Artist’s animation of the system with the most massive stellar black hole in our galaxy

Astronomers have found the most massive stellar black hole in our galaxy, thanks to the wobbling motion it induces on a companion star. This artist’s animation shows the orbits of both the star (in blue) and the black hole (in red), dubbed Gaia BH3, around their common centre of mass. This wobbling was measured over several years with the European Space Agency’s Gaia mission. Additional data from other telescopes, including ESO’s Very Large Telescope in Chile, confirmed that the mass of this black hole is 33 times that of our Sun. The chemical composition of the companion star suggests that the black hole was formed after the collapse of a massive star with very few heavy elements, or metals, as predicted by theory.


ESO/L. Calçada/Space Engine (

About the Video

Release date:16 April 2024, 09:00
Related releases:eso2408
Duration:20 s
Frame rate:25 fps

About the Object

Name:Gaia BH3
Type:Milky Way : Star : Evolutionary Stage : Black Hole
Category:Quasars and Black Holes

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