Black holes have hairs

Black holes (Credit: glassich/Flickr)

Main Point:

Researchers have proposed that black holes may have hairs in the form of charges.

Published in:

[sociallocker]Phys. Rev. Lett.

Study Further:

Black Hole:

An object in space thought to contain celestial object with such a strong gravitational pull that no matter or energy can escape from it. Black holes are believed to form when stars collapse in upon themselves.

Researchers thought that black holes can be defined by only two quantities that are mass and angular momentum (a black hole rotation velocity).

Present Study:

This present study showed that the black holes are “dirtier” than the Roy Kerr’s proposed “clean” black hole model in 1963. Researchers used interferometers, instruments capable of recording the gravitational waves, for the present research.

In the present study, researchers reported the presence of matter in the surrounding of black hole.

Thomas Sotiriou, a physicist of the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) of Trieste, noted that black holes may not only be described by the mass and angular momentum. “Black holes, according to our calculations, may have hair”, explained Sotiriou.

“Although Kerr’s ‘bald’ model is consistent with General Relativity, it might not be consistent with some well-known extensions of Einstein’s theory, called tensor-scalar theories”, added Sotiriou. “This is why we have carried out a series of new calculations that enabled us to focus on the matter that normally surrounds realistic black holes, those observed by astrophysicists. This matter forces the pure and simple black hole hypothesized by Kerr to develop a new ‘charge’ (the hair, as we call it) which anchors it to the surrounding matter, and probably to the entire Universe.”

“According to our calculations, the growth of the black hole’s hair,” concluded Sotiriou “is accompanied by the emission of distinctive gravitational waves.”

Below is just a picture of an eye in which the artist presented that the cornea looks like black hole. Interestingly, it has hairs.

Cornea looks like black hole (Credit: Flickr)

Research Suggestions:

“In the future, the recordings by the instrument may challenge Kerr’s model and broaden our knowledge of the origins of gravity,” noted Sotiriou.


Do black holes have hair? – SISSA – (

Vitor Cardoso et al. (2013). Black Holes with Surrounding Matter in Scalar-Tensor Theories Phys. Rev. Lett. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.111.111101

Usman Zafar Paracha

Usman Zafar Paracha is a sort of entrepreneur. He is the author of "Color Atlas of Statistics", and the owner of an Android game "Faily Rocket."