Thermal Hawking radiation stimulated by vacuum fluctuations
We observe a thermal distribution of Hawking radiation, stimulated by quantum vacuum fluctuations, emanating from an analogue black hole. This confirms Hawking’s prediction regarding black hole thermodynamics. The thermal distribution is accompanied by correlations between the Hawking particles outside the black hole and the partner particles inside. We find that the high energy pairs of Hawking and partner particles are entangled, while the low energy pairs are not. The entanglement verifies an important element in the disussion of information loss in a black hole. The observation of Hawking radiation verifies Hawking’s calculation, which is viewed as a milestone in the quest for quantum gravity.