Don't panic but a "runaway monster" black hole is currently screaming through the galaxy at a million miles an hour
· Apr 10, 2023 ·

Most people's bedtime routines involve checking the door locks, making sure the oven's off, checking to see if the faucets aren't dripping. You know, normal, practical safety stuff.

I'm not sure how to check for this, though.

NASA has warned that there's an 'invisible monster on the loose', in the form of a 'runaway' black hole.

The supermassive black hole is barrelling through the universe so quickly that if it were in our solar system, it could travel the 237,674-mile journey from Earth to the Moon in just 14 minutes.

To be fair, how would you even check for something like that? I feel like the only warning you'd have that this thing was coming toward you is when it started to inexorably draw you into itself.

Thankfully that isn't likely to happen. This bad boy is located about 7.5 billion light-years from Earth. A single light-year being about three trillion miles, give or take, I'd say we're mostly safe for now.

Here's a picture of the black hole's trail. As usual, NASA is able to distinguish between a smudge and the unthinkably large path of an inconceivably large astronomical body.

What's coolest about this big old gravity well is that, through some amazing astronomical mechanism, it is actually triggering the creation of new stars:

The black hole, which is 7.5 billion light-years from Earth, is ploughing into gas in front of it, triggering star formation.

Truly amazing — from a good long distance anyway.

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