Building black holes, gravitational waves, and relativistic fluid flows: Supercomputer cinema

Stuart Louis Shapiro, Saul A. Teukolsky

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The authors have constructed a new computer code to solve Einstein's equations of general relativity for the dynamical evolution of a relativistic star cluster. The cluster may contain a large number of stars that move in a strong gravitational field at velocities approaching the speed of light. Unstable star clusters undergo catastrophic collapse to black holes. The collapse of an unstable cluster to a supermassive black hole at the center of a galaxy may explain the origin of quasars and active galactic nuclei. By means of a supercomputer simulation and color graphics, the whole process can be viewed in real time on a movie screen. The authors have also written a multidimensional, relativistic hydrodynamics code to determine the flow of gas onto such black holes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProc Supercomput 90
PublisherPubl by IEEE
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)0818620560
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of Supercomputing '90 -
Duration: Nov 12 1990Nov 16 1990


OtherProceedings of Supercomputing '90

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)


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