What are the differences between a Black Hole and a Supermassive Black Hole

  • From what I understand, the mass of a black hole should be nearly infinite, how much more massive can something get?




    • Is the name to be literally interpreted such that a Supermassive Black Hole just has more mass?

    • Or rather, is a Supermassive Black Hole just a regular Black Hole with nearly infinite mass that is larger in diameter?

    • If the difference is in fact a change in diameter, how are the changes in size with the retention of the immense mass reflected in the Supermassive Black Hole's gravitational field?


    The *density* is infinite - not the mass, IIRC.

    Just the **supermassive** :P

    The density at the **singularity** is believed to be infinite. Typically a black hole's size is defined by it's event horizon, so it could be considered to have a finite density.

    Have to agree with Aaron. And add that, since we don't know what goes on inside a black hole, we can hypothesize that it's a sort of mini-universe. And perhaps our own universe may be a black hole inside some other universe...

    One is a Muse song) and the other one isn't.

  • John Conde

    John Conde Correct answer

    9 years ago

    Stellar mass black holes form from the collapse of massive stars at the end of their lives. You can then find them scattered throughout galaxies, just like you find massive stars. They typically have a mass a few times the mass of the sun.



    Supermassive black holes are found at the centers of galaxies. They typically have mass of millions of Suns.



    Recently they have started to discover Intermediate Mass Black Holes which blur the lines between a stellar black hole and supermassive black hole. The typically have a mass in the range 100 to one million solar masses.


    I have heard Black Holes described as a "Single point of immense mass in space," does this hold true, or are there Black Holes of varying diameter?

    They vary in diameter. What you're referring to has to do with the effects of the laws of physics breaking down once you pass the event horizon.

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Content dated before 7/24/2021 11:53 AM