‘Black Hole’ traces 100 years of a transformative idea | Science News



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‘Black Hole’ traces 100 years of a transformative idea

Implied by general relativity, black holes’ existence took decades for physicists to accept

3:00pm, May 6, 2015
supermassive black hole

SUPERMASSIVE IDEA  Black holes, such as the supermassive one illustrated here, have transformed astronomers’ understanding of the cosmos in recent decades.

Black Hole
Marcia Bartusiak
Yale Univ., $27.50

Almost a century before Einstein was born, the English polymath John Michell speculated that a star of immense mass could exert enough gravitational force to imprison light. Michell’s insight marked the origin of an idea that was demonstrated in reality only in the 20th century, in the astrophysical offspring of Einstein’s general relativity known as the black hole.

In Black Hole, Marcia Bartusiak, an acclaimed science writer, tells the story of black holes as they emerged from studies of Einstein’s equations, focusing

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