Monstrous and terrifying ‘ultra-massive’ black hole discovered

Aliens 'could be travelling unseen through space using black hole Halo drives'

Astronomers have discovered an ‘ultra-massive’ black hole that’s one of the largest cosmic colossi ever seen. A team of German researchers believe a monster with a mass 40 billion times greater than our sun is lurking at the center of a galaxy called Holmberg 15A.

 The behemoth is so huge that it would be able to eat the entire solar system, including Earth and all its fleshy residents. Although the hole’s existence has been mooted before, the new study is the first to prove its existence by analyzing the movements of stars around it. ‘This is the most massive black hole with a direct… detection in the local universe,’ the team wrote.

The beast of Holmberg 15A (which is also called Holm 15A) is likely to be truly gargantuan. A similarly-sized hole called S5 0014+81 has a diameter of 236.7 billion kilometers – which is about 40 times bigger than the distance at which Pluto orbits from the sun. This makes it ‘ultra massive’ rather than simply ‘supermassive’, which is the name for the dark leviathans which are often found at the center of galaxies.

 Aliens 'could be travelling unseen through space using black hole Halo drives'

Now, you might think that a bigger black hole is scarier than a little one. But you’d probably survive for longer if you plunged into a supermassive hole than a small ‘stellar-sized’ beast with a mass comparable to our sun’s. It’s believed the ‘tidal forces’ are lower at the event horizon (the point of no return) of a supermassive hole than they are at within a smaller hole. 

This means an unlucky astronaut might be able to eke out their existence until they plunge beyond the event horizon – whereas a tinier monster would rip them apart much sooner. Anything that falls into a black hole undergoes a process called spaghettification in which they are stretched into a long, thin shape resembling a piece of spaghetti.

Sadly, although you might theoretically take a little longer to succumb to this grim fate if you decided to jump into an ultramassive or supermassive black hole, it’s likely the radiation and other deadly forces will kill you stone dead long before you get turned into a great cosmic space noodle.