Event horizon

related topics
{math, energy, light}
{day, year, event}
{@card@, make, design}
{water, park, boat}

In general relativity, an event horizon is a boundary in spacetime beyond which events cannot affect an outside observer. In layman's terms it is defined as "the point of no return" i.e. the point at which the gravitational pull becomes so great as to make escape impossible. The most common case of an event horizon is that surrounding a black hole. Light emitted from beyond the horizon can never reach the observer. Likewise, any object approaching the horizon from the observer's side appears to slow down and never quite pass through the horizon, with its image becoming more and more redshifted as time elapses. The traveling object, however, experiences no strange effects and does, in fact, pass through the horizon in a finite amount of proper time.

More specific types of horizon include the related but distinct absolute and apparent horizons found around a black hole. Still other distinct notions include the Cauchy and Killing horizon; the photon spheres and ergospheres of the Kerr solution; particle and cosmological horizons relevant to cosmology; and isolated and dynamical horizons important in current black hole research.


Event horizon of a black hole

The most well-known example of an event horizon derives from general relativity's description of a black hole, a celestial object so dense that no nearby matter or radiation can escape its gravitational field. Often, this is described as the boundary within which the black hole's escape velocity is greater than the speed of light. However, a more accurate description is that within this horizon, all lightlike paths (paths that light could take) and hence all paths in the forward light cones of particles within the horizon, are warped so as to fall farther into the hole. Once a particle is inside the horizon, moving into the hole is as inevitable as moving forward in time, and can actually be thought of as equivalent to doing so, depending on the spacetime coordinate system used.[1][2][3][4]

Full article ▸

related documents
Orbital resonance
Holographic principle
Tau Ceti
Gamma ray burst
Electromagnetic field
Brown dwarf
Proxima Centauri
Kinetic energy
Oort cloud
Variable star
Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9
Neutron star
Nonlinear optics
Twin paradox
Continuum mechanics
Chaos theory
Newton's laws of motion
Shape of the Universe
Correspondence principle
Electric field
Kepler's laws of planetary motion
Precession (astronomy)
Planets beyond Neptune
Second law of thermodynamics