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Astronomers Spot Growing Double Supermassive Black Holes in Infant Universe

Using a technique known as gravitational lensing and NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory telescope, astronomers have caught a glimpse of a duo of supermassive black holes that existed when the Universe was just 2 billion years old.

The process is allowing astronomers to check out distant and faint X-ray objects like these black holes in unprecedented detail, as well as stare back in time to a period when the Universe was just a fraction of its current age of around 14 billion years old. X-ray objects are cosmic bodies that emit strongly in the X-ray region of the electromagnetic spectrum. These include, stars, supernovae, and the regions around black holes.

The X-ray emitting objects in question are 12 billion light-years away from Earth and are likely to be double growing supermassive black holes that are separated by just 650 light-years, according to a study set to be published in The Astrophysical Journal.

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