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Matter falling into black holes emits tremendous amounts of energy which can escape as visible light, ultraviolet light and X-rays. This energy can also drive outflows of gas and dust far from the black hole, affecting the growth and evolution of galaxies containing the black holes.
Though light cannot escape from black holes themselves, black holes with accretion disks -- which are swirling clouds of matter about to enter the black hole -- are among the most luminous objects in galaxies. By studying how the radiation and accretion disk interact, astrophysicists can learn much about the extreme gravitational fields, magnetic forces and radiation processes close to these black holes.
"The rapid accretion phase releases a lot of energy, not only in radiation, but also in outflows that drive gas out of a galaxy, which can shut off star formation and hold back the growth of the galaxy," said Ballantyne, a scientist in Georgia Tech's Center for Relativistic Astrophysics.
Most of this was already known, but the one piece of news (to me) in the article you didn't quote so I'll quote it here:
Originally posted by buni11687
That's the key finding that wasn't expected, as the models predicted a cubic relationship but they found a linear relationship.
the relationship we saw between the ionization and rate of accretion was different from what the theory predicted."