Exploring Black Holes: Part 2

The Care and Feeding of Black Holes

How intrinsically invisible objects become the brightest things in the universe

Matthew R Francis
6 min readAug 29, 2017

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Part 2 of a four-part series on black holes. Part 1 can be found here.

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.

In the late 1950s, astronomers began spotting a number of bright sources of radio waves and visible…

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Matthew R Francis

Writer of physics and astronomy. Wearer of jaunty hats. Tryin' to publish a novel. Social Justice Doof Warrior. Avatar by @ScienceComic .