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Exploring Black Holes: Part 2

The Care and Feeding of Black Holes

How intrinsically invisible objects become the brightest things in the universe

The quasar poetically known as GB 1428 in visible, radio, and X-ray light. This object is more than 12 billion light-years away but is bright enough to be seen from Earth. That’s because it’s powered by a supermassive black hole. X-ray: NASA/CXC/NRC/C.Cheung et al; Optical: NASA/STScI; Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA.
Illustration of the structure of an accretion disk (the red doughnut shape) and jet (white streams) created by a supermassive black hole, located at the center of the diagram. Image: NASA/CXC/M.Weiss
A jet from the supermassive black hole in the M87 galaxy as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope. Image: NASA/Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

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