Could Black Holes Consume Stars From Within?
Black holes may enter into stars and consume them from the inside, according to new research by Serguei Komissarov and Maxim Barkov of the University of Leeds. The idea has been suggested as a way to explain observed gamma-ray bursts that can last for hours at a time.
Scientists at the University of Leeds in England instead suggest the matter that falls into black holes can generate extremely powerful magnetic forces that focus and drive the plasma jets linked with long gamma-ray bursts. The matter has to whirl very rapidly, with the centrifugal forces caused by this spin opposing the powerful gravitational pull of the black hole, for the prolonged blast seen in long gamma-ray bursts.
The researchers found one way such whirling matter could result is if a black hole plunged into a star and began eating it from the inside. As the black hole ripped the star apart, its remains could twirl apart in precisely the right way needed for a long gamma-ray burst.
"This 'invader variant' provides a natural explanation of the very fast rotation," researcher Serguei Komissarov.
For science fiction fans, this is not a new idea. In his 1980 book Dragon's Egg, physicist and sf writer Robert L. Forward described a case of "solar indigestion."
The information gathered had shown that the Sun had a case of indigestion. It had eaten too many black holes.
The scientists found an extremely periodic fluctuation in the strength of the Sun's polar magnetic field... It was finally concluded that the Sun had four dense masses, probably miniature primordial black holes, orbiting around each other deep inside the sun. These disturbed the Sun's normal fusion equilibrium by gnawing away at its bowels...
Komissarov and his colleague Maxim Barkov detailed their findings in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. Via Space.com; special thanks to Randall Glenn for writing in with the tip and reference for this story.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 9/23/2009)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
NASA's LADEE Enters Lunar Orbit
'... dust normally on the surface picks up and keeps a charge.' - Hal Clement, 1956.
Nuclear Interceptors Designed For Planetary Protection
See NASA's concept for a nuclear interceptor.
SpaceX Grasshopper Divert Video
Isn't this the way that rocket ships were meant to land?
Ultrasonic Noise Betrays ISS Leaks
Gentlemen, Be Seated!
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Army's New Bird-Like Surveillance UAV
'The prototype blue-bellied, gray-backed tracer-bird with the wide-angle eye...'
Honda's Tumblebug - The UNI-CUB beta
'A tumblebug does not give a man dignity...'
NASA's LADEE Enters Lunar Orbit
'... dust normally on the surface picks up and keeps a charge.'
3D Printing An Entire Car
"... Almost as good as the original it was printed from."
Aldebaran Robot Talks Like C3PO - Almost
'See Vee Threepio - Vee for versatility - at your service...'
Google's Skin Tattoo Lie Detector
'Three and a half centimetres in diameter, permanently fixed in the centre of his forehead.'
inFORM Dynamic Shape Output Device
Like that pushpin device you remember, but supercharged.
Owlet Vitals, The Future Of Baby Monitoring
'In every diaper there is a fine copper wire...'
Robert Heinlein, Your Personal Electric Helicopter Will Be Ready In 2016
"They were half way home when a single flyer, hopping free in a copter harness, approached the little parade."
WildCat Runs Faster Than You, Untethered
'...moving with such drifting ease that it was like a single solid cloud of black-grey smoke blown at him in silence.' Almost.
HiBot's ACM-R5H Robot Video Shows Graceful Terminator-Style Swimming
'No! No! Aaaaaaarrrrrrgh!'
tDCS Jumpstarts Your Future
'We invented a scanner that can change the labyrinthine neural connections of the brain by tiny electronic impulses...'.
RealView Interactive Live Medical Holography
Surgeons can see an organ in its entirety in a live image.
Britney Spears And Lynn Minmay - Weapons Of Choice
An attack can take many forms.
Aireal Haptics Inching Towards Holodeck Experience
How to feel something that isn't there?
Starchase Pursuit Management ala Star Wars
Yes, but does it follow evil doers through hyperspace?
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories