Journal Article

Hydrodynamic simulations of viscous accretion flows around black holes

Kinsuk Giri and Sandip K. Chakrabarti

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 421, issue 1, pages 666-678
Published in print March 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online March 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Hydrodynamic simulations of viscous accretion flows around black holes

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We study the time evolution of a rotating, axisymmetric, viscous accretion flow around black holes using a grid-based finite difference method. We use the Shakura–Sunyaev viscosity prescription. However, we compare with the results obtained when all the three independent components of the viscous stress are kept. We show that the centrifugal pressure supported shocks became weaker with the inclusion of viscosity. The shock is formed farther out when the viscosity is increased. When the viscosity is above a critical value, the shock disappears altogether and the flow becomes subsonic and Keplerian everywhere except in a region close to the horizon, where it remains supersonic. We also find that as the viscosity is increased, the amount of outflowing matter in the wind is decreased to less than a percentage of the inflow matter. Since the post-shock region could act as a reservoir of hot electrons or the so-called ‘Compton cloud’, the size of which changes with viscosity, the spectral properties are expected to depend on viscosity strongly: the harder states are dominated by low angular momentum and the low-viscosity flow with significant outflows while the softer states are dominated by the high-viscosity Keplerian flow having very few outflows.

Keywords: accretion, accretion discs; black hole physics; hydrodynamics; shock waves

Journal Article.  6771 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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