Today is Valentine’s Day, so to celebrate we bring you an interview with the two lovers at the heart of the greatest love story in the universe, the story of two black holes brought together over the whole of time and space:
So, Massive Black Hole Number One, what first attracted you to Massive Black Hole Number Two?
MBH1: Well, life is lonely in the Southern Celestial Hemisphere. Everyone around you seems to gravitate to you but they soon vanish, never to be seen again. No-one wants to talk to a Massive Black Hole because they’re scared they’ll die, so I’d basically given up hope of finding anyone to share my life with. I was getting on a bit, a lot actually, and my life sucked figuratively and literally. Then I spotted MBH2 spinning towards me across space and time, absorbing everything in his wake, and I thought, Hello!
MBH2: It was love at first sight, we just couldn’t help but be pulled towards each other. I’d never met a black hole quite like MBH1. We spiraled around each other for a while, checking each other out, but in the end we couldn’t help ourselves and we merged and started ringdown-ing like there was no tomorrow.
MBH1: Our love gave off gravitational waves.
MBH2: You wrinkled my space-time.
MBH1: We’re so hot together that the peak radiated gravitational wave power of about 3.6 x 10-to-the-power-of-49 watts was over ten times more than the combined light power radiated by all the stars in the observable universe.
That’s very hot.
MBH1: You’re damn right.
MBH2: We’re so good together that we’re basically just one Massive Black Hole now instead of two.
So, what now for you two information-sucking, terrifying death-abyss lovers?
MBH1: Who knows? We’re the couple of the moment, ‘stars’ you might say, although we haven’t been actual stars for a while! The universe is our oyster.
MBH2: I imagine we’ll keep making waves in the observable universe.
I’m sure you will. We’ll all be watching.