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The Unique Blazar OJ 287 and Its Massive Binary Black Hole Central Engine

Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai 400005, India
Finnish Centre for Astronomy with ESO, University of Turku, FI-20014 Turku, Finland
Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Turku, FI-20014 Turku, Finland
Astronomical Observatory, Jagiellonian University, ul. Orla 171, PL-30-244 Cracow, Poland
Mt. Suhora Astronomical Observatory, Pedagogical University, ul. Podchorazych 2, PL30-084 Cracow, Poland
Czech Technical University in Prague, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Technicka 2, 166 27 Prague, Czech Republic
Engelhardt Astronomical observatory, Kazan Federal University, Kremlyovskaya street 18, 420008 Kazan, Russia
Department of Physics, University of Helsinki, Gustaf Hällströmin katu 2a, FI-00560 Helsinki, Finland
Nordic Optical Telescope, Apartado 474, E-38700 Santa Cruz de La Palma, Spain
Space Science Data Center - Agenzia Spaziale Italiana, via del Politecnico, snc, I-00133 Roma, Italy
Instituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare, Sezione di Roma Tor Vergata, I-00133 Roma, Italy
Astrophysics Research Institute, Liverpool John Moores University, IC2, Liverpool Science Park, Brownlow Hill L3 5RF, UK
Herschel Science Centre, ESAC, European Space Agency, Villanueva de la Cañada, 28691 Madrid, Spain
Max Planck Institut fuer Radioastronomie, Auf dem Huegel 69, 53121 Bonn, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Universe 2019, 5(5), 108;
Received: 26 March 2019 / Revised: 1 May 2019 / Accepted: 6 May 2019 / Published: 8 May 2019
The bright blazar OJ 287 is the best-known candidate for hosting a nanohertz gravitational wave (GW) emitting supermassive binary black hole (SMBBH) in the present observable universe. The binary black hole (BBH) central engine model, proposed by Lehto and Valtonen in 1996, was influenced by the two distinct periodicities inferred from the optical light curve of OJ 287. The current improved model employs an accurate general relativistic description to track the trajectory of the secondary black hole (BH) which is crucial to predict the inherent impact flares of OJ 287. The successful observations of three predicted impact flares open up the possibility of using this BBH system to test general relativity in a hitherto unexplored strong field regime. Additionally, we briefly describe an ongoing effort to interpret observations of OJ 287 in a Bayesian framework. View Full-Text
Keywords: general relativity; blazar: OJ 287; black holes general relativity; blazar: OJ 287; black holes
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Dey, L.; Gopakumar, A.; Valtonen, M.; Zola, S.; Susobhanan, A.; Hudec, R.; Pihajoki, P.; Pursimo, T.; Berdyugin, A.; Piirola, V.; Ciprini, S.; Nilsson, K.; Jermak, H.; Kidger, M.; Komossa, S. The Unique Blazar OJ 287 and Its Massive Binary Black Hole Central Engine. Universe 2019, 5, 108.

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