Dark matter and extreme gravitational regimes

  • #1
member 563992
If dark matter really lives up to it's name and truly is some form of matter, then wouldn't it feed black holes given extreme gravitational regime in a black hole?
 
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  • #2
It should, as long as it can hit such a small target.
 
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  • #3
ToddM4 said:
If dark matter really lives up to it's name and truly is some form of matter, then wouldn't it feed black holes given extreme gravitational regime in a black hole?
Dark matter only interacts gravitationally, so it has trouble losing energy, so the cross-section for capture of dark matter by a black hole is much smaller than for normal matter. But yes, it can be swallowed by a black hole like anything else.
 
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  • #4
I presume it's difficult to test since dark matter doesn't emit light so we can't see it accruing near a black hole's horizon?
 
  • #5
ToddM4 said:
I presume it's difficult to test since dark matter doesn't emit light so we can't see it accruing near a black hole's horizon?
It doesn't particularly accumulate, that's the point. To accumulate it needs some mechanism to dump kinetic energy, which ordinary matter does by collision. But dark matter is (near) collisionless, which is why it forms diffuse halos around galaxies.

Dark matter would only drop into a black hole if it happens to be very nearly on a collision course with the hole. It doesn't form accretion discs, visible or otherwise.
 
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  • #6
Is there a way to observe Sgt A*, calculate it's size based on normal matter and derive how much dark matter it has swallowed? I imagine there would've been plenty of dark matter that was very nearly on a collision course with the black hole.
 
  • #7
If I have a black hole of mass M, how do I know how much of M was originally ordinary matter and how much was originally dark?
 
  • #8
Vanadium 50 said:
If I have a black hole of mass M, how do I know how much of M was originally ordinary matter and how much was originally dark?
It's written on the label!
 
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  • #9
ToddM4 said:
I imagine there would've been plenty of dark matter that was very nearly on a collision course with the black hole.
I don’t. As has been mentioned already, dark matter lacks a way to radiate away energy and clump. This makes it relatively less abundant in matter-dense regions.
 
  • #10
ToddM4 said:
Is there a way to observe Sgt A*, calculate it's size based on normal matter and derive how much dark matter it has swallowed?
If you could account for its entire history and track every bit of normal matter that fell in, sure. But the thing is older than the Earth and we've only just started to get blurry pictures of it. The data isn't there and can't ever be.

In principle you could track its growth, but I suspect the error bars around how much normal matter it swallows (even if we get vastly better images) would be much larger than the supposed dark matter infall.
 
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  • #11
ToddM4 said:
imagine there would've been plenty of dark matter that was very nearly on a collision course with the black hole.
Black holes are small. Even Sagittarius A* is only about twenty million kilometres across, less than twice the size of the Sun. You have to hit within 1.5 times that to fall in. It's a really small target on a galactic scale.
 
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  • #12
ToddM4 said:
If dark matter really lives up to it's name and truly is some form of matter, then wouldn't it feed black holes given extreme gravitational regime in a black hole?
A black hole has the same gravitational attraction as a star of the same mass. From that point of view, the concept of an "extreme gravitational regime" is a misconception. It's only when you within where the surface of the star would have been that the gravity keeps increasing - but you would have crashed into the original star at that point in any case.
 
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  • #13
Ibix said:
If you could account for its entire history and track every bit of normal matter that fell in, sure. But the thing is older than the Earth and we've only just started to get blurry pictures of it. The data isn't there and can't ever be.

In principle you could track its growth, but I suspect the error bars around how much normal matter it swallows (even if we get vastly better images) would be much larger than the supposed dark matter infall.
Darn. I was hoping it would lead to clarifications on the JWST observations of black holes in the early Universe and their sizes.

Edit: Also, it'd have been nice to measure dark matter with the tiny black holes generated by LHC even though they evaporate before having the chance to be observed (of course, still want them to evaporate before growing so they won't swallow Earth but that's a conundrum).
 
  • #14
PeroK said:
A black hole has the same gravitational attraction as a star of the same mass. From that point of view, the concept of an "extreme gravitational regime" is a misconception. It's only when you within where the surface of the star would have been that the gravity keeps increasing - but you would have crashed into the original star at that point in any case.
My point precisely by saying "extreme gravitational regime" as in: past the event horizon.
 
  • #15
ToddM4 said:
My point precisely by saying "extreme gravitational regime" as in: past the event horizon.
That's irrelevant for dark matter "feeding the black hole". The dark matter would have to be local to get sucked in.
 
  • #16
PeroK said:
That's irrelevant for dark matter "feeding the black hole". The dark matter would have to be local to get sucked in.
If the black hole is moving through space, and that space is filled with dark matter, won't dark matter going past the horizon be feeding the black hole?
 
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  • #17
Ibix said:
You have to hit within 1.5 times that to fall in.
Reference please. For light, the max impact parameter for the geodesic to end up inside the horizon is ##3\sqrt{3}R_S/2## if I don’t misremember. That’s about 2.6 times the Schwarzschild radius.
 
  • #18
ToddM4 said:
If the black hole is moving through space, and that space is filled with dark matter, won't dark matter going past the horizon be feeding the black hole?
Yes it will, but there won’t be so much dark matter for it to matter significantly.
 
  • #19
Orodruin said:
Yes it will, but there won’t be so much dark matter for it to matter significantly.
Won't this allow for study on how dark matter interacts in extreme gravitational regimes?
 
  • #20
Orodruin said:
Reference please.
I was just going with the photon sphere. You seem to have done an actual calculation.
 
  • #21
ToddM4 said:
Won't this allow for study on how dark matter interacts in extreme gravitational regimes?
How so?
 
  • #22
PeroK said:
How so?
If it interacts gravitationally different from visible matter it might give us clues into the nature of dark matter, no?
 
  • #23
ToddM4 said:
If it interacts gravitationally different from visible matter it might give us clues into the nature of dark matter, no?
Let me expand on that: if dark matter is throughout our galaxy, and thus our solar system, and, we produce black holes at LHC, couldn't we study their expected evaporation due to visible matter and measure the properties of dark matter if the evaporation rate is different from what we normally would expect just with visible matter?
 
  • #24
ToddM4 said:
Let me expand on that: if dark matter is throughout our galaxy, and thus our solar system, and, we produce black holes at LHC, couldn't we study their expected evaporation due to visible matter and measure the properties of dark matter if the evaporation rate is different from what we normally would expect just with visible matter?
Cosmology would take some giant steps forward if we could recreate a galaxy at the LHC and study it in the lab - dark matter and all. Sadly, all attempts even to detect dark matter in the lab have failed. That's why some are now skeptical of its existence!
 
  • #25
PeroK said:
Cosmology would take some giant steps forward if we could recreate a galaxy at the LHC and study it in the lab - dark matter and all. Sadly, all attempts even to detect dark matter in the lab have failed. That's why some are now skeptical of its existence!
Sure, but we can create tiny black holes in collisions at the LHC and study how fast they evaporate. If dark matter is matter that succumbs to the gravitational field of a black hole, with our solar system going through the galaxy, which implies going through dark matter, shouldn't we be able to measure the influence of dark matter on the evaporation of the tiny black holes?
 
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  • #26
ToddM4 said:
Sure, but we can create tiny black holes in collisions at the LHC and study how fast they evaporate.
How long have you been working on black hole evaporation at the LHC?
 
  • #28
ToddM4 said:
Nevermind, it seems we didn't detect microscopic black holes @ the LHC.

https://cms.cern/news/search-microscopic-black-hole-signatures-large-hadron-collider#:~:text=No experimental evidence for microscopic,models that postulate extra dimensions.

I wonder if cosmic rays which happen at higher energies than those LHC can produce create microscopic black holes and thus test dark matter via evaporation.
Well, ChatGPT clarifies this one as well.

Theoretically, cosmic rays with extremely high energies, such as those in the exa-electronvolt range, could, under certain models, produce microscopic black holes when they interact with particles in the Earth's atmosphere. This idea is based on some speculative extensions of certain theories, like extra dimensions in string theory.

However, it's important to note that this is highly speculative and not confirmed by experimental evidence. The energies required for such processes are far beyond what current particle accelerators can achieve, making it challenging to test these theories directly. As of my last knowledge update in January 2022, there hasn't been any experimental confirmation of microscopic black hole production through cosmic ray interactions.
 
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  • #30
Ibix said:
You seem to have done an actual calculation.
I had my students do it as homework at some point. I guess that means I did it too since I had to know the correct answer. 😉
ToddM4 said:
Well, ChatGPT clarifies this one as well.
please don’t use ChatGPT as a source of information regarding advanced physics subjects. It is very prone to sounding authorative when in reality it has no clue whatsoever.
 
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  • #31
ToddM4 said:
ChatGPT
Is not a valid reference here.
 
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  • #32
Several posts about ChatGPT have been deleted. Further posts on ChatGPT will also be removed. It is not an acceptable source here.
 
  • #33
This sound like a jumble of words, but no clear tests.

1. Suppose the LHC made semi-stable black holes. What would you do with them to tell you something about DM?
2. Homework #1 - what is the total volume of black holes (in cubic meters) you expect to make at the LHC. Show your work.
3. Homework #2: What is the total amount of DM contained in the volume of the Earth? In the volume of the previous question?
4, Given the answer to the last two questions does that cause you to rethink the answer to the first?
 
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  • #34
ToddM4 said:
Still, wouldn't it be cool to test dark matter via microscopic black hole evaporation?
There are models where this leaves a cosmological imprint 1 2. I'm sure their authors would agree with you!

But one should not be too excited about the mere existence of such models. A model is simply a formal statement of a possibility, and there are large numbers of possibilities, and they can't all be true. E.g. a review of inflationary models from 2013 contains over 100 distinct theories of cosmic inflation.
 
  • #35
ToddM4 said:
If dark matter really lives up to it's name and truly is some form of matter, then wouldn't it feed black holes given extreme gravitational regime in a black hole?
The bulk of the theoretical and observational work being done on this question involves predictions regarding how the properties of neutron stars (which also involve extreme gravitational effects) would be different (their so called "equation of state") if they had captured significant dark matter, estimates of how much dark matter neutron stars should have absorbed, and efforts to determine if observationally neutron star properties are a better fit to the with dark matter mixed in hypothesis or the without dark matter mixed in hypothesis.

Neutron stars are more attractive than black holes for this kind of research because they are much easier to observe directly.

There are probably a few new papers every month addressing this question. See, e.g., this paper from last week entitled: "Towards Uncovering Dark Matter Effects on Neutron Star Properties: A Machine Learning Approach". There are about 123 papers in all at arXiv on this topic, using one fairly broad set of search terms.

The problem is that the anticipated differences in observable properties between neutron stars with and without dark matter are subtle, the properties of neutron stars without dark matter are hard to model and a subject of dispute, and the observations we have of neutron stars aren't terribly precise making distinguishing between the two hypotheses hard.

The best evidence of neutron star properties come from binary systems of a neutron star together with a black hole, another neutron star, or an ordinary star. But, neutron stars are, by definition, very small (on the order of a dozen miles across), which makes it tough to distinguish subtle differences in their properties at immense distances. One area of research focuses on the expected gravitational wave profile of neutron stars that collide and merge with or without significant dark matter components.

There is also work being done on how the properties of ordinary stars, especially our own Sun, should be different if they absorb a predicted quantity of dark matter. But, again, the predicted effects are subtle.
 
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