Friday, June 01, 2007

Big News on Black Holes!


Back on August 17, during a Journey to the Centre of the Earth this blog predicted that "voids" between galaxies are far from empty. "The largest Black Holes were true monsters devouring everything in sight. They cleared great voids between sheets of matter. The 70% of mass ascribed to 'dark energy' may be hidden in those voids." That was predicted back in '004 by the Very Short Paper on GM=tc^3, in January 7, January 13 and February 27 posts.

This week at AAS: a team led by astronomer Anca Constantin announced that supermassive Black Holes are just as common in void galaxies as they are in walls. Her team studied more than 1,000 galaxies using the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. Perhaps you recognise the human shape in the Sloan diagram. Here the visible galaxies are black dots and the blue circles are voids. When our eyes are opened we find the red dots, supermassive Black Holes in the voids.

Being alone in their voids, these Black Holes accrete relatively little matter. With less food around, they eat less and give off less radiation. Like a Black Hole is supposed to be, they are dark and difficult to find. This led astronomers to assume that "voids" containing most of the Universe's volume are empty.

A fish in the Barrier Reef knows to avoid dark holes in the coral. Something hidden in those voids could eat her! It is hoped that scientists are more intelligent than fish. One pillar of the "dark energy" hypothesis is that 70% of the Universe mass appeared to be missing. If Black Holes are as common in voids as in walls that is at least 50% of mass. Here is the missing slice of the pie, and DE will soon be in big trouble.

For a comprehensive list of ISDC news links, check Out of the Cradle.

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8 Comments:

Blogger Kea said...

Cool!! Do they have a paper up on the arxiv yet? I'd love to see some figures on mass fractions.

11:39 AM  
Anonymous darnell clayton said...

A fish in the Barrier Reef knows to avoid dark holes in the coral. Something hidden in those voids could eat her! It is hoped that scientists are more intelligent than fish.

If this is true, then it intergalactic travel in the future may require worm hole transportation rather than warp speed (aka faster than light travel).

After all, you wouldn't want to run into these "silent killers" while visiting Grandma's over in the Andromeda galaxy.

7:04 PM  
Blogger L. Riofrio said...

No paper found yet, they may have only presented it at AAS.

9:41 PM  
Blogger nige said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

6:18 AM  
Blogger nige said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

6:26 AM  
Blogger nige said...

The cover story of the 2 June 2007 New Scientist, by Marcus Chown, points out that the large black holes at the centres of galaxies (3 million solar masses for the black hole in the middle of the Milky Way, and 30 million solar masses for the black hole in the middle of Andromeda, which the Milky Way is approaching at 600 km/s), can get catapaulted out of galaxies into empty space when galaxies collide.

"A black hole can cut loose when two galaxies collide: their central supermassive black holes coalesce into a single object, and this can receive a tremendous kick in the process. Some supermassive black holes travel to the outskirts of their galaxy before returning ... others go into exile for good, catapaulted unceremoniously into the lonely deep freeze of intergalactic space."

In the process of coalescing, black holes spiral in towards each other, releasing gravitational waves. Ther article also suggests that since "the merged object may very well take its super-hot disc of swirling matter and jets with it" it may appear as a bright quasar. Chown cites one arxiv paper as source: http://www.arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0703722, which has been accepted for publication by PRL.

6:27 AM  
Blogger L. Riofrio said...

HI nige. Lots of speculative stuff makes it into New Scientist, and so far EVERY galaxy examined contains a central Black Hole. That makes the "kicked out" hypothesis difficult to support. Interesting idea, though.

7:34 AM  
Anonymous a quantum diaries survivor said...

Hi Louise,

great post and amazing stuff. I look forward to getting to know more about this. As you, I do not believe in standard cosmology, and although I have not married an alternative theory yet, I am happy that your model is well, alive and kicking!

Cheers,
T.

10:22 AM  

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