Accretion by a supermassive black hole

Accretion by a supermassive black hole

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Credit: MARK GARLICK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: This image shows the aftermath of the accretion of a star by a supermassive black hole. Black holes such as these lurk at the centres of many, if not all, galaxies, and can weight in at anything from a few tens of thousands to several billion times the mass of a single star. The star has been completely destroyed, its gasses mingling inside the giant accretion disc with those of previous stars which met the same fate.

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Keywords: accretion, accretion disc, artwork, astronomy, astrophysics, black hole, centre, coloured, cosmology, galaxy, gas, gravity, horizontal, illustration, jet, light, pattern, planet, round, space, space object, spin, star, star galaxy, stellar, supermassive, vacuum, whorl

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