How Supermassive Black Holes get so big: Secrets of Space Giants

(ORDO NEWS) — If you’re fascinated by black holes, you’re not alone. But how do they manage to grow to such a size?

Supermassive black holes grow very fast, but how do they do it?

In 2017, astronomers began to find huge black holes in the most ancient part of the universe.

These black holes, about a billion times the mass of our Sun, were surrounded by accretion disks that glowed so brightly that they could be seen over vast stretches of space and time.

How supermassive black holes appeared

These gravitational giants existed when the universe was only 700 million years old. At that point in cosmic history, the universe was still a child.

Gravity was just beginning to harness the clouds of gas and dark matter, forming structures that later evolved into mature spiral and elliptical galaxies.

The stars began to appear, but they were much less than today.

According to the traditional picture of the formation and growth of black holes, the universe at that time simply did not exist long enough for the mass of black holes to reach a billion solar masses.

So, based on our common understanding of how black holes form and grow, such massive objects should not have existed. And yet they exist and pose a problem for astrophysicists.

According to the prevailing cosmological model known as ΛCDM (lambda-CDM), the universe began 13.8 billion years ago in the Big Bang.

The early universe was originally a “cauldron” of subatomic particles and dark matter, with material nearly evenly distributed and therefore unable to coalesce.

It is important to note that in the first few minutes of the universe’s existence, high temperatures and pressure allowed subatomic particles to coalesce into nuclei of hydrogen and helium, with barely visible traces of heavier elements.

When the universe cooled even further, 380,000 years later, electrons combined with hydrogen and helium nuclei to form neutral atoms and release the CMB or cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation.

At the dawn of the universe

High-resolution CMB measurements show that the universe at this time was extremely, but not perfectly, homogeneous. Subtle disturbances in the density of matter eventually allowed gravity to do its thing.

About 200 million years after the Big Bang, regions with somewhat higher concentrations of dark matter and gas began to collapse, forming the first stars and protogalaxies.

According to calculations, these regions were divided into several clusters, which formed stars with a mass of up to 500 Suns.

They lived fast and died young, radiating millions of times the energy of our Sun, but surviving only a few million years.

They died as a result of colossal supernova explosions, and their cores turned into black holes with a mass of 100 to 200 solar masses.

These black holes then began to gobble up nearby material, including nearby stars.

They probably even merged with each other, forming black holes with a mass of many hundreds or perhaps even thousands of solar masses.

But even that doesn’t explain how these objects could grow to a billion solar masses in just 500 million years. Scientists have yet to find the answer to this question.


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