Biggest Black Hole Collision Detected

Published by F.A. Malik on

According to the Astronomers, there is a detection of a violent collision of two black holes. The result is the formation of a new, more giant black hole. Such a big black hole wasn’t detected before.

More than 7 billion years, two black holes swirled around each other coming closer and closer over the years until they collided and produced a violent bang. The result of this collision forms a new giant black hole. The boom due to crash created ripples that soared through the spacetime and trembled our planet Earth. These ripples or gravitational waves reached Earth in the early hours on May 21, 2019.

Biggest Black Hole Collision Detected

Black Hole

The densely packed compact region of space through which even light cannot escape is known as the black hole. Astronomers detect only two sizes of black holes that are smaller or supermassive. The small holes or stellar black holes are the result of star collapsing and are about the size of small cities. The supermassive black holes that are millions, maybe billions, of times more massive than our sun and around which entire galaxies revolve.


The collision by the two black holes released a massive amount of energy in space. This energy travels in the form of waves until detected by LIGO and Virgo detectors. These detectors LIGO installed in the United States of America while Virgo in Italy. These waves were picked up as audio signals by the sensors. The scientists heard the collision that lasted just for the tenth of a second. One of the persons that listened to the crash said, “It just sounds like a thud. It doesn’t sound like much on a speaker.”

Biggest Black Hole Collision Detected

This merger signal is called GW190521. However, the scientists immediately realized it was extraordinary in comparison to the low chirp of two colliding black holes LIGO detected in 2015, which confirmed Einstein’s ineffable notions on spacetime. “It’s the biggest bang since the Big Bang that humanity has ever observed,” says Alan Weinstein, an astronomer at the California Institute of Technology who was part of the study. It could offer clues as to why the Universe looks the way it does.

Intermediate sized black hole

Till now, the calculations by astronomers suggest that there is no sense of anything between small or supermassive holes. The reason is that stars that grew too big before collapsing would essentially consume themselves, leaving no black holes.

But in May 2019, two detectors picked up a signal that turned out to be the energy from two stellar black holes — each large for a stellar black hole — crashing into each other. One was 66 times the mass of our sun, and the other a husky 85 times the mass of the sun. The result was the first-ever detected intermediate black hole, at 142 times the mass of the sun.

Comments by Astronomers

According to Harvard astronomer Avi Loeb:

“Perhaps, like playing Legos, smaller blocks combine to make bigger ones and those combine to make even bigger ones”.

Barnard College astronomer Janna Levin said that:

“It’s conceivable that this pair of black holes formed entirely differently, possibly in a dense system with lots of dead stars whizzing about, which allows one black hole to capture another during a flyby”.

On the other hand, scientists can’t quite explain how merged black holes, flying around the Universe, would meet so many others to merge again and grow ever more prominent. It could instead be that supermassive black holes formed in the immediate aftermath of the Big Bang.


Leave a Reply

Avatar placeholder

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *