The universe keeps on bringing new things that astronomers discover and then puzzle over. Much of space, with its vastness, is still virtually unexplored and people will find discoveries that would rewrite what people know. This is the case with the nearly naked supermassive black hole discovered recently.
Black holes by themselves are a mystery. Astronomers and other scientists are still trying to know about them. With each new discovery comes new questions, such as what happened to the nearly naked supermassive black hole. The black hole has been found through the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA).
The supermassive black hole that was found seems to be part of a galaxy that was shredded by a much larger galaxy. This happened when two galaxies collide, and one galaxy would be ripped apart by having its stars and gases thrown off into space. Astronomers speculate this has been the case with the supermassive black hole.
The two galaxies are said to be part of a group of galaxies far from our Milky Way. They are 2 billion light years away, making them one of the farthest objects seen. With the collision the smaller galaxy lost almost all its stars and gases, taken away by the much larger galaxy.
With what happened, only a remnant of it has been intact. That includes the supermassive black hole in its center. The remnant galaxy is measured to be only 3,000 light years across, as the National Radio Astronomy Observatory site states. That is small compared to the Milky Way, which is 100,000 light years across.
The discovery has been made as part of a search for supermassive black holes that are not in the center of galaxies. Usually, supermassive black holes are at the center of galaxies, though there might be some that are not in the center. The supermassive black hole found is called B3 1715+425. It is part of the galaxy cluster ZwCI 8193.
The supermassive black hole is said to be surrounded by a galaxy much smaller and fainter. It is also observed to be going away from the core of a larger galaxy at a speed of 2,000 miles per second, as Science Daily reports. Scientists speculate that the supermassive black hole is all that has remained of the smaller galaxy after the collision.
"The data from we get from the VLBA is very high quality," remarked James Condon of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. He added that the supermassive black hole found is leaving the other galaxy with debris following it, which indicates of a collision in the past. With the VLBA Condon hopes that more such objects would be discovered.
The nearly naked supermassive black hole discovered is part of the mysteries of the universe. Earlier another such supermassive black hole has been found, wandering in space after a similar galactic collision. More discoveries like it are expected as astronomers continue to look at the vast universe.