Ka-Boom! Two Black Holes Get Ready to Collide

Our universe is pretty amazing, don’t ya think?

TIME

For cosmic drama, nothing should beat a supermassive black hole. It weighs millions, or even billions of times as much as the Sun; it eats stars whole with no apparent difficulty (although it does sometimes burp); it heats up surrounding gases to such insane temperatures that you can see the glow halfway across the universe; and perhaps best of all, it gives Stephen Hawking something to theorize and argue about.

For all that, it turns out that something does beat a giant black hole: two giant black holes, especially ones circling each other like wary Sumo wrestlers getting ready to grapple. Such things are by no means unheard of: just about every galaxy has a supermassive black hole lurking at its core, and when two galaxies merge, as they often do, their central black holes orbit each other in an ever-tightening dance, and in many cases…

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About squishymaru

Master's student in chemical engineering with a B.S. in chemical engineering as well. Loves chemistry, math, increasing diversity in STEM, politics, and public health advocacy. Loves reading, writing, and being active -- mentally and physically.

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