Hubble Space Telescope finds big surprise in teeny tiny galaxy

September 18, 2014 9:45 PM

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Hubble Space Telescope finds big surprise in teeny tiny galaxy

Astronomers first hypothesized that our galaxy contained a supermassive black hole at its center several decades ago. Once it had been confirmed, they turned to other nearby galaxies, finding that this was a common phenomenon–possibly even universal among large galaxies. Now astronomers have used the Hubble Space Telescope to uncover a supermassive black hole in a very unlikely place–at the center of one of the smallest galaxies ever discovered.

The object is known by the name M60-UCD1, indicating it is closely associated with the much larger M60 galaxy about 55 million light years away from Earth. At the center of this dwarf galaxy is a black hole five times more massive than the one at the center of the Milky Way, but the galaxy itself co...

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