black holes

Category archives for black holes

“It is conceptually interesting, if not astrophysically very important, to calculate the precise apparent shape of the black hole… Unfortunately, there seems to be no hope of observing this effect.” -Jim Bardeen Black holes were one of the first consequences of general relativity that were predicted to exist, and the more we’ve studied the Universe,…

“Never look down to test the ground before taking your next step; only he who keeps his eye fixed on the far horizon will find the right road.” -Dag Hammarskjold One of relativity’s oddest predictions is the existence of black holes, objects so dense and massive that nothing, not event light can escape from them.…

“Put two ships in the open sea, without wind or tide, and, at last, they will come together. Throw two planets into space, and they will fall one on the other. Place two enemies in the midst of a crowd, and they will inevitably meet; it is a fatality, a question of time; that is…

“Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it.” -Stephen Hawking Throw a book into a black hole, and the information must somehow wind up inside. Same goes for a star, a planet, or even a single proton: that information must be maintained. But allow enough time to pass, and quantum theory…

“Other galaxies like Andromeda are shooting these ‘spitballs’ at us all the time.” -James Guillochon, coauthor on the new study Imagine you’re a star passing too close to a black hole. What’s going to happen to you? Yes, you’ll be tidally disrupted and eventually torn apart. Some of the matter will be swallowed, some will…

“It’s the first time the universe has spoken to us through gravitational waves, up to now we’ve been deaf to them.” -Dave Reitze No doubt about it: the greatest science advance of 2016 was the end of the century-long wait for the first direct detection of gravitational waves. Not only were we able to detect…

“Even with all the collected data we cannot say with 100% certainty that the ASASSN-15lh event was a tidal disruption event. But it is by far the most likely explanation.” -Giorgos Leloudas Last year, a record-shattering event occurred: we saw the brightest supernova ever observed in the Universe. It outshone the previous record holder by…

“The bedrock nature of space and time and the unification of cosmos and quantum are surely among science’s great ‘open frontiers.’ These are parts of the intellectual map where we’re still groping for the truth – where, in the fashion of ancient cartographers, we must still inscribe ‘here be dragons.’” -Martin Rees In 2015, LIGO…

“I’ll never, ever be full. I’ll always be hungry. Obviously, I’m not talking about food.” -Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson Only a very small percentage of galaxies have active supermassive black holes. While the black holes themselves are common, they only rarely feed, gaining a huge influx of matter to accelerate and send jets and other…

“I think there are a number of experiments that are thinking about how you could look in different frequency bands, and get a glimpse of the primordial gravitational wave background. I think that would be really revolutionary, because that would be your first glimpse at the very first instant of our Universe.” -Dave Reitze, LIGO’s…