In 2003, astronomers detected something truly astonishing: acoustic waves propagating through the copious amounts of gas surrounding the
The black hole at the centre of the Perseus galaxy cluster has long been associated with sound. In 2003, astronomers discovered that the pressure waves sent out by this black hole cause ripples in the cluster's gas that can be translated into a note, albeit, one that humans cannot hear.
"According to NASA, a black hole sounds like billions of souls wailing in anguish from the depths of hell," one tweet read.
Such fast-moving matter gains a tremendous amount of energy, and this energy does not vanish past the event horizon. Instead, as an object is pulled into a black hole, the energy of its motion is transformed into sound. We cannot hear these sounds, as space is silent, but we can “see” them with our telescopes.
In its sonifications of the black hole in the M87 galaxy, which was first imaged in 2019, NASA created audio using X-ray, optical light and radio wave data from ground and space telescopes.
Black holes are so massive that they severely warp the fabric of spacetime (the three spatial dimensions and time combined in a four-dimensional continuum). For this reason, an observer inside a black hole experiences the passage of time much differently than an outside observer.
If black holes evaporate under Hawking radiation, a solar mass black hole will evaporate over 1064 years which is vastly longer than the age of the universe. A supermassive black hole with a mass of 1011 (100 billion) M ☉ will evaporate in around 2×10100 years.
While we've never directly 'seen' a black hole, we know they exist and that they have some unintuitive effects on space and time. The full details of black hole mechanics are not known, but researchers have ruled out some of the most popular myths.
The fate of anyone falling into a black hole would be a painful “spaghettification,” an idea popularized by Stephen Hawking in his book “A Brief History of Time.” In spaghettification, the intense gravity of the black hole would pull you apart, separating your bones, muscles, sinews and even molecules.
Black holes are dark, dense regions in space where the pull of gravity is so strong that nothing can escape. Not even light can get out of these regions. That is why we cannot see black holes—they are invisible to our eyes. Because nothing can get out of black holes, physicists struggle understanding these objects.
The loudest sound in the universe definitely comes from black hole mergers. In this case the “sound” comes out in gravitational waves and not ordinary sound waves.
No, there isn't sound in space.
This is because sound travels through the vibration of particles, and space is a vacuum. On Earth, sound mainly travels to your ears by way of vibrating air molecules, but in near-empty regions of space there are no (or very, very few) particles to vibrate – so no sound.
This energy takes the form of a slow-but-steady stream of radiation and particles that came to be known as Hawking radiation. With every bit of energy that escapes, the black hole loses mass and thereby shrinks, eventually popping out of existence altogether.
Black holes are freezing cold on the inside, but incredibly hot just outside. The internal temperature of a black hole with the mass of our Sun is around one-millionth of a degree above absolute zero.
The event horizon is defined as the point where no information can escape - in other words, nothing within an event horizon can affect the rest of the Universe. So no communication is possible.
Converting the energy of 1,100 decibels to mass yields 1.113x1080 kg, meaning that the radius of the resulting black hole's event horizon would exceed the diameter of the known universe. Voila! No more universe.
Eventually, in theory, black holes will evaporate through Hawking radiation. But it would take much longer than the entire age of the universe for most black holes we know about to significantly evaporate.
Black holes, the insatiable monsters of the universe, are impossible to kill with any of the weapons in our grasp. The only thing that can hasten a black hole's demise is a cable made of cosmic strings, a hypothetical material predicted by string theory.
Black holes are regions of space where gravity is so strong that nothing can escape them, not even light. Even before you reach the event horizon – the point of no return – you would be “spaghettified” by the black hole's tidal forces. Astronomers do not actually know what goes on inside black holes.
Eventually, the entire contents of the universe will be crushed together into an impossibly tiny space – a singularity, like a reverse Big Bang. Different scientists give different estimates of when this contraction phase might begin. It could be billions of years away yet.
Roughly one out of every thousand stars that form is massive enough to become a black hole. Therefore, our galaxy must harbor some 100 million stellar-mass black holes. Most of these are invisible to us, and only about a dozen have been identified.
Wormholes are shortcuts in spacetime, popular with science fiction authors and movie directors. They've never been seen, but according to Einstein's general theory of relativity, they might exist.
Stellar black holes are very cold: they have a temperature of nearly absolute zero – which is zero Kelvin, or −273.15 degrees Celsius.
The most powerful supernova yet recorded (ASSASN-15lh) was 22 trillion times more explosive than a black hole will be in its final moments. It doesn't matter how small or how massive a black hole is, their closing fireworks are exactly the same. The only difference is how long it will take a black hole to explode.
According to our best theory of gravity, Einstein's theory of general relativity, your spaghettified body would eventually end up at a 'singularity' – an infinitely small and dense point at the 'bottom' of the black hole.