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Tidal disruptions by rotating black holes: relativistic hydrodynamics with Newtonian codes
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Astronomy. Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, The Oskar Klein Centre for Cosmo Particle Physics (OKC). Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, México.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Astronomy. Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, The Oskar Klein Centre for Cosmo Particle Physics (OKC). Nordic Optical Telescope, Spain.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Astronomy. Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, The Oskar Klein Centre for Cosmo Particle Physics (OKC).
Number of Authors: 4
2017 (English)In: Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, ISSN 0035-8711, E-ISSN 1365-2966, Vol. 469, no 4, 4483-4503 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We propose an approximate approach for studying the relativistic regime of stellar tidal disruptions by rotating massive black holes. It combines an exact relativistic description of the hydrodynamical evolution of a test fluid in a fixed curved space-time with a Newtonian treatment of the fluid's self-gravity. Explicit expressions for the equations of motion are derived for Kerr space-time using two different coordinate systems. We implement the new methodology within an existing Newtonian smoothed particle hydrodynamics code and show that including the additional physics involves very little extra computational cost. We carefully explore the validity of the novel approach by first testing its ability to recover geodesic motion, and then by comparing the outcome of tidal disruption simulations against previous relativistic studies. We further compare simulations in Boyer-Lindquist and Kerr-Schild coordinates and conclude that our approach allows accurate simulation even of tidal disruption events where the star penetrates deeply inside the tidal radius of a rotating black hole. Finally, we use the new method to study the effect of the black hole spin on the morphology and fallback rate of the debris streams resulting from tidal disruptions, finding that while the spin has little effect on the fallback rate, it does imprint heavily on the stream morphology, and can even be a determining factor in the survival or disruption of the star itself. Our methodology is discussed in detail as a reference for future astrophysical applications.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 469, no 4, 4483-4503 p.
Keyword [en]
accretion, accretion discs, black hole physics, relativistic processes, methods: numerical, galaxies: nuclei
National Category
Astronomy, Astrophysics and Cosmology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-147132DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stx1089ISI: 000406837900052OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-147132DiVA: diva2:1145795
Available from: 2017-09-29 Created: 2017-09-29 Last updated: 2017-09-29Bibliographically approved

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Gafton, EmanuelRosswog, Stephan
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