Astrophysicists from international projects LIGO and Virgo recorded gravitational waves from a black hole, which should not exist. Its mass is 100 times the mass of the Sun, and this is considered physically impossible. This was reported by Quanta magazine, citing seven researchers who contacted reporters.
According to the forecasts of [such] black holes can not be, not even a few. But, of course, nature often finds its way.
University of California Astrophysicist
Experts interviewed by journalists said that in April, the LIGO and Virgo detectors recorded signals from a collision involving a black hole of unprecedented proportions, which weighs about 100 times heavier than the sun. The LIGO / Virgo teams did not confirm or deny the find.
The formation of such a black hole is considered impossible due to the “pair instability.” According to scientists, black holes are formed from dying stars that run out of “fuel” and begin to shrink.
According to modern data, the bulk of black holes are objects 50 times more massive than the Sun. Moreover, in the interval from 50 to 130 solar masses they do not form : the nucleus is too heavy to turn into a black hole.
Instead, such stars become supernovae with paired instability and explode. Nuclei with masses from 65 to 130 solar masses are usually completely scattered , and those weighing from 50 to 65 solar masses pulsate, losing mass in a series of explosions.
Moreover, beyond 130 solar masses, black holes can again form. However, stars lose weight throughout their lives, so it would take 300 solar masses at birth, so that by death the star would “weigh” 130 solar masses, and this rarely happens. Astronomers have discovered black holes millions and billions of times more massive than the Sun, but they are located in the centers of galaxies and the mechanism of their formation has not yet been studied.
Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology believe that in fact there is a workaround for the formation of such objects. In their opinion, this is possible in a globular star cluster, where many stars are next to each other.
According to the theory, in such places a black hole with a mass of 50 solar can absorb a black hole in 30 solar masses, and then find other “victims”. Researchers believe that LIGO / Virgo detectors recorded the absorption of the second generation.
However, there is another way to form such black holes. For example, this could happen in an isolated binary star system, which are often found in space. One of the stars could become a black hole and grow due to a companion star, which then also turned into a black hole.
Some astrophysicists were so sure that the appearance of such massive black holes was impossible that they made a bet in 2017. Chris Belczynski from Warsaw University, along with several colleagues, put a 100-dollar bottle of wine on the fact that among the first hundred objects LIGO / Virgo there will not be such black holes.
It is unclear whether scientists lost the bet: usually LIGO / Virgo immediately announce new findings. However, while the teams did not say anything, they promised to publish the research results no later than the spring of 2020.