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Ultra Relativistic Particle Collisions

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I will present recent numerical results obtained in collaboration with Frans Pretorius that describe head-on collisions of two solitons coupled to the general relativistic gravitational field and boosted to ultra relativistic energies. The calculations show, for the first time, that at sufficiently high energies such a collision leads to black hole formation, consistent with hoop conjecture arguments. This implies that the non-linear gravitational interaction between the kinetic energy of the solitons results in gravitational collapse, and the arguments for black hole formation in super-Planck scale particle collisions are robust.
I will also speculate on the nature of the threshold of black hole formation in the model.