The X-ray outburst is one of the most extreme ever detected and was caused by gas from the destroyed star being heated to millions of degrees.
The black hole is at the centre of a galaxy known as RX J1242-11 and is estimated to have a mass about 100 million times that of the sun. RX J1242-11 is an estimated 700 million light years away from Earth...
'The centre of the galaxy flared up in a brilliant burst of X-rays thousands of times brighter than all of the billions of stars of this galaxy taken together.'
Not that far away really. I wonder what happened to all the peoples alive in that galaxy 700 milllion years ago ...
[update: A later NASA release said that radiation levels at the galactic periphery, aka the habitable band of most galaxies, would not be hazardous to life.]
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