KARACHI: Researchers have found the brightest object in the universe, which is 500 trillion times brighter than the Sun.

According to the European Southern Observatory (ESO), the newly discovered quasar is the most luminous object ever observed, and it is powered by a massive blackhole which is eating a mass equivalent to one Sun per day, making it the fastest-growing black hole to date.

Quasars are the bright cores of distant galaxies, and they are powered by supermassive black holes. The black hole in this record-breaking quasar is growing in mass by the equivalent of one Sun per day, making it the fastest-growing black hole to date, according to ESO.

The Guardian reported that a group of scientists at the Australian National University first spotted the quasar at an observatory in Coonabarabran town near Australia’s New South Wales state. The discovery was then confirmed using ESO’s Very Large Telescope.

“We have discovered the fastest-growing black hole known to date. It has a mass of 17 billion Suns and eats just over a Sun per day. This makes it the most luminous object in the known Universe,” Christian Wolf, the lead author of the study, was quoted as saying by ESO.

The quasar, known as J0529-4351, is so far away from Earth that its light took over 12 billion years to reach us.

Another research said the brightest quasar had been remarkably hiding in plain sight.

“It is a surprise that it has remained unknown until today when we already know about a million less impressive quasars. It has literally been staring us in the face until now,” the study’s co-author, Christopher Onken, told ESO.

According to researchers, studies into distant supermassive black holes could answer some of the most prevalent questions about galaxies and their evolution and solve some of the mysteries of the early Universe.

Published in Dawn, February 21st, 2024

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