Are there any galaxies that lack a black hole?

1 Answer
Mar 25, 2016

It is possible that there are galaxies without black holes.


Most large galaxies have supermassive black holes at their centres. In fact it is now thought that these black holes drive the evolution of galaxies. A supermassive black hole is typically millions or billions of solar masses.

Smaller galaxies don't necessarily have supermassive black holes at their centres.

Some larger galaxies may have lost their supermassive black hole due to a collision with another galaxy. The supermassive black hole either got ejected or it merged with another.

Supermassive black holes are detectable, stellar black holes are much much smaller and harder to detect. Stellar black holes are caused by the collapse of stars over about 5 solar masses.

Any galaxy which has had one or more large stars reach the end of their life and collapse is likely to have a black hole.