New Delhi:While most of our childhood was spent reading and learning Isaac Newton’s law of gravity, today, more than 100 years after the path-breaking discovery, scientists announced that the theory was outrightly wrong and, therefore, ruled out the same. However, the researchers still prefer to go with Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity even after their most comprehensive test near the monstrous black hole at the centre of our galaxy.
Talking about the new findings, Andrea Ghez from University of California said, “Einstein is right, at least for now. We can absolutely rule out Newton’s law of gravity. Our observations are consistent with Einstein’s theory of general relativity”.
“However, his theory is definitely showing vulnerability,” Ghez said, adding that “It cannot fully explain gravity inside a black hole, and at some point, we will need to move beyond Einstein’s theory to a more comprehensive theory of gravity that explains what a black hole is”.
Einstein, the German-born theoretical physicist, along with Newton, is considered to be one of the two pillars of modern physics. His work is known for its influence on the philosophy of science. The scientist, who won 1921 Nobel Prize for his significant contribution to the areana of Physics, first proposed that objects such as the sun and the Earth change this geometry.
Newton, born in England, too, is widely recognised as one of the most influential scientists of all time, and a key figure in the scientific revolution. Apart from Physics, the gem also had remarkable contribution in the arena of Mathematics, astronomy, theology and literature.
Einstein’s theory is the best description of how gravity works, said Ghez, who during their latest black hole study made measurements of the phenomenon near a supermassive black hole – research dubbed “extreme astrophysics”.
The laws of physics, including gravity, should be valid everywhere in the universe, the California professor stated, adding that her research team is one of only two groups in the world to watch a star known as S0-2 make a complete orbit in three dimensions around the supermassive black hole at the Milky Way’s centre.
The researchers also say their work is the most detailed study ever conducted into the supermassive black hole and Einstein’s theory of general relativity. The full orbit takes 16 years, and the black hole’s mass is about four million times that of the Sun.
According to Einstein’s theory of general relativity, gravity results from how mass warps space and time. The greater an object’s mass, the stronger its gravitational pull.
On the other hand, Newton’s law of universal gravitation states that every particle attracts every other particle in the universe with a force which is directly proportional to the product of their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance between their centers.