A jackpot of previously unknown black holes across the universe has been discovered by the infrared eyes of a prolific NASA sky-mapping telescope.
The cosmic find comes from data collected by NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey (WISE) telescope, which scanned the entire sky in infrared light from December 2009 to February 2011. The full catalog of observations by WISE during its mission was publicly released in March, and astronomers are still poring through this celestrial trove for discoveries.
N SPACE: In this handout from NASA/ESA, an artist’s concept illustrates a quasar, or feeding black hole. NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) revealed millions of potential black holes in its survey of the sky in 2011. The WISE telescope, which ceased operation is February of 2011 after it ran out of coolant to keep its electronics cool, made the full sky image and was released to the public in March with hopes of astronomers making discoveries. (Photo by NASA/ESAvia Getty Images)
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