<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >

Quantum gravity

Black holes radiate

Quantum gravity is important in those situations where gravity is so extremely strong that it has effects on the quantum scale, where the other forces are ordinarily much stronger. The early universe was such a place, but black holes are another. The first significant connection between gravity and quantum effects was made by the Russian physicist Yakov Zel’dovich in 1971, and other significant advances followed from the British physicist Stephen Hawking. (See [link] .) These two showed that black holes could radiate away energy by quantum effects just outside the event horizon (nothing can escape from inside the event horizon). Black holes are, thus, expected to radiate energy and shrink to nothing, although extremely slowly for most black holes. The mechanism is the creation of a particle-antiparticle pair from energy in the extremely strong gravitational field near the event horizon. One member of the pair falls into the hole and the other escapes, conserving momentum. (See [link] .) When a black hole loses energy and, hence, rest mass, its event horizon shrinks, creating an even greater gravitational field. This increases the rate of pair production so that the process grows exponentially until the black hole is nuclear in size. A final burst of particles and γ size 12{γ} {} rays ensues. This is an extremely slow process for black holes about the mass of the Sun (produced by supernovas) or larger ones (like those thought to be at galactic centers), taking on the order of 10 67 size 12{"10" rSup { size 8{"67"} } } {} years or longer! Smaller black holes would evaporate faster, but they are only speculated to exist as remnants of the Big Bang. Searches for characteristic γ size 12{γ} {} -ray bursts have produced events attributable to more mundane objects like neutron stars accreting matter.

The image on the left shows what appears to be a spherical white burst of dust from which two yellow-orange jets emanate, one going up and the other going down. From the top of the upper jet to the bottom of the lower jet is about one hundred and eighty thousand light years. The background is black. The center of the white burst is expanded in the image on the right and appears as a bright yellow doughnut-shaped disk spread over four hundred light years. At the center of the disk is a bright spot that may be the source of the jets.
This Hubble Space Telescope photograph shows the extremely energetic core of the NGC 4261 galaxy. With the superior resolution of the orbiting telescope, it has been possible to observe the rotation of an accretion disk around the energy-producing object as well as to map jets of material being ejected from the object. A supermassive black hole is consistent with these observations, but other possibilities are not quite eliminated. (credit: NASA and ESA)
This figure shows a windowless room full of desks and computer screens and with three large screens on the wall upon which are projected a lot of technical graphs.
The control room of the LIGO gravitational wave detector. Gravitational waves will cause extremely small vibrations in a mass in this detector, which will be detected by laser interferometer techniques. Such detection in coincidence with other detectors and with astronomical events, such as supernovas, would provide direct evidence of gravitational waves. (credit: Tobin Fricke)
A photo of Stephen Hawking sitting on his special chair fitted with modern gadgets.
Stephen Hawking (b. 1942) has made many contributions to the theory of quantum gravity. Hawking is a long-time survivor of ALS and has produced popular books on general relativity, cosmology, and quantum gravity. (credit: Lwp Kommunikáció)
The figure shows a purple doughnut-shaped object with a black hole in the middle. Many different-colored spots are arranged like glazing around the edge of the doughnut. The deep purple of the doughnut fades to a light purple as you move away from the doughnut, and the space around the doughnut is filled with randomly placed white dots. Various particles are shown either falling in or escaping from the doughnut. There is a proton antiproton pair, with the proton escaping and the antiproton falling back into the doughnut. There is an electron-positron pair in which the positron escapes then annihilates with an electron outside the doughnut, with the subsequent gamma rays escaping the doughnut. There is a muon-antimuon pair that is created then both fall back into the doughnut. Finally, there is an electron-positron pair that is generated, with the electron escaping and the positron falling back into the doughnut.
Gravity and quantum mechanics come into play when a black hole creates a particle-antiparticle pair from the energy in its gravitational field. One member of the pair falls into the hole while the other escapes, removing energy and shrinking the black hole. The search is on for the characteristic energy.

Questions & Answers

What is the difference between a principle and a law
the law is universally proved. The principal depends on certain conditions.
state Faraday first law
aliyu Reply
it states that mass of an element deposited during electrolysis is directly proportional to the quantity of electricity discharge
what does the speedometer of a car measure ?
Jyoti Reply
Car speedometer measures the rate of change of distance per unit time.
describe how a Michelson interferometer can be used to measure the index of refraction of a gas (including air)
using the law of reflection explain how powder takes the shine off a person's nose. what is the name of the optical effect?
is higher resolution of microscope using red or blue light?.explain
what is dimensional consistent
In engineering and science, dimensional analysis is the analysis of the relationships between different physical quantities by identifying their base quantities and units of measure and tracking these dimensions as calculations or comparisons are performed
can sound wave in air be polarized?
Unlike transverse waves such as electromagnetic waves, longitudinal waves such as sound waves cannot be polarized. ... Since sound waves vibrate along their direction of propagation, they cannot be polarized
A proton moves at 7.50×107m/s perpendicular to a magnetic field. The field causes the proton to travel in a circular path of radius 0.800 m. What is the field strength?
Celedonio Reply
derived dimenionsal formula
Ajak Reply
what is the difference between mass and weight
Isru Reply
assume that a boy was born when his father was eighteen years.if the boy is thirteen years old now, how is his father in
what is head-on collision
Javaid Reply
what is airflow
Godswill Reply
derivative of first differential equation
Haruna Reply
why static friction is greater than Kinetic friction
Ali Reply
draw magnetic field pattern for two wire carrying current in the same direction
Ven Reply
An American traveler in New Zealand carries a transformer to convert New Zealand’s standard 240 V to 120 V so that she can use some small appliances on her trip.
nkombo Reply
What is the ratio of turns in the primary and secondary coils of her transformer?
what is energy
How electric lines and equipotential surface are mutually perpendicular?
Abid Reply
The potential difference between any two points on the surface is zero that implies È.Ŕ=0, Where R is the distance between two different points &E= Electric field intensity. From which we have cos þ =0, where þ is the angle between the directions of field and distance line, as E andR are zero. Thus
sorry..E and R are non zero...

Get Jobilize Job Search Mobile App in your pocket Now!

Get it on Google Play

Source:  OpenStax, College physics. OpenStax CNX. Jul 27, 2015 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11406/1.9
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'College physics' conversation and receive update notifications?