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Questions tagged [black-holes]

For questions about a region of space time where gravity is so strong that nothing, not even light, can escape it.

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83 votes
11 answers
16k views

Is it worth sending a manned mission to a black hole?

Suppose we detect a stellar black hole passing near the Solar system, and we have technology and time to send a manned mission to study it. Are there any experiments or observations that would help ...
Just Larry's user avatar
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43 votes
14 answers
7k views

How would one destroy a black hole?

Science-Fiction has tools to destroy anything: atoms, molecules, DNA, cellular organisms, multicellular organisms, buildings, streets, cities, countries, continents, planets, and even stars. Some ...
Nzall's user avatar
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31 votes
6 answers
4k views

On the immediate effects of a small, short term black hole

What immediate effects would a small, short-term black hole have if it appeared in a residential backyard? How small or short-lived would it have to be to be survivable, if it is survivable at all? ...
MiraAstar's user avatar
  • 645
30 votes
4 answers
5k views

A planet illuminated by a black hole?

Is it possible for a planet to be heated and illuminated by a black hole due to Hawking radiation at the same intensity as by a star? What mass and size should a black hole have to produce the same ...
Anixx's user avatar
  • 5,360
28 votes
18 answers
10k views

How would one weaponize a black hole?

Assume two massive space empires begin to war with each other. Now, they come to a standstill because they are so alike that they are unable to outnumber, outwit, or outmaneuver each-other and come to ...
Jax's user avatar
  • 11.9k
26 votes
9 answers
8k views

Protect a planet against a black hole attack

Suppose in a very very long future, humans have become relative powerful military force in galactic politics due to a very powerful weapon: the ability of creating black holes wherever we want. Now we ...
Freedo's user avatar
  • 785
24 votes
5 answers
2k views

Is it safe to orbit HDE 226868?

I'm considering a story where an exploration is devised to explore a binary system containing a black hole; the choice is Cygnus X-1, with its companion supergiant star HDE 226868. It would likely be ...
HDE 226868's user avatar
  • 102k
23 votes
3 answers
3k views

How big a black hole is needed for this story?

The story begins in classic disaster film style. A small rogue black hole is approaching our Solar System. It isn’t going to get close enough to destroy everything, but it will agitate our Sun, ...
Henry Taylor's user avatar
  • 69.2k
21 votes
13 answers
11k views

1 Light Year Diameter Planet

Suppose a species has limitless resources and the ability to construct megastructures of an astronomical scale. Would it be possible, given antigravitational technology (hypothetical), to create a ...
Kcronix's user avatar
  • 612
21 votes
7 answers
8k views

The Moon turns into a black hole of the same mass -- what happens next?

If there were a black hole orbiting an inhabited planet, with the gravity of a typical moon (e.g our moon, orbiting a similarly weighted planet to ours), what practical differences would arise when ...
zevythegreat's user avatar
21 votes
1 answer
4k views

How do I feed my black hole?

Strange title I know, but you'll understand why quickly. I wanted to use a black hole to create absurd amounts of power for hopefully obvious reasons (kind of useful). The problem with natural large ...
Demigan's user avatar
  • 45.5k
19 votes
16 answers
10k views

Black hole as a storage device?

I'm writing a sci-fi story, and there is a giant autonomous computer planet that constantly gathers resources from around the universe using drones. It stores a super weapon at the core of the planet, ...
user69899's user avatar
  • 215
17 votes
7 answers
7k views

Is a solar system around a black hole possible?

Is it possible for there to be a "solar system" of sorts with a black hole and a few suns orbiting around it? Could that system be stable and (if so) would it be possible for some civilization(s) to ...
user avatar
17 votes
4 answers
4k views

What would happen if the black hole at the center of a galaxy was removed?

Say you have a galaxy, possibly ours, with a central black hole. In an instant the black hole falls through a plot hole and vanishes. What happens to the rest of the galaxy? Does everything keep on ...
AndyD273's user avatar
  • 34.8k
16 votes
6 answers
2k views

How would a space probe determine its distance from a black hole while orbiting around it?

Let's say that a space probe is sent to swing once around a black hole. Now, as long as our knowledge of physics goes, if the spaceship stays outside the event horizon it can, at least in principle, ...
L.Dutch's user avatar
  • 292k
16 votes
3 answers
3k views

How long until a small black hole makes the sun fail?

Imagine aliens dropped a small black hole (say, 1% of the moon's mass, so you wouldn't notice the difference in gravitation) into the sun (from the far side of the sun, so nobody on earth can see it). ...
celtschk's user avatar
  • 31.5k
15 votes
3 answers
2k views

Black holes as heat sinks

Cooling in space is a well known difficulty. There are many unpleasant consequences like no stealth in space, difficult space battles which turn into a short wars of attrition (because you have to ...
Danijel's user avatar
  • 2,415
14 votes
4 answers
4k views

How big would a "Ring World" have to be to orbit a black hole?

In many Science Fiction books and games, there are worlds or planet-like objects that are rings that orbit (or float around in space) (some examples being the Halo (from Halo) or the Ringworld (from ...
The Man's user avatar
  • 1,869
14 votes
5 answers
857 views

Can a single, larger black hole be split into multiple smaller black holes?

Essentially, my question is, can one larger black hole be split into a system of smaller black holes? I'm assuming energy requirements will be prohibitive, and that it may not be possible without ...
Ushumgallu's user avatar
13 votes
9 answers
6k views

How to tell a blackhole from a neutron star covered entirely by Dyson sphere painted in vantablack?

In a galaxy far far away... M6760 (I made it up) is an unusually massive neutron star billions of light years away and it is surrounded by a spherical Dyson sphere painted in new improved formula ...
user6760's user avatar
  • 48k
13 votes
6 answers
4k views

How would someone destroy a black hole that’s at the centre of a planet? [duplicate]

For starters, the black hole is temporarily contained. But once it’s containment fails it will devour the planet. Obviously, that’s a bad thing. What’s a reasonable way to prevent that? Also the ...
Alisha Schneider's user avatar
12 votes
6 answers
4k views

What would happen to a modern skyscraper if it rains micro blackholes?

Set in present day New York City, an unknown spacecraft of alien origin expelled millions of micro blackholes each with the mass of a grape in the earth atmosphere. I like to know what happens if ...
user6760's user avatar
  • 48k
12 votes
8 answers
2k views

How far could life develop inside a black hole before it explodes?

Apparently it is theoretically possible for a planet to achieve a stable orbit around the singularity at the centre of a black hole within the event horizon. This means that life could hypothetically ...
overactor's user avatar
  • 5,575
11 votes
1 answer
975 views

What exactly would happen if a black hole was introduced into the sun?

A ship powered by a black hole of a few hundred thousand tons (say, under $6 \times10^8$ kg, which would have a lifetime of several years and a power output of a few hundred petawatts) crashes (...
Tharaib's user avatar
  • 1,191
11 votes
4 answers
893 views

A supermassive black hole is coming our way. When's the latest that we would notice?

I'm trying to build a story around a supermassive black hole, which is ejected from a merger of two galaxies, that is hurtling our own way. What is the smallest realistic distance at which the black ...
bantu's user avatar
  • 113
11 votes
2 answers
10k views

The Science behind Miller's Planet [closed]

In the movie Interstellar, Miller's planet is an ocean planet orbiting extremely close to a black hole. The ridiculous tidal effects caused by the black hole cause the planet's water to concentrate ...
LargeDan69's user avatar
  • 1,118
10 votes
13 answers
8k views

Destroy a Planet inside a black hole?

Imagine a race whom have mastered the knowledge of black holes, at least a bit. They've found a way survive, with their planet intact, inside the gravitation of the black hole without getting ...
Xxy's user avatar
  • 1,270
10 votes
4 answers
3k views

Reasons for time dilation to happen on a habitable planet with same g force and not orbiting a black hole

I wish to clarify my doubts regarding time dilation Is it possible for a planet to be habitable like Edmund's planet from interstellar, which has somewhat similar gravitational force as Earth (9.8 m/...
Peaceman's user avatar
  • 803
10 votes
8 answers
1k views

Are Black Holes Military & Economic Assets? [closed]

I'm working on a sandbox astrophysics, economics and military simulation generator (there is no defined setting but I try to use real and hypothesized science for the most part) where different types ...
Wolf Beaumont's user avatar
10 votes
4 answers
2k views

Would the Hawking radiation from a small black hole make a feasible propulsion source?

I was wondering if a small black hole would make a feasible/possible propulsion source, and if so, how. Pros Black holes release Hawking radiation, would should be easy to direct in a certain ...
Christopher King's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
451 views

Intragalactic velocity past the central black hole

In my story people are traveling from somewhere beyond the opposite side of the galaxy to Earth. The distance traveled is approximately 66 million light-years. I would like the travelers to ...
Javor's user avatar
  • 181
10 votes
2 answers
440 views

Cluster of Black Holes around a Central Point

Within the Star Wars Extended Universe, there is a science base on a small object within a near impenetrable sphere of Black Holes. Is this possible? The place referenced is called the Maw ...
The Glis Jackel's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
384 views

Can the event horizon of a black hole be distorted or destabilized by an extreme spin rate

Assuming that there is a means of increasing the spin rate of an existing black hole, what would happen to the shape of the event horizon as the spin rate was increased? In extremis what would ...
Slarty's user avatar
  • 37.9k
9 votes
4 answers
4k views

How do you detect and defend against micro blackhole cannon?

Set a hundred years into the future, an alien mothership antimatter engine has malfunctioned and to prevent a disaster they decided to eject the byproduct, a micro blackhole as massive as an empire ...
user6760's user avatar
  • 48k
9 votes
4 answers
2k views

Could black holes made of matter and antimatter explode if they were to collide? [closed]

Let's say you have two same-mass black holes, about 10 solar masses each, but while one is made of pure matter, the other is made of pure antimatter. Obviously no amount of energy produced could ...
Nosajimiki's user avatar
  • 97.8k
9 votes
5 answers
784 views

How can I hit a planet with an energy beam from ten lightyears away?

My interstellar empire is powered by a quasar. Or at least it will be once I finish my scheme. See that cloud of glowing dust? That's called the quasar's accretion disc. When stuff falls into the ...
Daron's user avatar
  • 66.2k
9 votes
2 answers
1k views

Smallest Black Hole to 'heat' a Gas Giant

So I want a large power source to heat my new real estate on the Jovian moons. I create a micro black hole (MBH), maybe a few kg, maybe more and drop it into Jupiter. I expect the following to happen [...
mart's user avatar
  • 3,487
9 votes
3 answers
1k views

How close would a black hole need to be for humans to have discovered it before theorizing it?

Black holes were first seriously theorized in the early 20th century, but it took many decades before one could be observed; depending on your definition of "observe," this may have occurred ...
Willa's user avatar
  • 389
9 votes
7 answers
2k views

Could black holes be a better source of energy than stars?

In my story, set in the far(ish) future, humanity discovers a way to extract energy from black holes (perhaps via the Penrose process?), which sparks conflict as various factions attempt to take ...
the_nacho's user avatar
  • 671
9 votes
5 answers
2k views

What would the sky look like to a being inside the event horizon of a black hole?

Suppose it was possible to travel to inside the event horizon of a black hole safely. Also suppose said black hole is large enough that the curvature of the horizon of the surface of the central mass ...
user's user avatar
  • 29k
9 votes
1 answer
1k views

Physiological effects of living on a world close to a black hole

Let's say you were living on a planet near (but not too near) a black hole. I'm thinking of the planet Miller in the movie Interstellar. Obviously there are some strong tidal forces. But at this ...
Coomie's user avatar
  • 499
9 votes
2 answers
679 views

Escaping a blackhole with an Alcubierre drive?

If your ship just got trapped inside the event horizon of an super massive black hole, could the ship "accelerate" back out with an alcubierre drive?
sirzento's user avatar
  • 325
9 votes
2 answers
451 views

Using transfinite numbers in a scifi story

I have been bandying about some exotic mathematics ideas as the basis for a hard scifi setting, and I wonder what technology/alien life would "make sense," here, given the physics arising ...
Kristian Berry's user avatar
8 votes
6 answers
2k views

Space-based black hole weapon effects

For the fluff of my story one of the space-ships is equipped with what I hope is one of the biggest F-you weapons in ship-to-ship combat: a miniature black hole launcher. The launcher fires a whopping ...
Demigan's user avatar
  • 45.5k
8 votes
6 answers
1k views

Spaceship orbiting a black hole under the event horizon - a prison where no one escapes

The relationship between the distance, $d$, of the event horizon from a black hole's center and the tidal acceleration, $a$, experienced by an object near a black hole allows for scenarios in which a ...
Austin A's user avatar
  • 1,098
8 votes
5 answers
1k views

Can we identify black holes in our path flying between the stars?

When traveling at fast speeds through the galaxy, would it be possible to identify where all the black holes were on your path? I know most black holes are identified by their affect on other nearby ...
bowlturner's user avatar
  • 49.2k
8 votes
3 answers
1k views

How much artificial gravity could create a black hole?

In my world, people have powers based on the four fundamental forces. One of my characters can generate spontaneous gravity to crush his opponents. He's also resistant to his own power (so I ignore ...
Eli Gauthier's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
262 views

How big a telescope would we need to see the light distortion effects of a black hole the mass of the Moon, at the distance of the Moon?

Fairly straightforward. I suspect that we'd notice the gravitational effects of it long before we'd be able to see it, but at what point in history would people start noticing that stars jitter around ...
Robert Rapplean's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
4k views

Building a Dyson Shell around a black hole?

What's the minimum safe distance to start building if you don't want any part of the shell or swarm to fall into the event horizon? Could you build a stable structure just short of the Schwarzschild ...
Z.Schroeder's user avatar
  • 11.3k
8 votes
3 answers
477 views

Preventing black hole formation in a water-filled universe

Imagine a universe full of water. A comfortable 22 degrees Celsius warm, density of about 998 grams per liter, and it fills up everything for as far as can be observed. There's nothing else; neither ...
KeizerHarm's user avatar
  • 14.4k

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