“Scary Barbie” is more powerful than a supernova explosion

Scientists are studying a transient event known as the “Scary Barbie”. They have found that in fact it is a black hole that extracts matter from a neighboring star and shoots it into space at a relativistic speed. At the same time, the brightness of this event is greater than a supernova explosion.

“Scary Barbie”. Source: Mark Garlick/Science Photo Library

“Scary Barbie” in the depths of space

Astronomers told about an extraordinary event that occurred in the depths of space and was called “Scary Barbie”. This is a very powerful burst of energy that lasts for months and surpasses even what happens during supernova flares. 

The most interesting thing is that the Scary Barbie could not be seen immediately as soon as it became noticeable. The Recommender Engine For Intelligent Transient Tracking machine learning algorithm helped in this, combing through the observation data of several telescopes over the past few years and paying attention to it.

In fact, the “Scary Barbie” is a so-called transient event, that is, a phenomenon observed for a limited time and no longer recurring. It got its name through a set of characters, which designated the random number generator — ZTF20abrbeie. Similarly, a few years ago, a new class of supernovae was called “cows”.

“What is that?”

Scientists believe that they have well understood the nature of the “Scary Barbie”. In fact, it is a black hole that tears apart a star that inadvertently approached it. It happened at a distance of 7.7 billion light-years from us, so far beyond the local group of galaxies.

When the star approaches a black hole, the tidal forces of the latter become stronger than its own gravity. They pull out a part of the luminary into a long “spaghetti” that begins to fall on the black hole, and when it falls, it twists around it. 

But the black hole cannot completely “pass” this mass. Instead, it shoots it into space, partially converting it into energy. Similar events have been observed by scientists repeatedly. From all of them, “Scary Barbie” differs in its power and that it lasts not for several weeks, but for almost two years.

Why this is happening, scientists can not give an answer yet. Maybe the James Webb Space Telescope will help to figure this out. As the authors of the study note, there are still many things in the Universe that we do not understand the essence of.

According to www.space.com

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