The fastest growing supermassive black hole ever found | Night Sky News March 2024

From Dr. Becky.

AD | Go to to read up on research and the way news interprets it for us. Sign up through my link to get 30% off unlimited access this month. | In this month’s Night Sky News we’re chatting all about how you can watch the total solar eclipse on the 8th April 2024 across Mexico, the USA, and & Canada, the importance of the space exploration milestone of Intuitive Machines and their Odysseus lander on the Moon, the hard decision NSF faces on whether to continue to fund the Thirty Meter Telescope in Hawaii or the Giant Magellan Telescope in Chile, and the fastest growing supermassive black hole that’s ever been found! #astronomy #space #nasa

"Our Accidental Universe" by Prof Chris Lintott out in the UK on 21st March (note that in the USA the book is called “Accidental Astronomy” and the release date is 11th June) –

NASA eclipse map – interactive eclipse map with timings –
@TheEclipseCompany map with cloud cover percentages and community events –

What is the Hubble Space Telescope observing now:
What is the James Webb Space Telescope observing now:

Act now to help save the Chandra X-ray telescope (how to contact Congress) –

Wolf et al. (2024; quasar J0529–4351 properties confirmed as fastest growing) –
Onken et al. (2023; quasar J0529–4351 first identified) –
Fan et al. (2019; the previously fastest growing quasar known) –

00:00 Intro
01:04 Mercury @ Greatest Eastern Elongation with Jupiter (24th March)
02:29 Saturn returns with Mars + Toenail Moon! (6th Apr)
03:32 TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE! (North America, 8th April)
06:08 Penumbral Lunar Eclipse (24th March)
06:39 Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks update!
08:41 Ground News
10:27 NASA Space Telescope Live
11:25 Odysseus IM-1 Moon landing
14:31 NSF given ultimatum to choose either TMT or GMT
20:51 NASA must cut budget to Chandra X-Ray Observatory
21:54 Fastest growing SMBH ever found!
30:09 Conclusion
31:21 Bloopers

Video filmed on a Sony ⍺7 IV

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👩🏽‍💻 I’m Dr. Becky Smethurst, an astrophysicist at the University of Oxford (Christ Church). I love making videos about science with an unnatural level of enthusiasm. I like to focus on how we know things, not just what we know. And especially, the things we still don’t know. If you’ve ever wondered about something in space and couldn’t find an answer online – you can ask me! My day job is to do research into how supermassive black holes can affect the galaxies that they live in. In particular, I look at whether the energy output from the disk of material orbiting around a growing supermassive black hole can stop a galaxy from forming stars.