Supermassive Black Holes Hide in Dust Cocoons

Many large galaxies are thought to have supermassive black holes at their centers. A high volume of material spiraling into a supermassive black hole larger than a million suns produces strong radiation. However, if the black hole is buried in dust from all directions, this radiation may not easily be detected. Although theories suggest many actively radiating supermassive black holes deeply buried in dust, only few cases were known. Astronomers used the Subaru Telescope to perform infrared observation of galaxies exceptionally bright in the infrared, and found evidence for such supermassive black holes completely surrounded by dust.