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Physics  2015 

Superradiance

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-19000-6

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Abstract:

Superradiance is a radiation enhancement process that involves dissipative systems. With a 60 year-old history, superradiance has played a prominent role in optics, quantum mechanics and especially in relativity and astrophysics. In General Relativity, black-hole superradiance is permitted by dissipation at the event horizon, that allows for energy, charge and angular momentum extraction from the vacuum, even at the classical level. Black-hole superradiance is intimately connected to the black-hole area theorem, Penrose process, tidal forces and even Hawking radiation, which can be interpreted as a quantum version of black-hole superradiance. Various mechanisms (as diverse as massive fields, magnetic fields, anti-de Sitter boundaries, nonlinear interactions, etc...) can confine the amplified radiation and give rise to strong instabilities. These "black-hole bombs" have applications in searches of dark matter and of physics beyond the Standard Model, are associated to the threshold of formation of new black hole solutions that evade the no-hair theorems, can be studied in the laboratory by devising analog models of gravity, and might even provide a holographic description of spontaneous symmetry breaking and superfluidity through the gauge-gravity duality. This work is meant to provide a unified picture of this multifaceted subject, which was missing in the literature. We focus on the recent developments in the field, and work out a number of novel examples and applications, ranging from fundamental physics to astrophysics.

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