Volume 409, Number 3, October III 2003
|Page(s)||809 - 812|
|Published online||17 November 2003|
The black hole at the galactic center as a possible retro-lens for the S2 orbiting star
Dipartimento di Fisica, Università di Lecce, and , Sezione di Lecce, CP 193, 73100 Lecce, Italy
2 International Center for Relativistic Astrophysics – I.C.R.A., University of Rome “La Sapienza”, 00185 Rome, Italy
Corresponding author: F. De Paolis, email@example.com
Accepted: 23 July 2003
Holz & Wheeler (2002) have recently proposed that a Schwarzschild black hole may act as a retro-lens which, if illuminated by a powerful light source, deflects light ray paths to large bending angles and a series of luminous arcs (or rings in the case of aligned objects) centered on the black hole may form. Obviously, the most convenient geometry to get retro-lensing images would be that of a very bright star close to a massive black hole, say the putative black hole at the galactic center. Recent observations of the galactic center region in the K-band have revealed the presence of a very bright main sequence star (labelled S2) with mass orbiting at close distance (130-1900 AU) from Sgr A*. The relatively vicinity of S2 to the central massive black hole may offer a unique laboratory to test the formation of retro-lensing images. The next generation of space-based telescopes in the K-band (like NGST) may have high enough limiting magnitude necessary to observe such retro-lensing images.
Key words: gravitation / gravitational lensing
© ESO, 2003
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