|Time:||Thursday, March 18, 2021, 09:00am|
|Title:||Recent Progress in Understanding Tidal Disruption Events|
|Speaker:||Dr. Wenbin Lu (Caltech)|
S727 & Online via Zoom
When a star falls sufficiently close to a supermassive black hole, it is disrupted by the enormous tidal forces and then the debris feeds a sudden burst of accretion. Such tidal disruption events (TDEs) provide an ideal laboratory to study the otherwise dormant black hole population, accretion disk physics, and many general relativistic effects. However, due to numerical challenges, simulations have not been able to capture the full range of timescales and physical processes needed to compare with observations. Here, I will present a new hybrid method that circumvents the challenges and allows global simulations of realistic TDEs. Our model provides a unification of the diverse behaviors of TDEs found in the X-ray and optical bands. Many predictions from our model will be tested by on-going surveys like ZTF and eROSITA. I will summarize the open questions that may be solved in the near future.
Wenbin got his bachelor’s degree in physics from Peking University. Then he went to graduate school in University of Texas at Austin, where he received his PhD under the supervision of Prof. Pawan Kumar. He is now a Burke Prize Postdoctoral Fellow at Caltech and will move to Princeton University as a Spitzer Fellow this Fall. Wenbin specializes on theoretical studies of various high-energy transient phenomena, including fast radio bursts, tidal disruption events, and compact object mergers. He has also worked on gamma-ray bursts, accretion disks, pre-supernova mass loss, and hyper-velocity stars.
Host: Wei Zhu