Most Powerful Quasar Yet Observed

Massive outflow


Astronomers have discovered a quasar with the most massive outflow ever seen. Quasars are bright galactic centers powered by supermassive black holes, and many of them accelerate the material around them, throwing it out a high speed in a process that plays a key role in the evolution of galaxies. The newly discovered quasar is, according to researchers, five times more powerful than any quasar previously seen.

A new study, to be published in The Astrophysical Journal, details the observations made of the quasar SDSS J1106+1939 using the European Southern Observatory's (ESO) Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile. It reports that a mass equal to about 400 suns is streaming away from the quasar every year at a speed of 8000 kilometers per second (about 5000 miles per second).