M. Christodoulou, T. De Lorenzo

Volume inside old black holes

Theoretical and Experimental Physics

Black holes that have nearly evaporated are often thought of as small objects, due to their tiny exterior area. However, the horizon bounds large spacelike hypersurfaces. A compelling geometric perspective on the evolution of the interior geometry was recently shown to be provided by a generally covariant definition of the volume inside a black hole using maximal surfaces. In this article, we expand on previous results and show that finding the maximal surfaces in an arbitrary spherically symmetric spacetime is equivalent to a 1+1 geodesic problem. We then study the effect of Hawking radiation on the volume by computing the volume of maximal surfaces inside the apparent horizon of an evaporating black hole as a function of time at infinity: while the area is shrinking, the volume of these surfaces grows monotonically with advanced time, up to when the horizon has reached Planckian dimensions. The physical relevance of these results for the information paradox and the remnant scenarios are discussed.

This article is authored also by Synbrain data scientists and collaborators. READ THE FULL ARTICLE