Almost 40 years ago, Stephen Hawking said that not everything that comes near the black hole accedes to its deep non-existence. Photons (Small particles of light) are sometimes discharged, preventing the black hole of a little amount of energy, and this steady loss of mass over time means that every black hole eventually vaporizes out of existence.
Marked as Hawking radiation, these eluding particles help us understand one of the ultimate paradoxes in the known Universe, but nobody could prove this practically, and Hawking’s suggestion remained firmly in hypothesis zone.
But now all that will possibly change, with two independent teams of scientists claiming that they’ve created a proof to support Hawking's suggestions, and finally, it could see one of the greatest living physicists win a Nobel Prize. In 1974, Hawking proposed that the Universe is jam-packed with 'virtual particles' that, according to available evidence, how quantum mechanics works, blink in and out of existence and destroy each other whenever they come in contact - with an exception, if they reach each other on either side of a black hole's event horizon.
Fundamentally, one particle gets swallowed by the black hole, and the other radiates away into the cosmos. The existence of Hawking radiation has explained a lot of questions regarding Black Holes working, but during that, it also raised a bunch of question that physicists are still trying to solve.
Hawking’s theory was not proved earlier because this radiation emitted by the black hole is so delicate that it is almost impossible to identify it from thousands of light-years away. But now physicist Jeff Steinhauer from Technion University in Haifa, Israel, thinks that if we are unable to reach black holes then why not drag out the black hole to us?
As Oliver Moody reports for The Times, Steinhauer has accomplished in creating a lab-sized ‘black hole’ collected from sound, and when he thrust it into gear; he observed that particles took energy from its outer edge.
Reporting his experiment in a research paper forwarded to the physics pre-press website, arXiv.org, Steinhauer claims that he cooled helium to just above absolute zero, then shook it up so fast, it made a 'barrier' over which sound should not be able to pass. Moody reported, “Steinhauer said he had found signs that phonons, the very small packets of energy that make up sound waves, were escaping from his sonic black hole just like Stephen Hawking’s calculations predict they should.”
These conclusions of the research are still under review and the research papers have been uploaded on arXiv.org for public view. According to another paper published in Physical Review Letters last month, Physicists Chris Adami and Kamil Bradler from the University of Ottawa suggest a new method that allows physicists to follow a black hole’s life over time.
That’s inspiring stuff because it means that whatever information or matter that travels over the event horizon does not ‘vanishes’ but is slowly leaking back out throughout the later periods of the black hole’s disappearance. Adami said in a press release, "In order to perform this calculation, we have to guess how a black hole interacts with the Hawking radiation field that surrounds it. That’s because there currently is no theory of quantum gravity that could suggest such a phenomenon. However, it seems we made a well-educated deduction because our model is equivalent to Hawking’s theory in the limit of fixed, static black holes."
Both the scientists will soon be able to prove hawking’s suggestions right or wrong. As Moody points out, Peter Higgs, who claimed the occurrence of the Higgs boson, had to wait about 49 years for his Nobel Prize, we’ll have to be patient if Hawking ends up with his own.
This post was written by Usman Abrar. To contact the writer write to firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Facebook