Kuro5hin.org: technology and culture, from the trenches
create account | help/FAQ | contact | links | search | IRC | site news
[ Everything | Diaries | Technology | Science | Culture | Politics | Media | News | Internet | Op-Ed | Fiction | Meta | MLP ]
We need your support: buy an ad | premium membership

[P]
Definitive proof of event horizons?

By Miniluv in News
Fri Jan 12, 2001 at 08:14:45 PM EST
Tags: Science (all tags)
Science

Researchers using the Chandra X-Ray telescope, along with orbiting telescopes, believe to have found the most convincing evidence to date of the existence of black holes. CNN is running an article discussing the details.


Black holes are still one of the most elusive astronomical phenomena though they are becoming more widely accepted as existing. The article talks about the difference in observed and theorized behavior of matter as it approaches the center of an X-Ray novae, which would contain either a neutron star or a black hole.

Researchers are now stating they have found four instances of what they believe to be observable event horizons, indicating the presence of black holes. "An event horizon is the defining characteristic of a black hole," said Narayan. "Stuff can fall in, but nothing can get out."

The discovery required a fair bit of counterintuitive thinking as evidenced by statements from the researchers regarding their methods. It's a bit odd to say we've discovered something by seeing almost nothing, but in essence, this what we have done,"said astronomer Michael Garcia."By detecting very little energy from these black hole candidates, we have new proof that event horizons exist. Black holes really are black." This evidence has been presented at the most recent national meeting of the American Astronomical Society.

Sponsors

Voxel dot net
o Managed Hosting
o VoxCAST Content Delivery
o Raw Infrastructure

Login

Poll
Black holes are...
o The ultimate end of the universe 14%
o Just a myth 0%
o Galactic Sex Toys 37%
o Albert Einsteins best theory yet 14%
o How rusty cleans his apartment 33%

Votes: 81
Results | Other Polls

Related Links
o CNN
o article
o Also by Miniluv


Display: Sort:
Definitive proof of event horizons? | 13 comments (9 topical, 4 editorial, 0 hidden)
poll option (4.15 / 20) (#5)
by radar bunny on Fri Jan 12, 2001 at 06:48:27 PM EST

black holes are where God divided by zero.

Uhm... (2.66 / 6) (#6)
by Qtmstr on Fri Jan 12, 2001 at 09:06:55 PM EST

Will they also be able to detect more massive black holes at the center of galaxies this way, to determine their exact location? Oh, and bring the old logo back!


Kuro5hin delenda est!
About the Poll... (1.00 / 1) (#7)
by ar0n on Sat Jan 13, 2001 at 08:29:31 PM EST

Actually, I believe the notion of a blackhole (as we now know them today), was suggested by Stephen Hawking and Roger Penrose (Yes, I'm reading A Brief History of Time).

History of black holes (none / 0) (#12)
by spiralx on Mon Jan 15, 2001 at 06:30:31 AM EST

The idea of a body of matter so dense that light could not escape is actually several centuries old, dating from shortly after Newton formulated his theory of gravitation. I can't remember who came up with the idea first, but there was discussion of the possibility of "dark stars".

The existance of black holes in the modern sense is a consequence of Einstein's theory of general relativity. A scientist called Karl Schwarzschild came up with a solution of the field equations of GR for a non-rotating body with a mass confined within a radius smaller than the so-called Schwarzschild radius - a black hole. The term "black hole" itself was coined by John Wheeler, before that, they were referred to as "frozen stars".

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

They DON'T exist (1.00 / 2) (#8)
by ryancooley on Sat Jan 13, 2001 at 09:20:45 PM EST

I am a strong opposer of the existance of black holes. The 'Event Horizon' as it is known defies the laws of matter.
To 'pull' in light the force of the black hole has to pull light AT the speed of light (a^2+b^2=c^2) and all forces dimish exponentially based on distance from the source.

If any object can swallow light at any distance from it's own center, the center has to be of such a force that it's pull would be faster than light itself.

An oversimlified explanation I know, but it does show that either black holes don't exist or the laws of physics we believe must be wrong.

Minor correction (4.00 / 1) (#9)
by ryancooley on Sat Jan 13, 2001 at 09:22:25 PM EST

A^2*B^2=C^2 not '+'

[ Parent ]
WTF? (4.50 / 2) (#10)
by swf on Sat Jan 13, 2001 at 09:54:51 PM EST

To 'pull' in light the force of the black hole has to pull light AT the speed of light (a^2+b^2=c^2) and all forces dimish exponentially based on distance from the source.
What the hell does that mean? "the force... has to pull light AT the speed of light"?
"The Event Horizon... defies the laws of matter" What laws?

[ Parent ]
I think you missed a third possibility (5.00 / 1) (#11)
by DoubleEdd on Sun Jan 14, 2001 at 09:53:10 AM EST

I think you missed something when you said:
An oversimlified explanation I know, but it does show that either black holes don't exist or the laws of physics we believe must be wrong.

Namely that you believe a completely different set of the laws of physics to the ones in general use by the rest of us. Unfortunately, laws of physics are not something that physicists believe. They're things they test.

Lets take an example:
To 'pull' in light the force of the black hole has to pull light AT the speed of light (a^2+b^2=c^2) and all forces dimish exponentially based on distance from the source.

If you test the electric (Coulomb) force its pretty clear that it doesn't diminish exponentially with distance. You can show that its pretty close to being a 1/r^2 force by examining the field within a charged conducting sphere - which will be zero.

Furthermore, you do not pull at a speed. A pull is a force, and a force is a change in momentum. This means you can 'pull' on a beam of light and change its direction and energy (a blueshift or redshift).

I am a strong opposer of the existance of black holes. The 'Event Horizon' as it is known defies the laws of matter.
I don't know what you mean by the laws of matter. I think everyone in physics pretty much agrees that black holes are nicely explained by General Relativity and that there isn't any evidence against it in the kind of mass and distance ranges covered by astronomical black holes, and that there is in fact a fair chunk of evidence in its favour. So, it looks like black holes do exist, the laws of physics we currently work with (note, not believe) explain them rather nicely thank you, and the laws of physics you believe are in need of a healthy dose of experimental evidence.

[ Parent ]

Wrong (5.00 / 1) (#13)
by spiralx on Mon Jan 15, 2001 at 06:48:12 AM EST

The 'Event Horizon' as it is known defies the laws of matter.

Which "laws of matter" would these be? Seeing as event horizons aren't made of anything I don't get your point; all an event horizon is is a boundary between space where light can escape and space where all future paths of light end up at the singularity. There's nothing actually there.

To 'pull' in light the force of the black hole has to pull light AT the speed of light (a^2+b^2=c^2) and all forces dimish exponentially based on distance from the source.

Errm, well it's lucky that light travels at, well, the speed of light then isn't it! Not quite sure what Pythagoras has to do with this either... And as for forces, long range forces (gravity and electromagnetism) fall off as 1/r^2 because we live in a 3 dimensional space...

If any object can swallow light at any distance from it's own center, the center has to be of such a force that it's pull would be faster than light itself.

No, not any object, just black holes. And pull (by which I assume you mean the gravitational force towards the centre of the black hole) does not have a speed... force is mass * acceleration remember?

An oversimlified explanation I know, but it does show that either black holes don't exist or the laws of physics we believe must be wrong.

No, my solution is that the laws of physics you believe are wrong.

You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
[ Parent ]

Definitive proof of event horizons? | 13 comments (9 topical, 4 editorial, 0 hidden)
Display: Sort:

kuro5hin.org

[XML]
All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. The Rest 2000 - Present Kuro5hin.org Inc.
See our legalese page for copyright policies. Please also read our Privacy Policy.
Kuro5hin.org is powered by Free Software, including Apache, Perl, and Linux, The Scoop Engine that runs this site is freely available, under the terms of the GPL.
Need some help? Email help@kuro5hin.org.
My heart's the long stairs.

Powered by Scoop create account | help/FAQ | mission | links | search | IRC | YOU choose the stories!