Compact Objects

Seeing is believing: “Observing” simulations of relativistic jets

What these students did for their summer vacation: 2016 undergraduate research at KIPAC!

by Lori Ann White

Some things just go together. Hot dogs and mustard, smart phones and selfies, school and summer vacation. But science is a year-round proposition, and several undergrads didn't seem to mind forgoing their summer vacations to pursue a variety of research opportunities with members of KIPAC. (Protip: it’s never too soon to start thinking about next summer!)

SULI students come to SLAC

Brett Harvey explains his research to Pat Burchat.

Searching for gamma-ray needles in a gravitational wave haystack with Fermi/LAT


By Nicola Omodei and Giacomo Vianello

Gravity waves from black hole collision

A New Puzzle from NuSTAR: most wildly luminous Neutron Star ever discovered, or a very new form of Black Hole?

By Greg Madejski

The concept of a black hole seems to be shrouded in mystery, perhaps partly because of the enigmatic name, but in reality it is a very simple one:  a black hole is an object containing an enormous quantity of mass shrunk down to a tiny volume - so much so that the speed required to escape the pull of this compact object’s gravity would exceed even that of light.  

From Small to Large -- but what about in between?

Black Holes Eating Stars and Making Waves

By William E. East

One of the more graphic terms in black hole physics is "spaghettification."  It refers to the way that strongly varying gravitational forces can distort a round object into a shape most familiar from your dinner plate. This is a fate that can befall a star that has the misfortune to wander too close to a massive black hole. In this post, I want to tell you about some recent work I have done using computer simulations to explore how such stars get pulled and squashed as they fall into black holes. This work was done partly in order to understand whether we might soon be able to observe such events, in a nascent field of astronomy based on measuring gravitational waves.

A Mad Ballerina Consumes Her Companion

By Mandeep S. S. Gill

Take a star that weighs about twice as much as our Sun, and compact it down to the size of a medium-sized city, to make a neutron star whose extreme mass warps the spacetime everywhere near it.  Next, put a much smaller companion star in orbit around it at very close range, and let the system evolve: what happens now?