How to catch a kicked black hole: searching for post-merger recoiling black holes in astronomical data

Date: 
11/10/2009 -
2:30pm to 3:30pm
Speaker: 
Erin Bonning
Speaker affiliation: 
Yale University
Location: 
78-2170

Numerical simulations of binary black holes through coalescence and merger have shown that the product of such a merger may gain a kick of several thousand kilometers per second. This velocity is astrophyscially interesting due to the fact that it is comparable to the escape velocity of a typical galaxy. Since all massive galaxies contain a central supermassive black hole and are believed to have undergone one or more mergers in their
lifetime, it is possible that such kicked black holes may be detected in current observations. I will discuss observational methods for finding kicked black holes, including proposed candidates, as well as the difficulties faced in interpretation of the data.
 

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