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Are You Know What is a Black Hole?
History: The concept of an object from which light could not escape (e.g., black hole) was originally proposed by Pierre Simon Laplace in 1795. Using Newton's Theory of Gravity, Laplace calculated that if an object were compressed into a small enough radius, then the escape velocity of that object would be faster than the speed of light.
What Is A Black Hole ?
A black hole is what remains when a massive star dies.
If you have read How Stars Work, then you know that a star is a huge, amazing fusion reactor. Because stars are so massive and made out of gas, there is an intense gravitational field that is always trying to collapse the star. The fusion reactions happening in the core are like a giant fusion bomb that is trying to explode the star. The balance between the gravitational forces and the explosive forces is what defines the size of the star.
As the star dies, the nuclear fusion reactions stop because the fuel for these reactions gets burned up. At the same time, the star's gravity pulls material inward and compresses the core. As the core compresses, it heats up and eventually creates a supernova explosion in which the material and radiation blasts out into space. What remains is the highly compressed, and extremely massive,
core. The core's gravity is so strong that even light cannot escape.
This object is now a black hole and literally disappears from view. Because the core's gravity is so strong, the core sinks through the fabric of space-time, creating a hole in space-time -- this is why the object is called a black hole.
The core becomes the central part of the black hole called the singularity. The opening of the hole is called the event horizon.
You can think of the event horizon as the mouth of the black hole. Once something passes the event horizon, it is gone for good. Once inside the event horizon, all "events" (points in space-time) stop, and nothing (even light) can escape. The radius of the event horizon is called the Schwarzschild radius, named after astronomer Karl Schwarzschild, whose work led to the theory of black holes.
Types of Black Holes
There are two types of black holes:
* Schwarzschild - Non-rotating black hole
* Kerr - Rotating black hole
The Schwarzschild black hole is the simplest black hole, in which the core does not rotate. This type of black hole only has a singularity and an event horizon.
The Kerr black hole, which is probably the most common form in nature, rotates because the star from which it was formed was rotating. When the rotating star collapses, the core continues to rotate, and this carried over to the black hole (conservation of angular momentum). The Kerr black hole has the following parts:
* Singularity - The collapsed core
* Event horizon - The opening of the hole
* Ergosphere - An egg-shaped region of distorted space around the event horizon (The distortion is caused by the spinning of the black hole, which "drags" the space around it.)
* Static limit - The boundary between the ergosphere and normal space
If an object passes into the ergosphere it can still be ejected from the black hole by gaining energy from the hole's rotation.
However, if an object crosses the event horizon, it will be sucked into the black hole and never escape. What happens inside the black hole is unknown; even our current theories of physics do not apply in the vicinity of a singularity.
Even though we cannot see a black hole, it does have three properties that can or could be measured:
* Electric charge
* Rate of rotation (angular momentum)
As of now, we can only measure the mass of the black hole reliably by the movement of other objects around it. If a black hole has a companion (another star or disk of material), it is possible to measure the radius of rotation or speed of orbit of the material around the unseen black hole. The mass of the black hole can be calculated using Kepler's Modified Third Law of Planetary Motion or rotational motion.