In this contribution, we summarize our results concerning the observational constraints on the electric charge associated with the Galactic centre black hole - Sgr A*. According to the no-hair theorem, every astrophysical black hole, including supermassive black holes, is characterized by at most three classical, externally observable parameters - mass, spin, and the electric charge. While the mass and the spin have routinely been measured by several methods, the electric charge has usually been neglected, based on the arguments of efficient discharge in astrophysical plasmas. From a theoretical point of view, the black hole can attain charge due to the mass imbalance between protons and electrons in fully ionized plasmas, which yields about ~ 108 C for Sgr A*. The second, induction mechanism concerns rotating Kerr black holes embedded in an external magnetic field, which leads to electric field generation due to the twisting of magnetic field lines. This electric field can be associated with the induced Wald charge, for which we calculate the upper limit of ~ 1015 C for Sgr A*. Although the maximum theoretical limit of ~ 1015 C is still 12 orders of magnitude smaller than the extremal charge of Sgr A*, we analyse a few astrophysical consequences of having a black hole with a small charge in the Galactic centre. Two most prominent ones are the effect on the X-ray bremsstrahlung profile and the effect on the position of the innermost stable circular orbit.
Journal of Physics Conference Series
- Pub Date:
- October 2019
- Astrophysics - Astrophysics of Galaxies;
- Astrophysics - High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena;
- General Relativity and Quantum Cosmology
- 16 pages, 4 figures, a short review on the charge of the Galactic centre black hole (Sgr A*) presented at FISICPAC-2018 conference (University of Sharjah, UAE), submitted to the Journal of Physics: Conference Series