If you dipped into a black hole (something we would not recommend), you would probably find a singularity or an infinitely small and dense dot in the middle.

Or physicists have always thought that. But now a couple of scientists are suggesting that some black holes could not be black holes at all. Instead, it could be strange objects that are full of dark energy – the mysterious force that pushes the limits of the universe and causes them to expand.

If what we took to be black holes are indeed objects without singularities, then the accelerated expansion of our universe is a natural consequence of Einstein’s general theory of relativity, “said Kevin Croker, astrophysicist at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Croker and a colleague describe this idea in a new study published online on Aug. 28 in the Astrophysical Journal. If they are right and the singularity in the heart of a black hole could be replaced by a strange energy that diverges everything, it could revolutionize the way we think about these dense objects. The duo did not want to find out what is in a black hole.

Croker and Joel Weiner, emeritus professor of mathematics at the same university, looked at Friedmann’s equations, which are simplified from Einstein’s Theory of General Theory of Relativity (relativity describes how mass and energy change space-time.) Physicists use Friedmann’s equations to describe theTo describe the expansion of the universe, in part, because the mathematics is simpler than in Einstein’s equation body, which describes the relativity.

The team found that ultra-dense and isolated regions of space, such as neutron stars and black holes, like all other domains, must be mathematically treated to properly write Friedmann’s equations. So far, cosmologists have thought it sensible to ignore the internal details of ultra-dense and isolated regions, such as the inside of a black hole.

We have shown that there is only one way to properly construct these equations, “Croker told Live Science.And if you do this in a way that’s the way to go, you’ll find some interesting things.

The new results suggest that all the dark energy required to accelerate the expansion of the universe could be contained in these alternatives to black holes. The researchers discovered this in mathematics after correcting the spelling of Friedmann’s equations.

A follow-up report to the Astrophysical Journal, published in the Preprint journal arXiv on September 7, showed that these alternatives to black holes, referred to as Generic Dark Energy Objects (GEODEs), can also helpto explain the peculiarities of gravitation.Wave observations of 2016. The mathematics of Friedmann’s equations showed that over time, these ultra-dense objects gain weight simply because of the expansion of the universe, even if there is no material in the vicinity they could use. Just as light that travels through expanding space loses energy – an effect known as redshift – matter also loses weight as space expands. The effect is usually so small that it is not visible.

However, with ultrathin material with very high internal pressure called relativistic material, the effect is noticeable.

Dark energy is very relativistic and its pressure counteracts normal matter and light.Therefore, objects made therefrom (such as these hypothetical GEODES) gain in weight over time.

Light is a strange thing.

It’s not intuitive in many ways, “said Croker.People did not expect this behavior to be shown in other objects as well. But we have shown, yes, you can see it in another object, GEODEs. GEODEs were first proposed as an idea in the 1960s, but the mathematics they support has been recently developed.

However, it has been found that these strange objects could also provide a simple explanation for watching large black hole mergers.

In 2016, members of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO) Virgo said they had the first observations of a black hole fusion, but the calculated masses of the suspected black holes were unexpected – scientists expected this to be either much higher or lower. But GEODEs gain weight over time, unlike traditional black holes. If two GEODEN that formed in the younger Universe finally collided, they would have become larger than typical black holes at the time of their collision.

At that point, the masses of the GEODEs would match the masses observed in the collision observed by LIGO-Virgo. Instead of having to imagine a highly specific situation that led to the merger, GEODEs could offer a simpler solution for explaining the observations.

However, not all scientists are convinced. The new description of these objects is “catchy and hard to digest,” said Vitor Cardoso, a professor of physics at the Instituto Superior Tecnico in Lisbon, Portugal, who was not involved in the study, using Live Science in an e-mail. But he added, “I like the idea of ​​finding alternatives to black holes – it forces us to reinforce the paradigm of black holes. In addition, sometimes it is difficult to find things if we are not looking for them.