Every now and then the scientific community comes across a discovery that is so important that it immediately changes the course of human evolution. I am, of course, talking about the invention of the word Blanet. I think we can all agree that it’s the sweetest word science has ever created.
However, if you’re like me, you’ll be disappointed to know that a Blanet is actually not a tiny little planet covered with soft, comfortable blankets ̵
Scientists have long believed that black holes could house planetary bodies. The big idea is that a singularity is infinitely dense, but when you are further away there comes a point where it should logically be able to hold onto a solid object and hold it in its gravity without devouring it.
The same thing happens when planets form around stars, as our solar system did around our sun.[[[[Read: Here’s what would happen if a black hole battled a wormhole]]
A new study conducted by astrophysicists in Japan is trying to shed light on how blanets can form within the confines of a black hole’s gravitational boundaries. In essence, the researchers calculate that blanetar formation would work quite similarly to their planetary cousins.
According to the researchers’ pre-print study on arXiv:
We suggested that a new class of planets, blanets (ie black hole planets), could be formed, provided the standard scenario of planet formation is present in the circular nuclear disk. Here we examined the physical conditions of the Blanet formation outside the snow line (rsnow ∼ several parsecs) more closely, especially taking into account the effect of radial advection of the dust aggregates.
Planets are created when vortices of dust swirling around a star merge into a disk from which a planet is thrown out. The same essential function works in black holes, but the end result would be nothing like the earth or other bodies that we are likely to recognize as planets. According to a study:
Our results suggest that blanets could be formed around active galactic nuclei (AGNs) with relatively low luminosity during their lifespan (. 108 years). The gaseous shell of a blanet should be negligibly small compared to the blanet mass. Therefore, the blanet system differs greatly from the standard earth-type planets in the exoplanet systems.
Other astrophysicists have created hypothetical star systems that are fused with black holes. In these scenarios, scientists have proposed a binary singularity / star paradigm in which a black hole and a star of equal mass would exist in perfect equilibrium. In such circumstances – which are incredibly specific – hundreds of habitable planets could revolve around the black sun in a belt.
Both theories are based on calculations and explain more about the mechanics and physics of black holes than about the actual existence of blanets – which would require some rather specific creation parameters. However, that doesn’t stop us from imagining entire galaxies hidden in the blurred edges of a supermassive black hole.
There is no reason why the Milky Way and we in it could not exist within a wispy tendril of the outer edges of a massive super-super black hole. Perhaps there was a blanet deep in the ground all the time. On the other hand, it may just be turtles all the way down.
Phew, hey you!
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