The first evidence of “cosmological coupling”

Researchers have uncovered the first evidence of “cosmological coupling” — a newly predicted phenomenon in Einstein’s theory of gravity, possible only when black holes are placed inside an evolving universe.

The researchers studied supermassive black holes at the heart of ancient and dormant galaxies to develop a description of them that agrees with observations from the past decade.

Their findings are published in two articles, one in The Astrophysical Journal and the other in The Astrophysical Journal Letters.

The first study found that these black holes gain mass over billions of years in a way that can’t easily be explained by standard galaxy and black hole processes, such as mergers or accretion of gas.

According to the second paper, the growth in mass of these black holes matches predictions for black holes that not only cosmologically couple, but also enclose vacuum energy—material that results from squeezing matter as much as possible without breaking Einstein’s equations, thus avoiding a singularity.

With singularities removed, the paper then shows that the combined vacuum energy of black holes produced in the deaths of the universe’s first stars agrees with the measured quantity of dark energy in our universe.

Wish I had sufficient lifespan available to start all over again. Studies, acquiring knowledge enough to join the scientific circles key to this sort of research. Fascinating stuff!

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