Scientists detect massive galactic collision between black holes that "aren't supposed to exist"

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/09/07/scientists-detect-massive-gala.html

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The phrase ‘heat death of the universe’ is being made redundant. We’re all just going to end up inside one truly massive black hole long before the universe cools that much.

I, for one, welcome our eventually-to-become new dark overlord.

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Might be nice to add the original publications to the post?


https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.3847/2041-8213/aba493
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https://starchild.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/StarChild/questions/question28.html

UPDATE! Measurements made by NASA’s WMAP spacecraft have shown that the universe is 13.7 billion years old, plus or minus about 130,000 years.

Problem?

I guess not!

Because of the high rate of expansion, it is also possible for a distance between two objects to be greater than the value calculated by multiplying the speed of light by the age of the universe. These details are a frequent source of confusion among amateurs and even professional physicists.[3] Due to the non-intuitive nature of the subject and what has been described by some as “careless” choices of wording, certain descriptions of the metric expansion of space and the misconceptions to which such descriptions can lead are an ongoing subject of discussion within the fields of education and communication of scientific concepts.[4][5][6][7]

Still, I’m assuming that this event must have happened in the relatively early universe, and surely that raises questions about the accumulation of black holes that large?

Light that is emitted today from galaxies beyond the cosmological event horizon, about 5 gigaparsecs or 16 billion light-years, will never reach us, although we can still see the light that these galaxies emitted in the past.

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Nope. The universe is expanding. The current estimate is the universe is about 93 billion light years across.

If I did my my math right, this collision happened 5ish billion years ago.

Edit: NatGeo says 7 billion years ago for the merger.

Edit 2: 85 + 66 = 142? There is a missing 9 solar masses. This was released by the collision as gravitational waves.

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Mergers like this clearly show the need for stronger Anti-Trust Laws. #toobigtofail

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Lookit all the solar masses lost! This embezzlement on a galactic scale!

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Black hole mergers are rare, because space is big. The problem lies with supermassive blackholes.

edit-- aside from binaries and trinaries.

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So the bad news is, black holes can basically smash themselves together and form newer, larger black holes, which can then consume other black holes to continue adding to their masses.

Looks like someone let their game of Katamari Damacy get e liiiitle out of control.

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Current best theories predict that the expansion of the universe will continue to accelerate, forever consigning clusters of galaxies outside their neighbor’s cosmological event horizons. Their masses will be unable to ever reach one another in any form.

Also, black holes evaporate.

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“…in a split-second of capitalistic frenzy, ringing the market like the NYSE opening bell.”

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Fucking 2020. Who had Black Holes for September?

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This made me laugh, I’d give you a gold star to chuck in the supermassive black hole if I could :smiley:

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That’s a bit counter-intuitive. I’d have imagined they condensed!

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Very. It was the defining discovery of Stephen Hawking’s career and opened a new era in theoretical physics.

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I like the story better when it was tagged under David Bowie

Yeah, there’s some great stuff on Youtube (YMMV) about how much of the universe is no longer visible to us, i.e., due to initial inflation (which traveled “faster than the speed of light”) and then expansion we’re past the point where light from those objects can ever travel to us - if I recall correctly it’s over 80%.

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Yeah, that means October is either the flesh eating nano-bots or the Google-Amazon merger.

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Is there a “none of the above” option?

Your closest 2020 runner up available is total nothingness - aka false vacuum collapse? https://cosmosmagazine.com/physics/vacuum-decay-ultimate-catastrophe/