Star-shredding, supermassive black hole spins at half the speed of light

In a distant galaxy, many millions of years ago, a black hole spinning at half the speed of light ripped apart a star, Mashable reports. After devouring it, the black hole belched x-rays across the universe, which astronomers detected in 2014. Now, astrophysicists have used them to estimate how fast the black hole spins, they report this week in Science. A mere 5% of black holes are known to consume stars, but astrophysicists hope to use rare cosmic events like this one (above) to help unravel their mysteries.

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