What we know or at least theorize about black holes and the way they work changes very frequently. That’s because what we don’t know about black holes is leaps and bounds more than what we do know. In fairness, it’s not easy to learn about an object so forceful that it swallows everything including light.
But new science is slowly emerging that challenges what we all previously thought to be at the center of every black hole: the singularity. The singularity is an infinitely small one-dimensional space at the center of a black hole where space-time is completely broken down and both the density and gravity are infinite. This being the case, a singularity would absolutely devour any matter that heads toward it.
Matter would be able to pass through it and wind up on the other side.
Physicists theorize in a new article published for the journal Classical and Quantum Gravity that the center of a black hole might actually be a wormhole instead. This would be an extremely small sphere instead of a one-dimensional point and therefore would not be infinitely small. Being a wormhole, matter would be able to pass through it and wind up on the other side — wherever that might be in the universe.
Of course, spaghettification would still occur on the way into the wormhole. With gravity so strong that light can’t escape, any matter entering a black hole is pulled and stretched toward the center wormhole at light speed. So matter still won’t have a fun time inside a black hole.
With gravity so strong that light can’t escape, any matter entering a black hole is pulled and stretched toward the center wormhole at light speed.
The story doesn’t quite end there though. As reported by The Science Explorer, the size of the wormhole at the center might potentially change depending on the electrical charge within the black hole. The bigger the charge, the larger the wormhole. While scientists have worked out that the wormholes are probably smaller than the nucleus of an atom, that’s still not as small as an “infinitely small” singularity. Theoretically, this wormhole could get infinitely larger based on the charge. In fact, matter might actually return to its normal size on the other side.
Though already proposed, your own experience falling inside a black hole would also vary depending on the size of the black hole. Interestingly enough, the more massive a black hole is, the more you’d be able to witness what is unfolding around you as you fall in. Top Media has a mind-blowing YouTube video on this phenomenon.
Don’t get your hopes up though. The chances of a person surviving a black hole are still remarkably unlikely and that idea tends to ignore the basic necessities also required for life like air… something that a black hole lacks. But where the concept of a singularity ensured you would be crushed to an infinitely small amount, wormholes offer hope that whatever happens to matter inside a black hole doesn’t result in a complex infinite shrinkage.
Interestingly enough, the more massive a black hole is, the more you’d be able to witness what is unfolding around you as you fall in.
It’s important to also keep in mind once again that black holes are still for the most part very misunderstood. Ideas and concepts are likely to change again and again in the future regarding what goes on inside of one. In short, the center of black holes being finite rather than infinite is ever so slightly good news for finite things like matter. But buying a round-trip ticket to go check one out still wouldn’t be a smart financial move.
G. J., Rubiera-Garcia, D., & Sanchez-Puente, A. (2016). Impact of curvature divergences on physical observers in a wormhole space–time with horizons. Classical and Quantum Gravity, 33(11), 115007.
Last updated on 23 February, 2022
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