MadSci Network: Astronomy

Re: What is the gravity of a black hole?

Date: Sat Jul 14 15:39:19 2001
Posted By: Ken Wharton, Post-doc, Laser/Plasma Physics
Area of science: Astronomy
ID: 993225493.As

Here's a good FAQ on black holes, which should answer most of your questions.

The gravitational force at a black hole's event horizon will depend on the mass of the black hole. Strangely enough, the bigger the black hole, the less of a gravitational force! (Here's the explanation.)

The previous link also discusses the tidal forces someone would experience near a black hole -- those would be able to tear you apart if you got close enough to a medium-sized black hole.

You're right that black holes don't really act like a vacuum cleaner; objects have to lose their angular momentum before they can spiral into it. But once you've crossed the event horizon, there's no going back.

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