Emission Modeling in the EHT–ngEHT Age
This work proposes a methodology for testing phenomenologically motivated emission processes that account for the flux and polarization distribution and global structure of the 230 GHz sources imaged by the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT): Messier (M)87* and Sagittarius (Sgr) A*. We introduce into general relativistic magnetohydrodynamic (GRMHD) simulations some novel models to bridge the largely uncertain mechanisms by which high-energy particles in jet/accretion flow/black hole (JAB) system plasmas attain billion-degree temperatures and emit synchrotron radiation. The "Observing" JAB Systems methodology then partitions the simulation to apply different parametric models to regions governed by different plasma physics—an advance over methods in which one parametrization is used over simulation regions spanning thousands of gravitational radii from the central supermassive black hole. We present several classes of viewing-angle-dependent morphologies and highlight signatures of piecewise modeling and positron effects, including a MAD/SANE dichotomy in which polarized maps appear dominated by intrinsic polarization in the MAD case and by Faraday effects in the SANE case. The library of images thus produced spans a wide range of morphologies awaiting discovery by the groundbreaking EHT instrument and its yet more sensitive, higher-resolution next-generation counterpart, ngEHT.