Event horizons in numerical relativity: Methods and tests

Joseph Libson, Joan Massó, Edward Seidel, Wai Mo Suen, Paul Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This is the first paper in a series on event horizons in numerical relativity. In this paper we present methods for obtaining the location of an event horizon in a numerically generated spacetime. The location of an event horizon is determined based on two key ideas: (1) integrating backward in time and (2) integrating the whole horizon surface. The accuracy, efficiency and robustness of the methods are examined with various sample spacetimes, including both analytic (Schwarzschild and Kerr) and numerically generated black holes. The numerically evolved spacetimes contain highly distorted black holes, rotating black holes, and colliding black holes. In all cases studied, our methods can find event horizons to within a very small fraction of a grid zone.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4335-4350
Number of pages16
JournalPhysical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

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