Cosmic Blowout: Black holes spew as much as they consume | Science News

SUPPORT SCIENCE NEWS

Help us keep you informed.

Real Science. Real News.


News

Cosmic Blowout: Black holes spew as much as they consume

By
2:30pm, April 2, 2003

Notorious for gorging on matter, the supermassive black holes at the cores of galaxies may blow out as much material as they swallow. A study reported last week suggests that during the roughly 10 billion years that these black holes power the brilliant light beacons known as quasars, they also generate high-speed winds that eject an amount of gas equivalent to billions of suns. These winds, which contain oxygen, carbon, and iron, may seed the black hole's host galaxy–and possibly intergalactic space–with the elements necessary for life.

This article is only available to Science News subscribers. Already a subscriber? Log in now. Or subscribe today for full access.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content