You are here:

Physics/Fabric of universe & 2D blackhole surface.


I just got done watching a video about the nature of space. Before it was thought to be nothing more than the container of matter, but later became known as having properties of its own, stretching, altered by thing inside of it, etc. I was wondering, can the fabric of space tear like it sometimes will in fiction like the movie "event horizon" or is there no proof of that possibility? And if it is possible, what would happen? Would that region of space become a source of strong pull? I was thinking if the universe is continously expanding, perhaps that could cause a tear of some kind, which then could cause the universe to altimately reverse direction back towards its center. What do you think?

Also what proof do they have that in the absense of matter space is still never empty because there are molecules popping in and out of space all the time? Where does such materials comes from, where does it when it colides with itself and annilates, and is annilation complete deletion of something such as matter and anti-matter?

And lastly I think recently people have come to believe that things in our 3D world when dropping into a blackhole become spread over the surface of the event horizon in a 2D type format. How can something that is of a high dimension ever be fit into a lower dimension of space? And in any event why does it matter to anyone because a blackhole should have enough radiation and force inside that it should destory everything like the star it was created from could?

Referring to it as the "fabric" of spacetime brings up many misconceptions like this.  It simply assumes sudden alterations in properties.  To open up a tear in fabric is to open up a gap in the fabric in space...if you did that in space, what would you be opening up a "tear" in?  In short, no, and don't put too much stock in science fiction notions like black holes being tunnels to other universes.  

The Casimir effect is proof positive of the existence of quantum particle-antiparticle pairs in empty space (generally not whole molecules, as you put it).  There are other examples, but that one is perhaps the most relevant.  They're virtual particles, basically "borrowed" from the vacuum energy of space for time spans allowed by the uncertainty principle.  

For your last question, they don't.  As they approach closely enough, the gravitational mass of objects being squished onto the event horizon of a black hole add to its mass.  Since its radius is proportional to its mass, the black hole actually expands to "eat" the incoming matter.  There are a lot of misconceptions here.  A deeper understanding will only come through a more serious study of the subject than can be found in fiction (which takes many necessary liberties, and many unnecessary ones as well), movies, and popular works not written by serious scientists.

P.S.  Black hole is two words.


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Dr. Stephen O. Nelson


I can answer most basic physics questions, physics questions about science fiction and everyday observations of physics, etc. I'm also usually good for science fair advice (I'm the regional science fair director). I do not answer homework problems. I will occasionally point out where a homework solution went wrong, though. I'm usually good at explaining odd observations that seem counterintuitive, energy science, nuclear physics, nuclear astrophysics, and alternative theories of physics are my specialties.


I was a physics professor at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin, research in nuclear technology and nuclear astrophysics. My travelling science show saw over 20,000 students of all ages. I taught physics, nuclear chemistry, radiation safety, vacuum technology, and answer tons of questions as I tour schools encouraging students to consider careers in science. I moved on to a non-academic job with more research just recently.

Ph. D. from Duke University in physics, research in nuclear astrophysics reactions, gamma-ray astronomy technology, and advanced nuclear reactors.

©2016 All rights reserved.