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Centre for Astrophysics Research (CAR) Seminar Series

Our seminars are held every Wednesday at 3pm (UK)

Most seminars will be streamed via Zoom. Please e-mail the seminar organisers for the link if you would like to attend remotely. Recordings of past seminars may also be available on the University of Hertfordshire YouTube channel.

Next Talk (4 October 2023)

Dr Philip Wiseman (University of Southampton)

AT2021lwx and the Super ANTs: Seeking the power source of the Universe’s most energetic eruptions

Abstract: Ambiguous nuclear transients (ANTs) are extremely luminous flares occurring in the centres of galaxies. The most energetic of all, AT2021lwx, at redshift 1, shows a single optical brightening to a luminosity close to 10^46 erg/s, followed by a smooth decline over more than a year in the rest frame.The luminosity and timescale indicate that a large supermassive black hole is likely the central engine, but how the energy is released, and from what, remains a mystery. In this talk I will summarise the observed and inferred properties of AT2021lwx and the candidate scenarios. I will present a preliminary compilation of “super-ANTs” from the Zwicky Transient Facility and Dark Energy Survey, and look forward to the exciting prospect and observational challenge of constructing large ANT samples in upcoming transient surveys.

3pm in C152

Semester A Schedule

Date Speaker Title Abstract Location Recording
The seminar organisers for 2023-2034 are Dr Michael Kuhn (m.kuhn (at) herts.ac.uk) and Dr Robert Yates (r.yates3 (at) herts.ac.uk).