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Relativistic Bondi-Hoyle-Lyttleton Accretion

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Bondi-Hoyle-Lyttleton accretion is the flow of a uniform fluid onto a compact object moving at constant velocity. Although some aspects of the flow can be derived analytically, it is necessary to perform numerical simulations in order to obtain a full flow analysis. I shall discuss previous simulation results in this area, in the cases of a non-uniform fluid and of axisymmetric or thin-disc accretion onto a black hole. I will explain the numerical and computational approaches required to simulate the case of fully three-dimensional relativistic Bondi-Hoyle-Lyttleton accretion of a non-uniform fluid onto a spinning black hole. I will then present the results of a parametric study performed using these techniques, varying the spin of the black hole, the accretion direction, and the fluid density profile, and conclude with an analysis of some aspects of the flow.

This talk is part of the Cavendish Astrophysics Seminars series.

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