- Primordial black holes the size of a hydrogen molecule may be dark matter
- PHBs could help prove the existence of dark matter, as its gravity “oscillates” in Earth's orbit
- But the primordial black hole could swallow the entire Earth if it got too close
- Read more: NASA animation shows 'monster' black holes lurking in every galaxy
Scientists have discovered that some ancient black holes change the Earth's orbit.
It has been proposed by a team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Swirling clumps of matter, called primordial black holes (PBHs), fly through our solar system at least once every decade, disrupting planets and moons.
PBHs, which formed sShortly after the Big Bang 12.8 billion years ago, they are about the size of a microbe, but as dense as an asteroid, which can cause orbits to “wobble.”
The team's claim suggests that the distances of planets from the Sun or Earth can change over time.
When primordial black holes fly by a planet, physicists calculate, “they cause the planet to wobble or oscillate slightly around the path it was taking.” Above, simulations show how black holes bend a starry background and capture light, forming a black hole silhouette or “photon ring.”
Black holes were proposed in 1947 by astrophysicist Stephen Hawking and his doctoral student Bernard Carr, who argued that during the first moments of the Big Bang, “clumpy” regions of extra mass might have formed in the universe and turned into black holes when they collapsed.
But ancient black holes have not yet been discovered in the universe.
The new study is based on the theory that the universe is teeming with PBHs, which means the objects must pass close to our cosmic neighborhood.
The universe is teeming with ancient “primordial black holes,” which formed from swirling clumps of matter shortly after the Big Bang, rather than from a dying star, theoretical physicists say.
The researchers calculated how close the PBH came to a planet or moon in our solar system in order to change the motion.
The study used a simulation that included the eight planets, about 300 planetary satellites (such as moons), more than 1.3 million asteroids and about 4,000 comets.
The model also included rogue PBHs.
The team noticed this If an asteroid-mass object came within just two astronomical units of the Sun, the orbits of the planets and moons would fluctuate by up to several feet.
However, the researchers note that the oscillation will not destroy our planet.
They are now developing methods to measure gravitational oscillations, in an attempt to collect the first concrete evidence proving the long-theorized “dark matter.”
Physicists have long calculated that about 85% of all matter in the universe is dark matter, but none of this much has ever been discovered.
In essence, their plan is to measure any “fluctuations” in gravity that change Earth's distance from the Moon, along with many other known orbits within our solar system to determine which small but dense specks of dark matter are passing us.
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