Wikipedia There is more information available on this subject at Hawking Radiation on the English Wikipedia.


In physics, Hawking Radiation (also known as Bekenstein-Hawking radiation) is a thermal radiation with a black body spectrum predicted to be emitted by black holes due to quantum effects. It is named after the physicist Stephen Hawking who provided the theoretical argument for its existence in 1974, and sometimes also after the physicist Jacob Bekenstein who predicted that black holes should have a finite, non-zero temperature and entropy.[1][2]

Because Hawking radiation allows black holes to lose mass, black holes which lose more matter than they gain through other means are expected to evaporate, shrink, and ultimately vanish. Smaller 'micro' black holes (or MBHs) are currently predicted by theory to be larger net emitters of radiation than larger black holes, and to shrink and evaporate faster.

Hawking's analysis became the first convincing insight into a possible theory of quantum gravity. However, the existence of Hawking radiation has never been observed, nor are there currently viable experimental tests which would allow it to be observed. Hence there is still some theoretical dispute over whether Hawking radiation actually exists.

In the Halo UniverseEdit

Slipspace drives create micro-black holes, which tear open a small hole in the fabric of the universe, allowing a starship to pass through into Slipstream Space for far faster interstellar travel. These micro-black holes quickly evaporate via Hawking radiation.[3]


  1. Wikipedia's Article on Hawking radiation
  2. Wikipedia's Article on Stephen Hawking
  3. Halo: Ghosts of Onyx, page 53