Scientists have investigated two possible scenarios according to which neutron stars can be eaten from the inside.
Some caterpillars are not lucky enough to be tracked down by parasitic axes to load eggs into their bodies: the resulting larvae gradually eat them and eventually kill them.
It is possible that similar internal parasites (endoparasites) attack dead stars. Instead of larvae, these are miniature black holes.
A new study by American physicists has examined whether these could be original black holes thought to exist for decades or even more exotic objects.
The researchers published the study in the archive of scientific overprints arXiv.
The real identity of dark matter?
Four-fifths of gravity in space appears to be missing a source. We call the invisible cause of this weight dark matter because it does not radiate or reflect radiation. It is manifested only by gravity.
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We do not know the true identity of dark matter. One possibility is the so-called primordial black holes – hypothetical objects that were supposed to have formed shortly after the Big Bang.
If black holes do not consume matter and gravity does not affect the trajectories of nearby objects, they are very difficult to detect. If they “do nothing” and are isolated, they are practically invisible to us. Just like dark matter.
Ordinary black holes are usually so massive that they reveal an effect on other objects. But the original black holes did not form from stars, because they did not exist shortly after the Big Bang. They should therefore be small in size, ideal for an unseen source of excessive cosmic gravity.
Were they born into them?
Several researchers have believed that there are some detectors of such dark matter that form black holes – neutron stars, or extremely compressed nuclei of dead stars.
If black holes do not absorb matter as in the picture or do not gravitationally affect the trajectories of other bodies, they are very difficult to detect.
Physicists have considered two scenarios. In one, the first neutron stars in the early history of the cosmos merged with pre-existing primordial black holes. In the second scenario, miniature black holes were born somewhere during the later evolution of the cosmos directly in them.
“Dark matter particles could be trapped inside a neutron star. Under sufficient washing conditions, these particles could create an object with enough density to crash into a small black hole,” the study authors explain.
“In both cases, the neutron star would carry a small parasitic black hole in its center. Such a black hole would gradually absorb the surrounding mass of the neutron star until it is completely absorbed,” the scientists continue.
Is it real?
The question was how quickly that absorption would happen. Researchers from Bowdoin College and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign decided to answer that.
The answer could indicate whether the original black holes are parasitic in the womb of neutron stars.
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American physicists first modeled the evolution of parasitic black holes of different sizes within neutron stars of different sizes.
They concluded that, given the maximum mass of neutron stars (2.3 times that of the Sun), they would be completely swallowed by parasitic black holes about three billion times throughout the history of the cosmos (1021) less massive than the Sun.
Another blow to the original black holes
They then compared the results of computer modeling with the properties of the observed neutron stars. They discovered that the original black holes could not be found in them because they would have swallowed them long ago.
This means that if the dark matter is at least partially explained by the weight of the miniature parasitic black holes, it will be scenario number two – black holes, which formed only in the womb of neutron stars.
Although the absorption of the original black holes was supposed to take place in the early evolution of the universe, according to physicists, the above-mentioned formation of parasitic black holes is a process that can occur at any time. Even at this point.