Naked singularities and the hoop conjecture: An analytic exploration

Takashi Nakamura, Stuart L. Shapiro, Saul A. Teukolsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The formation of a naked singularity during the collapse of a finite object would pose a serious difficulty for the theory of general relativity. The hoop conjecture suggests that this possibility will never happen provided the object is sufficiently compact (M) in all of its spatial dimensions. But what about the collapse of a long, nonrotating, prolate object to a thin spindle? Such collapse leads to a strong singularity in Newtonian gravitation. Here we construct an analytic sequence of momentarily static, prolate, and oblate dust spheroids in full general relativity. In the limit of large eccentricity the solutions all become singular. However, when the spheroids are sufficiently large there are no apparent horizons, lending support to the hoop conjecture. These solutions thus suggest that naked singularities with matter could possibly form in asymptotically flat spacetimes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2972-2978
Number of pages7
JournalPhysical Review D
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


Dive into the research topics of 'Naked singularities and the hoop conjecture: An analytic exploration'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this