After putting stupendous efforts to capture the first picture of a black hole, physicists have now shown that black holes eventually evaporate entirely, according to Live Science.
The famous physicist Stephen Hawking had predicted the above theory in 1974 stating that black holes are not perfectly "black" but instead emit particles which Hawking believed could eventually siphon enough energy and mass away from black holes to make them disappear. While the theory was theoretically believed to be true by scientists, it was impossible to be proven.
Physicist Jeff Steinhauer and his colleagues at the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa have proven the theory in their lab. Speaking to the science news agency, Steinhauer said that they had simulated the conditions using an extremely cold gas called a Bose-Einstein condensate to model the event horizon of a black hole.
To prove the emission of particles, scientists use phonons or quantum sound waves. First, they created a flowing stream of gas and placed a cliff to create - a 'waterfall' effect. When the gas flowed over the waterfall, it turned enough potential energy into kinetic energy to flow faster than the speed of sound - thus simulating a 'black hole' like condition.
"Now the phonons on the slow side could travel against the flow of the gas, away from the waterfall, while the phonon on the fast side could not, trapped by the "black hole" of supersonic gas," said Steinhauer to the science news agency.
Further explaining how this proved Hawking's theory he elaborated on the co-relation saying:
"It's like if you were trying to swim against a current that was going faster than you could swim. "You'd feel like you were going forward, but you were really going back. And that's analogous to a photon in a black hole trying to get out of the black hole but being pulled by gravity the wrong way."
While the study confirmed the predictions, it did not show the phonon pairs being correlated on the quantum level, according to Renaud Parentani, a theoretical physicist at Laboratoire de Physique Théorique of Paris-Sud University.
Hawking had predicted that black holes emitted particles and the accompanying radiation would be in a continuous spectrum of wavelengths and energies which could be described by a single temperature that was dependent only on the mass of the black hole.