Probing Strong Gravity with Accreting Black Holes
Prof. Andrew Fabian (University of Cambridge)

The most persistent luminous objects in the Universe are accreting black holes. Much of the radiation originates from close to the black hole in the form of quasi-blackbody emission from an accretion disc and power-law continuum X-rays from a corona above the disc. Reflection of the power-law component from the disc produces characteristic signatures in terms of spectral shape and time delays which can be used as a probe of the strong gravity regime. Reflection spectra and reverberation delays will be discussed and illustrated with examples from nearby active galaxies and Galactic black hole binary systems.

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