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Black Hole Temperature

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Posted by pmb on February 13, 2000 23:06:34 UTC

: Does a black hole have a mesurable temperature,

Yes. But it's a qualified yes (sigh! Nothing is ever simple in physics!). An observer outside the black hole sees electromagnetic radiation comming from the black hole. This radiation has a spectrum which is the same as that of a "black body" (where black body is defined as it is in thermodynamics, and depends on the temperature of the body). This radiation is Hawking radiation which comes from just outside the event horizon. In this sense the observers see the black hole as having a temperature. The temperature is given by T = h/(8*pi*M) where M is the mass of the black hole.

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