Wow! Black hole collision just proved this Albert Einstein theory right | Tech News

Wow! Black hole collision just proved this Albert Einstein theory right

An enormous black hole collision showing extreme signs of wobbling has confirmed a phenomenon predicted by Albert Einstein.

| Updated on: Oct 13 2022, 18:48 IST
black hole
A pair of black holes is captured wobbling three 3 per second as they merged. (NASA)

A pair of black holes wobbling 3 times per second as they merged has confirmed a gravitational phenomenon predicted by Albert Einstein a century ago. The phenomenon also known as precession is similar to the wobbling motion that takes place when two ancient black holes collide together and merge into one. Gravity-induced orbital precession or wobbling is a consequence of general relativity's prediction about how gravity affects the fabric of space-time.

This effect had been observed very weakly in neutron stars orbiting one another. According to the study published in Nature magazine, Mark Hannam at Cardiff University, UK, and his colleagues have seen a gargantuan effect in a pair of black holes, as one of them is spinning at a fifth of the speed of light at a 90-degree angle to its orbital motion. And as both the block holes merged it released a gravitational wave, known as GW200129, carrying the sign of precession occurring at a rate of three times a second.

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Explaining the same, Hannam said, “It's 10 billion times faster than what was found in earlier measurements, so it really is the most extreme regime of Einstein's theory where space and time are warped and distorted in completely crazy ways.”

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To identify this wobbling Hannam's team reanalysed that data collected in 2020 by three gravitational wave detectors, based in the US, Italy and Japan. While the previous analysis shows no sign of precession, a more advanced model to detect sources of noise in the data, gives Hannam and his team the idea that the signal was with one of the black holes, spinning at almost the upper limit allowed by general relativity.

What is black hole?

Regina Caputo, a research astrophysicist at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center defined it as "a region of space where gravity is so strong that even light can't escape." NASA explained that the gravity is so strong because of the matter being squeezed into a tiny space when a star is dying.

The black holes are invisible as no light can get out of them. Space telescopes with special tools can help view black holes as well as how stars close to black holes act differently than other stars.

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First Published Date: 13 Oct, 18:20 IST