Solving the mysteries of black holes Today’s Video of the Day from NASA clears up some common misconceptions about black holes, which are some of the most intriguing phenomena in the Universe.
Black holes are not always black, and they are also not always the same size. Supermassive black holes are found at the center of every galaxy.
Most people think that anything within a few thousand miles of a black hole will be sucked into its strong gravitational pull, but this is not the case. A black hole with the mass of our Sun, for example, could be approached within tens of miles. Black holes are the only objects in the Universe that can trap light by sheer gravitational force. Scientists believe they are formed when the corpse of a massive star collapses in on itself, becoming so dense that it warps the fabric of space and time.
In short, black holes are massive pits of gravity that bend space-time because of their incredibly dense centers, or singularities.. When a star dies, it collapses inward rapidly. As it collapses, the star explodes into a supernova -a catastrophic expulsion of its outer material. Solving the mysteries of black holes To make a black hole, one must concentrate mass or energy sufficiently that the escape velocity from the region in which it is concentrated exceeds the speed of light.
Video Credit: NASA