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Universe 2017, 3(1), 3; doi:10.3390/universe3010003

Gravitational Lensing of Rays through the Levitating Atmospheres of Compact Objects

Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2, Canada
Academic Editors: Valerio Bozza, Francesco De Paolis and Achille A. Nucita
Received: 24 November 2016 / Revised: 20 December 2016 / Accepted: 22 December 2016 / Published: 1 January 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gravitational Lensing and Astrometry)
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Abstract

Electromagnetic rays travel on curved paths under the influence of gravity. When a dispersive optical medium is included, these trajectories are frequency-dependent. In this work we consider the behaviour of rays when a spherically symmetric, luminous compact object described by the Schwarzschild metric is surrounded by an optically thin shell of plasma supported by radiation pressure. Such levitating atmospheres occupy a position of stable radial equilibrium, where radiative flux and gravitational effects are balanced. Using general relativity and an inhomogeneous plasma we find the existence of a stable circular orbit within the atmospheric shell for low-frequency rays. We explore families of bound orbits that exist between the shell and the compact object, and identify sets of novel periodic orbits. Finally, we examine conditions necessary for the trapping and escape of low-frequency radiation. View Full-Text
Keywords: gravitation-plasmas-pulsars; general-stars; neutron gravitation-plasmas-pulsars; general-stars; neutron
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Rogers, A. Gravitational Lensing of Rays through the Levitating Atmospheres of Compact Objects. Universe 2017, 3, 3.

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