Mistaken Identity Explains How G2 Survived a Black Hole

Earlier this year, astronomers watched as an object named G2 zoomed through space and passed close to the black hole at the center of our galaxy. Many thought G2 was a cloud of hydrogen gas that the black hole would rip apart and devour, unleashing fireworks we could see through telescopes on Earth. But they were wrong on both counts: G2 isn’t a gas cloud, and, like a rainy Fourth of July, the fireworks never happened. That may sound disappointing, but it’s a story of mistaken identity and a

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