Michael Kesden is an Assistant Professor of Physics. He also serves as a faculty member of the UTD Cosmology, Relativity and Astrophysics Group. Dr. Kesden's research interests and areas of expertise include:
- Theoretical astrophysics and relativity
- Binary black hole formation, evolution, and merger
- Gravitational wave emission and detection
- Stellar tidal disruption by supermassive black holes
- Astrophysical probes of dark-matter dynamics
- Gravitational lensing of the cosmic microwave background
Works in Treasures @ UT Dallas are made available exclusively for educational purposes such as research or instruction. Literary rights, including copyright for published works held by the creator(s) or their heirs, or other third parties may apply. All rights are reserved unless otherwise indicated by the copyright owner(s).
Stellar Tidal Disruption Events in General Relativity (Springer/Plenum Publishers, 2019-02-12)A tidal disruption event (TDE) ensues when a star passes too close to a supermassive black hole (SMBH) in a galactic center, and is ripped apart by its tidal field. The gaseous debris produced in a TDE can power a bright ...
Scaffolded Training Environment for Physics Programming (STEPP) (Association for Computing Machinery, Inc, 2019-06)We are a year into the development of a software tool for modeling and simulation (M&S) of 1D and 2D kinematics consistent with Newton’s laws of motion. Our goal has been to introduce modeling and computational thinking ...
Wide Nutation: Binary Black-Hole Spins Repeatedly Oscillating from Full Alignment to Full Anti-Alignment (Institute of Physics Publishing, 2019-04-15)Within the framework of 2PN black-hole binary spin precession, we explore configurations where one of the two spins oscillates from being completely aligned with the orbital angular momentum to being completely anti-aligned ...
Explaining LIGO's Observations via Isolated Binary Evolution with Natal Kicks We compare binary evolution models with different assumptions about black-hole natal kicks to the first gravitational-wave observations performed by the LIGO detectors. Our comparisons attempt to reconcile merger rate, ...
Unified Treatment of Tidal Disruption by Schwarzschild Black Holes (2017-04-03)Stars on orbits with pericenters sufficiently close to the supermassive black hole at the center of their host galaxy can be ripped apart by tidal stresses. Some of the resulting stellar debris becomes more tightly bound ...
Precessional Instability in Binary Black Holes with Aligned Spins (2015-10-02)Binary black holes on quasicircular orbits with spins aligned with their orbital angular momentum have been test beds for analytic and numerical relativity for decades, not least because symmetry ensures that such ...
Multi-Timescale Analysis of Phase Transitions in Precessing Black-Hole Binaries (American Physical Society, 2015-09-14)The dynamics of precessing binary black holes (BBHs) in the post-Newtonian regime has a strong timescale hierarchy: the orbital timescale is very short compared to the spin-precession timescale which, in turn, is much ...
Distinguishing Black-Hole Spin-Orbit Resonances by their Gravitational-Wave Signatures (American Physical Society, 2014-06-24)If binary black holes form following the successive core collapses of sufficiently massive binary stars, precessional dynamics may align their spins, S₁ and S₂, and the orbital angular momentum L into a plane in which they ...