Measurement of Hawking radiation in analog systems
William G. Unruh
Department of Physics & Astronomy, University of British Columbia
CIFAR, Program in Cosmology and Gravity
Hawking's discovery that black holes are not black but have a quantum instability which makes them radiate thermally was one of the most surprizing discoveries of the second half of the 20th century. But finding black holes to see if they actually radiate is difficult especially since the temperature is so low (microKelvin or less) for black holes known to exist. In the 80s it was discovered that the same argument used by Hawking leads to dumb holes, analogs of black holes in a system with sound waves, should also radiate. This opens the possibility of experiments. This talk will discuss this possibility and also discoss a couple of experiments, a water tank one done at UBC, and a BEC experiment in Israel, which address this possibility.