Stephen Hawking's last paper before death just published, throws light on dark secrets of black holes

Stephen Hawking
Stephen Hawking Lucas Jackson/Reuters

Legendary theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking's final study which was completed before his death was just published by his colleagues in the pre-print journal arXiv. It was the third in a series of papers by Hawking throwing light on the black hole information paradox and has revealed some of the darkest secrets associated with black holes.

The team had completed the research a few days before Hawking's death in March. Titled 'Black Hole Entropy and Soft Hair', the study is co-authored by Malcolm Perry, a professor of theoretical physics at Cambridge with the help of Hawking's colleagues at Cambridge and Harvard Universities.

In the new research report, Professor Stephen Hawking has apparently cracked the mysteries of a black hole paradox which can be connected to Albert Einstein's theory of relativity. As per the information paradox related to black holes, everything that enters the black hole will eventually lose enough heat to disappear.

However, quantum mechanics contradicts the black hole model and argues that information will never be lost. Hawking's final study before his death tried to find answers to these questions. They tried to unravel the mysteries regarding the state of planets, moons and asteroids after they get trapped inside a black hole.

Hawking and his colleagues believe that the entropy of the objects will change once they get trapped inside a black hole. They argue that the object inside the black hole looks like it will disappear, but the information will linger around the edges of a black hole, in the so-called 'soft hair'.

"The difficulty is that if you throw something into a black hole it looks like it disappears. How could the information in that object ever be recovered if the black hole then disappears itself?," Malcolm Perry told the Guardian.

Finally, all this information will be released by the black hole once it evaporates.

"If I throw something in, is all of the information about what it is stored on the black hole's horizon? If it's only half of it, or 99 percent, that is not enough, you have not solved the information paradox problem," added Perry.

Stephen Hawking's final scientific research paper will be available globally on October 16.

This article was first published on October 12, 2018