We may have the key to understanding how galaxies are formed.
Scientists have discovered a black hole spinning close to the limit established by Albert Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. Put simply, it is spinning at a rate that could prompt space itself to rotate.
In 2016, India’s AstroSat spotted the black hole, which is roughly 10 times the mass of the sun, in the binary star system 4U 1630-47. It was detected because it was exuding unusual X-rays. NASA’s Chandra X-Ray Observatory subsequently confirmed the outburst.
The black hole is one of only five that have an accurately measured high rotation speed. Scientists currently measure black holes by their mass or by their spin rate. A spin rate can land anywhere between 0 and 1. When measured, this black hole was spinning at the rate of 0.9.
Only 20 other black holes have been spotted in the Milky Way Galaxy. Scientists theorize that the black hole’s high spin rate, paired with high temperatures and the gaseous elements entering it, could be fundamental to understanding how galaxies are formed.
Want to get some experience with the monstrous phenomenon we call black holes? Check it out: