EHT 2014

Conference Date: 
Monday, November 10, 2014 (All day) to Friday, November 14, 2014 (All day)
Scientific Areas: 
Strong Gravity

 

The Event Horizon Telescope is the first astronomical instrument capable of imaging the horizon of a known black hole. By assembling a global network of existing millimetre and sub-millimetre wavelength observatories, the EHT can access the extraordinary resolutions required via Very Long Baseline Interferometry. Already it has detected horizon scale structure around the supermassive black holes at the centre of the Milky Way and the giant elliptical galaxy M87.

This is the second in a conference series designed to bring together the full EHT community, from instrument builders to theoretical modellers, for the purpose of fully exploiting the unique opportunities that the EHT provides. The goals of this conference will be: 

  • Describe the broad scientific context of astrophysical black holes and its relationship to EHT observations, including how the EHT can provide insight into systems ranging from pulsars to galaxy clusters by probing accretion and energetic outflows on the scale of the Schwarzschild radius. 
  • Discuss developments in our understanding of the astrophysics of the initial EHT
    targets: the supermassive black holes at the centre of the Milky Way (Sgr A*) and M87.
  • Present new EHT-driven results. 
  • Describe the current technical status and discuss the planned development of the EHT, including the imminent inclusion of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array and the South Pole Telescope.
  • Discuss the EHT collaboration and organize the EHT community.

To register for this conference, please click here

There will be a poster session held during this conference.  Please contact Stephanie if you are interested in presenting a poster.

The Event Horizon Telescope has been made possible by support from:

EHT 2014 has received additional support from:

Kazunori Akiyama, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan
Keiichi Asada, Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics
Geoff Bower, Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics
Avery Broderick, Perimeter Institute & University of Waterloo
Jim Cordes, Cornell University
Jason Dexter, University of California, Berkeley
Shep Doeleman, MIT Haystack Observatory
Frank Eisenhauer, Max Planck Institute for Extraterristrial Physics
Heino Falcke, Radboud University Nijmegen
Vincent Fish, MIT Haystack Observatory
Elena Gallo, University of Michigan
Charles Gammie, University of Illinois
Andrea Ghez, University of California, Division of Astronomy & Astrophysics
Kayhan Gultekin, University of Michigan
Tim Johannsen, Perimeter Institute
Michael Johnson, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Sergei Komissarov, University of Leeds
Michael Kramer, Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy
Thomas Krichbaum, Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy
Colin Lonsdale, MIT Haystack Observatory
Ru-Sen Lu, MIT Haystack Observatory
Sera Markoff, University of Amsterdam
Samir Mathur, Ohio State University
Jeff McClintock, Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Jon McKinney, University of Maryland
John Monnier, University of Michigan
Monika Moscibrodzka, Radboud University Nijmegen
Masanori Nakamura, Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics
Dimitrios Psaltis, University of Arizona
Eliot Quataert, University of California, Berkeley
Laleh SadeghianUniversity of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Xavier Siemens, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Alexander Tchekhovskoy, University of California, Berkeley
Marta Volonteri, Paris Institute of Astrophysics
Jonelle Walsh, Texas A&M University
John Wardle, Brandeis University
 
 
  • James Bardeen, University of Washington
  • Christiann Brinkerink, Radboud University Nijmegen
  • Avery Broderick, Perimeter Institute & University of Waterloo
  • Alejandro Cardenas-Avendano, Universidad Nacional de Colombia
  • Pierre Christian, Harvard University
  • Riley Connors, University of Amsterdam
  • Shep Doeleman, MIT Haystack Observatory
  • Heino Falcke, Radboud University Nijmegen
  • Seth Fletcher, Scientific American
  • Mareki Honma, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan
  • Makoto Inoue, Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Tim Johannsen, Perimeter Institute
  • Michael Kramer, Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy
  • Luis Lehner, Perimeter Institute
  • Sera Markoff, University of Amsterdam
  • Ivan Marti-Vidal, Onsala Space Observatory
  • Jeff McClintock, Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
  • John Moffat, Perimeter Institute
  • Masanori Nakamura, Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Dimitrios Psaltis, University of Arizona
  • John Wardle, Brandeis University
  • Jonathan Weintroub, Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Schedule is subject to change
Thursday and Friday will be posted at a later date

Poster Session:
Participants have been encouraged to present posters; they will be displayed in the Atrium for the duration of the conference.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Time

Event

Location

8:30 – 9:00am

Registration

Reception

9:00 – 9:25am

Shep Doeleman, MIT Haystack Observatory
Introduction to EHT

Theater

9:25 – 9:50am

Marta Volonteri, Paris Institute of Astrophysics
Growth of supermassive black holes and their relationships to their host galaxies

Theater

9:50 – 10:15am

Jeff McClintock, Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Measuring the Spins of Black Holes

Theater

10:15 – 10:45am

Coffee Break

Bistro – 1st Floor

10:45 – 11:10am

Jon McKinney, University of Maryland
TBA

Theater

11:10 – 11:35am

Andrea Ghez,
University of California, Division of Astronomy & Astrophysics
TBA

Theater

11:35 – 12:00pm

Sera Markoff, University of Amsterdam
TBA

Theater

12:00 – 12:25pm

Geoff Bower,
Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy & Astrophysics
The Size and Morphology of Sgr A* at 7mm

Theater

12:25 – 1:00pm

Charles Gammie, University of Illinois
Discussion

Theater

1:00 – 2:30pm

Lunch

Bistro – 1st Floor

2:30 – 2:55pm

Eliot Quataert, University of California, Berkeley
TBA

Theater

2:55 – 3:20pm

Vincent Fish, MIT Haystack Observatory
TBA

Theater

3:20 – 3:45pm

Michael Johnson,
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
TBA

Theater

3:45 – 4:10pm

John Monnier, University of Michigan
Optimized Image Reconstruction:
Insights from Optical Interferometry

Theater

4:10 – 4:40pm

Coffee Break

Bistro – 1st Floor

4:40 – 6:00pm

Avery Broderick, Perimeter Institute
Discussion

Theater

 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Time

Event

Location

9:00 – 9:25am

Heino Falcke, Radboud University Nijmegen
TBA

Theater

9:25 – 9:50am

Elena Gallo, University of Michigan
State transitions in accreting black holes: X-ray binaries vs. AGN

Theater

9:50 – 10:15am

Sergei Komissarov, University of Leeds
TBA

Theater

10:15 – 10:45am

Coffee Break

Bistro – 1st Floor

10:45 – 11:10am

Kayhan Gultekin, University of Michigan
Stellar Dynamical Measurements of the Black Hole in M87 and Friends

Theater

11:10 – 11:35am

Monika Moscibrodzka, Radboud University Nijmegen
TBA

Theater

11:35 – 12:00pm

Keiichi Asada,
Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy & Astrophysics
TBA

Theater

12:00 – 12:25pm

Masanori Nakamura,
Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy & Astrophysics
TBA

Theater

12:25 – 1:00pm

John Wardle, Brandeis University
Discussion

Theater

1:00 – 2:30pm

Lunch

Bistro – 1st Floor

2:30 – 2:55pm

Ru-Sen Lu, MIT Haystack Observatory
TBA

Theater

2:55 – 3:20pm

Thomas Krichbaum,
Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy
TBA

Theater

3:20 – 3:45pm

Kazunori Akiyama,
National Astronomical Observatory of Japan
TBA

Theater

3:45 – 4:10pm

Alexander Tchekhovskoy, University of California, Berkeley
TBA

Theater

4:10 – 4:40pm

Coffee Break

Bistro – 1st Floor

4:40 – 6:00pm

Shep Doeleman, MIT Haystack Observatory
Discussion

Theater

 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Time

Event

Location

9:00 – 9:25am

Samir Mathur, Ohio State University
TBA

Theater

9:25 – 9:50am

Laleh Sadeghian, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
TBA

Theater

9:50 – 10:15am

Xavier Siemens, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
TBA

Theater

10:15 – 10:45am

Coffee Break

Bistro – 1st Floor

10:45 – 11:10am

Jonelle Walsh, Texas A&M University
TBA

Theater

11:10 – 11:35am

 Frank Eisenhauer,
Max Planck Institute for Extraterristrial Physics
GRAVITY - Exploring Physics Close to the Galactic Center Black Hole with Infrared Interferometry

Theater

11:35 – 12:00pm

Jim Cordes, Cornell University
TBA

Theater

12:00 – 12:25pm

Tim Johannsen, Perimeter Institute
Testing General Relativity with the EHT

Theater

12:25 – 2:00pm

Lunch

Bistro – 1st Floor

2:00 – 3:30pm

Michael Kramer, Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy
Colloquium

Theater

3:30 – 4:40pm

TBA
Discussion

Theater

6:30pm

Conference Dinner

Bistro – 1st Floor

 

 

Geoff Bower, Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics

The Size and Morphology of Sgr A* at 7mm

Long wavelength measurements provide sensitive probes of the intrinsic structure of Sgr A* and of the scattering properties of the line-of-sight interstellar medium.  At this wavelength, scattering dominates the apparent size of the source but careful closure amplitude techniques can provide highly accurate structural information.  We present new results from the VLBA at 7mm wavelength that for the first time reveal two-dimensional intrinsic structure while also demonstrating the stability of the intrinsic size during periods of significant activity at NIR and X-ray wavelengths.  These results also demonstrate the stability of the scattering medium over time.  New observations of the Galactic Center pulsar PSR J1745-2900 show that the scattering properties of Sgr A* are spatially coherent over an angular scale of at least a few arc seconds.  Analysis of the angular and temporal broadening data for the pulsar place the scattering medium at a distance of kiloparsecs away from the Galactic Center, resolving a significant mystery regarding the scattering medium.

Frank Eisenhauer, Max Planck Institute for Extraterristrial Physics

GRAVITY - Exploring Physics Close to the Galactic Center Black Hole with Infrared Interferometry

GRAVITY is a new instrument combining the four 8m ESO Very Large Telescopes in Chile. Other than the BlackHoleCam / EHT with its focus on imaging the shadow of the black hole against the surrounding accretion flow, the goal of GRAVITY is to measure dynamical processes in the immediate vicinity of the black hole, for example the motion of matter close to the last stable orbit and relativistic effects in stellar orbits. Our presentation covers the experimental and astrophysical aspects of this project and highlights the complementarity with the submm interferometry to overcome the degeneracies in modelling the observations.

Elena Gallo, University of Michigan

State transitions in accreting black holes: X-ray binaries vs. AGN

Kayhan Gultekin, University of Michigan

Stellar Dynamical Measurements of the Black Hole in M87 and Friends

Tim Johannsen, Perimeter Institute

Testing General Relativity with the EHT

Jeff McClintock, Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Measuring the Spins of Black Holes

Both the continuum-fitting and Fe-line methods of measuring black hole spin will be discussed and compared, with attention to sources of systematic error.  Both methods rely on estimating the inner radius of the black hole's accretion disk and identifying it with the radius of the ISCO.  The Fe-line method is extremely important because of its dominant role in measuring the spins of supermassive black holes, which is problematic for the continuum-fitting method.  Meantime, both methods are applicable to stellar-mass black holes, and we will discuss current efforts to cross-check the spins of individual black holes.  Finally, a comprehensive summary of spin results for both stellar-mass and supermassive black holes will be presented.

John Monnier, University of Michigan

Optimized Image Reconstruction: Insights from Optical Interferometry

The radio community pioneered the use of closure phases to allow interferometric imaging even when fringe phases are compromised by atmospheric turbulence or unstable reference clocks.  Eventually, better receivers and observing methods allowed phase referencing to provide direct measures of complex visibilities and eased the uncertainties using Fourier inversions required for imaging.  At the same time, optical and infrared (O/IR) interferometers have been developed recently that can combine up to 6 telescopes simultaneously, at which point the inadequacies of classic imaging methods such as CLEAN were apparent. Here I report on dramatic progress within the O/IR interferometry to develop new image reconstruction techniques taking advantage of advances in ``compressed sensing'' theory and new approaches afforded by modern computing.  Because the Event Horizon Telescope must rely on closure phases instead of direct Fourier phases, the new algorithms from the O/IR could be essential to extracting the most information from EHT observations and we demonstrate promising results using simulated EHT data.

Marta Volonteri, Paris Institute of Astrophysics

Growth of supermassive black holes and their relationships to their host galaxies

Black holes are the engines that power quasars and active galactic nuclei throughout cosmic time. The masses of black holes in nearby galaxies define clear correlations with the properties of their host galaxies. These results suggest that black holes, while a thousand times lighter than the galaxy, grow alongside their hosts during its cosmic evolution. I will discuss the growth of black holes, and the establishment of the connection between galaxies and black holes. 

If you need transportation while attending the conference, we offer suggestions below. If flying, we suggest that you book your flight to arrive at Toronto International Airport (YYZ) or the Region of Waterloo International Airport (YKF).


Boulevard Limousine (estimated travel time 1hr) The fare for Boulevard Limousine for one passenger is $118.00 to the Toronto Airport.  The fare for one passenger from the Toronto Airport to Waterloo is $133.00.  To make reservations, please visit their website or call 519-886-8090.


Airways Transit (estimated travel time 1hr) Airways Transit connects Toronto Pearson airport with the Waterloo area providing 24 hour door to door shared ride service. For Toronto Pearson airport transfers we have obtained a reduced conference fare of $69.00 per person, one way, tax included. To receive the reduced fare you must book in advance.

Book online at: http://conferences.airwaystransit.com  Enter booking code: EHT 2014 (enter exactly as shown).

By phone 24 hrs: 519 886 2121 – Identify yourself as an EHT delegate. 


0001 Toronto Cabs (estimated travel time 1hr)  Approximately $160.00 rate for one-way: Toronto International Airport to Waterloo. Call 416-809-5656. 
Note: One or more passengers can split this $90.00 rate.


Car Rentals Upon arrival in any of the terminals at Pearson International Airport there are a number of car rental agencies to choose from. Their booths are located on the arrivals level. The cost of a car rental is dependent upon the type of vehicle you would like and the length of the stay. 

Driving Directions 

  • From the airport, follow signs for Highway 427 South/Highway 401.  
  • Continue to follow signs for Highway 401 West - London.  
  • Proceed West on Highway 401.  
  • Exit Highway 401 at Highway 8 West.  
  • Take exit 278 (Highway 8 West) and follow 8 West for 5 km to Highway 85, towards Highway 7 East. 
  • Proceed on Highway 85 for 5 km to Bridgeport Road exit. Turn right at the off-ramp, traveling west.  
  • Follow Bridgeport Road for 2 km into downtown Waterloo.  
  • Bridgeport is a four-lane one-way road. It becomes Caroline Street at Albert Street. Continue straight ahead.  
  • Travel forward another 200 metres, but ease over into the right-hand lane. As you go down a hill and around a curve, look for the green Perimeter Institute sign on the right hand side. The parking lot entrance is just after the sign (past the historic grist mill that sits on the edge of Silver Lake).  
  • Turn right into the PI parking lot entrance.

If you need accommodations while attending the conference, we offer suggestions for lodging below.


Delta Waterloo 110 Erb Street West Waterloo ON N2L 0C6 Phone: 1-888-890-3222
Distance from PI: 450 m


Waterloo Hotel 2 King Street North Waterloo, ON N2J 2W7 Phone: 519-885-2626 Distance from PI: 500 m


Waterloo Inn 475 King Street North Waterloo, ON N2J 2Z5 Reservation line: 1-800-361-4708 Reservation e-mail: reserve@waterlooinn.com Distance from PI: 3 km


Walper Terrace Hotel 1 King Street West Kitchener, ON N2G 1A1 Phone: 519-745-4321 Distance from PI: 4 km


Courtyard by Marriott 50 Benjamin Road East St. Jacobs, ON N2V 2J9 Phone: 519-884-9295 Distance from PI: 5.6 km

Scientific Organizers:

  • Avery Broderick, Perimeter Institute & University of Waterloo
  • Shep Doeleman, MIT Haystack Observatory
  • Luis Lehner, Perimeter Institute
  • John Moffat, Perimeter Institute
  • Dimitrios Psaltis, University of Arizona
  • Jonathan Weintroub, Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Scientific Organizing Committee:

  • Heino Falcke, Radbout University Nimegen
  • Gabriela Gonzalez, Louisiana State University
  • Paul Ho, Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Mareki Honma, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan
  • Michael Kramer, Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy
  • Sera Markoff, University of Amsterdam
  • Dan Marrone, University of Arizona
  • John Wardle, Brandeis University
  • Anton Zensus, Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy
  • Lucy Ziurys, University of Arizona