Scientists believe they are formed when the corpse of a massive star collapses in on itself, becoming so dense that it warps the fabric of space and time.

Share via Print This computer-simulated image shows a supermassive black hole at the core of a galaxy. Rather than accepting the geometry of space and time as fixed, Einstein explained that we actually inhabit a four-dimensional reality called space-time whose form fluctuates in response to matter and energy.

Mathematicians have been able to prove very little about the equations themselves. Over the last year, however, mathematicians have brought the mathematics of general relativity into sharper focus.

Two groups have come up with proofs related to an important problem in general relativity called the black hole stability conjecture. If you jolt it, it shakes like Jell-O, then settles down into a stable form like the one it began with. To describe how the shape of space-time evolves, you need a coordinate system—like lines of latitude and longitude—that tells you which points are where.

Shake a Black Hole General relativity famously describes space-time as something like a rubber sheet. Absent any matter, the sheet is flat. But start dropping balls onto it—stars and planets—and the sheet deforms.

The balls roll toward one another. And as the objects move around, the shape of the rubber sheet changes in response. You give the equations information about curvature and energy at each point, and the equations tell you the shape of space-time in the future.

This is where the ball is at time zero, this is where it is five seconds later.

A black hole, such as one formed as a stellar corpse, would be rather inconvenient for space travel, because the matter falling into it would be crushed and incinerated by tidal forces as it . Informally, this means that if you wiggle a black hole, space-time will shake at first, before eventually settling down into a form that looks a lot like the form you started with. “Roughly, stability means if I take special solutions and perturb them a little bit, change data a little bit, then the resulting dynamics will be very close to the original solution,” Klainerman said. One of the greatest and most bizarre phenomena in the universe is Black Holes. These very ominous consequences of excess gravity puncture the fabric of space-time in many regions of space. When a star at least 20 times the mass of our sun approaches death, super heated matter expels out into the surrounding nothingness.

Later, physicists found exact solutions that describe a rotating black hole and one with an electrical charge. These remain the only exact solutions that describe a black hole. If you add even a second black hole, the interplay of forces becomes too complicated for present-day mathematical techniques to handle in all but the most special situations.

Yet you can still ask important questions about this limited group of solutions.

One such question developed out of work in by the French mathematician Yvonne Choquet-Bruhat. It asks, in effect: What happens when you shake a black hole? Lucy Reading-Ikkanda Quanta Magazine This problem is now known as the black hole stability conjecture. Now imagine that you perturb the pond by tossing in a stone.

The pond will slosh around for a bit and then become still again. Consider the case of flat, empty Minkowski space—the simplest of all space-time configurations. That result, by Klainerman and Demetrios Christodoulou, is a celebrated work in the field.

One of the main difficulties with stability proofs has to do with keeping track of what is going on in four-dimensional space-time as the solution evolves. You need a coordinate system that allows you to measure distances and identify points in space-time, just as lines of latitude and longitude allow us to define locations on Earth.

The second is that not every coordinate system works to identify every point in a space. Take lines of latitude and longitude:A black hole, such as one formed as a stellar corpse, would be rather inconvenient for space travel, because the matter falling into it would be crushed and incinerated by tidal forces as it .

What Sonic Black Holes Say About the Real Deal a hypothetical black hole phenomenon predicted by just as pairs of particles fluctuate in and out of space-time, vibrations called “phonons. The supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way is surrounded by a swarm of smaller black holes, according to new research.

Scientists were able to pinpoint at least 12 black hole. In , the supermassive black hole known as Markarian was observed mysteriously ejecting an object into space. Located near the constellation of Pegasus, some million light-years from Earth, the black hole is one of the heaviest and quickest spinning ever observed – a true colossus that turns so fast that it pulls space.

Black Holes and Neutron Stars Cole Miller Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Chicago Intro to Black Holes. A black hole is a region of space in which the matter is so compact that nothing can escape the common occurrence of this phenomenon and its other properties mean that it is telling us something fundamental.

A black hole is made up of several different parts. Located at the very center of the black hole is the singularity. This is the location of extremely large mass and almost zero volume, creating a point of infinite density [7].

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Outside the singularity is the event horizon.

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Vast Black Hole Swarm May Surround Milky Way's Heart