Nav: Home

Black holes sometimes behave like conventional quantum systems

November 05, 2019

A group of Skoltech researchers led by Professor Anatoly Dymarsky have studied the emergence of generalized thermal ensembles in quantum systems with additional symmetries. As a result they found that black holes thermalize the same way ordinary matter does. The results of their study were published in Physical Review Letters.

The physics of black holes remains an elusive chapter of modern physics. It is the sharpest point of tension between quantum mechanics and the theory of general relativity. According to quantum mechanics, black holes should behave like other ordinary quantum systems. Yet, there are many ways in which this is problematic from the point of view of Einstein's theory of general relativity. Therefore, the question of understanding black holes quantum mechanically remains a constant source of physical paradoxes. The careful resolution of such paradoxes should provide us a clue as to how quantum gravity works. That is why the physics of black holes is the subject of active research in theoretical physics.

One particularly important question is how black holes thermalize. A recent study undertaken by a group of Skoltech researchers found that in this regard black holes are not that different from ordinary matter. Namely, the emergence of equilibrium can be explained in terms of the same mechanism as in the conventional case. An analytical study of black holes became possible due to the rapidly developing theoretical tools of the so-called holographic duality. This duality maps certain types of conventional quantum systems to particular cases of quantum gravity systems. Although additional work is necessary to extend this similarity to thermalization dynamics, this work provides additional support for the paradigm that important aspects of black holes and quantum gravity in general can be explained in terms of the collective dynamics of conventional quantum many-body systems.

Furthermore, the work sheds new light on how conventional many-body quantum systems thermalize. It is widely accepted that isolated quantum mechanical systems can be accurately described by equilibrium statistical mechanics. The precise mathematical statement that provides such a description is called the Eigenstate Thermalization Hypothesis. Nevertheless, a proof of this hypothesis was lacking. Authors of the paper claim to partially fill this gap. "To the best of our knowledge, our work is the very first analytic proof of the Eigenstate Thermalization Hypothesis in spatially-extended systems, with all previous works on the subject (with very few exceptions) being numerical. We believe that the conceptual and technical novelty of our paper is of broad interest," explains Professor Anatoly Dymarsky of the Skoltech Center for Energy Science and Technology.

Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech)

Related Black Holes Articles:

Black holes? They are like a hologram
Spherical, smooth and simple according to the theory of relativity, or extremely complex and full of information as, according to quantum laws, Stephen Hawking used to say?
Under pressure, black holes feast
A new, Yale-led study shows that some supermassive black holes actually thrive under pressure.
Staining cycles with black holes
In the treatment of tumors, microenvironment plays an important role.
Black holes sometimes behave like conventional quantum systems
A group of Skoltech researchers led by Professor Anatoly Dymarsky have studied the emergence of generalized thermal ensembles in quantum systems with additional symmetries.
Scientists may have discovered whole new class of black holes
New research shows that astronomers' search for black holes might have been missing an entire class of black holes that they didn't know existed.
Growing old together: A sharper look at black holes and their host galaxies
The 'special relationship' between supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and their hosts -- something astronomers and physicists have observed for quite a while -- can now be understood as a bond that begins early in a galaxy's formation and has a say in how both the galaxy and the SMBH at its center grow over time, according to a new study from Yale University.
Are black holes made of dark energy?
Two University of Hawaii at Manoa researchers have identified and corrected a subtle error that was made when applying Einstein's equations to model the growth of the universe.
Telescopes in space for even sharper images of black holes
Astronomers have just managed to take the first image of a black hole, and now the next challenge facing them is how to take even sharper images, so that Einstein's Theory of General Relativity can be tested.
Can entangled qubits be used to probe black holes?
Information escapes from black holes via Hawking radiation, so it should be possible to capture it and use it to reconstruct what fell in: if given time longer than the age of the universe.
How black holes power plasma jets
Cosmic robbery powers the jets streaming from a black hole, new simulations reveal.
More Black Holes News and Black Holes Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Our Relationship With Water
We need water to live. But with rising seas and so many lacking clean water – water is in crisis and so are we. This hour, TED speakers explore ideas around restoring our relationship with water. Guests on the show include legal scholar Kelsey Leonard, artist LaToya Ruby Frazier, and community organizer Colette Pichon Battle.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#569 Facing Fear
What do you fear? I mean really fear? Well, ok, maybe right now that's tough. We're living in a new age and definition of fear. But what do we do about it? Eva Holland has faced her fears, including trauma and phobia. She lived to tell the tale and write a book: "Nerve: Adventures in the Science of Fear".
Now Playing: Radiolab

First things first: our very own Latif Nasser has an exciting new show on Netflix. He talks to Jad about the hidden forces of the world that connect us all. Then, with an eye on the upcoming election, we take a look back: at two pieces from More Perfect Season 3 about Constitutional amendments that determine who gets to vote. Former Radiolab producer Julia Longoria takes us to Washington, D.C. The capital is at the heart of our democracy, but it's not a state, and it wasn't until the 23rd Amendment that its people got the right to vote for president. But that still left DC without full representation in Congress; D.C. sends a "non-voting delegate" to the House. Julia profiles that delegate, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, and her unique approach to fighting for power in a virtually powerless role. Second, Radiolab producer Sarah Qari looks at a current fight to lower the US voting age to 16 that harkens back to the fight for the 26th Amendment in the 1960s. Eighteen-year-olds at the time argued that if they were old enough to be drafted to fight in the War, they were old enough to have a voice in our democracy. But what about today, when even younger Americans are finding themselves at the center of national political debates? Does it mean we should lower the voting age even further? This episode was reported and produced by Julia Longoria and Sarah Qari. Check out Latif Nasser's new Netflix show Connected here. Support Radiolab today at