LIGO

Astronomers spot a super-rare class of black hole for the first time

Historically, the black holes that astronomers have found come in two distinct sizes: stellar black holes (aka collapsars), which are born from the implosion of dying stars and have a mass range of 5 to several tens that of their stellar mass, and supermassive black holes, which have a mass range of millions to billions …

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Astronomers may have spotted light from colliding black holes

Caltech/R. Hurt (IPAC) Black hole collisions tend not to produce light by their very nature — you may catch gravitational waves, but that’s about it. However, scientists might have just found one of those rare instances where a collision was visible. A team using May 2019 data from both the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) …

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Astronomers think this black hole collision may have exploded with light

Enlarge / Artist’s concept of a supermassive black hole and its surrounding accretion disk of gas. Embedded within this disk are two smaller black holes, orbiting one another, that eventually collided and may have produced a detectable burst of light. Caltech/R. Hurt (IPAC) One of the most defining characteristics of a black hole is that …

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Physicists identify unique signature to confirm quark-gluon plasma in universe

Computer simulation of a merger between two dense neutron stars. After the merger, a phase transition from ordinary hadronic matter (red-yellow) to quark matter (green) takes place. In the first fractions of a second of our universe’s existence, the energy density was so incredibly high that there were no protons and neutrons, just a hot …

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