Thermodynamics of frozen stars

Ram Brustein, A. J. M. Medved, Tamar Simhon
General Relativity and Quantum Cosmology, General Relativity and Quantum Cosmology (gr-qc), High Energy Physics - Theory (hep-th)
2023-10-16 16:00:00
The frozen star is a recent proposal for a non-singular solution of Einstein's equations that describes an ultracompact object which closely resembles a black hole from an external perspective. The frozen star is also meant to be an alternative, classical description of an earlier proposal, the highly quantum polymer model. Here, we show that the thermodynamic properties of frozen stars closely resemble those of black holes: Frozen stars radiate thermally, with a temperature and an entropy that are perturbatively close to those of black holes of the same mass. Their entropy is calculated using the Euclidean-action method of Gibbons and Hawking. We then discuss their dynamical formation by estimating the probability for a collapsing shell of "normal" matter to transition, quantum mechanically, into a frozen star. This calculation followed from a reinterpretation of a transitional region between the Euclidean frozen star and its Schwarzschild exterior as a Euclidean instanton that mediates a phase transition from the Minkowski interior of an incipient Schwarzschild black hole to a microstate of the frozen star interior. It is shown that, up to negligible corrections, the probability of this transition is $e^{-A/4}$, with $A$ being the star's surface area. Taking into account that the dimension of the phase space is $e^{+A/4}$, we conclude that the total probability for the formation of the frozen star is of order unity. The duration of this transition is estimated, which we then use to argue, relying on an analogy to previous results, about the scaling of the magnitude of the off-diagonal corrections to the number operator for the Hawking-like particles. Such scaling was shown to imply that the corresponding Page curve indeed starts to go down at about the Page time, as required by unitarity.
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