When the black hole is actively fed, something weird can be noticed: extremely powerful plasma jets shoot from its poles at speeds approaching the speed of light.
Given the intense gravitational interaction in the game, exactly how these jets are secret. But now, using computer simulations, this physicist has come up with the answer – particles that have "negative energy" pull out the energy from the black hole and divert it to the jets.
This theory for the first time united two different and seemingly irreconcilable theories about how energy can be extracted from the black holes.
The first is called the Blandford-Znajek process and describes how the magnetic field of the black holes can be used to obtain energy from its rotation.
As the disk material grows ever closer to the horizon of the event, it stands in theory, it becomes increasingly magnetized, creating a magnetic field. Within this field, the black hole acts as a spur, inducing the tension between the poles and the equator; this voltage is released from the poles as jets.
The other is called the Penrose process, and is based on the preservation of the momentum, not the magnetism. The rotation energy of the black hole is not within the horizon of the event, but in the area outside it is called ergosphere, which comes into contact with the horizon of the events on the poles.
According to the Penrose process, if the object within this area is broken, with one piece moving toward the black hole and the other outward, opposite the turning of the black hole, the piece that was tied out would appear with more energy, removed from the rotation. It produces some kind of "negative energy" & # 39;
Both of these scenarios are convincing, but so far we have not been sure of the correct answer.
"How can energy be extracted by rotating black holes to create nozzles?" said theoretical physicist Kyle Parfrey of the National Laboratory Lawrence Berkeley. "This is a question for a long time."
The team designed a simulation of collision-free plasma (where particle collisions do not play an important role) in the presence of a strong gravitational surface of the black hole. They are also responsible for creating electron-positronic pairs in electrical fields, enabling a more realistic plasma density.
The resulting simulation has naturally produced the Blandford-Znajek process – electrons and positronium that move in the opposite directions around the black holes, generating the energy in the electromagnetic field that is thrown out of the poles as jets.
But that also produced a variation of the Penrose process. Because of the relativistic effects, some particles had "negative energy" when they disappeared into the black hole – which slowed the rotation of the black hole, only a tiny part.
"If you were right up to the particle, you would not see anything strange about it, but the remote observer seems to have a negative energy," Parfrey said. New Scientist.
"You are left with this strange case where, if it falls into the black hole, it will cause a reduction in mass and rotation."
The effect did not really contribute to total energy extraction, Parfrey pointed out, but it is possible that this is in some way related to electric currents that swirl magnetic fields.
The simulation also lacks some components, such as the acrylic disk, and the physics of positron-electron creation is not as detailed as it could be. The team will work to create even more realistic simulations to better study the process.
"We hope to provide a more consistent picture of the whole problem," Parfrey said.
A team survey was published in the journal Physical Review Letters, and can be read entirely on arXiv.