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Black Holes (Lucent Library of Science and Technology) by Don Nardo

By Don Nardo

The is still of collapsed stars, black holes own huge, immense gravities that pull in and annihilate any topic that strays too shut. the most recent proof and theories for those weird and wonderful gadgets are provided during this fascinating publication, together with how black holes have been first anticipated, how they shape, their actual houses, and the way scientists become aware of them. additionally coated are the enormous black holes referred to now to lurk on the facilities of such a lot galaxies and the potential of utilizing those gadgets as cosmic gateways.

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Sample text

Dubbed 3C 273, the object is situated at the enormous distance of 2 billion light-years from our solar system. ) Astronomers noted that 3C 273 gives off both visible light and strong jets of radio waves and other kinds of electromagnetic radiation. What made the object seem so 63 64 Black Holes unusual was that this outpouring energy is hundreds of times greater than that of the entire Milky Way galaxy, which is made up of billions of stars; yet 3C 273 appeared to be extremely small—the size of a single star.

Not surprisingly, this densest of superdense objects jams an extremely large amount of material into a very small volume of space. A stellar black hole is surprisingly small, therefore. One formed during the death of a star having eight solar masses would probably be only about the size of a small house. It is important to remember that most of the former star’s original matter is still inside the black Dying Stars and the Formation of Black Holes hole. ) That means that the object’s gravitational pull will be roughly the same as that of the original star.

But most will remain inside the shrinking star, which, compelled by gravity’s mighty hand, will finally crush this matter into a white dwarf—a small, hot, but only dimly luminous ball about the size of Earth. A white dwarf is so dense that a mere tablespoon of its material weighs a thousand tons. Thus it comes as no surprise that such a body possesses a very deep gravity well and therefore a powerful gravitational pull. To escape a white dwarf, a spaceship would need to reach a speed of about three thousand miles per second!

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