• Question: Are wight holes real and do you think they pull things in or blow out?

    Asked by 964sptm26 to Angus, Christine, Guy, Hermine, Ollie on 9 Mar 2018.
    • Photo: Hermine Schnetler

      Hermine Schnetler answered on 9 Mar 2018:

      I am not really a scientist, I am an engineer who knows a little bit about astronomy. However in Wikipedia it is stated: “In general relativity, a white hole is a hypothetical region of spacetime which cannot be entered from the outside, although matter and light can escape from it. In this sense, it is the reverse of a black hole, which can only be entered from the outside and from which matter and light cannot escape.”

      From this I interpret that it is not real.

    • Photo: Alexander Burke

      Alexander Burke answered on 9 Mar 2018:

      White holes, in theory, should exist. According to Einstein’s theory of general relativity, white holes are a perfectly “natural” solution to his equations which describe how gravity works in the universe. Before you understand the concepts behind a white hole, it’s best to understand the properties of a black hole.
      A black hole is a region in space (and time) where the gravity is so strong, nothing, not even light, can escape it’s immense gravitational pull. Black holes suck things in and we don’t really know where they go. I believe that this stuff that is sucked in goes to another universe but that’s just my view. A white hole is the “time reversal” of a black hole. Black holes suck things in, white holes spit stuff out. You can NEVER enter a white hole. It is impossible. You can only pass through a white hole through a black hole and into another universe. You could enter a white hole if you travel faster than the speed of light. Unfortunately though, according to Einstein, this is impossible. In summary: White holes are areas in the universe which spit stuff out rather than suck them in.

    • Photo: Guy Rixon

      Guy Rixon answered on 14 Mar 2018:

      Nobody has ever seen a white hole. They should be quite easy to see if they give out a lot of energy, but I’m not aware of anything in the surveys that’s been identified as a white hole. All the obvious candidates are said to be stuff falling into *black* holes.
      This is a bit suspicious. Usually, if a good theory says that something *can* exists then it *does* exists somewhere in the universe, and if it’s lit up brightly then it can be found. So if we aren’t seeing white holes then probably the theory of gravity is not quite right. We know that general relativity works – i.e. describes observed reality – just outside a black hole, but the maths goes crazy inside a black hole. We need a quantum theory of gravity (which hasn’t been worked out in detail yet) to fully understand things. When we have that, we might find that it says white holes shouldn’t exist.