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Magnetospheric Eternally Collapsing Objects

Image source: New Scientist, http://space.newscientist. com/data/images/ns/cms/dn9620/dn9620-1_500.jpg

Alternative theory to Black Holes Black Holes present some problems MECO theory serves to address these issue
Jeff Hodgson Astrophysics 302/401 Semester 1, 2008

Theory of Black Holes

A star of at least several solar masses collapses into a black hole after a supernova. The mass of this collapsed star is so great that even light cannot escape. The 'point of no return' for which energy entering the black hole cannot escape is known as the event horizon. Below the event horizon, information is essentially lost. After this, matter collapses into a singularity. Cannot be directly observed, but existence is inferred through interactions with matter which has yet to fall below the event horizon

Problems with Black Hole theory

Under the theory of relativity, the only solution in a total gravitation collapse is the infinite solution. This implies a physical singularity - ie. space-time and density of matter go to infinity. Something that is hard to realistically imagine. Appears to be evidence of intrinsic magnetic fields in Galactic Black Hole Candidates (GBHCs)[2]. Since information is lost below the event horizon, a Black Hole cannot have a magnetic field. 'No Trapped Surface' condition of relativity[4].

MECO Theory
Magnetospheric Eternally Collapsing Object. From the outside would look very similar to a black hole.[1] Matter is collapsing toward a singularity but will never actually reach it - the collapse becomes progressively slower the closer it approaches a singularity.[2] The pressure of radiation inside a MECO should be equal or greater than the gravity pushing in and hence cannot collapse completely.[2]

MECO Theory evidence

Shows good agreement between neutron stars and behaviour observed by GBHCs.[3][6] Explains apparent intrinsic magnetic fields measured in some GBHCs (eg. Sgr A*[5]) Supports the theoretical notion og 'no trapped surfaces' which would negate the existance of event horizons and hence black holes.[4] Correctly predicts the radio/x-ray luminescence correlation.[5]


How MECOs were discovered

First hints of their existance found at the center of a quasar.[2] Used gravitational lensing to probe into the structure of a quasar [2] Gravitational lensing is where a distant galaxy lines up with a distant object in such a way that it amplifies the distant image.[1] Found a disc of material at the center of a quasar with a hole surrounding the object (GBHC) which is best explained by a magnetic field.[2]

Problems with MECO theory

Current black hole theory is well developed and is generally accepted by the wider scientific community. MECO supporting evidence is only seen in some GBHCs although may be due to lack of detail in current measurements. Hole in the disc could infact be a hot gas which doesn't radiate much.[1] Theory is only in its infancy

1. D. Shiga, New Scientist, 2006, retrieved from: http://space.newscientist.com/article/dn9620-mysterious-quasarcasts-doubt-on-black-holes.html 2. Rudolph E. Schild et al, 2006 The Astronomical Journal , 132 420-432

3. D. Leiter, S. Robertson, Found. Phys. Lett. 16, 143-161 (2003)

4. A. Mitra, Found. Phys. Lett. 13, 543 (2000) (astro-ph/9910408) 4. (revised) A. Mitra, Found. Phys. Lett. 15, 439-471 (2002) (astro-ph/0207056) 5. D. Leiter, S. Robertson, Does SGR A* have an intrinsic magneticmoment instead of an event horizon? arxiv.org (2008) (astro-ph/0603746) 6. D. Leiter, S. Robertson, The Magnetospheric Eternally Collapsing Object (MECO) Model of Galactic Black Hole Candidates and Active Galactic Nucleiarxiv.org (2006) (astro-ph/0602453v1)