Massive Black Holes Shred The Falling Stars In Deep Space

By Amit Meta | May 31, 2017 05:29 AM EDT
This artist’s rendering illustrates new findings about a star shredded by a black hole. When a star wanders too close to a black hole, intense tidal forces rip the star apart. In these events, called “tidal disruptions,” some of the stellar debris is flung outward at high speed while the rest falls toward the black hole. This causes a distinct X-ray flare that can last for a few years. NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, Swift Gamma-ray Burst Explorer, and ESA/NASA’s XMM-Newton collected different pieces of this astronomical puzzle in a tidal disruption event called ASASSN-14li, which was found in an optical search by the All-Sky Automated Survey for Supernovae (ASAS-SN) in November 2014. The event occurred near a supermassive black hole estimated to weigh a few million times the mass of the sun in the center of PGC 043234, a galaxy that lies about 290 million light-years away. Astronomers hope to find more events like ASASSN-14li to test theoretical models about how black holes affect their environments.

The University of Texas at Austin and Harvard University astronomers have put a basic principle of black holes. They said black holes vanish when something pulled in and massive black holes shred the falling stars in deep space.

A black hole is a region in space where gravity pulls so much that even light cannot escape through it. But what happened to the falling star on the night sky, do they really get into the massive black holes or crash with something else? According to the scientist, the gravity field of a black hole is so strong that nothing can escape their grip and it is surrounded by an event horizon. However, the existence of event horizon has not been proven yet. 

As UT News reported, supermassive black hole is the largest type of black hole and it is found in the center of almost all galaxies. But scientists suggest there is something else which is not a black hole but an even stranger supermassive object. In addition, this object has managed to avoid gravitational collapse to a singularity surrounded by an event horizon. This idea is actually a modified theory of Einstein's General Relativity.

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Researchers also explained that a singularity has no surface area and the non-collapsed object would have a hard surface. So based on this information, they made a conclusion that a star would not fall into a black hole, but hit this hard surface and be destroyed. Theorists Wenbin Lu and Ramesh Narayan from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics have come to determine the actual reason. They believe that there is an event horizon around black holes.

Their main goal was to find a falling star toward a supermassive object and hitting a hard surface. Researchers used Pan-STARRS, a 1.8-meter telescope in Hawaii to scan the northern hemisphere sky. They calculated how many such transients Pan-STARRS should have detected over a period of 3.5 years, Phys.Org reported. Scientists LU said if the hard surface theory is true then it should have detected more than 10 of them.

But they did not observe properly, because when the material is pulled by these exotic objects then it really does disappear from the observable universe. Now, researchers are still trying to improve the test with an 8.4-meter Large Synoptic Survey Telescope. They will also repeat the survey of the sky over time with great sensitivity.

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