Black Holes May Create Holograms Rather Than Being Ruthless 'Killers'

First Posted: Jun 17, 2015 08:32 AM EDT

Black holes may be more complicated than we originally thought, and may not be the ruthless "killers" scientists once believed. A new theoretical study proposes that there may be a loophole when it comes to the idea that black holes destroy all they touch.

More than a decade ago, Samir Mathur, a professor of physics at the Ohio State University, used the principles of string theory to show that black holes are actually tangled-up balls of cosmic strings. This "fuzzball theory" helped resolve certain contradictions in how physicists think of black holes.

Later researchers then added the firewall theory to this. According to the firewall theory, the surface of the fuzzball is deadly. Yet now, Mathur has stated that black holes aren't killers, but are more like copy machines.

In this case, the researchers believe that when material touches the surface a black hole, it becomes a hologram-a near-perfect copy of itself that continues to exist just as before. However, this hologram is imperfect since it would be impossible for a perfect hologram to form.

That's not all that occurs, either. The black hole is permanently changed by the new addition. It's as if a new gene sequence has been spliced into its "DNA." This means that every black hole is a unique product of the material that happens to come across it.

So what are the implications of this theory? One of the tenets of string theory is that our three-dimensional existence might actually be a hologram on a surface that exists in many more dimensions.

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