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Supermassive black holes are already choking.


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supermassive black holes.
supermassive black holes are already choking.

Matter is incinerated when it falls into a black hole.

Here's a relief. Instead of being painfully stretched (aka spaghettified) by the immense tidal forces around a black hole, you'd probably just be roasted by the intense heat. Professor Andrew Hamilton at the University of Colorado predicts that only the smallest black holes would actually stretch you out like this. All the larger, supermassive black holes are already choking on enough material, that their surrounding environment is a superhot plasma heated to millions of degrees and blasting out intense radiation.

Mini black holes litter the early universe.

Famed Astronomer Sir Martin Rees, and a team of Astronomers from Cambridge in UK believe that the early universe swarmed with miniature black holes. They believe that these smaller objects formed early and then merged together over time to create the supermassive black holes that now lurk at the centres of galaxies. Recent observations of the cosmic microwave background radiation shows that the universe warmed up when the it was 400,000 years old, which could have been because of matter heating up around these mini black holes.

Michael Griffin takes the helm at NASA.

Michael Griffin addressed NASA employees on Thursday, when he became the 11th Administrator for the space agency. In his address, Griffin said he would focus on getting the shuttles ready to return to flight, and continue to fulfill the Vision for Space Exploration, which sees astronauts returning to the Moon and eventually continuing on to Mars in the coming decades. Griffin was nominated by President Bush on March 14, and was confirmed by the Senate on April 13.

Expedition 11 blasts off for the international space station.

The 11th crew to man the International Space Station blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome on Thursday. The Soyuz TMA capsule carrying Cosmonaut Sergei Krikalev, Astronaut John Phillips, and European Space Agency Astronaut Roberto Vittori of Italy reached orbit a few minutes after launch. Krikalev and Phillips will replace the current crew, while Vittori will only remain on the station for a week and then return with Expedition 10. The Soyuz will dock on Saturday.

Enceladus is seen above Saturn's rings.

NASA's Cassini spacecraft captured this beautiful image of Saturn's Moon Enceladus perched just above the giant planet's rings. Enceladus is 505 km (314 miles) across, and the photo was taken when Cassini was just below the ring plane. Saturn's A, B, and C rings are also visible in the photograph.

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