Paul M. Sutter is an astrophysicist at SUNY Stony Brook and the Flatiron Institute, host of Ask a Spaceman and Space Radio, and author of How to Die in Space. He contributed this article to Space.com’s Expert Voices: Opinions and Insights.

Astronomers don’t understand the origins of the biggest black holes in the universe. These black holes appear so early in the cosmological record that we might have to invoke new physics to explain their appearance.