Indexed on: 18 Dec '96Published on: 18 Dec '96Published in: High Energy Physics - Theory
We point out that the celebrated Hawking effect of quantum instability of black holes seems to be related to a nonperturbative effect in string theory. Studying quantum dynamics of strings in the gravitational background of black holes we find classical instability due to emission of massless string excitations. The topology of a black hole seems to play a fundamental role in developing the string theory classical instability due to the effect of sigma model instantons. We argue that string theory allows for a qualitative description of black holes with very small masses and it predicts topological solitons with quantized spectrum of masses. These solitons would not decay into string massless excitations but could be pair created and may annihilate also. Semiclassical mass quantization of topological solitons in string theory is based on the argument showing existence of nontrivial zeros of beta function of the renormalization group.