"Astronomers find closest black hole to Earth, hints of more"

July 5, 2020

"Astronomers find closest black hole to Earth, hints of more"

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Illustration of Black Hole near Earth
Description

Meet your new but shy galactic neighbor: A black hole left over from the death of a fleeting young star.

European astronomers have found the closest black hole to Earth yet, so near that the two stars dancing with it can be seen by the naked eye.

Of course, close is relative on the galactic scale. This black hole is about 1,000 light-years away and each light-year is 5.9 trillion miles (9.5 trillion kilometers). But in terms of the cosmos and even the galaxy, it is in our neighborhood, said European Southern Observatory astronomer Thomas Rivinius, who led the study published Wednesday in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics.

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