- News Home
17 April 2014 12:48 pm ,
Vol. 344 ,
Officials last week revealed that the U.S. contribution to ITER could cost $3.9 billion by 2034—roughly four times the...
An experimental hepatitis B drug that looked safe in animal trials tragically killed five of 15 patients in 1993. Now,...
Using the two high-quality genomes that exist for Neandertals and Denisovans, researchers find clues to gene activity...
A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that humanity has done little to slow...
Astronomers have discovered an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a red dwarf—a star cooler than the sun—500...
Three years ago, Jennifer Francis of Rutgers University proposed that a warming Arctic was altering the behavior of the...
- 17 April 2014 12:48 pm , Vol. 344 , #6181
- About Us
ScienceShot: One Black Hole Won't Ruin Your Day
22 March 2012 3:30 pm
A black hole hitting Earth sounds like the ultimate doomsday scenario. But it probably won't hurt much, say researchers who created computer simulations to see what would happen if a puny primordial black hole, born just after the big bang, struck our planet. If they exist, such black holes constitute some of the galaxy's dark matter; they're much smaller than the black holes we know about, having the masses of asteroids but the diameters of atomic nuclei. As the scientists will report in The Astrophysical Journal, the hypothetical black hole would zip through Earth in about a minute, barely shaking the world's surface the way a very weak earthquake would. Larger primordial black holes would shake the ground more but are thought to be much rarer. Don't stay up waiting for those tremors, however: Even collisions with the smallest and most common primordial black holes should happen no more than once every few million years. That's good news for everyone, except those who'd like to see whether these exotic objects really exist.
See more ScienceShots.