Invited seminar about tidal disruption events at UCL

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk

Description of Activity

Tidal Disruption Events: Hosts, Rates, and Echoes

Tidal disruption events are luminous, transient flares that occur when a star strays past the tidal radius of a supermassive black hole (SMBH) and is torn apart by the SMBH's gravitational field. These transients, predicted in the 1970s, are now routinely discovered in optical, wide-field surveys. However, they are rare, and only ~150 such objects have been discovered to date. In my talk, I will describe what we know about the host galaxies of these events and how they relate to their formation mechanism. I will then describe how tidal disruption events can be discovered in spectroscopic surveys, such as SDSS and DESI, by searching for high-ionization iron lines. Tidal disruption events are not only interesting as a new type of transient, they are also useful probes of SMBH/AGN physics and evolution. I will show several examples of such uses, including as scanning machines of the gas in the vicinity of SMBHs.
Period26 Feb 2024
Held atUniversity College London, United Kingdom