Astronomers have discovered evidence that a distant black hole took a massive bite out of a nearby star more than a decade ago and has continued to devour it ever since.

The 11-year feeding frenzy is far and away the longest scientists have observed, said University of New Hampshire research scientist Dacheng Lin.

“We have witnessed a star’s spectacular and prolonged demise,” said Dr. Lin in a statement. “Dozens of these so-called tidal disruption events have been detected since the 1990s, but none that remained bright for nearly as long as this one.”

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