Posts Tagged ‘Black Hole’

Dark Black Hole Next Door

May 6, 2020

HR 6819, is a double star system, about 1,000 light-years away, or roughly 9.5 thousand, million, million kilometers, in the Constellation Telescopium. On the scale of the galaxy, it’s next door. Usually Black Holes are detected by the sparks of material furiously accelerated as it falls towards the hole (“Accretion” BH). Copious X-rays are emitted. However, this phenomenon arises typically when two stars are in close orbit, one goes supernova, then implode into a Black Hole, and material keeps transferring from the other star towards the hole.

If the stars are far enough, and one collapses into a Black Hole, there is no reason for a transfer of material. The Black Hole arises because, to our knowledge, gravity will overwhelm any force we know of, if there is enough mass M in a tight enclosure. Notice the “if”. In truth we are not absolutely sure that Black Hole equation, passed a point will behave as General Relativity supposes, because we could only be sure if we are sure we have all of physics figured out. Highly unlikely…

A basic trick used all over astronomy to evaluate the masses of stars and planets, as long as something rotates around them. Gravitational constant has been put equal to unity, to simplify.

But one thing that is clear, and it was already clear to Laplace in the Eighteenth Century, if there is enough mass concentrated, particles of light won’t come out. Laplace waxed lyrical on the subject, until he realized that, thanks to Young’s and others’ work, it looked like light was, after all, a wave, not a particle as Laplace had assumed, following Newton. It was clear how to hold a particle down, with a concentrated mass… But not a wave. So Laplace, assuming now light was a wave, removed Black Holes from late editions of his book!  We can see that the wave-particle perplexity was already causing trouble centuries ago…

The HR 6819 Black Hole can be characterized from its interaction with the two stars of HR 6819 – one that orbits the hole, and the other that orbits this inner pair.

HR 6819 can be seen with just the naked eye from the southern sky. No telescope or binoculars are needed. The 2.2m telescope at La Silla Observatory in Chile reveals the inner of the two visible stars to be orbiting an unseen object every 40 days.

Considering the speed of the orbiting star, and its radius, the invisible object is found to be around four solar masses, more than twice the mass at which a Black Hole is unavoidable in a dark object (a star can have up to hundreds of times the mass of the Sun, but only because raging thermonuclear fire keeps it inflated).

Stars at the end of their lives with a bit more than 1.4 solar masses will implode the Black Hole way. Some think there maybe 10^8 of them in the Milky Way… Which has an area of roughly 10^10 light years… this makes it likely there are other really black Black Holes of the same type closer than that…

Patrice Ayme


From the source:

A naked-eye triple system with a nonaccreting black hole in the inner binary,⋆⋆


Several dozen optical echelle spectra demonstrate that HR 6819 is a hierarchical triple. A classical Be star is in a wide orbit with an unconstrained period around an inner 40 d binary consisting of a B3 III star and an unseen companion in a circular orbit. The radial-velocity semi-amplitude of 61.3 km s−1 of the inner star and its minimum (probable) mass of 5.0 M (6.3 ± 0.7 M) imply a mass of the unseen object of ≥4.2 M (≥5.0 ± 0.4 M), that is, a black hole (BH). The spectroscopic time series is stunningly similar to observations of LB-1. A similar triple-star architecture of LB-1 would reduce the mass of the BH in LB-1 from ∼70 M to a level more typical of Galactic stellar remnant BHs. The BH in HR 6819 probably is the closest known BH to the Sun, and together with LB-1, suggests a population of quiet BHs. Its embedment in a hierarchical triple structure may be of interest for models of merging double BHs or BH + neutron star binaries. Other triple stars with an outer Be star but without BH are identified; through stripping, such systems may become a source of single Be stars.

Black Hole Paradox

September 1, 2015

Photons are the carriers of the electromagnetic field. Each single photon is endowed with a given energy, hf, where f is the frequency of said photon. In some circumstances, the energy a photon possesses is less than the one it needs to get out of a gravitational well. So it cannot get out: a black hole forms.

Essentially, this comes from the fact a photon’s energy is finite, whereas the energy of a gravitational field can grow infinitely… Or so I, and others, used to think, until I became skeptical.

No Doubt There Are Black Holes. Question: How Come?

No Doubt There Are Black Holes. Question: How Come?

Simulated view of a black hole in front of the Large Magellanic Cloud, one of many small galaxies satellite to the giant Milky Way. This Black Hole is assumed to be alone, without accretion disk (accretion would make the Black Hole very luminous!). The ratio between the black hole Schwarzschild radius and the observer distance to it is 1:9. Of note is the gravitational lensing effect known as an Einstein ring, which produces a set of two fairly bright and large but highly distorted images of the Cloud as compared to its actual angular size.

The two arcs of circle top and bottom are actually the Large Magellanic Cloud, appearing in two places, as light goes above and below the Black Hole. The Milky Way appears above, strongly distorted by gravitational lensing. [2006 image by French physicist Alain R.]

Gravitons are the (alleged) carriers of the gravitational field. Each of them has some energy. At some point the energy gravitons individually posses ought to be less than the potential energy needed to get out of a gravitational well. (The reasoning is the same as for photons.)

But then what?

In the case of photons, what is blocked is light the electromagnetic field: light, in another word.

What is blocked when gravitons get blocked? The gravitational field itself! Thus a black hole would not just then show up as a black, “frozen star”. A Black Hole should outright violate (apparent) matter conservation. It should disconnect gravitationally.

Following this simple logic, at some point a mass collapsing gravitationally should disappear, not just visually, but gravitationally.

Yet, astronomical observations reveal hyper massive black holes at the center of galaxies. This tends to indicate that physics may happen inside a black hole that we can neither observe, nor predict.

I presented these simple ideas a very long time ago in Stanford, a private university in California, personally or in seminars, to some of the household names in the field. The reaction of my iconoclasm was close to indignant anger. It’s easy to see why. We human beings live lives which are endowed with sense only by forgetting that we make little sense individually, absent others.

A way to make sense is by giving love and care. Another, mostly the obverse, by the will to power. A scientific, or, more generally, an intellectual career (philosopher, poet, writer, etc.)marries both love and power. Science, in particular, unites a potent hierarchy akin to priesthood, with the pretense of great magic vis-à-vis the public and being a gift to humanity. Or so it is perceived by its participants. Break the spell, and scientists feel as insects instead of semi-gods, and the absurdity of their position, that of thieves in full sight, exposed to the pillory, is too much to bear.

Yet, a quick glance at the history of science shows that great errors and lack of understanding, spectacularly erroneous theories could have been detected easily, with simple observations.

I am not saying that science is always simple. Far from it. For example, the heliocentric theory could be only demonstrated to be sure with 100% certainty, only after a careful study of the phases of Venus, through increasingly powerful telescopes, during the middle of the seventeenth century. Before that, geocentrism failed the smell test (it was too contrived, and the sun was so much bigger). True. The smell test is philosophical in nature. Before that, one could only say that it was un-scientific to rule out the most likely theory (heliocentrism), just because one could not prove it, and because it enraged so many people in high places.

It cannot be any different today: the very idea of the priesthood, scientific or not, is making some humans into quasi-gods. Out of this divine hierarchy comes the certainty that metaphysics has been solved.

Thus, when I suggested that, on the face of it, ultimately, Black Holes ought to disconnect gravitationally with the rest of the universe, I undermined the principle that the greatest scientists (I will not write their names as not to enrage them further), covered as they are with great medals, after all, do not understand much more about gravitation, than we did, say, three centuries ago.

I caused these people existential pain: no, you are not the greatest of the great, having achieved greater understanding than anyone did before you, colossally dominating history and humanity, and deservedly so. What you call greatest of the greatness, seems, after all, to be just errors of the smugly ignorant.

Einstein was not that way. He said:

All these fifty years of conscious brooding have brought me no nearer to the answer to the question, ‘What are light quanta?’ Nowadays every Tom, Dick and Harry thinks he knows it, but he is mistaken. (Albert Einstein, 1954)

Most importantly, Albert Einstein also suspected that Matter could not be described by field theory:

I consider it quite possible that physics cannot be based on the field concept, i.e., on continuous structures. In that case, nothing remains of my entire castle in the air, gravitation theory included, [and of] the rest of modern physics. (Albert Einstein, 1954)

In my theory, elementary particles are not only non-local (Einstein’s Error was to suppose that they were), but they break (giving rise to Dark Matter). But I will not go as far as to say that “nothing remains”. Far from it, my dear Uncle Albert. Quantum Field Theory remains, as an approximation. Just as the epicycle theory remains, as a sort of Fourier Analysis of a periodic motion.

Some physicists will laugh at the simplicity of the preceding reasoning, and just exasperatedly utter: “that’s ridiculous” as some of the most prestigious specialists of the field did to me, decades ago. Maybe it is. Just tell me why. I am humbly waiting.

Patrice Ayme’  

The Satanic Imperative

January 24, 2014

I explained in Black Hole Inequality that if inequality grows too much, a society will be sucked by it as if by a Black Hole. Such collapses typically conclude with war, invasion, or a natural calamity: Jin, Song, Yuan, Ming dynasties, & the “Fall” of Rome, or the Maya are examples.

The situation we have today possesses unparalleled perils we are not addressing because we are not in democracy, and the ruling elites are doing their best to distract themselves with corruption, in a fit of psychology reminiscent of the Nazi elite stealing treasure and art all over, while the Great Reich was falling. (See below for the Chinese elite’s theft of at least 4 trillion dollars, a pale imitation of what the American elite has been doing since it has been hiding behind the Bushes.)

Inequality is born from the exponential growth of power (in particular capital), that’s a purely mathematical effect. It became possible when capital appeared. That is, when artifacts appeared rendering life comfortable… Two million years ago (first stone tools). In conjunction with a failure of taxing said growth of capital enough, capital will grow exponentially.

In turn, inequality, being widely perceived, experiments show, as insufferable by primates, has to be covered-up under a thick layer of lies and dissemblance, to be entertained further by those who profit from it (Note 2). Even madness is not far, because those who rule have want the rabble believe that white is black, and black is white. Indeed, ethics is absolute, but, in an unjust society, it’s those who rule, who want to be absolute.

Hence the greater the inequality, the worse the emotions, the more satanic the behavior of those at the top. This is why the reign of the rich brings up the Dark Side, Satan, Pluto. That insight was reached by the Greeks at least 26 centuries ago (and later reinforced by the mythical Jesus).

Hence inequality is not just about injustice, and diminished economic opportunity for the average citizen. It’s also about a society increasingly led by fewer and fewer people gathering all the money and power, and ever more so, as long as a strong mechanism to block further inequality is not put in place.

But, even more horrifyingly, a society where inequality grows is a society where the leaders learn to increasingly lie and use the worse methods for their class to keep on ruling.

As inequality grows, so does the Dark Side.



Inequality is the drama of the Obama presidency, his signature achievement, even more than Romneycare. Obama’s is the Inequality presidency. Obama lowered taxes (mostly to the non rich) thus allowing him to leave untouched taxes on the hyper rich that were way too low. (So Obama used the former to hide the latter, a nice magician trick; Note 1.)

Krugman, his lower eye on his rather dim readership, and his upper one on his masters, wrote a less grand, but still educative editorial in the The Populist Imperative:

“The outstanding faults of the economic society in which we live are its failure to provide for full employment and its arbitrary and inequitable distribution of wealth and incomes.”

John Maynard Keynes wrote that in 1936, but it applies to our own time, too.

If, as has been widely reported, President Obama devotes much of his State of the Union address to inequality, everyone should be cheering him on.

They won’t, of course. Instead, he will face two kinds of sniping. The usual suspects on the right will, as always when questions of income distribution comes up, shriek “Class warfare!” But there will also be seemingly more sober voices arguing that he has picked the wrong target, that jobs, not inequality, should be at the top of his agenda.

Here’s why they’re wrong.

First of all, jobs and inequality are closely linked if not identical issues. There’s a pretty good although not ironclad case that soaring inequality helped set the stage for our economic crisis

…Yes, we’re a nation that admires rather than resents success, but most people are nonetheless disturbed by the extreme disparities of our Second Gilded Age. A new Pew poll finds an overwhelming majority of Americans — and 45 percent of Republicans! — supporting government action to reduce inequality, with a smaller but still substantial majority favoring taxing the rich to aid the poor. And this is true even though most Americans don’t realize just how unequally wealth really is distributed.

By contrast, it’s very hard to communicate even the most basic truths of macroeconomics, like the need to run deficits to support employment in bad times. You can argue that Mr. Obama should have tried harder to get these ideas across; many economists cringed when he began echoing Republican rhetoric about the need for the federal government to tighten its belt along with America’s families. But, even if he had tried, it’s doubtful that he would have succeeded.”

Krugman is funny: a man can’t teach what he does not understand. There is this famous saying that: give a man a fish, feed him for a day, teach him to fish, feed him for life.

In his unforgettable books, the irreplaceable Obama teaches that life is all about… navigating. I did not see Obama teaching values such as employment, or how to do anything productive, such as fishing and thinking.  Obama is not the Old Man and the Sea. It’s the Young Man and the Pot of Gold.

Obama’s confused policy in science and technology is a testimony to that. Obama wasted 150 billions (said his guy in charge) supporting friendly capitalists like the Elon Musk. That augmented inequality: Musk is just a filthy rich South African immigrant, who did not need all those billions from the USA president.

So Obama wasted those 150 billion, while carefully starving the science missions of NASA, including some international collaborations. The science budget at NASA is only 5 billion a year., but that makes work lots of workers and engineers, let alone scientists.

And Krugman to conclude: The point is that of the two great problems facing the U.S. economy, [employment and inequality], inequality is the one on which Mr. Obama is most likely to connect with voters…

So I hope we’ll hear something about jobs Tuesday night, and some pushback against deficit hysteria. But if we mainly hear about inequality and social justice, that’s O.K. “

It never hurts to listen to the birds singing in the trees, either. It’s more troubling when we have been navigated into a disaster by a guy who knew only to navigate to the masters. As I showed, after tax corporate profits have never been higher under Obama. But don’t worry: he will sleep well. He is not Magellan (who died pierced by arrows in the Philippines).



So let me repeat slowly: plutocracy central is the USA, As I explained in USA, Den Of Thieves. USA plutocrats have been the world’s mightiest and most durable ever since the Kaiser bit the dust. Kaiser Wilhem II of Germany, that is. USA plutocracy was the indispensable Deus In Machina that has ruled for more than a century, although sometimes through servants and collaborators: Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, are examples (even Mao was helped by USA plutocracy, not just in the 1940s, but by Nixon).

Obama does not know much, but he knows that the big corporate actors of the USA don’t pay much tax. That’s not a violation of the law, because they are the law (that’s the way he has got to see it, according to his “navigation” morality). At least so he was told, or decided, in 2008.

The way many strategists in the USA (be they in think tanks, the intelligence agencies, the military and rarefied pluto circles, Davos style) figure it out, rogue plutos and their corporations made the empire of the USA, by leveraging the world wars. And the struggle for world domination is not over. Just as they made German plutos an offer they could not refuse, a century ago, they made Russian plutos and Chinese plutos similar offer, that they could not refuse.

We are witnessing an attempt to implement the same trick. (However, that can work, see: Note 4.)



The corrupt, not to say satanic, Chinese leadership has hidden at least 4 trillion dollars in the Caribbean and other balmy places, for more than 22,000 tax havens clients, including 15 of the apex political animals in China.

This is what the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists announced this week.

Those files come from JUST two offshore firms — Singapore-based Portcullis TrustNet and BVI-based Commonwealth Trust Limited — that help clients create offshore companies, trusts and bank accounts.

(That’s part of a cache of 2.5 million leaked files that ICIJ has sifted through with help from more than 50 reporting partners in Europe, North America, Asia and other regions.)

PricewaterhouseCoopers, UBS and other Western banks and accounting firms are middlemen helping Chinese plutos setting up trusts and companies in the British Virgin Islands, Samoa and other tax havens. Example: giant Swiss bank Credit Suisse helped Wen Jiabao’s son create his British Virgin Island company while his daddy was leading China and terrorizing Tibet.

Obama loved to golf with the aptly named Wolf, head of UBS USA. Meanwhile UBS was found by the USA to have engaged in criminal conduct, but strangely enough, no American banker ever goes to jail (though the USA has no apparent problem jailing Swiss bankers, meaning that the USA is after market share, not justice).

A century ago, except for one large republic, France, Europe was dominated by plutocrats who all knew each other very well. War was the answer they found to the questions We The People asked, especially in Germany.

Right now, we have a somewhat similar situation developing: a new plutocratic Internationale has developed, and entangled all the world’s leadership systems. “democracy” is just a word they use to hide corruption. That they all know each other is not reassuring is anymore than in 1914. Just as in 1914, it makes them too confident and tolerant of the Dark Side.

The Prime Minister of Ukraine, an agent of Putin, gives interviews at the plutocratic conference in Davos, implying that he will keep on killing protesters, as needed.

Meanwhile, the Earth’s affairs are not attended by these golden clowns. A major catastrophic development in the CO2 crisis could happen any day, and then what? Everybody is unprepared to take intelligent, drastic countermeasures (remember that fundamental research budgets were actually reduced because of the 2008 plutocratic crisis… which makes sense in plutocratic logic!).

The first counter-measure? Increase educational levels. And that means increase funding for the likes of NASA or the Department of Energy, DOE (because, after all, there would be no CO2 crisis if we had more advanced energy sources). But the rumor is that Obama wants to save on laser fusion research (so he can give more money to his hyper wealthy “friends”?)

By refusing intelligent and soft counter-measures to rising inequality, we are preparing the worst.

Hence inequality is not just about giving in to the Dark Side, it’s about making the bed of war. And no doubt, among those who have nearly all and want to give nothing, war is always better than any alternative they can think of. Thinking is not their forte.

Patrice Aymé


Note 1: Obama, the Changeling, not to be confused to Chinese Princeling, brought us change we can believe: the greatest corporate profits ever, after tax, relative to GDP.  To compensate, he talks about inequality more than ever.

This is the State of the Union: schizoid (= a form of schizophrenia, being of two minds on one thing).

Note 2: Chimpanzees or Baboons have a strong sexual dimorphism, and thus a greater tolerance for injustice. Humans are closer in dimorphism to Capuchin Monkeys, who detest injustice.

Note 3. The graph of higher education hides a worse truth: a lot of the public spending helps actually fund the plutocratic (“private”) universities.

Note 4: Repeating exactly the same trick can work: the fascist German army defeated twice the French at Sedan (1870 & 1940). Even better, a more than 10,000 strong Persian army allied to Macedonia held the Thermopylae, just as the Spartans had done before, and, just as before, the Roman army took the same mountain path to crush them from behind.