MOCCA code for star cluster simulations – IV. A new scenario for intermediate mass black hole formation in globular clusters

20 Jan

[2015MNRAS.454.3150G]  Giersz, Mirek; Leigh, Nathan; Hypki, Arkadiusz; Lützgendorf, Nora; Askar, Abbas

We discuss a new scenario for the formation of intermediate mass black holes (IMBHs) in dense star clusters. In this scenario, IMBHs are formed as a result of dynamical interactions of hard binaries containing a stellar-mass black hole (BH), with other stars and binaries. We discuss the necessary conditions to initiate the process of intermediate mass BH formation and the influence of an IMBH on the host global globular cluster (GC) properties. We discuss two scenarios for IMBH formation. The SLOW and FAST scenarios. They occur later or earlier in the cluster evolution and require smaller or extremely large central densities, respectively. In our simulations, the formation of IMBHs is highly stochastic. In general, higher formation probabilities follow from larger cluster concentrations (i.e. central densities). We further discuss possible observational signatures of the presence of IMBHs in GCs that follow from our simulations. These include the spatial and kinematic structure of the host cluster, possible radio, X-ray and gravitational wave emissions due to dynamical collisions or mass transfer and the creation of hypervelocity main-sequence escapers during strong dynamical interactions between binaries and an IMBH. All simulations discussed in this paper were performed with the MOCCA (MOnte Carlo Cluster simulAtor) Monte Carlo code. MOCCA accurately follows most of the important physical processes that occur during the dynamical evolution of star clusters but, as with other dynamical codes, it approximates the dissipative processes connected with stellar collisions and binary mergers.