Impossible: astronomers have been puzzled | Queensland Times

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NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has identified a supermassive black hole that defies current theories about the universe and should not really exist.

The mysterious black hole is located in the heart of the spiral galaxy NGC 3147 and weighs about 250 million times more than the Sun.

The phenomenon of the black hole NGC 3147 has been described in the astronomy magazine Monthly notifications of Royal Astronomical Society.

The black hole is surrounded by a thin disc, consisting of debris and gas that runs around the edge of the hole.

It is this record that confuses astronomers because technically there shouldn't be.

This is because the black hole is actually "hungry" because not enough material is captured from its huge gravitational field and "hungry" black holes do not form discs of material – or so the scientists thought.

The lead author of the study, Stefano Bianchi, said: "It is the same type of disc that we see in objects that are 1,000 or even 100,000 times brighter.

"Forecasts of current models for gas dynamics in very weak active galaxies clearly failed."

The first ever image of a black hole in the M87 galaxy, released by astronomers using the Event Horizon Telescope. CREDIT: Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration For the spatial column of Martin George for Hobart Mercury

The first ever image of a black hole in the M87 galaxy, released by astronomers using the Event Horizon Telescope. CREDIT: Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration For the spatial column of Martin George for Hobart Mercury

The black hole, which is about 130 million light years from Earth, has a disk of debris that spins around 18.628 miles per second, or 10% of the speed of light.

Identifying this disc gave astronomers the chance to see two of Einstein's theories on relativity in action and could help them understand the process that occurs at the edges of black holes.

Bianchi said: "This is an intriguing peek on a disk very close to a black hole, so close that the speeds and intensity of the gravitational force influence the way we see photons of light."

Researchers will now look for more galaxies with black holes like this in the hope of explaining the phenomenon.

The study of black holes is important because they are the largest and most powerful objects of the entire universe.

They have the power to create, sustain and destroy, but we still know little about them.

Event Horizon Telescope director Sheperd Doeleman described them as: "A one-way door from our universe".

In other spatial news, astronomers have lost a huge 3,300-foot asteroid that has surrounded the Earth for decades – and blame its strange orbit.

Astronomers have created a "cosmic stratagem sheet" that could help both experts and amateurs to seek out alien life.

And that's why some people still think that the moon landings were falsified 50 years later – and the man who started the "buffalo" theory.

This story was originally published on The Sun and has been reprinted with permission.

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