Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Black Holes On The Loose

Date:
May 30, 2007
Source:
American Physical Society
Summary:
Two merging black holes can generate gravitational waves so powerful that the merged hole shoots out of its host galaxy at a speed of up to 2,500 miles per second, according to a new simulation.

Two merging black holes can generate gravitational waves so powerful that the merged hole shoots out of its host galaxy at a speed of up to 2,500 miles per second, according to a new simulation.

Related Articles


This research, led by Manuela Campanelli at the Rochester Institute of Technology, demonstrates for the first time that the violent recoil that follows a merger is capable of ejecting the supermassive black holes known to lie at the heart of most light-emitting galaxies. These black holes may be cruising through the universe, virtually undetectable unless they should crash into something and gain matter.

The study found the optimal conditions for producing recoil speeds high enough to free a supermassive black hole from its host galaxy. In this scenario, the two black holes orbit around one another. They have equal masses and spin at the highest possible rate. They must be tilted onto their sides, with their axes of rotation lying in the plane of their orbit, and they must spin in opposite directions. They spiral toward one another, and when they merge, they are kicked in a direction perpendicular to the orbital plane.

Some astrophysicists have argued that such conditions are rather unlikely. The probability that black hole ejection will occur remains an open question for future research. Even if supermassive black holes have been removed from galactic cores, the odds that one of them will streak through our solar system are small enough that we need not fear a sudden obliteration.

A second study, conducted by Abraham Loeb of Harvard University, examines the possibility of detecting a black hole that has been kicked by gravitational recoil. If the black hole is surrounded by a ring of gas, it will emit light and resemble a star-like object known as a quasar.

A quasar exists when the supermassive black hole at the center of a galaxy rapidly acquires gas. As a result, the gas near the black hole heats up and radiates several times as much energy as the Milky Way. A quasar that is displaced from galactic core may well be a kicked black hole. Unfortunately, it would require a real stroke of luck to catch one in action - the gas fueling the light would only last about ten million years, so an ejected black hole would be dark by the time it left its galaxy.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Physical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Physical Society. "Black Holes On The Loose." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 May 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/05/070529155041.htm>.
American Physical Society. (2007, May 30). Black Holes On The Loose. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/05/070529155041.htm
American Physical Society. "Black Holes On The Loose." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/05/070529155041.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

Share This



More Space & Time News

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Antares Liftoff Explosion

Raw: Antares Liftoff Explosion

AP (Oct. 29, 2014) Observers near Wallops Island recorded what they thought would be a routine rocket launch Tuesday night. What they recorded was a major rocket explosion shortly after lift off. (Oct 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Russian Cargo Ship Docks at Space Station

Raw: Russian Cargo Ship Docks at Space Station

AP (Oct. 29, 2014) Just hours after an American cargo run to the International Space Station ended in flames, a Russian supply ship has arrived at the station with a load of fresh supplies. (Oct. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Journalist Captures Moment of Antares Rocket Explosion

Journalist Captures Moment of Antares Rocket Explosion

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 29, 2014) A space education journalist is among those who witness and record the explosion of an unmanned Antares rocket seconds after its launch. Rough Cut (no reporter narration) Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Rocket Explosion Under Investigation

Rocket Explosion Under Investigation

AP (Oct. 28, 2014) NASA and Orbital Sciences officials say they are investigating the explosion of an unmanned commercial supply rocket bound for the International Space Station. It blew up moments after liftoff Tuesday evening over the launch site in Virginia. (Oct. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins