1. Subscribersonhouse
    Fast and Curious
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    01 Aug '13 13:57
    http://scitechdaily.com/new-method-for-measuring-black-hole-spin-could-provide-a-greater-understanding-of-galaxy-growth/
  2. Standard memberDeepThought
    Losing the Thread
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    01 Aug '13 14:42
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    http://scitechdaily.com/new-method-for-measuring-black-hole-spin-could-provide-a-greater-understanding-of-galaxy-growth/
    The article misses the real point, I had a look at the abstract. An alternative method of measuring the spin is given by "relativistic smearing of the iron profile". The figure they get from looking at the accretion disc is lower than expected - from the abstract:
    While our data on PG1244+026 does not have sufficient statistics at high energy to give a good measure of black hole spin from the iron line profile, cosmological simulations predict that black holes with similar masses have similar growth histories and so should have similar spins. This suggests that there is a problem either in our understanding of disc spectra, or/and X-ray reflection or/and the evolution of black hole spin

    In other words something interesting is going on.
    You can get to the full paper here, it's experimental and relatively accessible (most people should cope with the introduction): http://arxiv.org/pdf/1306.4786v1.pdf
  3. Subscribersonhouse
    Fast and Curious
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    01 Aug '13 15:281 edit
    Originally posted by DeepThought
    The article misses the real point, I had a look at the abstract. An alternative method of measuring the spin is given by "relativistic smearing of the iron profile". The figure they get from looking at the accretion disc is lower than expected - from the abstract:[quote]While our data on PG1244+026 does not have sufficient statistics at high energy to essible (most people should cope with the introduction): http://arxiv.org/pdf/1306.4786v1.pdf
    I imagine iron smearing wouldn't be much better than 20% accurate I would think. Better optics will give better data in coming years for sure, the Webb telescope seems to be back on track for launch in a few years so it will give us better looks at these strange objects.

    I wonder if there will ever be a way to show whether or not black holes actually start new universes like some of these cosmological theories predict.

    I guess the Webb will be primarily for IR measurements:

    http://www.jwst.nasa.gov/

    Aiming for 2018 launch date. 5 years. Sigh! I want it NOW🙂