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ICRANet Newsletter



ICRANet Newsletter
November-December 2019 - January 2020



SUMMARY
1. ICRANet Press Release "A New Paradigm of Black Hole Physics Leads to a New Quantum in Fundamental Physical Laws"
2. ICRANet-Armenia has been provided by the law with offices for gratuitous use in prestigious Marshal Baghramyan Avenue area in Yerevan
3. Renewal of the collaboration agreement ICRANet - CNR, December 23, 2019
4. Stakeholders' conference on the future of the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions, Brussels, December 3, 2019
5. Visit of the artist Michelangelo Pistoletto, ICRANet Pescara, January 14-15, 2020
6. "Mercurio in sole visu". Second event of the project "Alternanza scuola-lavoro" with High School G. Galilei of Pescara at ICRANet center, November 11, 2019
7. "Betelgeuse dimming: the state of the star", ICRANet workshop in Pescara, January 17, 2020
8. Prof. Ruffini intervention at "Science by Night", High School G. Galilei of Pescara, January 18, 2020
9. Visit of the Prefect of Pescara and the exhibition "Einstein, Fermi, Heisenberg and the birth of Relativistic Astrophysics", ICRANet Pescara, January 25-February 29, 2020
10. Scientific visits to ICRANet
11. Seminars at ICRANet center in Pescara
12. Prof. Ruffini awarded the prize Rosone d’oro 2019, Pianella, Italy, December 21, 2019
13. Upcoming meetings
14. Recent publications



1. ICRANet Press Release "A New Paradigm of Black Hole Physics Leads to a New Quantum in Fundamental Physical Laws"

A change of paradigm in black hole physics, leading to new perspectives in the role of the quantum in fundamental laws of physics, is finally reaching its most cogent confirmation by the introduction of the "inner engine" originating the GeV emission of GRB 130427A. This is explained in the new article [1], published today (22 November 2019) in The Astrophysical Journal, co-authored by R. Ruffini, R. Moradi, J. A. Rueda, L. Becerra, C. L. Bianco, C. Cherubini, Y. C. Chen, M. Karlica, N. Sahakyan, Y. Wang, and S. S. Xue. Remo Ruffini, Director of ICRANet, recalls that this a final step of a 49 years effort. In our joint article of 1971 with John Archibald Wheeler, "Introducing the black hole" [2], we pointed out how the concept of "continuous gravitational contraction", conceived by Oppenheimer and Snyder [3] for the Schwarzschild geometry, had profound modifications by introducing the Kerr metric describing the gravitational field of a spinning mass [4]. We there introduced an effective potential technique to address the particle trajectories around the Kerr black hole (BH), see Problem 12.2 in [5], that led to: 1) the determination of the last stable orbits around the Kerr BH amply applied to the study of gravitational accretion in a vast number of processes, from active galactic nuclei (AGNs), to accretion disk around the BH, to the emission of gravitational waves, see ch. 33 and 34 in [6]; 2) the mass-energy formula of a Kerr BH [7], of a Kerr-Newman BH [8] later confirmed by [9] (see Figure 1) and 3) the progressive change of the Oppenheimer paradigm, based on a Schwarzschild "dead" BH, to the new paradigm envisaging the Kerr "alive" BH indicating the BH as the "largest storehouse of energy in the Universe" [10]. Precisely, the "inner engine" extracting the rotational Christodoulou-Hawking-Ruffini energy of the Kerr BH, has been identified today, after 49 years, in GRB 130427A [1] and has been already successfully extended to GRB 190114C [11]. These results have been made possible thanks to the outstanding data of the GBM and LAT detectors of the Fermi satellite, the BAT and XRT detectors of the Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory, and the optical and the higher energy detectors on the ground.

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Fig. 1. Prof. Remo Ruffini and Prof. Roy Kerr with his wife at Prof. Stephen Hawking’s home in Cambridge for dinner on 20 June 2017, celebrating the Christodoulou-Hawking-Ruffini mass-energy formula of the Kerr metric.

Laura Beccera, who has been collaborating with the group of Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in the simulation of these GRBs, notices that this "inner engine" naturally forms in the binary-driven hypernova (BdHN) scenario of GRBs [12-14] (see Figure 2). Rahim Moradi recalls: an extremely efficient electrodynamical process of BH energy extraction occurs in the "inner engine", composed of a rotating BH in a background of very low density ionized plasma and a magnetic field, aligned and parallel with the rotation axis. These features are in contrast with the usual assumptions of a vacuum solution, of asymptotic flatness, and more important, the "inner engine" must be, necessarily, non-stationary. The electrons accelerate to ultrahigh-energies at expenses of the BH extractable energy: the mass and spin of the BH decrease in time keeping constant the BH irreducible mass. Jorge Rueda comments: Quantitatively, we obtain for both GRB systems the three ‘inner engine’ parameters, the BH mass M, the spin α, and the magnetic field B0, by requiring that the system satisfies three conditions: (1) the energetics of the GeV photon emission originates in the rotational energy of the BH; (2) the synchrotron radiation of the electrons in the magnetic field sets the timescale of the observed GeV luminosity; (3) the system is transparent to the emission of GeV photons. When applying this model to GRB 130427A, we find [1]: α= 0.5, M = 2.3 solar masses, just above the critical mass for the gravitational collapse of a neutron star (NS), and B0 = 3x1010 G, sufficient to explain the GeV emission via synchrotron radiation. For GRB 190114C [11]: α= 0.4, M = 4.4 solar masses, and B0 = 4x1010 G. This, for the first time, gives the clear evidence that BHs in BdHNe I form by hypercritical accretion onto a NS. Figure 3 shows how the ‘inner engine’ accelerates electrons away from the BH, emitting synchrotron radiation as a function of the pitch angle (angle between the electron motion and the magnetic field). Ruffini adds: The ‘inner engine’ operates in a sequence of discrete ‘quantized’ steps, authentic electric discharges, emitting a ‘blackholic quantum’ of energy [15]: ε=ħΩeff. Along the rotation axis, electrons gain the total potential energy: ΔΦ=ħωeff. Here Ωeff e ωeff are effective frequencies that depend only on fundamental constants, the electron mass, charge, and the Planck mass; on the neutron mass, and on the three ‘inner engine’ parameters. We obtain for the ‘blackholic quantum,’ ε~1037 erg, a maximum energy of electrons, ΔΦ~1018 eV, and the emission timescale of the synchrotron radiation, 10-14 s, leading to a GeV photon luminosity of 1051 erg/s. Every quantized event takes away only 10-16 of the rotational energy of the BH, implying that the process can be long-lasting, providing ionized plasma to feed the BH be present. C. L. Bianco and She-Sheng Xue also recall: All the above imply a full shift of paradigm from the traditional, gravitational accretion of high-density matter onto a BH. It seems to be too expensive for Nature to accelerate high-density matter in bulk, against the gravitational pull of the BH, to bring it to a distance of 1016-1017 cm, where it becomes transparent to high-energy photons. Our ‘inner engine,’ instead, uses a more efficient process of electrodynamical accretion, acting on very low density ionized plasma of 10-14 g/cm3[16], producing the observable high-energy emission directly close to the horizon of the BH, where the rotational energy of the Kerr BH is extracted. Narek Sahakyan, Mile Karlica, Yen Chen Chen, and Yu Wang comment: We are eager to apply this model, successfully used for GRB 130427A [1] and GRB 190114C [11], to extract the energy of BHs of much larger masses in AGNs (e.g., the central BH of M87 of nearly 1010 solar masses), for which the ‘inner engine’ repetition timescale is of the order of hours [15]. Christian Cherubini and Simonetta Filippi comment: One of the most intriguing aspects of this result is that the emission of the blackholic quantum of 1037 erg, with a timescale of 10-14 s, occurs in the entire universe in view of the ubiquitous and homogenous cosmological presence of GRBs. It is interesting that scenario proposing a possible role of GRB in the evolution of life in our universe was introduced in [16] and may now be further quantitatively extended following the observation of GRB 130427A.


References:
[1] R. Ruffini, R. Moradi, J. A. Rueda, L. Becerra, C. L. Bianco, C. Cherubini, S. Filippi, Y. C. Chen, M. Karlica, N. Sahakyan, et al., Astroph. J. 886, 82 (2019), arXiv:1812.00354, URL https://arxiv.org/abs/1812.00354.
[2] R. Ruffini and J. A. Wheeler, Phys. Today 24, 30 (1971), URL https://doi.org/10.1063/1.3022513.
[3] J. R. Oppenheimer and H. Snyder, Phys. Rev. 56, 455 (1939), URL https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRev.56.455.
[4] R. P. Kerr, Phys. Rev. Lett. 11, 237 (1963), URL https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.11.237.
[5] L. Landau and E. Lifshitz, in The Classical Theory of Fields (Fourth Edition) (ELSEVIER, Amsterdam, 1975), vol. 2 of Course of Theoretical Physics, p. xiii, fourth edition ed., ISBN 978-0-08-025072-4, URL https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-08-025072-4.50007-1.
[6] C. W. Misner, K. S. Thorne, and J. A. Wheeler, Gravitation (Freeman and Co., San Francisco, 1973).
[7] D. Christodoulou, Phys. Rev. Lett. 25, 1596 (1970), URL https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.25.1596.
[8] D. Christodoulou and R. Ruffini, Phys. Rev. D 4, 3552 (1971), URL https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevD.4.3552.
[9] S. W. Hawking, Physical Review Letters 26, 1344 (1971), URL https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.26.1344.
[10] D. Christodoulou and R. Ruffini, Essay submitted to the Gravity Research Foundation Third prize (1971), URL https://www.gravityresearchfoundation.org/s/christodoulou_ruffini.pdf.
[11] R. Moradi, J. A. Rueda, R. Ruffini, and Y. Wang, ArXiv e-prints (2019), arXiv:1911.07552, URL https://arxiv.org/ abs/1911.07552.

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Fig. 2. The evolutionary path (left-hand side, from up to down) leading to the progenitor of a BdHN I, the carbon-oxygen star (COcore)-NS binary [18, 19]. The BdHN I starts with the second supernova (SN) explosion ("SN-rise"), leaving a newborn NS (νNS), and producing a hypercritical accretion process onto the NS companion [13]. As the NS reaches the critical mass, a BH is formed [14, 20], and a cavity is formed around it [16]. The newborn BH, the embedding magnetic field inherited from the collapsed NS, and the surrounding low-density ionized plasma, conform the "inner engine" of the GRB, which explains the high-energy GeV emission via synchrotron radiation.

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Fig. 3. Figure taken from [11] with the kind permission of the authors. Contours of constant pitch angle (colored curves from purple to pink) of electrons moving in the uniform magnetic field around the rotating BH (filled black disk). The black dashed curves represent contours of constant electric energy density, and the colored background shows how it decreases with distance. Compare and contrast these theoretical expectations with the recent observational data of M87 (see Figure 4 in [21]), which harbored a supermassive BH of nearly 1010 solar masses.

[12] J. A. Rueda and R. Ruffini, Astroph. J. 758, L7 (2012), arXiv:1206.1684, URL https://doi.org/10.1088/2041-8205/758/1/L7.
[13] C. L. Fryer, J. A. Rueda, and R. Ruffini, Astroph. J. 793, L36 (2014), arXiv:1409.1473, URL https://doi.org/10.1088/2041-8205/793/2/L36.
[14] L. Becerra, C. L. Bianco, C. L. Fryer, J. A. Rueda, and R. Ruffini, Astroph. J. 833, 107 (2016), arXiv:1606.02523, URL https://doi.org/10.3847/1538-4357/833/1/107.
[15] J. A. Rueda and R. Ruffini, arXiv e-prints (2019), arXiv:1907.08066, URL https://arxiv.org/abs/1907.08066.
[16] R. Ruffini, J. D. Melon Fuksman, and G. V. Vereshchagin, Astroph. J. 883, 191 (2019), arXiv:1904.03163, URL https://doi.org/10.3847/1538-4357/ab3c51.
[17] P. Chen and R. Ruffini, Astronomy Reports 59, 469 (2015), arXiv:1403.7303, URL https://doi.org/10.1134/S1063772915060098.
[18] C. L. Fryer, F. G. Oliveira, J. A. Rueda, and R. Ruffini, Physical Review Letters 115, 231102 (2015), arXiv:1505.02809, URL https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.115.231102.
[19] L. Becerra, F. Cipolletta, C. L. Fryer, J. A. Rueda, and R. Ruffini, Astroph. J. 812, 100 (2015), arXiv:1505.07580, URL https://doi.org/10.1088/0004-637X/812/2/100.
[20] L. Becerra, C. L. Ellinger, C. L. Fryer, J. A. Rueda, and R. Ruffini, Astroph. J. 871, 14 (2019), arXiv:1803.04356, URL https://doi.org/10.3847/1538-4357/aaf6b3.
[21] J. Y. Kim, T. P. Krichbaum, R. S. Lu, E. Ros, U. Bach, M. Bremer, P. de Vicente, M. Lindqvist, and J. A. Zensus, Astron. Astroph. 616, A188 (2018), arXiv:1805.02478, URL https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361/201832921.



2. ICRANet-Armenia has been provided by the law with offices for gratuitous use in prestigious Marshal Baghramyan Avenue area in Yerevan

The ICRANet Armenia center is established since 2014 after the approval of the Seat Agreement by the Government of the Republic of Armenia. The Seat Agreement has been signed in Rome on February 14, 2015, by the director of ICRANet, prof. Remo Ruffini and the Ambassador of Armenia in Italy, Mr. Sargis Ghazaryan which was then unanimously approved by the Parliament of the Republic of Armenia. In October 3, 2019, the Government of the Republic of Armenia passed a law (N 1343-A) signed by the Prime Minister N. Pashinyan to provide 270 square meters area of the main building of the Institute of Geological Sciences (address: 24 Marshal Baghramyan Avenue, Yerevan 0019, Kentron district) to ICRANET Armenia Center International Organization with the right of gratuitous use for an indefinite period of time. The area has a separate entrance in accordance with the Seat Agreement to provide extraterritoriality (diplomatic immunity) and includes six working rooms and a large seminar room (with a maximum capacity of 70 persons). The Seat is located in the prestigious Marshal Baghramyan Avenue neighboring the parliament of the Republic of Armenia and the President Palace. This opens a new perspective for the ICRANet activities in Armenia and now the Seat in Armenia can host scientists from other ICRANet member institutions as well as host international conferences and workshops.
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Fig. 4: The President of the Republic of Armenia, H.E. Armen Sarkissian at his residence in Yerevan greeting Prof. Narek Sahakyan during the visit of the delegation from ICRANet led by prof. Remo Ruffini, in the occasion of the Armenian-Italian Science Day, Yerevan, April 15, 2019.



3. Renewal of the collaboration agreement ICRANet - CNR, December 23, 2019

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On December 23, 2019, the agreement between ICRANet and CNR (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche - Italy) has been renewed. The renewal was signed by Prof. Massimo Inguscio (President of CNR) and by Prof. Remo Ruffini (Director of ICRANet).
This agreement will be valid for 3 years and the main joint activities to be developed under its framework include: the promotion of theoretical and observational activities within the field of Relativistic Astrophysics; the joint collaboration of faculty members, researchers, post-doctorate fellows and students; the organization of training and teaching courses, seminars, conferences, workshops or short courses, and the joint work on scientific publications.
For the text of the agreement:
http://www.icranet.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=892.



4. Stakeholders' conference on the future of the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions, Brussels, December 3, 2019

On December 3, 2019, Professor Ruffini took part in the Stakeholders’ Conference on the Future of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions MSCA under Horizon Europe, held in Brussels. This was an opportunity for him and for all other participants to present their ideas on the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) under the Horizon Europe program (2021-2027) and to share opinions on policy and implementation issues.
For more information about the MSCA Advisory Group, see the link: http://ec.europa.eu/research/mariecurieactions/.

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Fig. 5: Prof. Ruffini during his speech at the Stakeholders' conference on the future of the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions, Brussels, December 3, 2019.



5. Visit of the artist Michelangelo Pistoletto, ICRANet Pescara, January 14-15, 2020


On January 14 and 15, 2020 the famous Italian artist Michelangelo Pistoletto visited ICRANet center in Pescara. Pistoletto is an Italian painter, action and object artist, and art theorist. Pistoletto is acknowledged as one of the main representatives of the Italian Arte Povera. His work mainly deals with the subject matter of reflection and the unification of art and everyday life in terms of a Gesamtkunstwerk. His works are exhibited in the main Italian museums (the Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte - Naples, the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna - Rome, the Galleria degli Uffizi - Florence, the MAXXI - Rome, ...) as well as worldwide (Musée du Louvre and Centre Georges Pompidou - Paris, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the MoMA and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum - New York, ...).
Prof. Ruffini accompanied Pistoletto to visit ICRANet center, showing him all the fundamental documents and pictures collected there. He also showed him the exhibition "Einstein, Fermi, Heisenberg and the birth of Relativistic Astrophysics", organized in ICRANet library. At the end of the tour, Michelangelo Pistoletto left his dates signature on the wall, next to those of other eminent personalities (scientists, politicians, artists, ...) who visited the center. During his visit, Pistoletto had an important dialogue with Prof. Ruffini, on the important relationship and correlation between "art and science" and Prof. Ruffini illustrated him the most recent scientific results on which ICRANet scientist are working on.

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Fig. 6: Michelangelo Pistoletto and Prof. Ruffini discussing about the correlation between art and science.
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Fig. 7: dated signature of Michelangelo Pistoletto on the wall of ICRANet center in Pescara.
 
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Fig. 8: Prof. Ruffini showing to Michelangelo Pistoletto and his wife, the important pictures collected in his office.
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Fig. 9: Michelangelo Pistoletto and his wife meeting ICRANet Faculty Professor and research students.

On the morning of Wednesday, January 15, Pistoletto and Prof. Ruffini met the major of Pescara, Dr Carlo Masci, at the Municipality of Pescara. During that meeting, Pistoletto recalled the longstanding relationship with the city of Pescara, which he has often visited in the ‘70s, when the city attracted both the attention of the European Union and of several artists from all over the world. The Major Masci highlighted that this was a fruitful meeting, which could open the way to future collaborations, especially concerning the regeneration of run-down urban spaces. At the end of the meeting, he gave to Pistoletto a precious book where some postcards realized by Basilio Cascella are collected, as a gift.
Press releases on this meeting:
• Rete 8: http://www.rete8.it/cronaca/123pescara-masci-riceve-la-visita-del-maestro-pistoletto/
• Abruzzo news: https://www.abruzzonews.eu/michelangelo-pistoletto-e-remo-ruffini-ricevuti-da-sindaco-masci-foto-582313.html

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Fig. 10 and 11: The Italian artist Michelangelo Pistoletto together with Prof. Remo Ruffini, during their meeting with the Major of Pescara, Dr Carlo Masci at the Municipality of Pescara, January 15, 2020.



6. "Mercurio in sole visu". Second event of the project "Alternanza scuola-lavoro" with High School G. Galilei of Pescara at ICRANet center, November 11, 2019


On November 11, 2019, ICRANet center in Pescara hosted the second event of the project "Alternanza scuola-lavoro", at the presence of the students from the classes 4°B, 4°D and 4°F from High School Galileo Galilei of Pescara, under the supervision of their tutor, Prof. Tiziana Pompa.
Chaired by Prof. Costantino Sigismondi, ICRANet collaborator, the morning session of the event started at 11 am with the opening remarks by Prof. Vladimir Belinski, ICRANet Faculty Professor, and went on with some plenary presentations in videoconference by Prof. Jay M. Pasachoff from the Williams College ("Projects for the Mercury transit of 2019"), by Prof. Sigismondi ("SAROS, Transiti Eclissi e Occultazioni tra Collegio Romano e Minerva"), by Prof. Terry Mahoney from the IAU ("Kepler and Gassendi: the first observed transit") and by Prof. Lorenzo Ricciardi from the University of Roma Tre ("La tecnologia e la società nel 2032").

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Fig. 12: Prof. Costantino Sigismondi, chairman of the event, introducing Prof. Vladimir Belinski (ICRANet Faculty Professor).
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Fig. 13: Participants to the second event of the project "Alternanza scuola-lavoro".

From 1 pm to 3 pm, the students, guided by Prof. Sigismondi and by their tutors, observed the transit of Mercury on the Sun through an optical telescope in ICRANet garden. The afternoon session continued with some plenary presentations in videoconference by Prof. Wolfgang Beisker from IOTA/ES ("The transit of Mercury and the asteroidal occultations"), by Prof. Bjӧrn Kattendit from IOTA/ES ("Observations of the transit f Mercury with a 28cm SC Telescope in 2016"), by Prof. Hamed Altafi, Tehran Observatory ("Il transito di Mercurio del 2016 e del 2019") and by Prof. Marcelo Emilio, Universidade de Ponta Grossa ("Diametro solare con SOHO e SDO"). Other contributions have been presented in videoconference also by Prof. Michele Bianda, Prof. Axel Wittmann, Prof. Marta Grabowska, Prof. Irene Sigismondi, Prof. Paolo Ochner, Prof. Francesco Berrilli, Prof. Lukasz Wieteska, Prof. Luigi M. Bordoni, Prof. Francesco Giannini, Prof. Rodolfo Calanca, Prof. Francesco Berrilli and Prof. Cesare Barbieri. The last part of the event has been dedicated to the concluding remarks by Prof. Ruffini.

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Fig. 14: Professors and students preparing the optical telescope for the observations in ICRANet garden.
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Fig. 15: Observation of the transit of Mercury on the Sun through the optical telescope.

For more information about the event: http://www.icranet.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1264#2
For the videos of the event:
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmKJ-Ppsftg&list=PLr5RLbSWSonviNqCXECM-5ahTACPb_JdY&index=4
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUHVWsvE7G0&list=PLr5RLbSWSonviNqCXECM-5ahTACPb_JdY&index=5



7. "Betelgeuse dimming: the state of the star", ICRANet workshop in Pescara, January 17, 2020


On January 17, 2020, ICRANet center in Pescara hosted an international workshop titled "Betelgeuse dimming: the state of the star", on the occasion of an epochal event, with some of the most prominent scientists in the field. Betelgeuse, the alpha of Orion, has been classified as the brightest star of the constellation by Ptolemy around 150 AD. It is a semi-regular variable that in the top luminosity phases can be the brightest star of the northern hemisphere, with negative magnitude. Since October 2019, its luminosity is dimming and lost one whole magnitude, attaining the visual magnitude of 1.4, at the level of Regulus, the alpha of Leo. What is going on now? This is the main subject discussed during this event.

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Fig. 16: Betelgeuse as in 1702, Clementine Gnomon – Rome.

The workshop, chaired by Prof. Costantino Sigismondi, ICRANet collaborator, started with 2 Lectio magistralis: one by Prof. Ruffini, Director of ICRANet on "Supernovae and Gamma-Ray bursts" and the other by Prof. Sigismondi on "The case of eta Carinae in 1843". The event went on with some plenary presentations in videoconference by Prof. Cersare Barbieri, University of Padova ("Astronomy and media"), by Prof. Margarita Karovska, Harvard CfA ("Multiperiodicity in the Light Curve of Alpha Orionis"), by Prof. Paolo Ochner, Asiago Astrophysical Observatory ("Galactic SN classification"), by Prof. Stella Kafka, AAVSO Director ("AAVSO Mission and Database") and by Prof. Massimo Turatto, INAF/Padova Observatory ("Supernova and variability from spectra and light curves").

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Fig. 17: Prof. Ruffini and Prof. Sigismondi during their presentation at the workshop.
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Fig. 18: Prof. Vereshchagin and Prof. Sigismondi during their presentation at the workshop.

For more information about the event: http://www.icranet.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1281



8. Prof. Ruffini intervention at "Science by Night", High School G. Galilei of Pescara, January 18, 2020

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Fig. 19: Prof. Ruffini presenting his talk "Observing a newly-born Black Hole", on the occasion of the event Science by Night at High School G. Galilei of Pescara, January 18, 2020.

On January 18, 2020, the High School Galileo Galilei of Pescara organized an important event titled "Science by Night". This event represented a nice occasion for discussion among students, citizens and researchers, and attracted a lot of people, offering to participants a unique opportunity to take part in science activities aiming to showcase both the fascination of research as a career and its significant societal impact.
On that occasion, Prof. Remo Ruffini, Director of ICRANet, and Prof. Costantino Sigismondi, ICRANet collaborator, were invited to participate. On that occasion, Prof. Ruffini deliver an important talk, titled "Observing a newly-born Black Hole".
For more information about the event and for the program: http://galileipescara.it/blog/science-by-night-v-ed/



9. Visit of the Prefect of Pescara and the exhibition "Einstein, Fermi, Heisenberg and the birth of Relativistic Astrophysics", ICRANet Pescara, January 25-February 29, 2020

ICRANet is pleased to announce the exhibition "Einstein, Fermi, Heisenberg and the birth of Relativistic Astrophysics" at ICRANet center in Pescara, which will be opened from January 25 to February 29, 2020 (from Monday to Friday, from 9:00 to 18:00). The exhibition has been organized on the occasion of the conferral of the honorary citizenship of Pescara to Liliana Segre, Life Senator of the Italian Republic, and to the Unione Comunità Ebraiche Italiane, to the Brigata Ebraica and to all the victims of Shoah by the Major Carlo Masci. Several eminent local institutional, military and religious authorities have been invited to visit the exhibition.
On Monday January 27, the Prefect of Pescara, H.E. Gerardina Basilicata, visited the exhibition. Prof. Ruffini accompanied her during the visit, explaining the birth of relativistic astrophysics thanks to the important role played by eminent personalities such as Albert Einstein, Enrico Fermi, Robert Oppenheimer, John Von Neumann and Werner Heisenberg.

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Fig. 20 and 21: The Prefect of Pescara, H.E. Gerardina Basilicata, visiting the exhibition "Einstein, Fermi, Heisenberg and the birth of Relativistic Astrophysics" at ICRANet center in Pescara.



10. Scientific visits to ICRANet

Dr Seddigheh Tizchang (Institute for Research in Fundamental Sciences IPM - Iran), November 6 - 19, 2019. Dr Tizchang visited ICRANet center in Pescara and had the opportunity to meet and discuss scientific issues with ICRANet scientists. On that occasion she also gave a seminar titled "Probing the effect of background fields on the polarization of photons from CMB to lasers".
Dr Orchidea Maria Lecian (University of Rome "La Sapienza" - Italy), November 7-8, 2019. During his visit, Dr Lecian had the opportunity to meet and discuss scientific issues with ICRANet scientists. On that occasion she also gave a seminar titled "Quantum-systems investigations vs optical-systems ones".
Prof. Mathews Grant (Center for Astrophysics at Notre Dame University - USA), November 19-20, 2019. Prof. Grant visited ICRANet center in Pescara and had the opportunity to meet and discuss scientific issues with ICRANet scientists from all over the world.
Academician Sergei Kilin (National Academy of Sciences of Belarus), December 15-17, 2019. Academician Kilin participated in the 21° ICRANet Steering Committee meeting, held on December 16. He had, therefore, the possibility to visit ICRANet center in Pescara and to meet and discuss scientific issues with ICRANet scientists.
Prof. Johann Rafelski (University of Arizona - USA), December 14-17, 2019. Prof. Rafelski participated in the 21° ICRANet Steering Committee meeting, held on December 16, as representative of the University of Arizona. He had, therefore, the possibility to visit ICRANet center in Pescara and meet and discuss scientific issues with ICRANet scientists.
Dr Yunlong Zheng (University of Science and Technology of China), December 12-26, 2019. Dr Zheng visited ICRANet center in Pescara and had the opportunity to meet and discuss scientific issues with ICRANet scientists. Accompanied by Prof. Ruffini, Dr Zheng visited also the University Campus Bio-medico of Rome.

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Dr Seddigheh Tizchang
Dr Orchidea Maria Lecian
Prof. Mathews Grant
Academician Sergei Kilin
Prof. Johann Rafelski
Dr Yunlong Zheng



11. Seminars at ICRANet center in Pescara

Seminar of Dr Orchidea Maria Lecian
On Thursday, November 7, 2019, Dr Orchidea Maria Lecian (University of Rome "La Sapienza" - Italy), gave a seminar titled "Quantum-systems investigations vs optical-systems ones". Here below is the abstract:
The features of quantum systems, quantum-optical-systems and optical systems can be outlined according to the possibility for the study of the properties of matter fields and of the gravitational field. Quantum properties of particles and of the background gravitational field at quantum scales, at the semi-classical regime and at the classical level are analyzed by quantum systems and optical-systems devices, for which the experimental features of the research are compared. Investigation in cosmology and in early cosmology can be envisaged. The features of quantum operators to be evaluated by these techniques are pointed out. The properties of relativistic objects are this way examined. The features of the Einstein field equations and of their initial conditions are defined. The degrees of freedom available for the Einstein field equations and their initial conditions are characterized.
The announcement of the seminar has also been published on ICRANet website: http://www.icranet.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=89&Itemid=781

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Fig. 22 and 23: Dr Orchidea Maria Lecian giving her seminar at ICRANet center in Pescara, November 7, 2019.


Seminar of Dr Seddigheh Tizchang
On Friday, November 15, 2019, Dr Seddigheh Tizchang (Institute for Research in Fundamental Sciences IPM - Iran), gave a seminar titled "Probing the effect of background fields on the polarization of photons from CMB to lasers". Here below is the abstract:
It is known that the polarization of photons can partly rotate and/or convert to circular polarization via forward Compton scattering in the presence of a background field. Based on this fact, we show that Compton scattering in presence of non-trivial background and scalar perturbation of metric, in addition to generate circularly polarized microwaves, can lead to a B-mode polarization for the CMB. Besides, we proposed an earth-based experiment in which the polarization of the laser photon convert to circular one via forward scattering by high energy charged lepton beam in presence of non-trivial background fields such as Non-commutative space-time and Lorentz violation.
The announcement of the seminar has also been published on ICRANet website: http://www.icranet.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=89&Itemid=781

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Fig. 24 and 25: Dr Seddigheh Tizchang giving her seminar at ICRANet center in Pescara, November 15, 2019.



12. Prof. Ruffini awarded the prize Rosone d’oro 2019, Pianella, Italy, December 21, 2019

On December 21, 2019, Prof. Ruffini, Director of ICRANet, was awarded the prize Rosone d’oro 2019 by the Municipality of Pianella. This award has been assigned to Prof. Ruffini in the section "Sciences" of the Prize for Literature, Art and Sciences ‘Città di Pianella’, in sign of appreciation of his eminent personality and his scientific achievements both at the international and national levels.
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Fig. 26: Prof. Ruffini receiving his award.
Fig. 27: Prof. Ruffini attending the official ceremony with the others awardees.
Fig. 28: Prof. Ruffini together with some organizers of the official ceremony.



13. Upcoming meeting

The International Center for Relativistic Astrophysics Network (ICRANet) together with the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus is organizing an international conference to be held in Minsk, Belarus on April 20-24, 2020: the Fourth Zeldovich meeting. The participation from neighboring countries such as Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Ukraine as well as from Balkan countries, Eastern and Western Europe and the Americas is expected. Exceptionally wide research interests of Ya. B. Zeldovich, ranging from chemical physics, elementary particle and nuclear physics to astrophysics and cosmology, provide the topics to be covered at the conference.
Registration to this meeting is open until March 15, 2020 at the following link: http://dbserver.icra.it:8080/meetings/registration_zeld4.htm

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From October 30 until April 1, 2020, it is possible to submit an abstract through the following link: https://uploader.icranet.org/zeld4/.

The preliminary list of invited speakers include:
• Abhay Ashtekar, Institute for Gravitation & the Cosmos, Penn State University, USA
• Rong-Gen Cai, Institute of Theoretical Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
• Jens Chluba, Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics, University of Manchester, UK
• Alexander Dolgov, Novosibirsk State University and ITEP, Russia
• Jaan Einasto, Tartu Observatory, Estonia
• Stefan Gillessen, Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics, Germany
• Claus Lämmerzahl, ZARM, Germany
• Vladimir Lipunov, Moscow State University, Russia
• Felix Mirabel, CEA Saclay, France
• Slava Mukhanov, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Germany
• Konstantin Postnov, Sternberg Astronomical Institute of the Moscow State University, Russia
• Piero Rosati, University of Ferrara, Italy
• Jorge Rueda, ICRANet, Italy
• Remo Ruffini, ICRANet, Italy
• Nikolay Shakura, Sternberg Astronomical Institute of the Moscow State University, Russia
• Dmitry Sokoloff, Moscow State University, Russia;
• Alexey Starobinsky, Landau institute for theoretical physics, RAS, Russia

For more information concerning the meeting, please consult the its official website: http://www.icranet.org/zeldovich4



14. Recent publications

Sahakyan, N., Investigation of the Gamma-ray Spectrum of CTA 102 During the Exceptional Flaring State in 2016-2017, accepted for publication in Astronomy & Astrophysics, November 2019.
The flat spectrum radio quasar CTA 102 entered an extended period of activity from 2016 to 2017 during which several strong γγ-ray flares were observed. Using Fermi large area telescope data a detailed investigation of \gray spectra of CTA 102 during the flaring period is performed. In several periods the \gray spectrum is not consistent with a simple power-law, having a hard photon index with an index of ∼(1.8−2.0)∼(1.8−2.0) that shows a spectral cutoff around an observed photon energy of ∼(9−16)∼(9−16) GeV. The internal γγ-ray absorption via photon-photon pair production on the broad line-region-reflected photons cannot account for the observed cut-off/break even if the emitting region is very close to the central source. This cut-off/break is likely due to a similar intrinsic break in the energy distribution of emitting particles. The origin of the spectral break is investigated through the multiwavelength modeling of the spectral energy distribution, considering a different location for the emitting region. The observed X-ray and γγ-ray data is modeled as inverse Compton scattering of synchrotron and/or external photons on the electron population that produce the radio-to-optical emission which allowed to constrain the power-law index and cut-off energy in the electron energy distribution. The obtained results are discussed in the context of a diffusive acceleration of electrons in the CTA 102 jet.
Link: https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2019arXiv191112087S/abstract


Acciari, V. A., et al. Monitoring of the radio galaxy M 87 during a low emission state from 2012 to 2015 with MAGIC, published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, January 2020.
M 87 is one of the closest (z=0.00436) extragalactic sources emitting at very-high-energies (VHE, E > 100 GeV). The aim of this work is to locate the region of the VHE gamma-ray emission and to describe the observed broadband spectral energy distribution (SED) during the low VHE gamma-ray state. The data from M 87 collected between 2012 and 2015 as part of a MAGIC monitoring programme are analysed and combined with multi-wavelength data from Fermi-LAT, Chandra, HST, EVN, VLBA and the Liverpool Telescope. The averaged VHE gamma-ray spectrum can be fitted from 100 GeV to 10 TeV with a simple power law with a photon index of (-2.41 ± 0.07), while the integral flux above 300 GeV is (1.44 ± 0.13) × 10-12 cm-2 s-1. During the campaign between 2012 and 2015, M 87 is generally found in a low emission state at all observed wavelengths. The VHE gamma-ray flux from the present 2012-2015 M 87 campaign is consistent with a constant flux with some hint of variability (3 σ) on a daily timescale in 2013. The low-state gamma-ray emission likely originates from the same region as the flare-state emission. Given the broadband SED, both a leptonic synchrotron self Compton and a hybrid photo-hadronic model reproduce the available data well, even if the latter is preferred. We note, however, that the energy stored in the magnetic field in the leptonic scenario is very low suggesting a matter dominated emission region.
Link: https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/staa014


MAGIC Collaboration; Acciari, V. A. et al., Testing emission models on the extreme blazar 2WHSP J073326.7+515354 detected at very high energies with the MAGIC telescopes, published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Volume 490, Issue 2, p.2284-2299.
Extreme high-energy-peaked BL Lac objects (EHBLs) are an emerging class of blazars. Their typical two-hump-structured spectral energy distribution (SED) peaks at higher energies with respect to conventional blazars. Multiwavelength (MWL) observations constrain their synchrotron peak in the medium to hard X-ray band. Their gamma-ray SED peaks above the GeV band, and in some objects it extends up to several TeV. Up to now, only a few EHBLs have been detected in the TeV gamma-ray range. In this paper, we report the detection of the EHBL 2WHSP J073326.7+515354, observed and detected during 2018 in TeV gamma rays with the MAGIC telescopes. The broad-band SED is studied within an MWL context, including an analysis of the Fermi-LAT data over 10 yr of observation and with simultaneous Swift-XRT, Swift-UVOT, and KVA data. Our analysis results in a set of spectral parameters that confirms the classification of the source as an EHBL. In order to investigate the physical nature of this extreme emission, different theoretical frameworks were tested to model the broad-band SED. The hard TeV spectrum of 2WHSP J073326.7+515354 sets the SED far from the energy equipartition regime in the standard one-zone leptonic scenario of blazar emission. Conversely, more complex models of the jet, represented by either a two-zone spine-layer model or a hadronic emission model, better represent the broad-band SED.
Link: https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/stz2725


MAGIC Collaboration; Acciari, V. A., et al., Observation of inverse Compton emission from a long γ-ray burst, published in Nature, Volume 575, Issue 7783, p.459-463.
Long-duration γ-ray bursts (GRBs) originate from ultra-relativistic jets launched from the collapsing cores of dying massive stars. They are characterized by an initial phase of bright and highly variable radiation in the kiloelectronvolt-to-megaelectronvolt band, which is probably produced within the jet and lasts from milliseconds to minutes, known as the prompt emission. Subsequently, the interaction of the jet with the surrounding medium generates shock waves that are responsible for the afterglow emission, which lasts from days to months and occurs over a broad energy range from the radio to the gigaelectronvolt bands. The afterglow emission is generally well explained as synchrotron radiation emitted by electrons accelerated by the external shock. Recently, intense long-lasting emission between 0.2 and 1 teraelectronvolts was observed from GRB 190114C. Here we report multi-frequency observations of GRB 190114C, and study the evolution in time of the GRB emission across 17 orders of magnitude in energy, from 5 × 10-6 to 1012 electronvolts. We find that the broadband spectral energy distribution is double-peaked, with the teraelectronvolt emission constituting a distinct spectral component with power comparable to the synchrotron component. This component is associated with the afterglow and is satisfactorily explained by inverse Compton up-scattering of synchrotron photons by high-energy electrons. We find that the conditions required to account for the observed teraelectronvolt component are typical for GRBs, supporting the possibility that inverse Compton emission is commonly produced in GRBs.
Link: https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2019Natur.575..459M/abstract


MAGIC Collaboration; Acciari, V. A. et al., Teraelectronvolt emission from the γ-ray burst GRB 190114C, published in Nature, Volume 575, Issue 7783, p.455-458.
Long-duration γ-ray bursts (GRBs) are the most luminous sources of electromagnetic radiation known in the Universe. They arise from outflows of plasma with velocities near the speed of light that are ejected by newly formed neutron stars or black holes (of stellar mass) at cosmological distances. Prompt flashes of megaelectronvolt-energy γ-rays are followed by a longer-lasting afterglow emission in a wide range of energies (from radio waves to gigaelectronvolt γ-rays), which originates from synchrotron radiation generated by energetic electrons in the accompanying shock waves. Although emission of γ-rays at even higher (teraelectronvolt) energies by other radiation mechanisms has been theoretically predicted, it has not been previously detected. Here we report observations of teraelectronvolt emission from the γ-ray burst GRB 190114C. γ-rays were observed in the energy range 0.2-1 teraelectronvolt from about one minute after the burst (at more than 50 standard deviations in the first 20 minutes), revealing a distinct emission component of the afterglow with power comparable to that of the synchrotron component. The observed similarity in the radiated power and temporal behaviour of the teraelectronvolt and X-ray bands points to processes such as inverse Compton upscattering as the mechanism of the teraelectronvolt emission. By contrast, processes such as synchrotron emission by ultrahigh-energy protons are not favoured because of their low radiative efficiency. These results are anticipated to be a step towards a deeper understanding of the physics of GRBs and relativistic shock waves.
Link: https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2019Natur.575..455M/abstract


Ruffini, R.; Moradi, R.; Rueda, J. A.; Becerra, L.; Bianco, C. L.; Cherubini, C.; Filippi, S.; Chen, Y. C.; Karlica, M.; Sahakyan, N.; Wang, Y.; Xue, S. S., On the GeV Emission of the Type I BdHN GRB 130427A, published in the Astrophysical Journal, Volume 886, Issue 2, article id. 82, 13 pp. (2019) on November 22, 2019.
We propose that the inner engine of a type I binary-driven hypernova (BdHN) is composed of Kerr black hole (BH) in a non-stationary state, embedded in a uniform magnetic field B0 aligned with the BH rotation axis and surrounded by an ionized plasma of extremely low density of 10−14 g cm−3. Using GRB 130427A as a prototype, we show that this inner engine acts in a sequence of elementary impulses. Electrons accelerate to ultrarelativistic energy near the BH horizon, propagating along the polar axis, θ = 0, where they can reach energies of ~1018 eV, partially contributing to ultrahigh-energy cosmic rays. When propagating with θ ≠ 0 through the magnetic field B0, they produce GeV and TeV radiation through synchroton emission. The mass of BH, M = 2.31M, its spin, α = 0.47, and the value of magnetic field B0 = 3.48 × 1010 G, are determined self consistently to fulfill the energetic and the transparency requirement. The repetition time of each elementary impulse of energy ε ~ 1037 erg is ~10−14 s at the beginning of the process, then slowly increases with time evolution. In principle, this "inner engine" can operate in a gamma-ray burst (GRB) for thousands of years. By scaling the BH mass and the magnetic field, the same inner engine can describe active galactic nuclei.
Journal link: https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.3847/1538-4357/ab4ce6
arXiv link: https://arxiv.org/abs/1812.00354


De Lima, Rafael C. R.; Coelho, Jaziel G.; Pereira, Jonas P.; Rodrigues, Claudia V.; Rueda, J. A., Evidence for a multipolar magnetic Field in SGR J1745-2900 from X-ray light-curve analysis, accepted for publication in The Astrophysical Journal; in press.
SGR J1745-2900 was detected from its outburst activity in April 2013 and it was the first soft gamma repeater (SGR) detected near the center of the Galaxy (Sagittarius A∗). We use 3.5-year Chandra X-ray light-curve data to constrain some neutron star (NS) geometric parameters. We assume that the flux modulation comes from hot spots on the stellar surface. Our model includes the NS mass, radius, a maximum of three spots of any size, temperature and positions, and general relativistic effects. We find that the light-curve of SGR J1745-2900 could be described by either two or three hot spots. The ambiguity is due to the small amount of data, but our analysis suggests that one should not disregard the possibility of multi-spots (due to a multipolar magnetic field) in highly magnetized stars. For the case of three hot spots, we find that they should be large and have angular semi-apertures ranging from 16-67 degrees. The large size found for the spots points to a magnetic field with a nontrivial poloidal and toroidal structure (in accordance with magnetohydrodynamics investigations and NICER's recent findings for PSR J0030+0451) and is consistent with the small characteristic age of the star. Finally, we also discuss possible constraints on the mass and radius of SGR J1745-2900 and briefly envisage possible scenarios accounting for the 3.5-year evolution of SGR J1745-2900 hot spots.
arXiv link: https://arxiv.org/abs/1912.12336


Ruiz-Baier R., Gizzi A., Loppini A., Cherubini C. and Filippi S., Modelling Thermo-Electro-Mechanical Effects in Orthotropic Cardiac Tissue, published in Commun. Comput. Phys. Vol.27, No. 1, pp. 87-115 (January 2020).
In this paper we introduce a new mathematical model for the active contraction of cardiac muscle, featuring different thermo-electric and nonlinear conductivity properties. The passive hyperelastic response of the tissue is described by an orthotropic exponential model, whereas the ionic activity dictates active contraction incorporated through the concept of orthotropic active strain. We use a fully incompressible formulation, and the generated strain modifies directly the conductivity mechanisms in the medium through the pull-back transformation. We also investigate the influence of thermo-electric effects in the onset of multiphysics emergent spatiotemporal dynamics, using nonlinear diffusion. It turns out that these ingredients have a key role in reproducing pathological chaotic dynamics such as ventricular fibrillation during inflammatory events, for instance. The specific structure of the governing equations suggests to cast the problem in mixed-primal form and we write it in terms of Kirchhoff stress, displacements, solid pressure, dimensionless electric potential, activation generation, and ionic variables. We also advance a new mixed-primal finite element method for its numerical approximation, and we use it to explore the properties of the model and to assess the importance of coupling terms, by means of a few computational experiments in 3D.
Link: https://global-sci.org/intro/article_detail/cicp/13315.html


M. A. Prakapenia and G. V. Vereshchagin, Bose-Einstein condensation in relativistic plasma, published in Europhysics Letters, Volume 128, Number 5 (2019) 50002 on 30 of January 2020.
The phenomenon of Bose-Einstein condensation is traditionally associated with and experimentally verified at low temperatures: either of the nano-Kelvin scale for alkali atoms, or room temperatures for quasi-particles or photons in two dimensions. Here we demonstrate out of first principles that for certain initial conditions nonequilibrium plasma at relativistic temperatures of billions of Kelvin undergoes condensation, as predicted by Zeldovich and Levich in their seminal work. We determine the necessary conditions for the onset of condensation and discuss the possibilities to observe such a phenomenon in laboratory and astrophysical conditions.
Link: https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1209/0295-5075/128/50002
 
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