Our own Milky Way galaxy has a black hole called PDS-456. The black hole is more than 2 billion light years from Earth and it sends out ultra-fast winds, called quasar winds, and an incredible amount of radiation.
Scientists say that the quasar winds stemming from black holes carry more energy per second than a trillion suns. While this may seem almost impossible to comprehend, the energy is so high in intensity that it can actually stop stars from forming and can actually reshape the way a galaxy looks like.
For the first time ever, the phenomenon of quasar winds stemming from black holes has been quantified for the first time by scientists at the European Space Agency and NASA. The study was published in the journal Science.
Black holes aren’t vortices of empty space and matter, but they are a dense collection of matter that forms when a star collapses on itself, much like a soufflé. The gravitational pull of a black hole is so strong that nothing can escape from it, not even light.
Astrophysicists have managed to calculate the speed, size and shape of quasar winds stemming from black holes and have figured out the impact they have on their galaxies. The quasar winds get bigger and bigger as the black hole does the same and it pushes gas outward.
Before this study, it was known that black holes have an impact on their galaxies, but they didn’t know how that happened.
Lead author of the study, Emanuele Nardini, stated in a NASA press release, that thanks to the study, now it is known that quasar winds stemming from black holes can contribute to mass loss in a galaxy, by driving out its supply of gas, the fuel any star needs for its formation.
Scientists believe that a black hole and the galaxy that is belongs to are engaged in a type o balancing act. As the galaxy is expanding, which it is because the entire universe is expanding, the black hole at the center of it works to stop that growth and prevent new starts from getting born.
Image Source: Wired
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