Black Hole Death by Hawking Radiation - Josh Habka

Black holes die through a gradual process called Hawking Radiation, which sheds its mass as energy.
Black Hole Death by Hawking Radiation - Josh Habka

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  • Black holes decay over immense time spans through a process called Hawking Radiation, proposed by Stephen Hawking.
  • This radiation causes black holes to gradually lose mass as energy, leading to their eventual demise.
  • Larger black holes can take over a quadrillion years to evaporate completely, while smaller ones might vanish much faster.
  • The Hawking Radiation process involves the creation of particle-antiparticle pairs, with one member falling into the black hole and the other escaping as radiation.
  • As black holes emit Hawking radiation, they lose mass, eventually evaporating entirely if no additional mass is added.
  • Detection of black holes typically occurs through indirect methods, such as observing their gravitational effects on nearby objects or detecting the radiation emitted as they consume matter.
  • Recent studies suggest that as black holes die, they release the information they consumed during their lifetime back into the universe through gravitational shock waves.

In perhaps his most significant contribution to science, Stephen Hawking suggested black holes might emit a form of radiation that would make them gradually shrink and, ultimately, terminate their lives with an enormous explosion. Black holes die through a gradual process called Hawking Radiation, which sheds its mass as energy. This process can take over a quadrillion years for the largest black holes to die. If black holes vaporize in a physics-inspired radiation shower from Stephen Hawking, then black holes of the sun's mass would evaporate in 1,064 years, a much longer time than the early Universes age. After absorption, the solar mass black holes would eventually begin losing more energy to the Hawking radiation (on average) than they would have absorbed, vaporizing entirely after about 1067 years, with the most significant black holes in the universe disappearing after about 10^100 years.

If this process keeps happening over again, with no additional mass joining the black holes, you could ultimately radiate it all out. The payments make it slowly evaporate while more particles come into being, and more Hawking radiation is released, sucking out more mass. If any particles escape, in the form of Hawking radiation, and avoid being destroyed, the remaining energy debt must be paid off with black-hole mass.

If Pawel insists on treating sources of such radiation as pairs of particles/antiparticles, at least consider two teams at once, permitting one particles antiparticle to be annihilated, creating the actual photons leaving the black hole, while allowing (virtual) pairs falling inside to draw energy (or mass) from the black hole itself.

In normal string theory, the most minor black holes would have Planck masses (which would have the last Planck times), but LHC energies are 14 orders of magnitude too low to achieve such energies, so standard string theory would say the LHC would never produce black holes. This implies black holes with masses more extensive than that of the moon would, in fact, be mass-gainers for us because their temperature would be lower than that of the CMB. Thus, they would get more energy from CMB photons that they are trapping, rather than radiating out as in the radiation of the Hawking radiation. There are tough times when a black hole can be detected using visible light, as opposed to nearby black holes of stellar mass, which astronomers can watch tear up stars, or supermassive black holes, which gain so much gas and dust and mass that the colliding particles falling into them glow more brilliantly than anything we see in the universe.

Black holes survive by eating up everything around them -- including stars – but due to their gravity, they can bring about their own destruction. Now, Viqar Husain and colleagues from the University of New Brunswick, Canada, have found they can solve the information paradox by including quantum gravitational effects in their simulations, indicating that as the black hole dies, the information that it swallowed in its lifetime is released back into the universe via gravitational shock waves.

Common Questions

Who discovered Hawking Radiation?

Hawking Radiation is named after the physicist Stephen Hawking who derived its existence in 1974.

How long will it take for Sagittarius A* to die?

For the Sagittarius A* black hole, its mass of 4 million solar masses gives an evaporation time of 10^87 years which is about an octovigintillion years.

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