AAS 207th Meeting, 8-12 January 2006
Session 56 AGN Gas Kinematics
Oral, Monday, 2:30-4:00pm, January 9, 2006, Balcony A

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[56.05] Signatures of Tidal Disruption and Massive Black Hole Binaries

T. Bogdanovic, S. Sigurdsson, M. Eracleous (Penn State), S. Mahadevan (Univ. of Florida), P. Laguna, B.D. Smith (Penn State)

We have modeled the time-variable profiles of the H\alpha emission line from the non-axisymmetric disk and debris tail created in the tidal disruption of a solar-type star by a 106 M\odot black hole. We have calculated the physical conditions and radiative processes in the debris using the photoionization code CLOUDY. We model the emission line profiles in the period immediately after the accretion rate onto the black hole became significant. We find that the line profiles at these very early stages of the evolution of the post-disruption debris do not resemble the double peaked profiles expected from a rotating disk since the debris has not yet settled into such a stable structure. Moreover, the predicted line profiles vary on fairly short time scales (of order hours to days). Given the accretion rate onto the black hole we also model the H\alpha light curve from the debris and the evolution of the H\alpha line profiles in time.

We are currently investigating observational signatures of massive black hole binaries (MBHBs) with associated gaseous component. In particular, we model binaries in an intermediate evolutionary stage between the dynamical friction phase and gravitational radiation phase. If observed, signatures of massive binaries could assess whether there are many MBHBs in other galaxies and whether they merge promptly. The modeling of emission line signatures of MBHBs also has a potential to determine orbital parameters of massive binaries. These are essential for characterization of amplitudes and frequencies of gravitational waves from MBHBs, an important class of sources for upcoming gravitational wave interferometer, LISA.

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