back to article Galactic pile-ups feed supermassive energy output

NASA's Swift satellite appears to have confirmed one reason why a small percentage of supermassive black holes throw out vastly elevated levels of energy: it's provoked by violent collisions between galaxies. NASA explains that one per cent of such black holes - weighing in at "between a million and a billion times the Sun's …


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  1. Winkypop Silver badge

    No, no, no!

    It's just god* turning the lights on and off !!!

    * Insert deity of personal preference

  2. SmallYellowFuzzyDuck, how pweety!

    Title goes here

    "10 billion times the Sun's energy"

    But could it run a PC powerful enough to play Crysis?

    1. Lionel Baden
      Thumb Down



  3. BillboBaggins

    Intergalactic pile-ups?!

    Where there's blame there's a claim!

    I would NOT like to be the insurance company for these, as no doubt there will be TV adverts for this very soon!

    1. Trevor Pott o_O Gold badge

      Sound reasoning

      Intergalactic pile-ups are why we need more average speed cameras, natch.

  4. AlistairJ

    When galaxies collide

    I pity the poor aliens who once inhabited these galaxies. Or, if you will, the galaxians.

  5. Bill Neal

    I'm sure...

    the swift bat will solve many problems and answer many questions

  6. Anonymous Coward

    holy collision, bat-man!

    i'm already sorry i said that....

  7. Nexox Enigma

    hmmm x-rays, you say?

    I wonder how they decided whether these photons they're looking at were x-rays instead of gamma rays. As I recall, the difference between the two is how they're made: gamma rays for chemical radioactive sources, x-rays for electric sources. They didn't get to "Colliding Galaxies" as a source for either...

    But then, they're calling them "hard" and "soft," so perhaps they don't really care what the proper name is...

    1. Chemist

      Re : hmmm x-rays, you say?

      Gamma are higher frequency than x-rays although there can be considerable overlap

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