Scientists Watch a Black Hole Eat a Star

  • Astronomers have witnessed a tidal disruption event, where a star whose material was shredded by a nearby supermassive black hole releases an bright flash of light.
  • The TDE is helping scientists understand more about the gruesome spaghettification process.
  • The flare occurred just 215 million light-years away from Earth, closer than any other previously observed tidal disruption event.

    Astronomers have spotted a rare and radiant pulse of light—the last gasp of a dying star that has been sucked toward the center of a supermassive black hole and shredded into sinuous strings of stardust. This process is delightfully called spaghettification, but make no mistake: it’s gruesome.

    🌌 You love our badass universe. So do we. Let’s nerd out over it together.

    “When a black hole devours a star, it can launch a powerful blast of material outwards that obstructs our view,” Samantha Oates, an astronomer at the University of Birmingham, said in

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