed?

Agree. Whereas in the headline they did go for "a Sun a day".

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Alien

Glaciers Melting In The Dead of Night

And the superstars sucked into the super massive

Super massive black hole

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Go on I dare you

Somebody sell it to Trump. American boffins are looking for a name for the, ahem, 'most prestigious thing so far found in the universe'. Would he take the honour?

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Unhappy

Re: Go on I dare you

That wouldn't work, Trump is a brown hole.

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Mushroom

Re: Go on I dare you

"if this monster was at the centre of the Milky Way it would likely make life on Earth impossible with the huge amounts of x-rays emanating from it"

Substitute "the President" for "the centre of the Milky Way", and "vainglorious belligerent BS" for "x-rays", and the article is pretty accurate.

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Alien

Scale is awesome

Enough energy to sterilise a galaxy (or at least mandate the evolution of extremophiles) and still growing when observed.

Is this the kind of thing the Pierson's Puppeteers were running from, or was it a super super nova? Now imagining the burning galactic centre being eaten by a supermassive black hole. Makes our planet seem fragile and puny.

I assume this is large enough to at least have a go at bending space and time.

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Re: Scale is awesome

At the time this thing was emitting at max the universe was too young for our kind of life. It took a few billion years for enough supernovas and planetary nebulas to "cook off," thus seeding the galactic media with the necessary materials, like oxygen, carbon and nitrogen, plus a sprinkling of heavier elements.

I suppose there might have been some kind of energy-based life, reveling in the glow of a really big accretion disk, but alas, such life's time has passed, leaving the universe to us moist mundanes.

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Re: Scale is awesome

Scale is so awesome and thinking about earth relative to it, we are a spec of dust.

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Re: Scale is awesome

Dust. Wind. Dude.

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Coat

I wouldn't say my Black Hole was fat.....

I'll be here all this week.

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Trollface

"at a rate of 200 million suns over a million years. It has a voracious appetite and gobbles a mass equivalent to twice that of our Sun every two days to sustain itself."

or what your mom would call it - fasting

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Anonymous Coward

"Gobbling a Sun a Day"

This Black Hole is now called "British Underclass"

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Proper units, please

"It has a voracious appetite and gobbles a mass equivalent to twice that of our Sun every two days to sustain itself."

That's 12 milliJupiters per second, just to put things in proper perspective.

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Is it as warm as Uranus?

BTW: Dark Matter doesn't exist:

"The Case Against Dark Matter"

http://astronomy.com/news/2018/05/the-case-against-dark-matter

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Pinpoint of light 10x brighter than the Moon

I wonder if you would even be able to look at it (assuming the X rays etc. were filtered) as it might be as bright as the Sun. The Sun is 400000x brighter than the Moon, but perhaps it would also be 400000x larger than a pinpoint 30K ly distant...

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Re: Pinpoint of light 10x brighter than the Moon

I wonder if you would even be able to look at it (assuming the X rays etc. were filtered

The X-rays have been stretched out into the infrared and at that distance the emitting part of the accretion disc would need to be about 10^19 times the diameter of the sun to make it as warm as we feel the sun.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Pinpoint of light 10x brighter than the Moon

> I wonder if you would even be able to look at it ... as it might be as bright as the Sun.

I'm imagining Audi daylight-fucking-running-lights.

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Re: Pinpoint of light 10x brighter than the Moon

The X-rays have been stretched out into the infrared and at that distance the emitting part of the accretion disc would need to be about 10^19 times the diameter of the sun to make it as warm as we feel the sun.

Huh? The article was talking about it being 10x brighter than the Moon if it was the Milky Way's galactic black hole, which is what I was referring to, and I was wondering you could look at it if it was 30K ly away, assuming the X rays were somehow blocked (they wouldn't be stretched into the infrared at that distance, and I'd be a bit surprised if they were even at 12 billion ly)

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Anonymous Coward

If time is linear as humans perceive it to be, did these "Scientists" use their time machine to go back in time and come up with these conclusions? Is this how they justify needing funding for "Research"? Seems very speculative, with no possible way to prove any of it. Doesn't that approach fly in the face of what evidence based research and science in general, is all about?

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Wow. Do you find it dark in Uranus?

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And maybe your behind does not exist even though you see it in the mirror?

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Boffin

A clear case of a Rectal-Cranial Inversion.

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Coat

The end is near

Just wait until we find the secondary percussion wave of the big bang is propagating albeit at a slower pace. That secondary wave is sweeping up after the initial mess and pushing everything together. These supermassive black holes and such will seem puny by comparison.

I'm off to the restaurant at the end of the universe, or maybe i'll calculate a few impropabilities and see where I end up.

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