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Black Holes and Impossible Planets

30 Nov 2016, 13:10 UTC
Black Holes and Impossible Planets
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

Black holes are incredibly fascinating. They represent the unknown, the dangerous, the terrifyingly majestic. They are the modern version of the void, the abyss, the bottomless pit. Most sci-fi gets black holes right, but poetic license ignores the facts at times, and takes over to accommodate the needs of the story.
A black hole is a simple thing really. It is an object so dense that its escape velocity (the velocity necessary to break free from the gravitational pull of said object) is greater than the speed of light. Now let’s add a bit more complexity to that. The region where you can barely escape the death-pull of the Black Hole is called the event horizon. Since light cannot escape, you cannot observe beyond that point. No peeping inside. That’s due to the Cosmic Censorship Conjecture. We can only probe the inside with the use of mathematics.
The matter present in the star before its transformation will collapse into a singularity, a point of infinite density. Well, not always a point. In a rotating black hole, the singularity has a curious property: it is not a point but a disk. The sides are still a singularity but if you ...

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