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Monster' Black Hole Wakes Up After 26 Years

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An enormous black hole has "woken up" after 26 years - offering a rare opportunity for astronomers.

The V404 Cygni system sits 8,000 light years away from Earth in the Milky Way galaxy and is made up of a black hole and a star which orbit each other.

Material flows from the star towards the black hole, where it gathers in a disc and heats up, before spiralling into the hole.

Repeated bright flashes of light from the system have been seen in the past 10 days, something rarely seen in other black hole systems.

When it flashes, it becomes the brightest object in the X-ray sky - up to 50 times brighter than the Crab Nebula, which is usually one of the brightest sources in the sky.