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Brightest Galaxy in the Universe Being Consumed by Black Hole


The brightest galaxy ever seen in the universe is being ripped apart by a supermassive black hole at its center.

According to Mashable, the galaxy known as W2246-0526 lies some 12.4 billion light years from Earth and astronomers believe it is ejecting gas at an alarming rate. The researchers published their findings in the Astrophysical Journal Letters.

"It is like a pot of boiling water being heated up by a nuclear reactor in the center," study lead Tanio Diaz-Santos, of the Universidad Diego Portales in Santiago, Chile, said in a press release.

Though the black hole at the center of the galaxy is getting larger, it is still just one million times the size, making the energy it is emitting all that more considerable.

"This galaxy is tearing itself apart," Roberto Assef, an astronomer at the Universidad Diego Portales and leader of the observing team at the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile, said in the release. "The momentum and energy of the particles of light deposited in the gas are so great that they are pushing the gas out in all directions.

"A likely finale would be that the galaxy will blow out all of the gas and dust that is surrounding it, and we would see the accretion disk without its dust cover - what we call a quasar."

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