Virtual black hole

Virtual black hole

In quantum gravity, a virtual black hole is a black hole which has a temporary existence as a result of a quantum fluctuation of spacetime. They are an example of quantum foam and are the gravitational analog of the virtual electron-positron pairs found in quantum electrodynamics. Theoretical arguments suggest that virtual black holes should have mass on the order of the Planck mass, lifetime around the Planck time, and occur with a number density of approximately one per Planck volume. [ Proton Decay, Black Holes, and Large Extra Dimensions] , Fred C. Adams, Gordon L. Kane, Manasse Mbonye, and Malcolm J. Perry, arXiv:hep-ph/0009154v2.] , p. 4.

If virtual black holes exist, they provide a mechanism for proton decay. The reason for this is that when a black hole's mass increases via mass falling into the hole, and then decreases when Hawking radiation is emitted from the hole, the elementary particles emitted will in general not be the same as those which fell in. Therefore, if two of a proton's constituent quarks fall into a virtual black hole, it is possible for an antiquark and a lepton to emerge, thus violating conservation of baryon number., pp. 4–5.

The existence of virtual black holes aggravates the black hole information loss paradox, as any physical process may potentially be disrupted by interaction with a virtual black hole. [ [ The black hole information paradox] , Steven B. Giddings, arXiv:hep-th/9508151v1.]


ee also

* Quantum foam

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