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Writer Fuel: Nasa Finds 400 “New” Black Holes, Shrouded By Dust

Black Holes - NASA
A side-by-side image of X-ray and optical data showing what appears to be an active black hole hidden at the center of a distant, dusty galaxy (Image credit: NASA/CXC/SAO/D. Kim et al.)

Astronomers have uncovered more than 400 previously hidden black holes feeding on stars and dust in the center of galaxies. It appears that many of the new black holes, discovered using NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, remained unknown until now because they are buried beneath cocoons of dust.

Supermassive black holes, which can be millions of times heavier than the sun, live in the center of almost every galaxy in the universe. These colossal objects produce bright beams of energy as they feed on gas, dust, and stars in their immediate vicinity, creating what are known as Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN), according to NASA (opens in new tab).

AGN are particularly bright in the X-ray portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, said astronomer Dong-Woo Kim (opens in new tab) of the Harvard and Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics during a news conference Jan. 11 at the 241st meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Seattle.

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Full Story From Live Science