Small black hole spotted beyond Milky Way by astronomers in landmark find

Scientists were amazed after finding a tiny infant black hole in the distant beyond the Milky Way – but it's still eleven times the size of our Sun.

The black hole was found nestled in star cluster NGC 1850 after what scientists termed a Sherlock Holmes-style investigation for the 100-million-year-old formation.

A Very Large Telescope (VLT) at the European Southern Observatory in Bavaria, Germany was used to comb space beyond our Galaxy to find the mysterious region of spacetime.

The black hole was next to the Large Magellanic Cloud about 160,000 light-years away from Earth, Space.com reported.

They wrote: "Because black holes absorb all flavours of light, telescopes typically can't see them directly.

"But any black hole will leave fingerprints: for instance, its gravity will influence the movements of objects around it — and those objects, telescopes can study.

"Now, chasing one such clue, astronomers have found a black hole in a cluster just outside the Milky Way."

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It's the first black hole ever spotted beyond the reaches of our own Galaxy using this technique.

Liverpool John Moores University astrophysicist Sara Saracino said black holes are notoriously hard to find because they can't ever be seen directly.

She explained: "Similar to Sherlock Holmes tracking down a criminal gang from their missteps, we are looking at every single star in this cluster with a magnifying glass in one hand, trying to find some evidence for the presence of black holes but without seeing them directly."

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"The result shown here represents just one of the wanted criminals, but when you have found one, you are well on your way to discovering many others, in different clusters."

The full research will soon be published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

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