Hunting for extra dimensions in the shadow of M87*


The Event Horizon Telescope has recently provided the first image of the dark shadow around the supermassive black hole M87*. The observation of a highly circular shadow provides strong limits on deviations of M87*’s quadrupole moment from the Kerr value. We show that the absence of such a deviation can be used to constrain the physics of extra dimensions of spacetime. Focusing on the Randall-Sundrum AdS$_5$ brane-world scenario, we show that the observation of M87*’s dark shadow sets the limit $\ell \lesssim 170,{\rm AU}$, where $\ell$ is the AdS$_5$ curvature radius. This limit is among the first quantitative constraints on exotic physics obtained from the extraordinary first ever image of the dark shadow of a black hole.

Physical Review D 100 (2), 024020 (2019)
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Luca Visinelli
Luca Visinelli
Fellini - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow

PhD in Physics, working on Particle Astrophysics and Dark Matter modeling.