Black holes are some incredible cosmic objects and they are scattered all over the universe. What’s important to note is that we don’t really know a whole lot of them. In fact, we barely had the opportunity to take a photo of one found in another galaxy. With that in mind, scientists are stating that within the observable universe, there are around 40 billion black holes. So there might be even more than that outside of the observable universe, which shows just how vast and incredible the Universe really is.
What is a black hole?
The thing to note about black holes is that they are astronomical objects. These objects have a very powerful gravitational pull. That gravitational pull is actually so powerful that anything will be drawn to it. Yes, it doesn’t matter the size of the item or anything like that. Which is why many believe that black holes can actually attract a lot of massive items, sometimes even small planets. What’s interesting to note is that the surface of a black hole is called the event horizon.
Not only that, but the exciting thing is that in order to escape the black holes, you will need to actually have a speed over the speed of light. It’s the speed limit in the cosmos, so anything from radiation to matter will be trapped and you can’t get out of that.
Over the years researchers have identified 2 different black hole classes. First, you have the stellar mass black holes. These are many times bigger than the mass of the sun. You can find them in our galaxy and other galaxies too. However, there are also the supermassive monsters that are hundreds of thousands or even way larger than the solar mass. These giants are in the center of large galaxies. Sometimes a galaxy can have both types of black holes, or only one. It depends on the situation.
Why do black holes exist?
It’s very difficult to narrow down the reasoning behind black holes and their existence. Some state that these black holes are actually the things that remained from other universes. But there are also people suggesting that these were actually used as space tunnels. You could use them to travel huge distances. Needless to say, there’s no definitive answer as of now, but it’s interesting to see that there are 40 billion black holes in the Universe that we know of. It just shows they aren’t just a random event. There are a plethora of them, and it’s interesting to see all of these things coming to light.
Where did this number come from? A team of scientists from SISSA started a research project with the idea of figuring out just how many black holes exist in the visible universe. The paper the team wrote was published in the Astrophysical Journal and the focus was to talk about stellar mass black holes, how large these are and how they might have influenced the end of life for many massive stars to begin with.
According to their research, it’s said that 1% of the matter in the Universe is actually locked in these black holes, more specifically the stellar mass ones. The same team also suggests that based on their studies, there are upwards of 40 billion black holes in the universe that we can see. Calculating just how many black holes exist is a huge undertaking, and there’s definitely a lot of estimation involved. It goes to show that yes, there are obvious challenges when it comes to such estimates, and it’s just great to see so much information coming to light.
Identifying the number of black holes in the observable universe
A lot of people might be asking how this team from SISSA managed to actively figure out what method was used in order to figure out the number of black holes. SISSA researcher Mario Spera created a binary evolution code SEVN in order to provide empirical prescriptions. This SEVN code is great at identifying the star formation rate, the interstellar medium metallicity and stellar mass size.
Despite the fact that this team identified just how many black holes are in the observable universe, they also studied other things too. They also focused on how black holes with different masses were formed and how did those things come to life. According to their research, it seems that most massive stellar black holes are formed through dynamic events. These events take place in stellar clusters, and the rate of black hole generation is random.
What are most black holes made of?
What’s important to note and keep in mind is the fact that these tend to be made from the remnants of a star which died in a supernova explosion. That massive force generates a black hole, and then it draws matter towards it. As we mentioned earlier, matter can’t escape a black hole, which means it will continue drawing matter towards it all the time.
Does time stop in the black hole?
There are many questions about black holes, but one of the things people are interested in is whether time stops in the black hole or not. Time does stop in black holes, but only those outside of the black hole will be able to feel that. Any physical signal is redshifted in a black hole. What that means people outside of it won’t be reached. When you are in a black hole, you won’t see time stopping in any way.
What happens if a person enters a black hole?
It didn’t happen until this point, obviously, but there are some studies related to the topic. What’s important to keep in mind, the body is subjected to spaghettification. What that means is that the gravity force in a black hole is so powerful that you would be stretched and compressed at the same time. This just goes to show the true power of a black hole and how much power it really has.
Are there more than 40 billion black holes in the universe?
We don’t have a clear image of the universe and how large it is. As a result, it’s close to impossible to figure out just how many of these black holes can actively be in the universe. That’s why it’s a very good idea to understand the vastness of the universe and just how many plants, galaxies and black holes are actually there. We can only think there are hundreds of billions of black holes that we just don’t see, maybe even way more than that. Which is what makes the universe so fascinating.
Even so, the research made by the SISSA team is great and it gives us an insight into the size of the universe and how amazing it really is. A lot of people are interested in the universe and its incredible size, but we also neglect the potential dangers. Black holes are a region of spacetime where nothing escapes, so as we venture into the universe and explore it even more, we can only imagine that we’ll encounter more and more of these black holes!
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