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Black Holes Contain a Mysterious Force

Some of them are helping the universe expand, study says
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 5, 2019 1:30 PM CDT
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An artist's rendering of a black hole.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Black holes are dense singularities that suck up matter, right? Not always, according to two scientists who say some black holes are likely objects filled with a mysterious energy. In Astrophysical Journal, Kevin Croker and Joel Weiner argue that the expansion of the universe—which is accelerating, apparently due to dark energy—can be better explained if some black holes are really Generic Objects of Dark Energy filled with this force that's swelling the size of our universe, LiveScience reports. Croker and Weiner stumbled on the idea while analyzing famous equations that support Einstein's theory of general relativity. But those equations, they found, are based on an assumption that didn't hold water on closer inspection.

The assumption: Matter is mostly similar and spread out evenly around the universe, per ScienceAlert. But Croker and Weiner found the expansion rate of the universe makes more sense if some collapsed stars contain dark energy and exert an extra influence on the expansion. Not all scientists are buying it, and more study is needed, but it's an interesting take. "For 80 years, we've generally operated under the assumption that the universe, in broad strokes, was not affected by the particular details of any small region," Croker tells Phys.org. "It is now clear that general relativity can observably connect collapsed stars—regions the size of Honolulu—to the behavior of the universe as a whole, over a thousand billion billion times larger." (Meanwhile, Planet 9 might not be a planet.)

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