Astronomers Have Just Discovered Record-Breaking Quasar with Brightness of 600 Trillion Suns

Hubble Space Telescope has discovered the brightest quasar ever seen in the early Universe. After 20 years of searching, astronomers have identified the ancient quasar with the help of strong gravitational lensing. This unique object provides an insight into the birth of galaxies when the Universe was less than a billion years old.

Quasars are the extremely bright nuclei of active galaxies. The powerful glow of a quasar is created by a supermassive black hole which is surrounded by an accretion disc. Gas falling toward the black hole releases incredible amounts of energy, which can be observed over all wavelengths.

The newly discovered quasar, catalogued as J043947.08+163415.7 [1], is no exception to this; its brightness is equivalent to about 600 trillion Suns and the supermassive black hole powering it is several hundred million times as massive as our Sun.

The results were presented at the 233rd meeting of the American Astronomical Society and will be published in the Astrophysical Journal Letters.

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Clips, images credit: ESO, NASA, ESA, X. Fan et al. (University of Arizona), ESA/Hubble, NASA, M. Kornmesser, L. Calçada

Music credit: YouTube Audio Library
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