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Does the aeroplane fall into the black hole?

  1. Dec 18, 2009 #1
    Yes, I know that this is a silly question. Let's assume that an aeroplane is flying 20 kilometers above the ground and its speed is 900 km/h. There is a black hole in the centre of the Earth that is growing and consuming the Earth. The Earth disappears into the black hole, but what does happen to the aeroplane?

    According to my friends, the aeroplane will start to go around the black hole in an elliptical orbit and it will survive the horrible end. http://siilein.com/gif.gif [Broken]

    What do you think?
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 18, 2009 #2


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    Assuming the black hole sucks up all of Earth and its atmosphere instantaneously, the plane would enter a highly elliptical orbit, as your friends said. Relativistic effects will be negligible because the plane won't go anywhere near the black hole's event horizon, which is on the order of centimeters.
  4. Dec 18, 2009 #3


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    Well, you'll miss the black hole, but surviving is another issue. Assuming that we acan ignore the rotation of the Earth and your 900 km/hr is the only velocity we need to worry about ( Say you were crossing the North pole at the time.), You'll pass within 32 km from the black hole.

    At that distance the tidal forces will be great enough to tear you and your plane apart. You'll leave the close approach as a cloud of tiny bits.
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