Hawking radiation is a process, first theorized by Stephen Hawking, by which a black hole can apparently evaporate. When virtual particles are produced in the vicinity of a black hole, it is possible for one member of the matter-antimatter pair to be pulled into the black hole while the other escapes into space. The particle that falls into the black hole negates some of its mass and so the black hole shrinks a little. This makes it look as if the particle that escaped into space has come from the black hole. Hawking radiation would be particularly important in the case of miniature black holes, which might explode in this way.