Friday, March 18, 2005

Katherine Blundell: SS433

Seminar by Katherine Blundell of Oxford on optical and radio observations of microquasars and in particular SS433. Neatest result was analysis of new VLA image. She showed that assuming SS433 shoots ballistic plasma blobs out completely symmetrically then the differences in observed shape from the two corkscrewing jets are due to relativistic aberration. This enables the jet speed to be determined accurately to 0.26c and hence the distance to 5.5 kpc. She also noted that the model is not a perfect fit and can be improved by allowing the speed to vary between 0.24 and 0.28c. Further she showed that by combining the redshifts of symmetric blobs one can determine independently the velocity and the cone opening angle. A PSD of the velocity shows a signal at the binary frequency. This may be due to eccentricity in the orbit.

Keywords: microquasars, SS433

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