Resolving black holes with infrared interferometry

May 28, 2020 - 11:00 am to 12:00 pm
Jason Dexter (University of Colorado at Boulder) via zoom

Zoom Recording

Phase-referenced infrared interferometry with the new instrument GRAVITY at the VLT is sufficiently sensitive to study black hole systems with sub-milliarcsecond angular resolution. I will discuss the first results on spatially resolved kinematics of the quasar broad emission line region. In the Galactic center, GRAVITY has allowed the detection of the gravitational redshift and orbital precession of the star S2 around the massive black hole Sgr A*. Resolved motions of flaring emission further brings these studies down to event horizon scales. I will outline the implications of the observations for accretion physics and the prospects for probing strong gravity around a massive black hole.