Dancing with black holes

Research paper by Sverre J. Aarseth

Indexed on: 02 Oct '07Published on: 02 Oct '07Published in: Astrophysics


We describe efforts over the last six years to implement regularization methods suitable for studying one or more interacting black holes by direct N-body simulations. Three different methods have been adapted to large-N systems: (i) Time-Transformed Leapfrog, (ii) Wheel-Spoke, and (iii) Algorithmic Regularization. These methods have been tried out with some success on GRAPE-type computers. Special emphasis has also been devoted to including post-Newtonian terms, with application to moderately massive black holes in stellar clusters. Some examples of simulations leading to coalescence by gravitational radiation will be presented to illustrate the practical usefulness of such methods.