Richard Plotkin

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Postdoctoral Researcher

University of Michigan Department of Astronomy
1085 S. University
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Office Location(s): 401 West Hall
Phone: 734.763.8328
Research Website

  • About

    PhD, University of Washington | Key Collaborator: Elena Gallo

    Accretion of matter onto black holes

    Richard Plotkin studies accretion onto stellar and supermassive black holes, and the connection between the resulting mass inflows and outflows. He uses data from space- and ground-based observatories – from radio, infrared, optical, ultraviolet, and X-ray telescopes – in order to probe the complex regions close to an accreting black hole. His goal is to constrain the most important factor(s) that determine the geometry of a black hole’s accretion flow. He achieves this by comparing multiwavelength observations of black hole samples across a wide range of masses and accretion rates. Plotkin hopes to better understand the physical mechanisms that release energy when matter falls onto a black hole, how much radiative and mechanical energy is typically released, and how that energy can ultimately affect the black hole’s host galaxy.

    Related Interests

    Blazars, Active Galactic Nuclei unification, black hole X-ray binaries, survey science, data mining.


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