Why A Medium-Sized Black Hole Is Surprising Physicists
If you’re looking for a black hole, they normally come in two sizes. There’s the basic model, in which a large, dying star collapses in on itself, and the gravity of its core pulls in other matter. Then there are the supermassive black holes, millions of times the mass of our sun, that tend to be found at the center of a galaxy.
But recently researchers reported that they had evidence for two colliding black holes that created a surprising offspring. Their collision formed a middle-weight black hole, around 142 times the mass of our sun.
Daniel Holz, a member of the LIGO team that spotted the collision, and a professor of astronomy and astrophysics at the University of Chicago, joins Ira to talk about what the observation means for theories of how black holes form and grow.
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Daniel Holz is a professor in the Departments of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Physics, and the Enrico Fermi Institute at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois, and a member of the LIGO Scientific Consortium.
The transcript for this segment is being processed. It will be posted within one week after the episode airs.