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Wednesday June 29, 2022

The Blackhole and My Science Project

blackhole
Illustration of a black hole.

Back in the year 5021CE, I was 10 years old.  Being interested in space, I had lobbied my parents to visit a black hole, only to be refused.  So, imagine my delight, when for our science project, we were asked to visit one.

We were to draw diagrams of a black hole and make a presentation on it.  Reluctantly, my parents booked a ship to QX-33, a newly discovered black hole.  It was right in the Milky Way, so we reached quickly.  The QX-33 spaceport was a few hundred million kilometers away from the actual hole.  I hurriedly disembarked, and ran to the observation deck.  QX-33 was only as large as Corsica, yet, it was devouring a gargantuan blue giant.  It had a mass equivalent to 15 Suns.  We were told the story of QX-33.  It was born when a large star died in a supernova explosion.  The black part was the event horizon.  If one crossed the event horizon, there was no chance of returning.  At the very center was the singularity, a place where matter is compressed down to an infinitely tiny point, and time breaks down.  Around the event horizon was the accretion disk, made up of hot, glowing gases.  I frantically noted everything down.  Even my parents, usually uninterested in everything space, didn’t seem too bored.

Soon, the time came for me to return.  I packed up my notes and took my seat on the ship.  This science project had morphed into a memorable excursion.

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