The ‘end of the world’ is certainly not a new topic of conversation; it’s been around longer than any of us have. Whether through plague, destruction, or nuclear disaster, we’ve always been a little concerned that tomorrow might be our last day. Of course, I’m using the general ‘we’ here, whether or not you feel that way personally is irrelevant.
2012 came and went without incident, as did all of the other doomsday predictions. I’ve always thought that if anything was going to take us out all of a sudden, it would come from space. Looks like I might be right: Scientists have revealed that a supermassive black hole (with more mass than one billion suns) has been ejected from the core of its galaxy.
“If our theory is correct, the observations provide strong evidence that supermassive black holes can actually merge”
Stefano Bianchi of Italy’s Roma Tre University, a co-author of the published study that explains the findings, goes on to say “There is already evidence of black hole collisions for stellar-mass black holes, but the process regulating supermassive black holes is more complex and not yet completely understood.”
NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and Chandra X-Ray Observatory provided the data that the team needed to study the galaxy in which the black hole is making a break from. Lucky for us, that galaxy (named 3C186) is about eight billion lightyears away.
What does it all mean?
Though the runaway black hole might eventually cause some issues for us, it’s probably not going to happen any time soon. And hey, even if it does, you won’t even know what hit (or I guess in this case, swallowed) you.