At nearly 6 trillion times the mass of the sun, M87 is the most massive galaxy in the Milky Wayâ€™s cosmic neighborhood. Astronomers expected it to host a correspondingly huge black hole, but the most commonly accepted estimates â€” based on measurements from the Hubble Space Telescope â€” found the black hole weighed just 3 billion solar masses, give or take a billion.
But although Hubble â€œhas taken the lead in terms of black hole measures, it canâ€™t do the biggest ones,â€ Gebhardt said.
To pin down the monstrous black holeâ€™s mass, Gebhardt and his colleagues used the Gemini North telescope atop Mauna Kea in Hawaii to measure the speeds of stars zipping past the galactic center.
Sounds like somebody needs to cut down on the carbons