Monthly Archives: May 2007

Sidebar Additions

I’ve added a several sites to the side bar. Space Flight Now which deals with space flight, space exploration, cosmology and astrophysics. The Space Review seems to be focused on manned space flight. Exploratorium offers down to Earth experiments and demonstrations educators and science hobbyists can use to teach and learn science.

These links will live on in the sidebar even after this post has scrolled.

Problem with Singularities

Black Holes are an interesting topic, I’m not convince they exist in their originally conceived form, that of a singularity. Problem with quantum physics aside, there is also the problem of angular momentum and relativity.

Everything in the universe possesses angular momentum, whether it be a collapsing star or space dust or whatever, it spins. To conserve angular momentum, as something collapses it spins faster, just as a ballerina spins faster when she brings her arms near her body.

Material collapsing will approach relativistic velocities at some point. It can not go faster than the speed of light but it can get closer and closer, and as it does, it will acquire more and more relativistic mass. The fact that it can’t spin infinitely fast means it can never collapse entirely into a singularity.

Even if the material only approaches the speed of light, we should see the effect of relativistic mass on the gravity signature of black holes and the effect that it has on the surrounding space. We don’t seem to see this so something must prevent the collapse from continuing past some stable point, otherwise we’d keep seeing the relativistic mass continue to rise towards infinity swallowing the entire universe. We are still here to contemplate this so I think it’s safe to assume this has not yet happened, in at least 13.7 billion years, this has not yet happened in our universe.