Gabor Kunstatter Colloquium

Fri. Nov. 18 12:30 PM - Fri. Nov. 18 01:20 PM
Location: 3M69

Dr. Gabor Kunstatter, University of Winnipeg

Black Holes, Firewalls and Exorcisms

In February of 2016, the LIGO Scientific Collaboration announced the detection of gravitational waves emitted by the merger of two massive black holes a billion years ago. This observation provided astounding confirmation of the validity in the strong field region of Einstein's theory of gravity as well as the first direct evidence for the existence of black holes.

According to Einstein's theory, at the center of every black hole there lurks a “singularity”, where the known laws of physics break down. In the 1970's, Stephen Hawking showed that quantum mechanics  suggests that black holes have the capacity to irreversibly destroy information, leading to the so-called "black hole information loss conundrum". 

After a brief review of black holes and the evidence for their ubiquitous presence in the Universe, I will describe the black hole information loss conundrum and summarize my recent attempts to study possible resolutions, including firewall formation and singularity exorcism.