Dec 31, 2021
This week marks the final episode of 2021, and we are excited to welcome Dr. Kevin Croker from University of Hawai’i at Mānoa! Kevin led a team that compared data from simulated black hole mergers with that from gravitational waves detected by the LIGO–Virgo collaboration. This comparison led to a surprising conclusion: ignoring the expansion of the universe may be limiting the scientific understanding of black-hole physics. The team hypothesizes that that as the universe expands outward following the Big Bang, all objects with mass grow as well - and Black Holes are no exception. This new process has been dubbed "Cosmological Coupling."
Kevin Croker is an affiliate graduate faculty at the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa. His research interest is Einstein's theory of gravitation and General Relativity (GR). He is currently exploring the observational consequences of cosmological energy shifts within relativistic compact objects (e.g. stellar collapse remnants such as GEODEs and neutron stars). His thesis work focused on cosmological applications of GR, in particular, the Dark Energy problem, and his past work has focused on the use of numerical simulations to compare and constrain proposed extensions of GR through existing astrophysical data. He firmly believes that observation is paramount.
You can read about Kevin's research in articles at PhysicsWorld: https://physicsworld.com/a/cosmological-coupling-is-making-black-holes-bigger-study-suggests/ and LiveScience: https://www.livescience.com/black-holes-expanding-with-universe
The research is also described in The Astrophysical Journal
You can learn more about Kevin and his research on his website: https://www.phys.hawaii.edu/~kcroker/
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