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Infrared Interferometry of Active Galactic Nuclei

Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy Hönig, Sebastian; Hofmann, Karlheinz; Kishimoto, Makoto; Tristram, Konrad; Weigelt, Gerd
With the advancement of Infrared Interferometry it is now possible to directly observe and spatially resolve the dusty tori in active galaxies. These tori provide the dust and gas which is eventually accreted onto the supermassive black hole in the nucleus of the galaxy. It is now possible to study the structure and distribution of the matter in the torus in detail. This may lead to an improved understanding of the growth of supermassive black holes. more
Radio pulsars are extremely compact neutron stars. Some of them have a rotational stability that is comparable to the precision of the best atomic clocks. In particular pulsars in binary systems are therefore ideal to test Einstein's general theory of relativity in strong gravitational fields. Changes in the orbital motion of binary pulsars are presently the only firm evidence for the existence of gravitational waves as predicted by general relativity. It is expected that in the next few years pulsars will allow the direct measurement of gravitational waves caused by super massive black holes. more
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