Star chime could reveal small black holes

Star chime could reveal small black holes

"In theory, black holes come in all sizes, not just the star- and galaxy-scale objects that astronomers have already seen. In particular, smaller “primordial” black holes might have formed from density fluctuations in the first seconds after the big bang. In addition to providing a window into the universe in its earliest moments, these remnants could be the cold dark matter that makes up about a quarter of its present mass.

"Previous observations rule out abundant black holes smaller than 10^-16 or larger than 10^-7 times the mass of the sun, but intermediate sizes could still account for cold dark matter. In Physical Review Letters, Michael Kesden at New York University and Shravan Hanasoge at Princeton University, New Jersey, propose that these medium-sized black holes could be detected when they pass through a star. Although the black hole will hardly be affected, it will leave lingering acoustic vibrations in the star, analogous to the ringing of a bell".



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