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Friday, January 8, 2010

What is inside a black hole?




An Artist’s impression of a supermassive black hole ripping apart a star and consuming some of its matter (source:NASA/CXC/M.Weiss).


"A black hole is a region of space whose attractive gravitational force is so intense that no matter, light, or communication of any kind can escape. A black hole would thus appear black from the outside. (However, gas around a black hole can be very bright.) It is believed that black holes form from the collapse of stars. As long as they are emitting heat and light into space, stars are able to support themselves against their own inward gravity with the outward pressure generated by heat from nuclear reactions in their deep interiors"


"Every star, however, must eventually exhaust its nuclear fuel. When it does so, its unbalanced self-gravitational attraction causes it to collapse. According to theory, if a burned-out star has a mass larger than about three times the mass of our sun, no amount of additional pressure can stave off total gravitational collapse. The star collapses to form a black hole. For a nonrotating collapsed star, the size of the resulting black hole is proportional to the mass of the parent star; a black hole with a mass three times that of our sun would have a diameter of about 10 miles."

"The possibility that stars could collapse to form black holes was first theoretically "discovered" in 1939 by J. Robert Oppenheimer and Hartland Snyder, who were manipulating the equations of Einstein's general relativity. The first black hole believed to be discovered in the physical world, as opposed to the mathematical world of pencil and paper, was Cygnus X-1, about 7,000 light-years from Earth. (A light-year, the distance light travels in a year, is about six trillion miles.) Cygnus X-1 was found in 1970. Since then, a dozen excellent black hole candidates have been identified. Many astronomers and astrophysicists believe that massive black holes, with sizes up to 10 million times that of our sun, inhabit the centers of energetic galaxies and quasars and are responsible for their enormous energy release. Ironically, Einstein himself did not believe in the existence of black holes, even though they were predicted by his theory."


source: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/einstein/relativity/
 
"Because not even light can escape the gravitational pull of a black hole, the interior of a hole is perhaps the ultimate terra incognita. The absence of light coming out means an absence of all information. Most of what science knows about these objects is thus entirely inferential — from gravitational effects on other objects like nearby stars."



source:http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/28/science/28prof.html?_r=1

Take a trip inside a black hole by clicking on the following video:
Dr. Andrew J. S. Hamilton,  is a professor of astrophysics at the University of Colorado:"what happens inside a black hole, and especially what such a place might look like, is another question entirely; no such consensus exists on that one."Dr. Hamilton said what his program predicted, especially in the inner event horizon, was simply where Einstein and his equations led.

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Thoughts worth thinking about

"Our subconscious minds have no sense of humor, play no jokes and cannot tell the difference between reality and an imagined thought or image. What we continually think about eventually will manifest in our lives."-Sidney Madwed



Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every woman and man present their views without penalty, there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.- Albert Einstein Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. - Leo Buscaglia



A person's true wealth is the good he or she does in the world. - Mohammed



Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. -Albert Einstein



The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others. - Ghandi



The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves. - Helen Keller



Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make yourself a happier and more productive person. - Dr. David M. Burns



Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures. -His Holiness The Dalai Lama



Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it. -



Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being



The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw

Ego's trick is to make us lose sight of our interdependence. That kind of ego-thought gives us a perfect justification to look out only for ourselves. But that is far from the truth. In reality we all depend on each other and we have to help each other. The husband has to help his wife, the wife has to help the husband, the mother has to help her children, and the children are supposed to help the parents too, whether they want to or not.-Gehlek Rinpoche Source: "The Best Buddhist Writing 2005 pg. 165

The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events---that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies---and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.