R&D – Astronomers classify B0218+357 as a blazar—a type of active galaxy noted for its intense emissions and unpredictable behavior. At the blazar’s heart is a supersized black hole with a mass millions to billions of times that of the sun. As matter spirals toward the black hole, some of it blasts outward as jets of particles traveling near the speed of light in opposite directions.
The extreme brightness and variability of blazars result from a chance orientation that brings one jet almost directly in line with Earth.
Long before light from B0218+357 reaches us, it passes directly through a face-on spiral galaxy—one very much like our own—about 4 billion light-years away. more> http://tinyurl.com/pvemdyz