Research Activities > Programs > Matter and Electromagnetic Fields in Strong Gravity

Matter and Electromagnetic Fields in Strong Gravity

CSIC Building (#406), Seminar Room 4122.
Directions: home.cscamm.umd.edu/directions


Merging Supermassive Black Holes in Astrophysics:
Gravitational Radiation Recoils, Spin and Gas Dynamics

Manuela Campanelli

Rochester Institute of Technology


Abstract:   The final merger of binary supermassive black holes (SMBHs), the consequent emission of asymmetrical gravitational radiation and the substantial kick that follows may have a major effect on the circumbinary disk surrounding the system. These phenomena may play a crucial role in interpreting a number of objects observed with current and future astronomical telescopes, including binary active galacitic nuclei (AGN) and "naked" quasars displaced from the centers of their host galaxies. Recent computational breakthroughs in solving the Einstein's field equations in strong field gravity have enabled computational astrophysicists to study these dynamical effects in great detail. One of the most important discoveries is that the merger of spinning black holes can yield recoil velocities from asymmetrical gravitational radiation up to 4000 km/s. Several candidate recoiling SMBHs may have been observed, but uncertainties in the theoretical predictions for observing such systems limit the ability to confirm detections. In this talk, I review the status of the simulation of binary black hole mergers in full general relativity followed by a discussion on recent calculations of large kicks, spin and gas dynamics and their possible observations.

University of Maryland    

UM Home | Directories | Calendar
Maintained by CSCAMM
Direct questions and comments to

CSCAMM is part of the
College of Computer, Mathematical & Natural Sciences (CMNS)