What Do We Actually Know About Black Holes? Fact vs Theory
The information we have on black holes is actually rather limited. How limited may surprise many people who haven’t given physics much attention. Black holes are thought to be a spherical area in space, with gravity so powerful that not even light can escape. The gravity pulls all matter down to a single point which is known as a singularity. What happens to the matter once it reaches said point? That has not been explained much. So, how much of this is fact and how much is theory?
Facts of a black hole
As of February 2017, a black hole has not directly been observed. No one on earth has ever seen one. So where has all the black hole talk come from?
Astronomers observed an area in space which is known as a “ghost region”. The region was given the name “black hole” because it appears to be an invisible area which has a gravitational pull so strong that not even light can escape. However, a black hole has never been directly observed. It was ‘discovered’ based on the analysis of light movement and the way it affects the space around it. Everything else is theory. Is it all a distance phenomena we’ll never discover in our lifetime? According to professionals, we are going to be getting our first direct image of a black hole this April. If so, we will be posting an article on the achievement.
Due to the area around the ghost region, or black hole as it is widely known, there is the one theory everyone seems to follow. This is where a black hole sucks in all matter and leads to a singularity where all the matter compresses, and, well, that’s about as far as the theory has got. No credible theory has been presented about the singularity. Some experts describe it as “a word we use when we can’t explain something”.
This is not to downgrade all the hard work physicist, scientists and astronomers have done, it is to educate people to the truths of a black hole versus the theories, so no one believes theories are actually facts and it’s clear that we have not seen a black hole, nor understand it or know how it operates at the core. The truth is, black holes are a complete mystery and are still presenting information which is baffling the greatest minds.
It was suggested that nothing could escape a black hole’s event horizon (the outer layer of a black hole, if you will), that was until a surge of x-ray energy shot out, article on NASA’s discovery here. Now, with one of the very few things experts believed being proven incorrect, it’s safe to say we just don’t have a clue what they are or why they are there.
We believe black holes are the engines of the universe. Each galaxy has a black hole, but without at least seeing one directly, there is nothing more than speculation as to its purpose, how it works, and what it is truly capable of. There’s an extremely interesting theory on black holes in the book 2050: Being Human in the Future.
What do you think black holes are? Do you think they exist as anything close to what science suggests or do you think they’re something else entirely? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.