Supermassive black hole with torn-apart star (artist’s impression)

This artist’s impression depicts a rapidly spinning supermassive black hole surrounded by an accretion disc. This thin disc of rotating material consists of the leftovers of a Sun-like star which was ripped apart by the tidal forces of the black hole. Shocks in the colliding debris as well as heat generated in accretion led to a burst of light, resembling a supernova explosion.


ESA/Hubble, ESO, M. Kornmesser

About the Image

Release date:12 December 2016, 17:00
Related releases:heic1622
Size:4992 x 3535 px

About the Object

Type:Early Universe : Galaxy : Component : Central Black Hole
Category:Quasars and Black Holes

Image Formats

r.titleLarge JPEG
858.0 KB
r.titlePublication JPEG
629.4 KB
r.titleScreensize JPEG
86.8 KB

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