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Sample records for supermassive black-hole growth

  1. New observational constraints on the growth of the first supermassive black holes

    SciTech Connect

    Treister, E.; Schawinski, K.; Volonteri, M.; Natarajan, P.

    2013-12-01

    We constrain the total accreted mass density in supermassive black holes at z > 6, inferred via the upper limit derived from the integrated X-ray emission from a sample of photometrically selected galaxy candidates. Studying galaxies obtained from the deepest Hubble Space Telescope images combined with the Chandra 4 Ms observations of the Chandra Deep Field-South, we achieve the most restrictive constraints on total black hole growth in the early universe. We estimate an accreted mass density <1000 M {sub ☉} Mpc{sup –3} at z ∼ 6, significantly lower than the previous predictions from some existing models of early black hole growth and earlier prior observations. These results place interesting constraints on early black hole growth and mass assembly by accretion and imply one or more of the following: (1) only a fraction of the luminous galaxies at this epoch contain active black holes; (2) most black hole growth at early epochs happens in dusty and/or less massive—as yet undetected—host galaxies; (3) there is a significant fraction of low-z interlopers in the galaxy sample; (4) early black hole growth is radiatively inefficient, heavily obscured, and/or due to black hole mergers as opposed to accretion; or (5) the bulk of the black hole growth occurs at late times. All of these possibilities have important implications for our understanding of high-redshift seed formation models.

  2. Supermassive Black Hole Growth During The Peak Of Cosmic Star Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ross, Nathaniel Robert

    2016-01-01

    Massive galaxies in the nearby universe all show evidence of a central Supermassive Black Hole. The black holes are seen to grow over time by accretion of gas from their host galaxy, a phenomenon referred to as an Active Galactic Nucleus. This process is believed to be fundamental to the observed correlations between black hole mass and properties of the host galaxies. We have a more limited and biased understanding of the growth of supermassive black holes in more 'typical' galaxies at z ˜ 1 -- 2. In this work, we search for Active Galactic Nuclei in a population of star-forming galaxies spanning a mass range of M* ˜ 107 -- 1012 M[special character omitted] at 0.62 < z < 2.39, during the peak of cosmic star formation and massive black hole growth. Our data are drawn from the WFC3 Infrared Spectroscopic Parallels (WISP) survey, for which we designed and implemented a suite of data analysis routines for discovering and measuring star-forming galaxies and active galactic nuclei. We find a sample of 50 active galactic nuclei, identified by their strong, rest-frame optical, emission-line ratios. We find that growing supermassive black holes in low-mass galaxies at z [special character omitted] 1 either make up a greater fraction of their galaxies' masses than those in massive galaxies, or perhaps emit a greater fraction of their energy in [O III].

  3. THE GROWTH OF THE STELLAR SEEDS OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, Jarrett L.; Li Hui; Whalen, Daniel J.; Fryer, Chris L.

    2012-05-01

    The collapse of baryons into extremely massive stars with masses {approx}>10{sup 4} M{sub Sun} in a small fraction of protogalaxies at z {approx}> 10 is a promising candidate for the origin of supermassive black holes (SMBHs), some of which grow to a billion solar masses by z {approx} 7. We determine the maximum masses such stars can attain by accreting primordial gas. We find that at relatively low accretion rates the strong ionizing radiation of these stars limits their masses to M{sub *} {approx} 10{sup 3} M{sub Sun} ( M-dot{sub acc}/10{sup -3} M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}){sup 8/7}, where M-dot{sub acc} is the rate at which the star gains mass. However, at the higher central infall rates usually found in numerical simulations of protogalactic collapse ({approx}>0.1 M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}), the lifetime of the star instead limits its final mass to {approx}10{sup 6} M{sub Sun }. Furthermore, for the spherical accretion rates at which the star can grow, its ionizing radiation is confined deep within the protogalaxy, so the evolution of the star is decoupled from that of its host galaxy. Ly{alpha} emission from the surrounding H II region is trapped in these heavy accretion flows and likely reprocessed into strong Balmer series emission, which may be observable by the James Webb Space Telescope. This, strong He II {lambda}1640, and continuum emission are likely to be the key observational signatures of the progenitors of SMBHs at high redshift.

  4. Supermassive black hole ancestors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petri, A.; Ferrara, A.; Salvaterra, R.

    2012-05-01

    In the attempt to alleviate the difficulties created by their early formation, we study a model in which supermassive black holes (SMBHs) can grow by the combined action of gas accretion on heavy seeds and mergers of both heavy ? and light ? seeds. The former results from the direct collapse of gas in ? K, H2-free haloes; the latter are the end product of a standard H2-based star formation process. The H2-free condition is attained by exposing haloes to a strong (J21≳ 103) Lyman-Werner ultraviolet (UV) background produced by both accreting BHs and stars, thus establishing a self-regulated growth regime. We find that this condition is met already at z˜ 18 in the highly biased regions in which quasars are born. The key parameter allowing the formation of SMBHs by z= 6-7 is the fraction of haloes that can form heavy seeds: the minimum requirement is that fheavy≳ 0.001; SMBH as large as 2 × 1010 M⊙ can be obtained when fheavy approaches unity. Independently of fheavy, the model produces a high-z stellar bulge-BH mass relation which is steeper than the local one, implying that SMBHs formed before their bulge was in place. The formation of heavy seeds, allowed by the Lyman-Werner radiative feedback in the quasar-forming environment, is crucial to achieve a fast growth of the SMBH by merger events in the early phases of its evolution, i.e. z≳ 7. The UV photon production is largely dominated by stars in galaxies, i.e. BH accretion radiation is subdominant. Interestingly, we find that the final mass of light BHs and of the SMBH in the quasar is roughly equal by z= 6; by the same time, only 19 per cent of the initial baryon content has been converted into stars. The SMBH growth is dominated at all epochs z > 7.2 by mergers (exceeding accretion by a factor of 2-50); at later times, accretion becomes by far the most important growth channel. We finally discuss possible shortcomings of the model.

  5. Supermassive Black Holes and Galaxy Evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Merritt, D.

    2004-01-01

    Supermassive black holes appear to be generic components of galactic nuclei. The formation and growth of black holes is intimately connected with the evolution of galaxies on a wide range of scales. For instance, mergers between galaxies containing nuclear black holes would produce supermassive binaries which eventually coalesce via the emission of gravitational radiation. The formation and decay of these binaries is expected to produce a number of observable signatures in the stellar distribution. Black holes can also affect the large-scale structure of galaxies by perturbing the orbits of stars that pass through the nucleus. Large-scale N-body simulations are beginning to generate testable predictions about these processes which will allow us to draw inferences about the formation history of supermassive black holes.

  6. The obscuration by dust of most of the growth of supermassive black holes.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Sansigre, Alejo; Rawlings, Steve; Lacy, Mark; Fadda, Dario; Marleau, Francine R; Simpson, Chris; Willott, Chris J; Jarvis, Matt J

    2005-08-01

    Supermassive black holes underwent periods of exponential growth during which we see them as quasars in the distant Universe. The summed emission from these quasars generates the cosmic X-ray background, the spectrum of which has been used to argue that most black-hole growth is obscured. There are clear examples of obscured black-hole growth in the form of 'type-2' quasars, but their numbers are fewer than expected from modelling of the X-ray background. Here we report the direct detection of a population of distant type-2 quasars, which is at least comparable in size to the well-known unobscured type-1 population. We selected objects that have mid-infrared and radio emissions characteristic of quasars, but which are faint at near-infrared and optical wavelengths. We conclude that this population is responsible for most of the black-hole growth in the young Universe and that, throughout cosmic history, black-hole growth occurs in the dusty, gas-rich centres of active galaxies.

  7. Supermassive Black Hole Growth and Merger Rates from Cosmological N-body Simulations

    SciTech Connect

    Micic, Miroslav; Holley-Bockelmann, Kelly; Sigurdsson, Steinn; Abel, Tom; /SLAC

    2007-10-29

    Understanding how seed black holes grow into intermediate and supermassive black holes (IMBHs and SMBHs, respectively) has important implications for the duty-cycle of active galactic nuclei (AGN), galaxy evolution, and gravitational wave astronomy. Most studies of the cosmological growth and merger history of black holes have used semianalytic models and have concentrated on SMBH growth in luminous galaxies. Using high resolution cosmological N-body simulations, we track the assembly of black holes over a large range of final masses - from seed black holes to SMBHs - over widely varying dynamical histories. We used the dynamics of dark matter halos to track the evolution of seed black holes in three different gas accretion scenarios. We have found that growth of a Sagittarius A* - size SMBH reaches its maximum mass M{sub SMBH}={approx}10{sup 6}M{sub {circle_dot}} at z{approx}6 through early gaseous accretion episodes, after which it stays at near constant mass. At the same redshift, the duty-cycle of the host AGN ends, hence redshift z=6 marks the transition from an AGN to a starburst galaxy which eventually becomes the Milky Way. By tracking black hole growth as a function of time and mass, we estimate that the IMBH merger rate reaches a maximum of R{sub max}=55 yr{sup -1} at z=11. From IMBH merger rates we calculate N{sub ULX}=7 per Milky Way type galaxy per redshift in redshift range 2 {approx}< z {approx}< 6.

  8. Editorial: Understanding the Growth of the First Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valiante, Rosa; Schneider, Raffaella; Volonteri, Marta

    2016-08-01

    The formation, assembly history, and environmental impact of the massive black holes (BH) that are ubiquitous in the nuclei of luminous galaxies today remain some of the main unsolved problems in cosmic structure formation. In the last several years, it has become clear that quasars are not just tracers of early and recent structure formation, but that they seem to have actively influenced galaxies and clusters through feedback mechanisms that are still not well understood. The discovery of more and more numerous quasars at redshift above 6, powered by BHs with masses similar to that of their local counterparts, further complicates this scenario. This emphasises the urgent need to better understand how and when such massive objects form and grow, what is the strength and scale of their impact on the evolution of their host galaxies, and what are the main physical processes driving and regulating this co-evolution.

  9. THE SUPERNOVA THAT DESTROYED A PROTOGALAXY: PROMPT CHEMICAL ENRICHMENT AND SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE GROWTH

    SciTech Connect

    Whalen, Daniel J.; Johnson, Jarrett L.; Smidt, Joseph; Meiksin, Avery; Heger, Alexander; Even, Wesley; Fryer, Chris L.

    2013-09-01

    The first primitive galaxies formed from accretion and mergers by z {approx} 15, and were primarily responsible for cosmological reionization and the chemical enrichment of the early cosmos. But a few of these galaxies may have formed in the presence of strong Lyman-Werner UV fluxes that sterilized them of H{sub 2}, preventing them from forming stars or expelling heavy elements into the intergalactic medium prior to assembly. At masses of 10{sup 8} M{sub Sun} and virial temperatures of 10{sup 4} K, these halos began to rapidly cool by atomic lines, perhaps forming 10{sup 4}-10{sup 6} M{sub Sun} Pop III stars and, later, the seeds of supermassive black holes. We have modeled the explosion of a supermassive Pop III star in the dense core of a line-cooled protogalaxy with the ZEUS-MP code. We find that the supernova (SN) expands to a radius of {approx}1 kpc, briefly engulfing the entire galaxy, but then collapses back into the potential well of the dark matter. Fallback fully mixes the interior of the protogalaxy with metals, igniting a violent starburst and fueling the rapid growth of a massive black hole at its center. The starburst would populate the protogalaxy with stars in greater numbers and at higher metallicities than in more slowly evolving, nearby halos. The SN remnant becomes a strong synchrotron source that can be observed with eVLA and eMERLIN and has a unique signature that easily distinguishes it from less energetic SN remnants. Such explosions, and their attendant starbursts, may well have marked the birthplaces of supermassive black holes on the sky.

  10. The Supernova that Destroyed a Protogalaxy: Prompt Chemical Enrichment and Supermassive Black Hole Growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whalen, Daniel J.; Johnson, Jarrett L.; Smidt, Joseph; Meiksin, Avery; Heger, Alexander; Even, Wesley; Fryer, Chris L.

    2013-09-01

    The first primitive galaxies formed from accretion and mergers by z ~ 15, and were primarily responsible for cosmological reionization and the chemical enrichment of the early cosmos. But a few of these galaxies may have formed in the presence of strong Lyman-Werner UV fluxes that sterilized them of H2, preventing them from forming stars or expelling heavy elements into the intergalactic medium prior to assembly. At masses of 108 M ⊙ and virial temperatures of 104 K, these halos began to rapidly cool by atomic lines, perhaps forming 104-106 M ⊙ Pop III stars and, later, the seeds of supermassive black holes. We have modeled the explosion of a supermassive Pop III star in the dense core of a line-cooled protogalaxy with the ZEUS-MP code. We find that the supernova (SN) expands to a radius of ~1 kpc, briefly engulfing the entire galaxy, but then collapses back into the potential well of the dark matter. Fallback fully mixes the interior of the protogalaxy with metals, igniting a violent starburst and fueling the rapid growth of a massive black hole at its center. The starburst would populate the protogalaxy with stars in greater numbers and at higher metallicities than in more slowly evolving, nearby halos. The SN remnant becomes a strong synchrotron source that can be observed with eVLA and eMERLIN and has a unique signature that easily distinguishes it from less energetic SN remnants. Such explosions, and their attendant starbursts, may well have marked the birthplaces of supermassive black holes on the sky.

  11. SUPERMASSIVE SEEDS FOR SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, Jarrett L.; Whalen, Daniel J.; Li Hui; Holz, Daniel E.

    2013-07-10

    Recent observations of quasars powered by supermassive black holes (SMBHs) out to z {approx}> 7 constrain both the initial seed masses and the growth of the most massive black holes (BHs) in the early universe. Here we elucidate the implications of the radiative feedback from early generations of stars and from BH accretion for popular models for the formation and growth of seed BHs. We show that by properly accounting for (1) the limited role of mergers in growing seed BHs as inferred from cosmological simulations of early star formation and radiative feedback, (2) the sub-Eddington accretion rates of BHs expected at the earliest times, and (3) the large radiative efficiencies {epsilon} of the most massive BHs inferred from observations of active galactic nuclei at high redshift ({epsilon} {approx}> 0.1), we are led to the conclusion that the initial BH seeds may have been as massive as {approx}> 10{sup 5} M{sub Sun }. This presents a strong challenge to the Population III seed model, which calls for seed masses of {approx}100 M{sub Sun} and, even with constant Eddington-limited accretion, requires {epsilon} {approx}< 0.09 to explain the highest-z SMBHs in today's standard {Lambda}CDM cosmological model. It is, however, consistent with the prediction of the direct collapse scenario of SMBH seed formation, in which a supermassive primordial star forms in a region of the universe with a high molecule-dissociating background radiation field, and collapses directly into a 10{sup 4}-10{sup 6} M{sub Sun} seed BH. These results corroborate recent cosmological simulations and observational campaigns which suggest that these massive BHs were the seeds of a large fraction of the SMBHs residing in the centers of galaxies today.

  12. Supermassive black holes in the EAGLE Universe. Revealing the observables of their growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosas-Guevara, Yetli; Bower, Richard G.; Schaye, Joop; McAlpine, Stuart; Dalla Vecchia, Claudio; Frenk, Carlos S.; Schaller, Matthieu; Theuns, Tom

    2016-10-01

    We investigate the evolution of supermassive black holes in the `Evolution and Assembly of GaLaxies and their Environments' (EAGLE) cosmological hydrodynamic simulations. The largest of the EAGLE volumes covers a (100 cMpc)3 and includes state-of-the-art physical models for star formation and black hole growth that depend only on local gas properties. We focus on the black hole mass function, Eddington ratio distribution and the implied duty cycle of nuclear activity. The simulation is broadly consistent with observational constraints on these quantities. In order to make a more direct comparison with observational data, we calculate the soft and hard X-ray luminosity functions of the active galactic nuclei (AGN). Between redshifts 0 and 1, the simulation is in agreement with data. At higher redshifts, the simulation tends to underpredict the luminosities of the brightest observed AGN. This may be due to the limited volume of the simulation, or a fundamental deficiency of the underlying model. It seems unlikely that additional unresolved variability can account for this difference. The simulation shows a similar `downsizing' of the AGN population as seen in observational surveys.

  13. Close supermassive binary black holes.

    PubMed

    Gaskell, C Martin

    2010-01-01

    It has been proposed that when the peaks of the broad emission lines in active galactic nuclei (AGNs) are significantly blueshifted or redshifted from the systemic velocity of the host galaxy, this could be a consequence of orbital motion of a supermassive black-hole binary (SMBB). The AGN J1536+0441 ( = SDSS J153636.22+044127.0) has recently been proposed as an example of this phenomenon. It is proposed here instead that J1536+0441 is an example of line emission from a disk. If this is correct, the lack of clear optical spectral evidence for close SMBBs is significant, and argues either that the merging of close SMBBs is much faster than has generally been hitherto thought, or if the approach is slow, that when the separation of the binary is comparable to the size of the torus and broad-line region, the feeding of the black holes is disrupted. PMID:20054358

  14. Major galaxy mergers and the growth of supermassive black holes in quasars.

    PubMed

    Treister, Ezequiel; Natarajan, Priyamvada; Sanders, David B; Urry, C Megan; Schawinski, Kevin; Kartaltepe, Jeyhan

    2010-04-30

    Despite observed strong correlations between central supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and star formation in galactic nuclei, uncertainties exist in our understanding of their coupling. We present observations of the ratio of heavily obscured to unobscured quasars as a function of cosmic epoch up to z congruent with 3 and show that a simple physical model describing mergers of massive, gas-rich galaxies matches these observations. In the context of this model, every obscured and unobscured quasar represents two distinct phases that result from a massive galaxy merger event. Much of the mass growth of the SMBH occurs during the heavily obscured phase. These observations provide additional evidence for a causal link between gas-rich galaxy mergers, accretion onto the nuclear SMBH, and coeval star formation.

  15. Close supermassive binary black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaskell, C. Martin

    2010-01-01

    It has been proposed that when the peaks of the broad emission lines in active galactic nuclei (AGNs) are significantly blueshifted or redshifted from the systemic velocity of the host galaxy, this could be a consequence of orbital motion of a supermassive blackhole binary (SMB). The AGN J1536+0441 (=SDSS J153636.22+044127.0) has recently been proposed as an example of this phenomenon. It is proposed here instead that 1536+044 is an example of line emission from a disc. If this is correct, the lack of clear optical spectral evidence for close SMBs is significant and argues either that the merging of close SMBs is much faster than has generally been hitherto thought, or if the approach is slow, that when the separation of the binary is comparable to the size of the torus and broad-line region, the feeding of the black holes is disrupted.

  16. No supermassive black hole in M33?

    PubMed

    Merritt, D; Ferrarese, L; Joseph, C L

    2001-08-10

    We observed the nucleus of M33, the third-brightest galaxy in the Local Group, with the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph at a resolution at least a factor of 10 higher than previously obtained. Rather than the steep rise expected within the radius of gravitational influence of a supermassive black hole, the random stellar velocities showed a decrease within a parsec of the center of the galaxy. The implied upper limit on the mass of the central black hole is only 3000 solar masses, about three orders of magnitude lower than the dynamically inferred mass of any other supermassive black hole. Detecting black holes of only a few thousand solar masses is observationally challenging, but it is critical to establish how supermassive black holes relate to their host galaxies, and which mechanisms influence the formation and evolution of both. PMID:11463879

  17. BLACK HOLE MASS ESTIMATES AND RAPID GROWTH OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN LUMINOUS z ∼ 3.5 QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    Zuo, Wenwen; Wu, Xue-Bing; Fan, Xiaohui; Green, Richard; Wang, Ran; Bian, Fuyan

    2015-02-01

    We present new near-infrared (IR) observations of the Hβ λ4861 and Mg II λ2798 lines for 32 luminous quasars with 3.2 < z < 3.9 using the Palomar Hale 200 inch telescope and the Large Binocular Telescope. We find that the Mg II FWHM is well correlated with the Hβ FWHM, confirming itself as a good substitute for the Hβ FWHM in the black hole mass estimates. The continuum luminosity at 5100 Å well correlates with the continuum luminosity at 3000 Å and the broad emission line luminosities (Hβ and Mg II). With simultaneous near-IR spectroscopy of the Hβ and Mg II lines to exclude the influences of flux variability, we are able to evaluate the reliability of estimating black hole masses based on the Mg II line for high redshift quasars. With the reliable Hβ line based black hole mass and Eddington ratio estimates, we find that the z ∼ 3.5 quasars in our sample have black hole masses 1.90 × 10{sup 9} M {sub ☉} ≲ M {sub BH} ≲ 1.37 × 10{sup 10} M {sub ☉}, with a median of ∼5.14 × 10{sup 9} M {sub ☉} and are accreting at Eddington ratios between 0.30 and 3.05, with a median of ∼1.12. Assuming a duty cycle of 1 and a seed black hole mass of 10{sup 4} M {sub ☉}, we show that the z ∼ 3.5 quasars in this sample can grow to their estimated black hole masses within the age of the universe at their redshifts.

  18. GROWTH OF EARLY SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES AND THE HIGH-REDSHIFT EDDINGTON RATIO DISTRIBUTION

    SciTech Connect

    DeGraf, C.; Di Matteo, T.; Khandai, N.; Croft, R.

    2012-08-10

    Using a new large-scale ({approx} 0.75 Gpc){sup 3} hydrodynamic cosmological simulation, we investigate the growth rate of supermassive black holes (BHs) in the early universe (z {approx}> 4.75). Remarkably we find a clear peak in the typical Eddington ratio ({lambda}) at BH masses of (4-8) Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 7} M{sub Sun} (typically in halos of {approx}7 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 11} to 1 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 12} M{sub Sun }, close to their shock heating scale), independent of redshift and indicative that most BH growth occurs in the cold-flow-dominated regime. BH growth is enhanced at high-z and by and large regulated by the cosmological evolution of gas density, with {lambda} scaling simply as (1 + z){sup 3}. The peak in {lambda} is caused by the competition between increased gas density available in more massive hosts, and a decrease due to active galactic nucleus feedback that becomes effective above the shock heating halo mass scale and at high BH masses. We show that the distribution of {lambda} among both mass-selected and luminosity-selected samples is approximately lognormal. We combine these findings into a single lognormal fitting formula for the distribution of Eddington ratios as a function of (M{sub BH}, z). This formula can be used in analytic and semianalytic models for evolving BH populations, predicting BH masses of observed quasars, and, in conjunction with the observed distribution of Eddington ratios, can be used to constrain the BH mass function.

  19. Offset active galactic nuclei as tracers of galaxy mergers and supermassive black hole growth

    SciTech Connect

    Comerford, Julia M.; Greene, Jenny E.

    2014-07-10

    Offset active galactic nuclei (AGNs) are AGNs that are in ongoing galaxy mergers, which produce kinematic offsets in the AGNs relative to their host galaxies. Offset AGNs are also close relatives of dual AGNs. We conduct a systematic search for offset AGNs in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey by selecting AGN emission lines that exhibit statistically significant line-of-sight velocity offsets relative to systemic. From a parent sample of 18,314 Type 2 AGNs at z < 0.21, we identify 351 offset AGN candidates with velocity offsets of 50 km s{sup –1} < |Δv| < 410 km s{sup –1}. When we account for projection effects in the observed velocities, we estimate that 4%-8% of AGNs are offset AGNs. We designed our selection criteria to bypass velocity offsets produced by rotating gas disks, AGN outflows, and gravitational recoil of supermassive black holes, but follow-up observations are still required to confirm our candidates as offset AGNs. We find that the fraction of AGNs that are offset candidates increases with AGN bolometric luminosity, from 0.7% to 6% over the luminosity range 43 < log (L{sub bol}) [erg s{sup –1}] <46. If these candidates are shown to be bona fide offset AGNs, then this would be direct observational evidence that galaxy mergers preferentially trigger high-luminosity AGNs. Finally, we find that the fraction of AGNs that are offset AGN candidates increases from 1.9% at z = 0.1 to 32% at z = 0.7, in step with the growth in the galaxy merger fraction over the same redshift range.

  20. Environmental Effects on the Growth of Supermassive Black Holes and Active Galactic Nucleus Feedback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shin, Min-Su; Ostriker, Jeremiah P.; Ciotti, Luca

    2012-01-01

    We investigate how environmental effects by gas stripping alter the growth of a supermassive black hole (SMBH) and its host galaxy evolution, by means of one-dimensional hydrodynamical simulations that include both mechanical and radiative active galactic nucleus (AGN) feedback effects. By changing the truncation radius of the gas distribution (Rt ), beyond which gas stripping is assumed to be effective, we simulate possible environments for satellite and central galaxies in galaxy clusters and groups. The continuous escape of gas outside the truncation radius strongly suppresses star formation, while the growth of the SMBH is less affected by gas stripping because the SMBH accretion is primarily ruled by the density of the central region. As we allow for increasing environmental effects—the truncation radius decreasing from about 410 to 50 kpc—we find that the final SMBH mass declines from about 109 to 8 × 108 M ⊙, but the outflowing mass is roughly constant at about 2 × 1010 M ⊙. There are larger changes in the mass of stars formed, which declines from about 2 × 1010 to 2 × 109 M ⊙, and the final thermal X-ray gas, which declines from about 109 to 5 × 108 M ⊙, with increasing environmental stripping. Most dramatic is the decline in the total time that the objects would be seen as quasars, which declines from 52 Myr (for Rt = 377 kpc) to 7.9 Myr (for Rt = 51 kpc). The typical case might be interpreted as a red and dead galaxy having episodic cooling flows followed by AGN feedback effects resulting in temporary transitions of the overall galaxy color from red to green or to blue, with (cluster) central galaxies spending a much larger fraction of their time in the elevated state than do satellite galaxies. Our results imply that various scaling relations for elliptical galaxies, in particular, the mass ratio between the SMBH and its host galaxy, can have dispersions due to environmental effects such as gas stripping. In addition, the simulations

  1. Star formation around supermassive black holes.

    PubMed

    Bonnell, I A; Rice, W K M

    2008-08-22

    The presence of young massive stars orbiting on eccentric rings within a few tenths of a parsec of the supermassive black hole in the galactic center is challenging for theories of star formation. The high tidal shear from the black hole should tear apart the molecular clouds that form stars elsewhere in the Galaxy, and transport of stars to the galactic center also appears unlikely during their lifetimes. We conducted numerical simulations of the infall of a giant molecular cloud that interacts with the black hole. The transfer of energy during closest approach allows part of the cloud to become bound to the black hole, forming an eccentric disk that quickly fragments to form stars. Compressional heating due to the black hole raises the temperature of the gas up to several hundred to several thousand kelvin, ensuring that the fragmentation produces relatively high stellar masses. These stars retain the eccentricity of the disk and, for a sufficiently massive initial cloud, produce an extremely top-heavy distribution of stellar masses. This potentially repetitive process may explain the presence of multiple eccentric rings of young stars in the presence of a supermassive black hole.

  2. Precocious Supermassive Black Holes Challenge Theories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2004-11-01

    NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has obtained definitive evidence that a distant quasar formed less than a billion years after the Big Bang contains a fully-grown supermassive black hole generating energy at the rate of twenty trillion Suns. The existence of such massive black holes at this early epoch of the Universe challenges theories of the formation of galaxies and supermassive black holes. Astronomers Daniel Schwartz and Shanil Virani of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, MA observed the quasar, known as SDSSp J1306, which is 12.7 billion light years away. Since the Universe is estimated to be 13.7 billion years old, we see the quasar as it was a billion years after the Big Bang. They found that the distribution of X-rays with energy, or X-ray spectrum, is indistinguishable from that of nearby, older quasars. Likewise, the relative brightness at optical and X-ray wavelengths of SDSSp J1306 was similar to that of the nearby group of quasars. Optical observations suggest that the mass of the black hole is about a billion solar masses. Illustration of Quasar SDSSp J1306 Illustration of Quasar SDSSp J1306 Evidence of another early-epoch supermassive black hole was published previously by a team of scientists from the California Institute of Technology and the United Kingdom using the XMM-Newton X-ray satellite. They observed the quasar SDSSp J1030 at a distance of 12.8 billion light years and found essentially the same result for the X-ray spectrum as the Smithsonian scientists found for SDSSp J1306. Chandra's precise location and spectrum for SDSSp J1306 with nearly the same properties eliminate any lingering uncertainty that precocious supermassive black holes exist. "These two results seem to indicate that the way supermassive black holes produce X-rays has remained essentially the same from a very early date in the Universe," said Schwartz. "This implies that the central black hole engine in a massive galaxy was formed very soon

  3. How to Build a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wanjek, Christopher

    2003-01-01

    NASA astronomer Kim Weaver has got that sinking feeling. You know, it's that unsettling notion you get when you sift through your X-ray data and, to your surprise, find mid-sized black holes sinking toward the center of a galaxy, where they merge with others to form a single supermassive black hole. Could such a thing be true? These would be the largest mergers since America On Line bought Time-Warner, and perhaps even more violent. The process would turn a starburst galaxy inside out, making it more like a quasar host galaxy. Using the Chandra X-Ray Observatory, Weaver saw a hint of this fantastic process in a relatively nearby starburst galaxy named NGC 253 in the constellation Sculptor. She noticed that starburst galaxies - those gems set aglow in a colorful life cycle of hyperactive star birth, death, and renewal - seem to have a higher concentration of mid-mass black holes compared to other galaxies.

  4. Possible evolution of supermassive black holes from FRI quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Matthew I.; Christian, Damian J.; Garofalo, David; D'Avanzo, Jaclyn

    2016-08-01

    We explore the question of the rapid buildup of black hole mass in the early universe employing a growing black hole mass-based determination of both jet and disc powers predicted in recent theoretical work on black hole accretion and jet formation. Despite simplified, even artificial assumptions about accretion and mergers, we identify an interesting low probability channel for the growth of one billion solar mass black holes within hundreds of millions of years of the big bang without appealing to super Eddington accretion. This result is made more compelling by the recognition of a connection between this channel and an end product involving active galaxies with FRI radio morphology but weaker jet powers in mildly sub-Eddington accretion regimes. While FRI quasars have already been shown to occupy a small region of the available parameter space for black hole feedback in the paradigm, we further suggest that the observational dearth of FRI quasars is also related to their connection to the most massive black hole growth due to both these FRIs high redshifts and relative weakness. Our results also allow us to construct the AGN (active galactic nucleus) luminosity function at high redshift, that agree with recent studies. In short, we produce a connection between the unexplained paucity of a given family of AGNs and the rapid growth of supermassive black holes, two heretofore seemingly unrelated aspects of the physics of AGNs.

  5. The imprint of the cosmic supermassive black hole growth history on the 21 cm background radiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanaka, Takamitsu L.; O'Leary, Ryan M.; Perna, Rosalba

    2016-01-01

    The redshifted 21 cm transition line of hydrogen tracks the thermal evolution of the neutral intergalactic medium (IGM) at `cosmic dawn', during the emergence of the first luminous astrophysical objects (˜100 Myr after the big bang) but before these objects ionized the IGM (˜400-800 Myr after the big bang). Because X-rays, in particular, are likely to be the chief energy courier for heating the IGM, measurements of the 21 cm signature can be used to infer knowledge about the first astrophysical X-ray sources. Using analytic arguments and a numerical population synthesis algorithm, we argue that the progenitors of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) should be the dominant source of hard astrophysical X-rays - and thus the primary driver of IGM heating and the 21 cm signature - at redshifts z ≳ 20, if (i) they grow readily from the remnants of Population III stars and (ii) produce X-rays in quantities comparable to what is observed from active galactic nuclei and high-mass X-ray binaries. We show that models satisfying these assumptions dominate over contributions to IGM heating from stellar populations, and cause the 21 cm brightness temperature to rise at z ≳ 20. An absence of such a signature in the forthcoming observational data would imply that SMBH formation occurred later (e.g. via so-called direct collapse scenarios), that it was not a common occurrence in early galaxies and protogalaxies, or that it produced far fewer X-rays than empirical trends at lower redshifts, either due to intrinsic dimness (radiative inefficiency) or Compton-thick obscuration close to the source.

  6. High-redshift supermassive black holes: accretion through cold flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Yu; Di Matteo, Tiziana; Croft, Rupert; Khandai, Nishikanta

    2014-05-01

    We use zoom-in techniques to re-simulate three high-redshift (z ≥ 5.5) haloes which host 109 M⊙ black holes from the ˜Gpc volume, MassiveBlack cosmological hydrodynamic simulation. We examine a number of factors potentially affecting supermassive black hole growth at high redshift in cosmological simulations. We find insignificant differences in the black hole accretion history by (i) varying the region over which feedback energy is deposited directly, (ii) changing mass resolution by factors of up to 64, (iii) changing the black hole seed mass by a factor of 100. Switching from the density-entropy formulation to the pressure-entropy formulation of smoothed particle hydrodynamics slightly increases the accretion rate. In general numerical details/model parameters appear to have small effects on the main fuelling mechanism for black holes at these high redshifts. The insensitivity to simulation technique seems to be a hallmark of the cold flow feeding picture of these high-z supermassive black holes. We show that the gas that participates in critical accretion phases in these massive objects at z > 6-7 is in all cases colder, denser and forms more coherent streams than the average gas in the halo. This is also mostly the case when the black hole accretion is feedback regulated (z < 6), however, the distinction is less prominent. For our resimulated haloes, cold flows appear to be a viable mechanism for forming the most massive black holes in the early universe, occurring naturally in Λ cold dark matter models of structure formation, without requiring fine-tuning of numerical parameters.

  7. Bright vigorous winds as signposts of supermassive black hole birth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fiacconi, Davide; Rossi, Elena M.

    2016-01-01

    The formation of supermassive black holes is still an outstanding question. In the quasi-star scenario, black hole seeds experience an initial super-Eddington growth, that in less than a million years may leave a 104-105 M⊙ black hole at the centre of a protogalaxy at z ˜ 20-10. Super-Eddington accretion, however, may be accompanied by vigorous mass-loss that can limit the amount of mass that reaches the black hole. In this paper, we critically assess the impact of radiative driven winds, launched from the surface of the massive envelopes from which the black hole accretes. Solving the full wind equations coupled with the hydrostatic structure of the envelope, we find mass outflows with rates between a few tens and 104 M⊙ yr-1, mainly powered by advection luminosity within the outflow. We therefore confirm the claim by Dotan et al. that mass losses can severely affect the black hole seed early growth within a quasi-star. In particular, seeds with mass >104 M⊙ can only form within mass reservoirs ≳107 M⊙, unless they are refilled at huge rates (≳100 M⊙ yr-1). This may imply that only very massive haloes (>109 M⊙) at those redshifts can harbour massive seeds. Contrary to previous claims, these winds are expected to be relatively bright (1044-1047 erg s-1), blue (Teff ˜ 8000 K) objects, that while eluding the Hubble Space Telescope, could be observed by the James Webb Space Telescope.

  8. Formation of Supermassive Black Hole Seeds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Latif, Muhammad A.; Ferrara, Andrea

    2016-10-01

    The detection of quasars at z > 6 unveils the presence of supermassive black holes of a few billion solar masses. The rapid formation process of these extreme objects remains a fascinating and open issue. Such discovery implies that seed black holes must have formed early on, and grown via either rapid accretion or BH/galaxy mergers. In this theoretical review, we discuss in detail various BH seed formation mechanisms and the physical processes at play during their assembly. We discuss the three most popular BH formation scenarios, involving the (i) core-collapse of massive stars, (ii) dynamical evolution of dense nuclear star clusters, (iii) collapse of a protogalactic metal free gas cloud. This article aims at giving a broad introduction and an overview of the most advanced research in the field.

  9. Cold, clumpy accretion onto an active supermassive black hole.

    PubMed

    Tremblay, Grant R; Oonk, J B Raymond; Combes, Françoise; Salomé, Philippe; O'Dea, Christopher P; Baum, Stefi A; Voit, G Mark; Donahue, Megan; McNamara, Brian R; Davis, Timothy A; McDonald, Michael A; Edge, Alastair C; Clarke, Tracy E; Galván-Madrid, Roberto; Bremer, Malcolm N; Edwards, Louise O V; Fabian, Andrew C; Hamer, Stephen; Li, Yuan; Maury, Anaëlle; Russell, Helen R; Quillen, Alice C; Urry, C Megan; Sanders, Jeremy S; Wise, Michael W

    2016-06-01

    Supermassive black holes in galaxy centres can grow by the accretion of gas, liberating energy that might regulate star formation on galaxy-wide scales. The nature of the gaseous fuel reservoirs that power black hole growth is nevertheless largely unconstrained by observations, and is instead routinely simplified as a smooth, spherical inflow of very hot gas. Recent theory and simulations instead predict that accretion can be dominated by a stochastic, clumpy distribution of very cold molecular clouds--a departure from the 'hot mode' accretion model--although unambiguous observational support for this prediction remains elusive. Here we report observations that reveal a cold, clumpy accretion flow towards a supermassive black hole fuel reservoir in the nucleus of the Abell 2597 Brightest Cluster Galaxy (BCG), a nearby (redshift z = 0.0821) giant elliptical galaxy surrounded by a dense halo of hot plasma. Under the right conditions, thermal instabilities produce a rain of cold clouds that fall towards the galaxy's centre, sustaining star formation amid a kiloparsec-scale molecular nebula that is found at its core. The observations show that these cold clouds also fuel black hole accretion, revealing 'shadows' cast by the molecular clouds as they move inward at about 300 kilometres per second towards the active supermassive black hole, which serves as a bright backlight. Corroborating evidence from prior observations of warmer atomic gas at extremely high spatial resolution, along with simple arguments based on geometry and probability, indicate that these clouds are within the innermost hundred parsecs of the black hole, and falling closer towards it. PMID:27279215

  10. Cold, clumpy accretion onto an active supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tremblay, Grant R.; Oonk, J. B. Raymond; Combes, Françoise; Salomé, Philippe; O'Dea, Christopher P.; Baum, Stefi A.; Voit, G. Mark; Donahue, Megan; McNamara, Brian R.; Davis, Timothy A.; McDonald, Michael A.; Edge, Alastair C.; Clarke, Tracy E.; Galván-Madrid, Roberto; Bremer, Malcolm N.; Edwards, Louise O. V.; Fabian, Andrew C.; Hamer, Stephen; Li, Yuan; Maury, Anaëlle; Russell, Helen R.; Quillen, Alice C.; Urry, C. Megan; Sanders, Jeremy S.; Wise, Michael W.

    2016-06-01

    Supermassive black holes in galaxy centres can grow by the accretion of gas, liberating energy that might regulate star formation on galaxy-wide scales. The nature of the gaseous fuel reservoirs that power black hole growth is nevertheless largely unconstrained by observations, and is instead routinely simplified as a smooth, spherical inflow of very hot gas. Recent theory and simulations instead predict that accretion can be dominated by a stochastic, clumpy distribution of very cold molecular clouds—a departure from the ‘hot mode’ accretion model—although unambiguous observational support for this prediction remains elusive. Here we report observations that reveal a cold, clumpy accretion flow towards a supermassive black hole fuel reservoir in the nucleus of the Abell 2597 Brightest Cluster Galaxy (BCG), a nearby (redshift z = 0.0821) giant elliptical galaxy surrounded by a dense halo of hot plasma. Under the right conditions, thermal instabilities produce a rain of cold clouds that fall towards the galaxy’s centre, sustaining star formation amid a kiloparsec-scale molecular nebula that is found at its core. The observations show that these cold clouds also fuel black hole accretion, revealing ‘shadows’ cast by the molecular clouds as they move inward at about 300 kilometres per second towards the active supermassive black hole, which serves as a bright backlight. Corroborating evidence from prior observations of warmer atomic gas at extremely high spatial resolution, along with simple arguments based on geometry and probability, indicate that these clouds are within the innermost hundred parsecs of the black hole, and falling closer towards it.

  11. Cold, clumpy accretion onto an active supermassive black hole.

    PubMed

    Tremblay, Grant R; Oonk, J B Raymond; Combes, Françoise; Salomé, Philippe; O'Dea, Christopher P; Baum, Stefi A; Voit, G Mark; Donahue, Megan; McNamara, Brian R; Davis, Timothy A; McDonald, Michael A; Edge, Alastair C; Clarke, Tracy E; Galván-Madrid, Roberto; Bremer, Malcolm N; Edwards, Louise O V; Fabian, Andrew C; Hamer, Stephen; Li, Yuan; Maury, Anaëlle; Russell, Helen R; Quillen, Alice C; Urry, C Megan; Sanders, Jeremy S; Wise, Michael W

    2016-06-08

    Supermassive black holes in galaxy centres can grow by the accretion of gas, liberating energy that might regulate star formation on galaxy-wide scales. The nature of the gaseous fuel reservoirs that power black hole growth is nevertheless largely unconstrained by observations, and is instead routinely simplified as a smooth, spherical inflow of very hot gas. Recent theory and simulations instead predict that accretion can be dominated by a stochastic, clumpy distribution of very cold molecular clouds--a departure from the 'hot mode' accretion model--although unambiguous observational support for this prediction remains elusive. Here we report observations that reveal a cold, clumpy accretion flow towards a supermassive black hole fuel reservoir in the nucleus of the Abell 2597 Brightest Cluster Galaxy (BCG), a nearby (redshift z = 0.0821) giant elliptical galaxy surrounded by a dense halo of hot plasma. Under the right conditions, thermal instabilities produce a rain of cold clouds that fall towards the galaxy's centre, sustaining star formation amid a kiloparsec-scale molecular nebula that is found at its core. The observations show that these cold clouds also fuel black hole accretion, revealing 'shadows' cast by the molecular clouds as they move inward at about 300 kilometres per second towards the active supermassive black hole, which serves as a bright backlight. Corroborating evidence from prior observations of warmer atomic gas at extremely high spatial resolution, along with simple arguments based on geometry and probability, indicate that these clouds are within the innermost hundred parsecs of the black hole, and falling closer towards it.

  12. Bringing Black Holes Together: How Supermassive Black Hole Binaries Form and Plunge Through the Final Parsec

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holley-Bockelmann, Kelly

    2016-04-01

    Astronomers now know that supermassive black holes reside in nearly every galaxy.Though these black holes are an observational certainty, nearly every aspect of their evolution -- from their birth, to their fuel source, to their basic dynamics -- is a matter of lively debate. In principle, gas-rich major galaxy mergers can generate the central stockpile of fuel needed for a low mass central black hole seed to grow quickly into a supermassive one. During a galaxy merger, the black holes in each galaxy meet and form a supermassive binary black hole; as the binary orbit shrinks through its final parsec, it becomes the loudest gravitational wave source in the Universe and a powerful agent to sculpt the galactic center. This talk will touch on some current and ongoing work on refining our theories of how supermassive black hole binaries form, evolve within, and alter their galaxy host.

  13. Supermassive Black Hole Mimics Smaller Cousins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2002-06-01

    Scientists have caught a supermassive black hole in a distant galaxy in the act of spurting energy into a jet of electrons and magnetic fields four distinct times in the past three years, a celestial take on a Yellowstone geyser. This quasar-like "active" galaxy is essentially a scaled-up model of the so-called microquasars within our Milky Way Galaxy, which are smaller black holes with as much as ten times the mass of the sun. This means that scientists can now use their close-up view of microquasars to develop working models of the most massive and powerful black holes in the universe. Artist's Conception of 3C 120. Scene from an animation of 3C 120. CREDIT: Cosmovision These results -- published in the June 6 issue of Nature -- are the fruit of a three-year monitoring campaign with the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA), a continent-wide radio-telescope system, and NASA's Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. "This is the first direct, observational evidence of what we had suspected: The jets in active galaxies are powered by disks of hot gas orbiting around supermassive black holes," said Alan Marscher of the Institute for Astrophysical Research at Boston University, who led this international team of astronomers. Active galaxies are distant celestial objects with exceedingly bright cores, often radiating with the brilliance of thousands of ordinary galaxies, fueled by the gravity of a central million- to billion-solar-mass black hole pulling in copious amounts of interstellar gas. Marscher and his colleagues have established the first direct observational link between a supermassive black hole and its jet. The source is an active galaxy named 3C120 about 450 million light-years from Earth. This link has been observed in microquasars, several of which are scattered across the Milky Way Galaxy, but never before in active galaxies, because the scale (distance and time) is so much greater. The jets in galaxy 3C120 are streams of particles

  14. Observational signatures of binary supermassive black holes

    SciTech Connect

    Roedig, Constanze; Krolik, Julian H.; Miller, M. Coleman

    2014-04-20

    Observations indicate that most massive galaxies contain a supermassive black hole, and theoretical studies suggest that when such galaxies have a major merger, the central black holes will form a binary and eventually coalesce. Here we discuss two spectral signatures of such binaries that may help distinguish them from ordinary active galactic nuclei. These signatures are expected when the mass ratio between the holes is not extreme and the system is fed by a circumbinary disk. One such signature is a notch in the thermal continuum that has been predicted by other authors; we point out that it should be accompanied by a spectral revival at shorter wavelengths and also discuss its dependence on binary properties such as mass, mass ratio, and separation. In particular, we note that the wavelength λ {sub n} at which the notch occurs depends on these three parameters in such a way as to make the number of systems displaying these notches ∝λ{sub n}{sup 16/3}; longer wavelength searches are therefore strongly favored. A second signature, first discussed here, is hard X-ray emission with a Wien-like spectrum at a characteristic temperature ∼100 keV produced by Compton cooling of the shock generated when streams from the circumbinary disk hit the accretion disks around the individual black holes. We investigate the observability of both signatures. The hard X-ray signal may be particularly valuable as it can provide an indicator of black hole merger a few decades in advance of the event.

  15. Magnetic fields during the formation of supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Latif, M. A.; Schleicher, D. R. G.; Schmidt, W.

    2014-05-01

    Observations of quasars at z > 6 report the existence of a billion solar mass black holes. Comprehending their formation in such a short time-scale is a matter of ongoing research. One of the most promising scenarios to assemble supermassive black holes is a monolithic collapse of protogalactic gas clouds in atomic cooling haloes with Tvir ≥ 104 K. In this paper, we study the amplification and impact of magnetic fields during the formation of seed black holes in massive primordial haloes. We perform high-resolution cosmological magnetohydrodynamic simulations for four distinct haloes and follow their collapse for a few free-fall times until the simulations reach a peak density of 7 × 10-10 g cm-3. Our findings show that irrespective of the initial seed field, the magnetic field strength reaches a saturated state in the presence of strong accretion shocks. Under such conditions, the growth time becomes very short and amplification occurs rapidly within a small fraction of the free-fall time. We find that the presence of such strong magnetic fields provides additional support against gravity and helps in suppressing fragmentation. Massive clumps of a few hundred solar masses are formed at the end of our simulations and high accretion rates of 1 M⊙ yr-1 are observed. We expect that in the presence of such accretion rates, the clumps will grow to form supermassive stars of ˜105 M⊙. Overall, the role of the magnetic fields seems supportive for the formation of massive black holes.

  16. ECCENTRIC EVOLUTION OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE BINARIES

    SciTech Connect

    Iwasawa, Masaki; An, Sangyong; Matsubayashi, Tatsushi; Funato, Yoko; Makino, Junichiro

    2011-04-10

    In recent numerical simulations, it has been found that the eccentricity of supermassive black hole (SMBH)-intermediate black hole (IMBH) binaries grows toward unity through interactions with the stellar background. This increase of eccentricity reduces the merging timescale of the binary through the gravitational radiation to a value well below the Hubble time. It also gives a theoretical explanation of the existence of eccentric binaries such as that in OJ287. In self-consistent N-body simulations, this increase of eccentricity is always observed. On the other hand, the result of the scattering experiment between SMBH binaries and field stars indicated that the eccentricity dose not change significantly. This discrepancy leaves the high eccentricity of the SMBH binaries in N-body simulations unexplained. Here, we present a stellar-dynamical mechanism that drives the increase of the eccentricity of an SMBH binary with a large mass ratio. There are two key processes involved. The first one is the Kozai mechanism under a non-axisymmetric potential, which effectively randomizes the angular momenta of surrounding stars. The other is the selective ejection of stars with prograde orbits. Through these two mechanisms, field stars extract the orbital angular momentum of the SMBH binary. Our proposed mechanism causes the increase in the eccentricity of most of SMBH binaries, resulting in the rapid merger through gravitational wave radiation. Our result has given a definite solution to the 'last-parsec problem'.

  17. RADIO ACTIVE GALAXY NUCLEI IN GALAXY CLUSTERS: HEATING HOT ATMOSPHERES AND DRIVING SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE GROWTH OVER COSMIC TIME

    SciTech Connect

    Ma, C.-J.; McNamara, B. R.; Nulsen, P. E. J.

    2013-01-20

    We estimate the average radio active galactic nucleus (AGN, mechanical) power deposited into the hot atmospheres of galaxy clusters over more than three quarters of the age of the Universe. Our sample was drawn from eight major X-ray cluster surveys and includes 685 clusters in the redshift range 0.1 < z < 0.6 that overlap the area covered by the NRAO VLA Sky Survey (NVSS). The radio-AGN mechanical power was estimated from the radio luminosity of central NVSS sources, using the relation of Cavagnolo et al. that is based on mechanical powers determined from the enthalpies of X-ray cavities. We find only a weak correlation between radio luminosity and cluster X-ray luminosity, although the most powerful radio sources reside in luminous clusters. The average AGN mechanical power of 3 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 44} erg s{sup -1} exceeds the X-ray luminosity of 44% of the clusters, indicating that the accumulation of radio-AGN energy is significant in these clusters. Integrating the AGN mechanical power to redshift z = 2.0, using simple models for its evolution and disregarding the hierarchical growth of clusters, we find that the AGN energy accumulated per particle in low luminosity X-ray clusters exceeds 1 keV per particle. This result represents a conservative lower limit to the accumulated thermal energy. The estimate is comparable to the level of energy needed to 'preheat' clusters, indicating that continual outbursts from radio-AGN are a significant source of gas energy in hot atmospheres. Assuming an average mass conversion efficiency of {eta} = 0.1, our result implies that the supermassive black holes that released this energy did so by accreting an average of {approx}10{sup 9} M {sub Sun} over time, which is comparable to the level of growth expected during the quasar era.

  18. Cosmological simulations of the growth of supermassive black holes and feedback from active galactic nuclei: method and tests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Booth, C. M.; Schaye, Joop

    2009-09-01

    We present a method that self-consistently tracks the growth of supermassive black holes (BHs) and the feedback from active galactic nuclei (AGN) in cosmological, hydrodynamical simulations. Our model is a substantially modified version of the one introduced by Springel, Di Matteo & Hernquist implemented in a significantly expanded version of the GADGET III code, which contains new prescriptions for star formation, supernova feedback, radiative cooling and chemodynamics. We simulate the growth of BHs from an initial seed state via Eddington-limited accretion of the surrounding gas, and via mergers with other BHs. Because cosmological simulations at present lack both the resolution and the physics to model the multiphase interstellar medium, they tend to strongly underestimate the Bondi-Hoyle accretion rate. To allow low-mass BHs to grow, it is therefore necessary to increase the predicted Bondi-Hoyle rates in star-forming gas by large factors, either by explicitly multiplying the accretion rate by a numerical correction factor or by using an unresolved, subgrid model for the gas close to the BH. We explore the physical regimes where the use of such multiplicative factors is reasonable, and through this introduce a new prescription for gas accretion by BHs. Feedback from AGN is modelled by coupling a fraction of the rest-mass energy of the accreted gas thermally into the surrounding medium. We describe the implementation as well as the limitations of the model in detail and motivate all the changes relative to previous work. We demonstrate how general physical considerations can be used to choose many of the parameters of the model and demonstrate that the fiducial model reproduces observational constraints. We employ a large suite of cosmological simulations, in which the parameters of the BH model are varied away from their fiducial values, to investigate the robustness of the predictions for the cosmic star formation history and the redshift zero cosmic BH

  19. Circumnuclear media of quiescent supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Generozov, Aleksey; Stone, Nicholas C.; Metzger, Brian D.

    2015-10-01

    We calculate steady-state, one-dimensional hydrodynamic profiles of hot gas in slowly accreting (`quiescent') galactic nuclei for a range of central black hole masses M•, parametrized gas heating rates, and observationally motivated stellar density profiles. Mass is supplied to the circumnuclear medium by stellar winds, while energy is injected primarily by stellar winds, supernovae, and black hole feedback. Analytic estimates are derived for the stagnation radius (where the radial velocity of the gas passes through zero) and the large-scale gas inflow rate, dot{M}, as a function of M• and the gas heating efficiency, the latter being related to the star formation history. We assess the conditions under which radiative instabilities develop in the hydrostatic region near the stagnation radius, both in the case of a single burst of star formation and for the average star formation history predicted by cosmological simulations. By combining a sample of measured nuclear X-ray luminosities, LX, of nearby quiescent galactic nuclei with our results for dot{M}(M_{bullet }), we address whether the nuclei are consistent with accreting in a steady state, thermally stable manner for radiative efficiencies predicted for radiatively inefficiency accretion flows. We find thermally stable accretion cannot explain the short average growth times of low-mass black holes in the local Universe, which must instead result from gas being fed in from large radii, due either to gas inflows or thermal instabilities acting on larger, galactic scales. Our results have implications for attempts to constrain the occupation fraction of upermassive black holes in low-mass galaxies using the mean LX-M• correlation, as well as the predicted diversity of the circumnuclear densities encountered by relativistic outflows from tidal disruption events.

  20. Observing stellar mass and supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cherepashchuk, A. M.

    2016-07-01

    During the last 50 years, great progress has been made in observing stellar-mass black holes (BHs) in binary systems and supermassive BHs in galactic nuclei. In 1964, Zeldovich and Salpeter showed that in the case of nonspherical accretion of matter onto a BH, huge energy releases occur. The theory of disk accretion of matter onto BHs was developed in 1972-1973 by Shakura and Sunyaev, Pringle and Rees, and Novikov and Thorne. Up to now, 100 years after the creation of Albert Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, which predicts the existence of BHs, the masses of tens of stellar-mass BHs ( M_BH=(4-35) M_ȯ) and many hundreds of supermassive BHs ( M_BH=(10^6-1010) M_ȯ) have been determined. A new field of astrophysics, so-called BH demography, is developing. The recent discovery of gravitational waves from BH mergers in binary systems opens a new era in BH studies.

  1. Supermassive black hole pairs in clumpy galaxies at high redshift: delayed binary formation and concurrent mass growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tamburello, Valentina; Capelo, Pedro R.; Mayer, Lucio; Bellovary, Jillian M.; Wadsley, James W.

    2016-10-01

    Massive gas-rich galaxy discs at z ˜ 1 - 3 host massive star-forming clumps with typical baryonic masses in the range 107 - 108 M⊙ which can affect the orbital decay and concurrent growth of supermassive black hole (BH) pairs. Using a set of high-resolution simulations of isolated clumpy galaxies hosting a pair of unequal-mass BHs, we study the interaction between massive clumps and a BH pair at kpc scales, during the early phase of the orbital decay. We find that both the interaction with massive clumps and the heating of the cold gas layer of the disc by BH feedback tend to delay significantly the orbital decay of the secondary, which in many cases is ejected and then hovers for a whole Gyr around a separation of 1-2 kpc. In the envelope, dynamical friction is weak and there is no contribution of disc torques: these lead to the fastest decay once the orbit of the secondary BH has circularised in the disc midplane. In runs with larger eccentricities the delay is stronger, although there are some exceptions. We also show that, even in discs with very sporadic transient clump formation, a strong spiral pattern affects the decay time-scale for BHs on eccentric orbits. We conclude that, contrary to previous belief, a gas-rich background is not necessarily conducive to a fast BH decay and binary formation, which prompts more extensive investigations aimed at calibrating event-rate forecasts for ongoing and future gravitational-wave searches, such as with Pulsar Timing Arrays and the future evolved Laser Interferometer Space Antenna.

  2. Binary pairs of supermassive black holes - Formation in merging galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valtaoja, L.; Valtonen, M. J.; Byrd, G. G.

    1989-08-01

    A process in which supermassive binary blackholes are formed in nuclei of supergiant galaxies due to galaxy mergers is examined. There is growing evidence that mergers of galaxies are common and that supermassive black holes in center of galaxies are also common. Consequently, it is expected that binary black holes should arise in connection with galaxy mergers. The merger process in a galaxy modeled after M87 is considered. The capture probability of a companion is derived as a function of its mass. Assuming a correlation between the galaxy mass and the blackholes mass, the expected mass ratio in binary black holes is calculated. The binary black holes formed in this process are long lived, surviving longer than the Hubble time unless they are perturbed by black holes from successive mergers. The properties of these binaries agree with Gaskell's (1988) observational work on quasars and its interpretation in terms of binary black holes.

  3. Dynamical Friction around Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antonini, Fabio; Merritt, David

    2012-01-01

    The density of stars in galactic bulges is often observed to be flat or slowly rising inside the influence radius of the supermassive black hole (SMBH). Attributing the dynamical-friction force to stars moving more slowly than the test body, as is commonly done, is likely to be a poor approximation in such a core since there are no stars moving more slowly than the local circular velocity. We have tested this prediction using large-scale N-body experiments. The rate of orbital decay never drops precisely to zero, because stars moving faster than the test body also contribute to the frictional force. When the contribution from the fast-moving stars is included in the expression for the dynamical-friction force, and the changes induced by the massive body on the stellar distribution are taken into account, Chandrasekhar's theory is found to reproduce the rate of orbital decay remarkably well. However, this rate is still substantially smaller than the rate predicted by Chandrasekhar's formula in its most widely used forms, implying longer timescale for inspiral. Motivated by recent observations that suggest a parsec-scale core around the Galactic center (GC) SMBH, we investigate the evolution of a population of stellar-mass black holes (BHs) as they spiral into the center of the Galaxy. After ~10 Gyr, we find that the density of BHs can remain substantially less than the density in stars at all radii; we conclude that it would be unjustified to assume that the spatial distribution of BHs at the GC is well described by steady-state models. One consequence is that rates of capture of BHs by the SMBH at the Galactic center (extreme-mass-ratio inspirals) may be much lower than in standard models. When capture occurs, inspiraling BHs often reach the gravitational-radiation-dominated regime while on orbits that are still highly eccentric; even after the semimajor axis has decreased to values small enough for detection by space-based interferometers, eccentricities can be

  4. Simulating the Growth of a Disk Galaxy and its Supermassive Black Hole in a Cosmological Simulating the Growth of a Disk Galaxy and its Supermassive Black Hole in a Cosmological Context

    SciTech Connect

    Levine, Robyn Deborah

    2008-01-01

    Supermassive black holes (SMBHs) are ubiquitous in the centers of galaxies. Their formation and subsequent evolution is inextricably linked to that of their host galaxies, and the study of galaxy formation is incomplete without the inclusion of SMBHs. The present work seeks to understand the growth and evolution of SMBHs through their interaction with the host galaxy and its environment. In the first part of the thesis (Chap. 2 and 3), we combine a simple semi-analytic model of outflows from active galactic nuclei (AGN) with a simulated dark matter density distribution to study the impact of SMBH feedback on cosmological scales. We find that constraints can be placed on the kinetic efficiency of such feedback using observations of the filling fraction of the Lyα forest. We also find that AGN feedback is energetic enough to redistribute baryons over cosmological distances, having potentially significant effects on the interpretation of cosmological data which are sensitive to the total matter density distribution (e.g. weak lensing). However, truly assessing the impact of AGN feedback in the universe necessitates large-dynamic range simulations with extensive treatment of baryonic physics to first model the fueling of SMBHs. In the second part of the thesis (Chap. 4-6) we use a hydrodynamic adaptive mesh refinement simulation to follow the growth and evolution of a typical disk galaxy hosting a SMBH, in a cosmological context. The simulation covers a dynamical range of 10 million allowing us to study the transport of matter and angular momentum from super-galactic scales all the way down to the outer edge of the accretion disk around the SMBH. Focusing our attention on the central few hundred parsecs of the galaxy, we find the presence of a cold, self-gravitating, molecular gas disk which is globally unstable. The global instabilities drive super-sonic turbulence, which maintains local stability and allows gas to fuel a SMBH without first fragmenting completely

  5. Migration Traps in Disks around Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bellovary, Jillian M.; Mac Low, Mordecai-Mark; McKernan, Barry; Ford, K. E. Saavik

    2016-03-01

    Accretion disks around supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in active galactic nuclei (AGNs) contain stars, stellar mass black holes, and other stellar remnants, which perturb the disk gas gravitationally. The resulting density perturbations exert torques on the embedded masses causing them to migrate through the disk in a manner analogous to planets in protoplanetary disks. We determine the strength and direction of these torques using an empirical analytic description dependent on local disk gradients, applied to two different analytic, steady-state disk models of SMBH accretion disks. We find that there are radii in such disks where the gas torque changes sign, trapping migrating objects. Our analysis shows that major migration traps generally occur where the disk surface density gradient changes sign from positive to negative, around 20-300Rg, where Rg = 2GM/c2 is the Schwarzschild radius. At these traps, massive objects in the AGN disk can accumulate, collide, scatter, and accrete. Intermediate mass black hole formation is likely in these disk locations, which may lead to preferential gap and cavity creation at these radii. Our model thus has significant implications for SMBH growth as well as gravitational wave source populations.

  6. Supermassive black holes do not correlate with galaxy disks or pseudobulges.

    PubMed

    Kormendy, John; Bender, R; Cornell, M E

    2011-01-20

    The masses of supermassive black holes are known to correlate with the properties of the bulge components of their host galaxies. In contrast, they seem not to correlate with galaxy disks. Disk-grown 'pseudobulges' are intermediate in properties between bulges and disks; it has been unclear whether they do or do not correlate with black holes in the same way that bulges do. At stake in this issue are conclusions about which parts of galaxies coevolve with black holes, possibly by being regulated by energy feedback from black holes. Here we report pseudobulge classifications for galaxies with dynamically detected black holes and combine them with recent measurements of velocity dispersions in the biggest bulgeless galaxies. These data confirm that black holes do not correlate with disks and show that they correlate little or not at all with pseudobulges. We suggest that there are two different modes of black-hole feeding. Black holes in bulges grow rapidly to high masses when mergers drive gas infall that feeds quasar-like events. In contrast, small black holes in bulgeless galaxies and in galaxies with pseudobulges grow as low-level Seyfert galaxies. Growth of the former is driven by global processes, so the biggest black holes coevolve with bulges, but growth of the latter is driven locally and stochastically, and they do not coevolve with disks and pseudobulges.

  7. Merging a Pair of Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-10-01

    When galaxies merge, the supermassive black holes (SMBHs) at the galaxies centers are thought to coalesce, forming a new, larger black hole. But can this merger process take place on timescales short enough that we could actually observe it? Results from a new simulation suggests that it can!When Galaxies CollideThese stills demonstrate the time evolution of the galaxy merger after the beginning of the authors simulation (starting from z=3.6). The red and blue dots mark the positions of the SMBHs. [Adapted from Khan et al. 2016]At present, its not well understood how the merger of two SMBHs proceeds from the merger of their host galaxies. Whats more, there are concerns about whether the SMBHs can coalesce on reasonable timescales; in many simulations and models, the inspiral of these behemoths stalls out when they are about a parsec apart, in whats known as the final parsec problem.Why are these mergers poorly understood? Modeling them from the initial interactions of the host galaxies all the way down to the final coalescence of their SMBHs in a burst of gravitational waves is notoriously complicated, due to the enormous range of scales and different processes that must be accounted for.But in a recent study, a team of scientists led by Fazeel Khan (Institute of Space Technology in Pakistan) has presented a simulation that successfully manages to track the entire merger making it the first multi-scale simulation to model the complete evolution of an SMBH binary that forms within a cosmological galaxy merger.Stages of aSimulationKhan and collaborators tackled the challenges of this simulation by using a multi-tiered approach.Beginning with the output of a cosmological hydrodynamical simulation, the authors select a merger of two typical massive galaxies at z=3.6 and use this as the starting point for their simulation. They increase the resolution and add in two supermassive black holes, one at the center of each galaxy.They then continue to evolve the galaxies

  8. Astrophysical phenomena related to supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pott, Jörg-Uwe

    2006-12-01

    The thesis contains the results of my recent projects in astrophysical research. All projects aim at pushing the limits of our knowledge about the interaction between a galaxy, the fundamental building block of today's universe, and a supermassive black hole (SMBH) at its center. Over the past years a lot of observational evidence has been gathered for the current understanding, that at least a major part of the galaxies with a stellar bulge contain central SMBHs. The typical extragalactic approach consists of searching for the spectroscopic pattern of Keplerian rotation, produced by stars and gas, when orbiting a central dark mass (Kormendy & Richstone 1995). It suggests that a significant fraction of large galaxies host in their very nucleus a SMBH of millions to billions of solar masses (Kormendy & Gebhardt 2001). In the closest case, the center of our Milky Way, the most central stars, which can be imaged, were shown to move on orbits with circulation times of a few decades only, evidencing a mass and compactness of the dark counter part of the Keplerian motion, which can only be explained by a SMBH (Eckart & Genzel 1996; Ghez et al. 2000; Schödel et al. 2002). Having acknowledged the widespread existence of SMBHs the obvious next step is investigating the interaction with their environment. Although the basic property of a SMBH, which is concentrating a huge amount of mass in a ludicrously small volume defined by the Schwarzschild radius, only creates a deep gravitational trough, its existence evokes much more phenomena than simply attracting the surrounding matter. It can trigger or exacerbate star formation via tidal forces (Morris 1993). It shapes the distribution of its surrounding matter to accretion discs, which themselves release gravitational potential energy as radiation, possibly due to magnetic friction (Blandford 1995). The radiation efficiency of such active galactic nuclei (AGN) can become roughly 100 times more efficient than atomic nuclear

  9. Spin and mass of the nearest supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dokuchaev, Vyacheslav I.

    2014-12-01

    Quasi-periodic oscillations (QPOs) of the hot plasma spots or clumps orbiting an accreting black hole contain information on the black hole mass and spin. The promising observational signatures for the measurement of black hole mass and spin are the latitudinal oscillation frequency of the bright spots in the accretion flow and the frequency of black hole event horizon rotation. Both of these frequencies are independent of the accretion model and defined completely by the properties of the black hole gravitational field. Interpretation of the known QPO data by dint of a signal modulation from the hot spots in the accreting plasma reveals the Kerr metric rotation parameter, , and mass, , of the supermassive black hole in the Galactic center. At the same time, the observed 11.5 min QPO period is identified with a period of the black hole event horizon rotation, and, respectively, the 19 min period is identified with a latitudinal oscillation period of hot spots in the accretion flow. The described approach is applicable to black holes with a low accretion rate, when accreting plasma is transparent up to the event horizon region.

  10. Higher harmonics increase LISA's mass reach for supermassive black holes

    SciTech Connect

    Arun, K. G.; Iyer, Bala R.; Sathyaprakash, B. S.; Sinha, Siddhartha

    2007-06-15

    Current expectations on the signal-to-noise ratios and masses of supermassive black holes which the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) can observe are based on using in matched filtering only the dominant harmonic of the inspiral waveform at twice the orbital frequency. Other harmonics will affect the signal-to-noise ratio of systems currently believed to be observable by LISA. More significantly, inclusion of other harmonics in our matched filters would mean that more massive systems that were previously thought to be not visible in LISA should be detectable with reasonable SNRs. Our estimates show that we should be able to significantly increase the mass reach of LISA and observe the more commonly occurring supermassive black holes of masses {approx}10{sup 8}M{sub {center_dot}}. More specifically, with the inclusion of all known harmonics LISA will be able to observe even supermassive black hole coalescences with total mass {approx}10{sup 8}M{sub {center_dot}}(10{sup 9}M{sub {center_dot}}) (and mass ratio 0.1) for a low frequency cutoff of 10{sup -4} Hz (10{sup -5} Hz) with an SNR up to {approx}60 ({approx}30) at a distance of 3 Gpc. This is important from the astrophysical viewpoint since observational evidence for the existence of black holes in this mass range is quite strong and binaries containing such supermassive black holes will be inaccessible to LISA if one uses as detection templates only the dominant harmonic.

  11. The early growth of the first black holes

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Johnson, Jarrett L.; Haardt, Francesco

    2016-03-04

    With detections of quasars powered by increasingly massive black holes at increasingly early times in cosmic history over the past decade, there has been correspondingly rapid progress made on the theory of early black hole formation and growth. Here, we review the emerging picture of how the first massive black holes formed from the primordial gas and then grew to supermassive scales. We discuss the initial conditions for the formation of the progenitors of these seed black holes, the factors dictating the initial masses with which they form, and their initial stages of growth via accretion, which may occur atmore » super-Eddington rates. Lastly, we briefly discuss how these results connect to large-scale simulations of the growth of supermassive black holes in the first billion years after the Big Bang.« less

  12. The Early Growth of the First Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Jarrett L.; Haardt, Francesco

    2016-03-01

    With detections of quasars powered by increasingly massive black holes at increasingly early times in cosmic history over the past decade, there has been correspondingly rapid progress made on the theory of early black hole formation and growth. Here, we review the emerging picture of how the first massive black holes formed from the primordial gas and then grew to supermassive scales. We discuss the initial conditions for the formation of the progenitors of these seed black holes, the factors dictating the initial masses with which they form, and their initial stages of growth via accretion, which may occur at super-Eddington rates. Finally, we briefly discuss how these results connect to large-scale simulations of the growth of supermassive black holes in the first billion years after the Big Bang.

  13. Supermassive black holes do not correlate with dark matter haloes of galaxies.

    PubMed

    Kormendy, John; Bender, Ralf

    2011-01-20

    Supermassive black holes have been detected in all galaxies that contain bulge components when the galaxies observed were close enough that the searches were feasible. Together with the observation that bigger black holes live in bigger bulges, this has led to the belief that black-hole growth and bulge formation regulate each other. That is, black holes and bulges coevolve. Therefore, reports of a similar correlation between black holes and the dark matter haloes in which visible galaxies are embedded have profound implications. Dark matter is likely to be non-baryonic, so these reports suggest that unknown, exotic physics controls black-hole growth. Here we show, in part on the basis of recent measurements of bulgeless galaxies, that there is almost no correlation between dark matter and parameters that measure black holes unless the galaxy also contains a bulge. We conclude that black holes do not correlate directly with dark matter. They do not correlate with galaxy disks, either. Therefore, black holes coevolve only with bulges. This simplifies the puzzle of their coevolution by focusing attention on purely baryonic processes in the galaxy mergers that make bulges.

  14. Supermassive black holes do not correlate with dark matter haloes of galaxies.

    PubMed

    Kormendy, John; Bender, Ralf

    2011-01-20

    Supermassive black holes have been detected in all galaxies that contain bulge components when the galaxies observed were close enough that the searches were feasible. Together with the observation that bigger black holes live in bigger bulges, this has led to the belief that black-hole growth and bulge formation regulate each other. That is, black holes and bulges coevolve. Therefore, reports of a similar correlation between black holes and the dark matter haloes in which visible galaxies are embedded have profound implications. Dark matter is likely to be non-baryonic, so these reports suggest that unknown, exotic physics controls black-hole growth. Here we show, in part on the basis of recent measurements of bulgeless galaxies, that there is almost no correlation between dark matter and parameters that measure black holes unless the galaxy also contains a bulge. We conclude that black holes do not correlate directly with dark matter. They do not correlate with galaxy disks, either. Therefore, black holes coevolve only with bulges. This simplifies the puzzle of their coevolution by focusing attention on purely baryonic processes in the galaxy mergers that make bulges. PMID:21248846

  15. Hunting for Infrared Signatures of Supermassive Black Hole Activity in Dwarf Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hainline, Kevin; Reines, Amy; Greene, Jenny; Stern, Daniel

    2016-08-01

    In order to explore the origin of the relationship between the growth of a galaxy and its central supermassive black hole, evidence must be found for black holes in galaxies at a wide range in masses. Searching for supermassive black holes in dwarf galaxies is especially important as these objects have less complicated merger histories, and they may host black holes that are similar to early proposed ``seed'' black holes. However, this selection is complicated by the fact that star formation in these dwarf galaxies can often mask the optical signatures of supermassive black hole growth and active galactic nucleus (AGN) activity in these objects. The all-sky infrared coverage offered by the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) has been used to great success to select AGNs in more massive galaxies, but great care must be used when using infrared selection techniques on samples of dwarf galaxies. In particular, compact, highly star-forming dwarf galaxies can have infrared colors that may lead them to be erroneously selected as AGNs. In this talk, I will discuss recent work exploring infrared selection of AGN candidates in dwarf galaxies, and present a set of potential IR dwarf-galaxy AGN candidates. I will also outline the importance in these results with respect to future selection of AGNs in low-metallicity galaxies at high-redshift.

  16. Can Direct Collapse Black Holes Launch Gamma-Ray Bursts and Grow to Supermassive Black Holes?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsumoto, Tatsuya; Nakauchi, Daisuke; Ioka, Kunihito; Heger, Alexander; Nakamura, Takashi

    2015-09-01

    The existence of black holes (BHs) of mass ˜ {10}9 {M}⊙ at z≳ 6 is a big puzzle in astrophysics because even optimistic estimates of the accretion time are insufficient for stellar-mass BHs of ˜ 10 {M}⊙ to grow into such supermassive BHs. A resolution of this puzzle might be the direct collapse of supermassive stars with mass M˜ {10}5 {M}⊙ into massive seed BHs. We find that if a jet is launched from the accretion disk around the central BH, the jet can break out of the star because of the structure of the radiation-pressure-dominated envelope. Such ultralong gamma-ray bursts with duration of ˜ {10}4-106 s and flux of 10-11-10-8 erg s-1 cm-2 could be detectable by Swift. We estimate an event rate of ≲ 1 {{yr}}-1. The total explosion energy is ≳1055-{10}56 {erg}. The resulting negative feedback delays the growth of the remnant BH by about 70 {Myr} or evacuates the host galaxy completely.

  17. Proto Supermassive Binary Black Hole Detected in X-rays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-04-01

    An international team of astrophysicists, led by D. Hudson from the University of Bonn and including the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory and the University of Virginia, presents their X-ray detection of a proto supermassive binary black hole. Their results will be published in an upcoming issue of Astronomy & Astrophysics. The image of this proto binary black hole was obtained with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. The two black holes have already been seen in radio images. The new X-ray images provide unique evidence that these two black holes are in the process of forming a binary system; that is, they are gravitationally bound and orbit each other. Chandra X-ray Image of 3C 75 Chandra X-ray Image of 3C 75 The two black holes are located in the nearby galaxy cluster Abell 400. With high-resolution Chandra data, the team was able to spatially resolve the two supermassive black holes (separated by 15") at the centre of the cluster. Each black hole is located at the centre of its respective host galaxy and the host galaxies appear to be merging. It is not, however, just the two host galaxies that are colliding - the whole cluster in which they live is merging into another neighbouring galaxy cluster. Using these new data, the team show that the two black holes are moving through the intracluster medium at the supersonic speed of about 1200 km/s. The wind from such a motion would cause the radio plasma emitted from these two black holes to bend backwards. Although this bending had been observed previously, the cause of it was still being debated. Since the bending of the jets due to this motion is in the same direction, it suggests that the two black holes are travelling along the same path within the cluster and are therefore gravitationally bound. Black Hole Merger Animation Black Hole Merger Animation These two black holes became gravitationally bound when their host galaxies collided. In several million years, the two black holes will probably coalesce causing a

  18. Astrophysical phenomena related to supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pott, Jörg-Uwe

    2006-12-01

    The thesis contains the results of my recent projects in astrophysical research. All projects aim at pushing the limits of our knowledge about the interaction between a galaxy, the fundamental building block of today's universe, and a supermassive black hole (SMBH) at its center. Over the past years a lot of observational evidence has been gathered for the current understanding, that at least a major part of the galaxies with a stellar bulge contain central SMBHs. The typical extragalactic approach consists of searching for the spectroscopic pattern of Keplerian rotation, produced by stars and gas, when orbiting a central dark mass (Kormendy & Richstone 1995). It suggests that a significant fraction of large galaxies host in their very nucleus a SMBH of millions to billions of solar masses (Kormendy & Gebhardt 2001). In the closest case, the center of our Milky Way, the most central stars, which can be imaged, were shown to move on orbits with circulation times of a few decades only, evidencing a mass and compactness of the dark counter part of the Keplerian motion, which can only be explained by a SMBH (Eckart & Genzel 1996; Ghez et al. 2000; Schödel et al. 2002). Having acknowledged the widespread existence of SMBHs the obvious next step is investigating the interaction with their environment. Although the basic property of a SMBH, which is concentrating a huge amount of mass in a ludicrously small volume defined by the Schwarzschild radius, only creates a deep gravitational trough, its existence evokes much more phenomena than simply attracting the surrounding matter. It can trigger or exacerbate star formation via tidal forces (Morris 1993). It shapes the distribution of its surrounding matter to accretion discs, which themselves release gravitational potential energy as radiation, possibly due to magnetic friction (Blandford 1995). The radiation efficiency of such active galactic nuclei (AGN) can become roughly 100 times more efficient than atomic nuclear

  19. VLBA Reveals Closest Pair of Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-05-01

    Astronomers using the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) radio telescope have found the closest pair of supermassive black holes ever discovered in the Universe -- a duo of monsters that together are more than 150 million times more massive than the Sun and closer together than the Earth and the bright star Vega. The VLBA The VLBA CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF "These two giant black holes are only about 24 light-years apart, and that's more than 100 times closer than any pair found before," said Cristina Rodriguez, of the University of New Mexico (UNM) and Simon Bolivar University in Venezuela. Black holes are concentrations of mass with gravity so strong that not even light can escape them. The black hole pair is in the center of a galaxy called 0402+379, some 750 million light-years from Earth. Astronomers presume that each of the supermassive black holes was once at the core of a separate galaxy, then the two galaxies collided, leaving the black holes orbiting each other. The black holes orbit each other about once every 150,000 years, the scientists say. "If two black holes like these were to collide, that event would create the type of strong gravitational waves that physicists hope to detect with instruments now under construction," said Gregory Taylor, of UNM. The physicists will need to wait, though: the astronomers calculate that the black holes in 0402+379 won't collide for about a billion billion years. "There are some things that might speed that up a little bit," Taylor remarked. An earlier VLBA study of 0402+379, an elliptical galaxy, showed the pair of radio-wave-emitting objects near its core. Further studies using the VLBA and the Hobby-Eberly Telescope in Texas, revealed that the pair of objects is indeed a pair of supermassive black holes. "We needed the ultra-sharp radio 'vision' of the VLBA, particularly at the high radio frequencies of 22 and 43 GigaHertz, to get the detail needed to show that those objects are a pair of

  20. Confirming the First Supermassive Black Hole in a Dwarf Starburst Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reines, Amy

    2011-10-01

    In the modern universe, supermassive black holes lie at the heart of most, if not all, galaxies with bulges. However, the birth and growth of the first "seed" black holes, back in the earlier universe, is observationally unconstrained. Reines et al. {2011} have recently discovered a candidate million-solar mass black hole in the bulgeless dwarf starburst galaxy Henize 2-10, offering the first opportunity to study a growing black hole in a nearby galaxy much like those in the infant universe. The case for an accreting black hole in Henize 2-10 is strong {e.g. co-spatial non-thermal radio and hard X-ray point sources}, but not watertight. Our proposal aims to confirm {or refute} the presence of this candidate black hole using STIS optical spectroscopy to trace the kinematics and ionization conditions in its immediate vicinity. Existing HST observations show a marginally resolved H-alpha knot coincident with the radio and X-ray point source, so our primary aim is to detect a compact rotating disk of ionized gas, directly yielding a black hole mass. Our secondary aim is to find evidence for AGN-related emission line signatures at the location of the H-alpha knot, and possibly along a narrow jet-like filament. Confirming the presence of a supermassive black hole in Henize 2-10 with these HST observations has immediate implications for our understanding of the birth and early evolution of the first black holes in the high-redshift universe.

  1. Dynamically important magnetic fields near accreting supermassive black holes.

    PubMed

    Zamaninasab, M; Clausen-Brown, E; Savolainen, T; Tchekhovskoy, A

    2014-06-01

    Accreting supermassive black holes at the centres of active galaxies often produce 'jets'--collimated bipolar outflows of relativistic particles. Magnetic fields probably play a critical role in jet formation and in accretion disk physics. A dynamically important magnetic field was recently found near the Galactic Centre black hole. If this is common and if the field continues to near the black hole event horizon, disk structures will be affected, invalidating assumptions made in standard models. Here we report that jet magnetic field and accretion disk luminosity are tightly correlated over seven orders of magnitude for a sample of 76 radio-loud active galaxies. We conclude that the jet-launching regions of these radio-loud galaxies are threaded by dynamically important fields, which will affect the disk properties. These fields obstruct gas infall, compress the accretion disk vertically, slow down the disk rotation by carrying away its angular momentum in an outflow and determine the directionality of jets.

  2. Observational Constraints on the Nature of the First Supermassive Black Holes Seeds in the Early Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treister, Ezequiel; Schawinski, Kevin; Natarajan, Priyamvada; Weigel, Anna

    2015-08-01

    We constrain the total accreted mass density in supermassive black holes at z>6, as inferred from the integrated X-ray emission in a sample of galaxy candidates selected using observed-frame optical and near-IR dropout techniques. Combining galaxy samples acquired in the Hubble Ultra Deep Field with recent deep Hubble observations of the CANDELS fields and Chandra 4 Msec observations we obtain the most restrictive current constraints on total black hole growth in the early Universe, estimating a mass density <1000M⊙Mpc-3. We further carry out a detailed study of all the individually-detected X-ray sources in the Chandra Deep Field South, finding that none of them is a good candidate to be at z>5.These results place interesting constraints on growth by accretion and imply one or more of the following: only ~20% luminous galaxies at this epoch are seeded with BHs - so seeding is inefficient; most black hole growth at early epochs happens in dusty - as yet undetected - host galaxies and/or in less-massive - also as yet undetected - galaxies; therefore a large fraction of the early black hole buildup is heavily obscured or that either most of the growth is due to radiatively inefficient accretion or due to black hole mergers at these early times. Not seeing a signal from growing black holes in high-redshift galaxies suggests that if their black holes are growing they are doing so in a veiled fashion, or they are simply not growing or perhaps most galaxies do not harbor black holes at their centers at all. These possibilities offer novel insights for high redshift seed formation models.Finally, we present the prospects to constrain the nature of the first black hole seeds in the early Universe using existing and planned space-based facilities.

  3. Light or heavy supermassive black hole seeds: the role of internal rotation in the fate of supermassive stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fiacconi, Davide; Rossi, Elena M.

    2016-10-01

    Supermassive black holes are a key ingredient of galaxy evolution. However, their origin is still highly debated. In one of the leading formation scenarios, a black hole of ˜100 M⊙ results from the collapse of the inner core of a supermassive star (≳ 104 - 5 M⊙), created by the rapid accumulation (≳ 0.1 M⊙ yr-1) of pristine gas at the centre of newly formed galaxies at z ˜ 15. The subsequent evolution is still speculative: the remaining gas in the supermassive star can either directly plunge into the nascent black hole, or part of it can form a central accretion disc, whose luminosity sustains a surrounding, massive, and nearly hydrostatic envelope (a system called a "quasi-star"). To address this point, we consider the effect of rotation on a quasi-star, as angular momentum is inevitably transported towards the galactic nucleus by the accumulating gas. Using a model for the internal redistribution of angular momentum that qualitative matches results from simulations of rotating convective stellar envelopes, we show that quasi-stars with an envelope mass greater than a few 105 M⊙ × black hole mass/100 M⊙)0.82 have highly sub-keplerian gas motion in their core, preventing gas circularisation outside the black hole's horizon. Less massive quasi-stars could form but last for only ≲ 104 years before the accretion luminosity unbinds the envelope, suppressing the black hole growth. We speculate that this might eventually lead to a dual black hole seed population: (i) massive (>104 M⊙) seeds formed in the most massive (>108 M⊙) and rare haloes; (ii) lighter (˜102 M⊙) seeds to be found in less massive and therefore more common haloes.

  4. Never Before Seen: Two Supermassive Black Holes in Same Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2002-11-01

    For the first time, scientists have proof two supermassive black holes exist together in the same galaxy, thanks to data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. These black holes are orbiting each other and will merge several hundred million years from now, to create an even larger black hole resulting in a catastrophic event that will unleash intense radiation and gravitational waves. The Chandra image reveals that the nucleus of an extraordinarily bright galaxy, known as NGC 6240, contains not one, but two giant black holes, actively accreting material from their surroundings. This discovery shows that massive black holes can grow through mergers in the centers of galaxies, and that these enigmatic events will be detectable with future space-borne gravitational wave observatories. "The breakthrough came with Chandra's ability to clearly distinguish the two nuclei, and measure the details of the X-radiation from each nucleus," said Guenther Hasinger, of the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in Germany, a coauthor of an upcoming Astrophysical Journal Letters paper describing the research. "These cosmic fingerprints revealed features characteristic of supermassive black holes -- an excess of high-energy photons from gas swirling around a black hole, and X-rays from fluorescing iron atoms in gas near black holes," he said. Previous X-ray observatories had shown that the central region produces X-rays, while radio, infrared and optical observations had detected two bright nuclei, but the nature of this region remained a mystery. Astronomers did not know the location of the X-ray source, or the nature of the two bright nuclei. "With Chandra, we hoped to determine which one, if either, of the nuclei was an active supermassive black hole," said Stefanie Komossa, also of the Max Planck Institute, lead author of the paper on NGC 6240. "Much to our surprise, we found that both were active black holes!" At a distance of about 400 million light years, NGC 6240

  5. Black hole evolution - I. Supernova-regulated black hole growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubois, Yohan; Volonteri, Marta; Silk, Joseph; Devriendt, Julien; Slyz, Adrianne; Teyssier, Romain

    2015-09-01

    The growth of a supermassive black hole (BH) is determined by how much gas the host galaxy is able to feed it, which in turn is controlled by the cosmic environment, through galaxy mergers and accretion of cosmic flows that time how galaxies obtain their gas, and also by internal processes in the galaxy, such as star formation and feedback from stars and the BH itself. In this paper, we study the growth of a 1012 M⊙ halo at z = 2, which is the progenitor of a group of galaxies at z = 0, and of its central BH by means of a high-resolution zoomed cosmological simulation, the Seth simulation. We study the evolution of the BH driven by the accretion of cold gas in the galaxy, and explore the efficiency of the feedback from supernovae (SNe). For a relatively inefficient energy input from SNe, the BH grows at the Eddington rate from early times, and reaches self-regulation once it is massive enough. We find that at early cosmic times z > 3.5, efficient feedback from SNe forbids the formation of a settled disc as well as the accumulation of dense cold gas in the vicinity of the BH and starves the central compact object. As the galaxy and its halo accumulate mass, they become able to confine the nuclear inflows provided by major mergers and the BH grows at a sustained near-to-Eddington accretion rate. We argue that this mechanism should be ubiquitous amongst low-mass galaxies, corresponding to galaxies with a stellar mass below ≲ 109 M⊙ in our simulations.

  6. ALIGNMENT OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE BINARY ORBITS AND SPINS

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, M. Coleman; Krolik, Julian H.

    2013-09-01

    Recent studies of accretion onto supermassive black hole binaries suggest that much, perhaps most, of the matter eventually accretes onto one hole or the other. If so, then for binaries whose inspiral from {approx}1 pc to {approx}10{sup -3}-10{sup -2} pc is driven by interaction with external gas, both the binary orbital axis and the individual black hole spins can be reoriented by angular momentum exchange with this gas. Here we show that, unless the binary mass ratio is far from unity, the spins of the individual holes align with the binary orbital axis in a time {approx}few-100 times shorter than the binary orbital axis aligns with the angular momentum direction of the incoming circumbinary gas; the spin of the secondary aligns more rapidly than that of the primary by a factor {approx}(m{sub 1}/m{sub 2}){sup 1/2} > 1. Thus the binary acts as a stabilizing agent, so that for gas-driven systems, the black hole spins are highly likely to be aligned (or counteraligned if retrograde accretion is common) with each other and with the binary orbital axis. This alignment can significantly reduce the recoil speed resulting from subsequent black hole merger.

  7. PHYSICS OF COEVOLUTION OF GALAXIES AND SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Cen Renyue

    2012-08-10

    A new physically based model for coevolution of galaxies and supermassive black holes (SMBHs) is presented. The evolutionary track starts with an event that triggers a significant starburst in the central region of a galaxy. In this model, the main SMBH growth takes place in the post-starburst phase, fueled by recycled gas from inner bulge stars in a self-regulated fashion on a timescale that is substantially longer than 100 Myr and at a diminishing Eddington ratio with time. We argue that the SMBH cannot gorge itself during the starburst phase, despite the abundant supply of cold gas, because star formation (SF) is a preferred mode of gas consumption over accretion to the central SMBH in such an environment. We also show that feedback from SF is at least as strong as that from an active galactic nucleus (AGN); thus, if SF is in need of being quenched, AGN feedback generally does not play the primary role. The predicted relation between SMBH mass and bulge mass/velocity dispersion is consistent with observations. A clear prediction is that early-type galaxy hosts of high-Eddington-rate AGNs are expected to be light blue to green in optical color, gradually evolving to the red sequences with decreasing AGN luminosity. A suite of falsifiable predictions and implications with respect to relationships between various types of galaxies, AGNs, and others are made. For those where comparisons to extant observations are possible, the model appears to be in good standing.

  8. Astrophysics of Super-Massive Black Hole Mergers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schnittman, Jeremy D.

    2013-01-01

    We present here an overview of recent work in the subject of astrophysical manifestations of super-massive black hole (SMBH) mergers. This is a field that has been traditionally driven by theoretical work, but in recent years has also generated a great deal of interest and excitement in the observational astronomy community. In particular, the electromagnetic (EM) counterparts to SMBH mergers provide the means to detect and characterize these highly energetic events at cosmological distances, even in the absence of a space-based gravitational-wave observatory. In addition to providing a mechanism for observing SMBH mergers, EM counterparts also give important information about the environments in which these remarkable events take place, thus teaching us about the mechanisms through which galaxies form and evolve symbiotically with their central black holes.

  9. Forming supermassive black holes by accreting dark and baryon matter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Jian; Shen, Yue; Lou, Yu-Qing; Zhang, Shuangnan

    2006-01-01

    Given a large-scale mixture of self-interacting dark matter (SIDM) particles and baryon matter distributed in the early Universe, we advance here a two-phase accretion scenario for forming supermassive black holes (SMBHs) with masses around ~109Msolar at high redshifts z(>~6). The first phase is conceived to involve a rapid quasi-spherical and quasi-steady Bondi accretion of mainly SIDM particles embedded with baryon matter on to seed black holes (BHs) created at redshifts z<~ 30 by the first generation of massive Population III stars; this earlier phase rapidly gives birth to significantly enlarged seed BH masses of during z~ 20-15, where σ0 is the cross-section per unit mass of SIDM particles and Cs is the velocity dispersion in the SIDM halo referred to as an effective `sound speed'. The second phase of BH mass growth is envisaged to proceed primarily via baryon accretion, eventually leading to SMBH masses of MBH~ 109Msolar such SMBHs may form either by z~ 6 for a sustained accretion at the Eddington limit or later at lower z for sub-Eddington mean accretion rates. In between these two phases, there is a transitional yet sustained diffusively limited accretion of SIDM particles which in an eventual steady state would be much lower than the accretion rates of the two main phases. We intend to account for the reported detections of a few SMBHs at early epochs, e.g. Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) 1148+5251 and so forth, without necessarily resorting to either super-Eddington baryon accretion or very frequent BH merging processes. Only extremely massive dark SIDM haloes associated with rare peaks of density fluctuations in the early Universe may harbour such early SMBHs or quasars. Observational consequences are discussed. During the final stage of accumulating a SMBH mass, violent feedback in circumnuclear environs of a galactic nucleus leads to the central bulge formation and gives rise to the familiar empirical MBH-σb correlation inferred for nearby normal

  10. Growth of Primordial Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harada, Tomohiro

    Primordial black holes have important observational implications through Hawking evaporation and gravitational radiation as well as being a candidate for cold dark matter. Those black holes are assumed to have formed in the early universe typically with the mass scale contained within the Hubble horizon at the formation epoch and subsequently accreted mass surrounding them. Numerical relativity simulation shows that primordial black holes of different masses do not accrete much, which contrasts with a simplistic Newtonian argument. We see that primordial black holes larger than the 'super-horizon' primordial black holes have decreasing energy and worm-hole like struture, suggesting the formation through quamtum processes.

  11. Possible consequences of tidal disruption by supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Ks; Dogiel, Vladimir

    2016-07-01

    Stars captured by the supermassive black holes in the galactic centers are common phenomena. Capture events occurred in distant galaxies have been observed by various of X-ray satellites. The capture rate is roughly once every tens to hundreds thousand years for normal galaxies. These capture events should also occur in the past of Milky Way. In this talk we will review some observed high energy phenomena in the galactic centers, which may be the consequences of the stellar capture events including Fermi Bubbles, positron annihilation lines, X-ray emission from Swift 1644+57 etc.

  12. The Direct Collapse of Supermassive Black Hole Seeds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Regan, John A.; Johansson, Peter H.; Wise, John H.

    2016-10-01

    The direct collapse model of supermassive black hole seed formation requires that thegas cools predominantly via atomic hydrogen. To this end we simulate the effect of ananisotropic radiation source on the collapse of a halo at high redshift. The radiationsource is placed at a distance of 3 kpc (physical) from the collapsing object and is setto emit monochromatically in the center of the Lyman-Werner (LW) band. The LW radiationemitted from the high redshift source is followed self-consistently using ray tracingtechniques. Due to self-shielding, a small amount of H2 is able to form at the verycenter of the collapsing halo even under very strong LW radiation. Furthermore, we find thata radiation source, emitting < 1054 (~103 J21) photons per second isrequired to cause the collapse of a clump of M ~ 105 M⊙. The resultingaccretion rate onto the collapsing object is ~ 0.25 M⊙ yr-1.Our results display significant differences, compared to the isotropic radiation field case,in terms of H2 fraction at an equivalent radius. These differences will significantly effectthe dynamics of the collapse. With the inclusion of a strong anisotropic radiation source, thefinal mass of the collapsing object is found to be M ~ 105 M⊙. This is consistentwith predictions for the formation of a supermassive star or quasi-star leading to asupermassive black hole.

  13. Tidal disruption as a probe for supermassive black hole binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Shuo; Liu, Fukun; Berczik, Peter; Spurzem, Rainer

    2016-02-01

    Supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) are the products of frequent galaxy mergers. It is very hard to be detected in quiescent galaxy. By using one million particle direct N-body simulations on special many-core hardware (GPU cluster), we study the dynamical co-evolution of SMBHB and its surrounding stars, specially focusing on the evolution of stellar tidal disruption event (TDE) rates before and after the coalescence of the SMBHB. We find a boosted TDE rate during the merger of the galaxies. After the coalescence of two supermassive black holes (SMBHs), the post-merger SMBH can get a kick velocity due to the anisotropic GW radiations. Our results about the recoiling SMBH, which oscillates around galactic center, show that most of TDEs are contributed by unbound stars when the SMBH passing through galactic center. In addition, the TDE light curve in SMBHB system is significantly different from the curve for single SMBH, which can be used to identify the SMBHB.

  14. Supermassive black holes: Coevolution (or not) of black holes and host galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kormendy, John

    2013-07-01

    Supermassive black holes (BHs) have been found in 75 galaxies by observing spatially resolved dynamics. The Hubble Space Telescope (HST) revolutionized BH work by advancing the subject from its `proof of concept' phase into quantitative studies of BH demographics. Most influential was the discovery of a tight correlation between BH masses M • and the velocity dispersions σ of stars in the host galaxy bulge components at radii where the stars mostly feel each other and not the BH. Together with correlations between M • and bulge luminosity, with the `missing light' that defines galaxy cores, and with numbers of globular clusters, this has led to the conclusion that BHs and bulges coevolve by regulating each other's growth. This simple picture with one set of correlations for all galaxies dominated BH work in the past decade. New results are now replacing the above, simple story with a richer and more plausible picture in which BHs correlate differently with different kinds of galaxy components. BHs with masses of 105-106 M ⊙ live in some bulgeless galaxies. So classical (merger-built) bulges are not necessary equipment for BH formation. On the other hand, while they live in galaxy disks, BHs do not correlate with galaxy disks or with disk-grown pseudobulges. They also have no special correlation with dark matter halos beyond the fact that halo gravity controls galaxy formation. This leads to the suggestion that there are two modes of BH feeding, (1) local, secular and episodic feeding of small BHs in largely bulgeless galaxies that involves too little energy feedback to drive BH-host-galaxy coevolution and (2) global feeding in major galaxy mergers that rapidly grows giant BHs in short-duration events whose energy feedback does affect galaxy formation. After these quasar-like phases, maintenance-mode BH feedback into hot, X-ray-emitting gas continues to have a primarily negative effect in preventing late-time star formation when cold gas or gas-rich galaxies

  15. A Supermassive Black Hole in a Nearby Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2001-03-01

    ISAAC Inspects the Center of Centaurus A Summary The nearby galaxy Centaurus A harbours a supermassive black hole at its centre . Using the ISAAC instrument at the ESO Very Large Telescope (VLT) , an international team of astronomers [1] has peered right through the spectacular dust lane of the peculiar galaxy Centaurus A , located approximately 11 million light-years away. They were able to probe the thin disk of gas that surrounds the very center of this galaxy. The new measurements show that the compact nucleus in the middle weighs more than 200 million solar masses ! This is too much just to be due to normal stars. The astronomers thus conclude the existence of a supermassive black hole lurking at the centre of Centaurus A . PR Photo 08a/01 : Visual image of the centre of Centaurus A . PR Photo 08b/01 : ISAAC spectrum of the centre of Centaurus A . PR Photo 08c/01 : The corresponding rotation curve from which the mass of the black hole was deduced. A well studied galaxy with a hidden center ESO PR Photo 08a/01 ESO PR Photo 08a/01 [Preview - JPEG: 352 x 400 pix - 160k] [Normal - JPEG: 704 x 800 pix - 376k] Caption : PR Photo 08a/01 shows a small area in the direction of the heavily obscured centre of the peculiar radio galaxy Centaurus A , as seen in visual light. It measures about 80 x 80 arcsec 2 , or 4400 x 4400 light-year 2 at the distance of this galaxy, and has been reproduced from exposures made with the FORS2 multi-mode instrument at the 8.2-m VLT KUEYEN telescope at Paranal. The full field may be seen in PR Photo 05b/00. Technical information about this photo is available below. The galaxy Centaurus A (NGC 5128) is one of the most studied objects in the southern sky. The unique appearance of this galaxy was already noticed by the famous British astronomer John Herschel in 1847 who catalogued the southern skies and made a comprehensive list of "nebulae". A fine photo of Centaurus A from the VLT was published last year as PR Photo 05b/00. Herschel could

  16. Circularization of tidally disrupted stars around spinning supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayasaki, Kimitake; Stone, Nicholas; Loeb, Abraham

    2016-10-01

    We study the circularization of tidally disrupted stars on bound orbits around spinning supermassive black holes by performing 3D smoothed particle hydrodynamic simulations with post-Newtonian corrections. Our simulations reveal that debris circularization depends sensitively on the efficiency of radiative cooling. There are two stages in debris circularization if radiative cooling is inefficient: first, the stellar debris streams self-intersect due to relativistic apsidal precession; shocks at the intersection points thermalize orbital energy and the debris forms a geometrically thick, ring-like structure around the black hole. The ring rapidly spreads via viscous diffusion, leading to the formation of a geometrically thick accretion disc. In contrast, if radiative cooling is efficient, the stellar debris circularizes due to self-intersection shocks and forms a geometrically thin ring-like structure. In this case, the dissipated energy can be emitted during debris circularization as a precursor to the subsequent tidal disruption flare. The circularization time-scale is remarkably long in the radiatively efficient cooling case, and is also sensitive to black hole spin. Specifically, Lense-Thirring torques cause dynamically important nodal precession, which significantly delays debris circularization. On the other hand, nodal precession is too slow to produce observable signatures in the radiatively inefficient case. Since the stellar debris is optically thick and its photon diffusion time is likely longer than the time-scale of shock heating, our inefficient cooling scenario is more generally applicable in eccentric tidal disruption events (TDEs). However, in parabolic TDEs for MBH ≳ 2 × 106 M⊙, the spin-sensitive behaviour associated with efficient cooling may be realized.

  17. Feedback-regulated supermassive black hole seed formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dijkstra, Mark; Ferrara, Andrea; Mesinger, Andrei

    2014-08-01

    The nature of the seeds of high-redshift supermassive black holes (SMBHs) is a key question in cosmology. Direct collapse black holes (DCBHs) that form in pristine, atomic-line cooling haloes, illuminated by a Lyman-Werner (LW) UV flux exceeding a critical threshold Jcrit represent an attractive possibility. We investigate when and where these conditions are met during cosmic evolution. For the LW intensity, JLW, we account for departures from the background value in close proximity to star-forming galaxies. For the pristine halo fraction, we account for both (i) supernova-driven outflows and (ii) the inherent pollution from progenitor haloes. We estimate the abundance of DCBH formation sites, nDCBH(z), and find that it increases with cosmic time from nDCBH(z = 20) ˜ 10-12-10-7 cMpc-3 to nDCBH(z = 10) ˜ 10-10-10-5 cMpc-3. Our analysis shows the possible importance of galactic winds, which can suppress the predicted nDCBH by several orders of magnitude, and cause DCBH formation to preferentially occur around the UV-brightest (MUV ˜ -21 ± 1) star-forming galaxies. Our analysis further highlights the dependence of these predictions on (i) the escape fraction of LW photons, (ii) Jcrit, and (iii) the galactic outflow prescription.

  18. The edge of infinity. Supermassive black holes in the universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melia, Fulvio

    In the past, they were recognized as the most destructive force in nature. Now, following a cascade of astonishing discoveries, supermassive black holes have undergone a dramatic shift in paradigm. Astronomers are finding out that these objects may have been critical to the formation of structure in the early universe, spawning bursts of star formation, planets, and even life itself. They may have contributed as much as half of all the radiation produced after the Big Bang, and as many as 200 million of them may now be lurking through the vast expanses of the observable cosmos. In this elegant, non-technical account, Melia conveys for the general reader the excitement generated by the quest to expose what these giant distortions in the fabric of space and time have to say about our origin and ultimate destiny.

  19. Joint Evolution of Spinning Supermassive Black Holes and Rotating Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merritt, David; Vasiliev, Eugene

    2015-01-01

    A rotating supermassive black hole (SBH) interacts with stars in a galactic nucleus via torques due to dragging of inertial frames. If the stars orbit preferentially about an axis that is misaligned with the SBH's spin, the SBH will experience a net torque and its spin vector will precess; individual stellar orbits also precess about the instantaneous SBH spin vector, although at different rates depending on their orbital elements. Solution of the coupled, post-Newtonian equations describing this interaction reveals two evolutionary modes: sustained precession of the SBH; and damped precession, leading to alignment of the SBH spin with the nuclear angular momentum. Beyond a certain radius, stars interact gravitationally with each other in a time shorter than the Lense-Thirring time. Long-term evolution in this case is well described as uniform precession of the SBH about the cluster's rotational axis, with a stochastic contribution due to star-star interactions.

  20. Scaling variability from stellar to supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Done, Chris; Gierliński, Marek

    2005-11-01

    We investigate the correspondence between the variability seen in the stellar and supermassive black holes. Galactic black hole (GBH) power density spectra (PDS) are generally complex, and dependent on spectral state. In the low/hard state the high-frequency rollover in the PDS moves in a way which is not simply related to luminosity. Hence this feature can only be used as an approximate indicator rather than as an accurate tracer of black hole mass in active galactic nuclei (AGNs). The X-ray spectrum in the high/soft state is dominated by the disc in the GBH, which is rather stable. We show that the PDS of the Comptonized tail in GBHs can be much more variable, and that it is this which should be compared to AGNs due to their much lower disc temperature. This bandpass effect removes a problem in interpreting the (often highly variable) narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLS1) galaxies as the counterparts of the high mass accretion rate GBHs. Additionally, we speculate that some NLS1s (e.g. Akn 564) are counterparts of the very high state. The Comptonized tail in this state is also highly variable, but with PDS which can be roughly described as band-limited noise. This shape is similar to that seen in the low/hard state, so merely seeing such band-limited noise in the power spectrum of an AGN does not necessarily imply low luminosity. We also stress that Cygnus X-1, often used for comparison with AGNs, is not a typical black hole system due to its persistent nature. In particular, the shape of its power spectrum in the high/soft state is markedly different from that of other (transient) GBH systems in this state. The fact that the NLS1s NGC 4051 and MCG -6-30-15 do appear to show a power spectrum similar to that of the high/soft state of Cyg X-1 may lend observational support to theoretical speculation that the hydrogen ionization disc instability does not operate in AGNs.

  1. Gravitational waves from supermassive stars collapsing to a supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shibata, Masaru; Sekiguchi, Yuichiro; Uchida, Haruki; Umeda, Hideyuki

    2016-07-01

    We derive the gravitational waveform from the collapse of a rapidly rotating supermassive star (SMS) core leading directly to a seed of a supermassive black hole (SMBH) in axisymmetric numerical-relativity simulations. We find that the peak strain amplitude of gravitational waves emitted during the black hole formation is ≈5 ×10-21 at the frequency f ≈5 mHz for an event at the cosmological redshift z =3 , if the collapsing SMS core is in the hydrogen-burning phase. Such gravitational waves will be detectable by space laser interferometric detectors like eLISA with signal-to-noise ratio ≈10 , if the sensitivity is as high as LISA for f =1 - 10 mHz . The detection of the gravitational wave signal will provide a potential opportunity for testing the direct-collapse scenario for the formation of a seed of SMBHs.

  2. Cosmic string loops as the seeds of super-massive black holes

    SciTech Connect

    Bramberger, Sebastian F.; Brandenberger, Robert H.; Jreidini, Paul; Quintin, Jerome E-mail: rhb@physics.mcgill.ca E-mail: jquintin@physics.mcgill.ca

    2015-06-01

    Recent discoveries of super-massive black holes at high redshifts indicate a possible tension with the standard ΛCDM paradigm of early universe cosmology which has difficulties in explaining the origin of the required nonlinear compact seeds which trigger the formation of these super-massive black holes. Here we show that cosmic string loops which result from a scaling solution of strings formed during a phase transition in the very early universe lead to an additional source of compact seeds. The number density of string-induced seeds dominates at high redshifts and can help trigger the formation of the observed super-massive black holes.

  3. Suppression of star formation in early-type galaxies by feedback from supermassive black holes.

    PubMed

    Schawinski, Kevin; Khochfar, Sadegh; Kaviraj, Sugata; Yi, Sukyoung K; Boselli, Alessandro; Barlow, Tom; Conrow, Tim; Forster, Karl; Friedman, Peter G; Martin, D Chris; Morrissey, Patrick; Neff, Susan; Schiminovich, David; Seibert, Mark; Small, Todd; Wyder, Ted K; Bianchi, Luciana; Donas, Jose; Heckman, Tim; Lee, Young-Wook; Madore, Barry; Milliard, Bruno; Rich, R Michael; Szalay, Alex

    2006-08-24

    Detailed high-resolution observations of the innermost regions of nearby galaxies have revealed the presence of supermassive black holes. These black holes may interact with their host galaxies by means of 'feedback' in the form of energy and material jets; this feedback affects the evolution of the host and gives rise to observed relations between the black hole and the host. Here we report observations of the ultraviolet emissions of massive early-type galaxies. We derive an empirical relation for a critical black-hole mass (as a function of velocity dispersion) above which the outflows from these black holes suppress star formation in their hosts by heating and expelling all available cold gas. Supermassive black holes are negligible in mass compared to their hosts but nevertheless seem to play a critical role in the star formation history of galaxies.

  4. Formation of supermassive black holes through fragmentation of torodial supermassive stars.

    PubMed

    Zink, Burkhard; Stergioulas, Nikolaos; Hawke, Ian; Ott, Christian D; Schnetter, Erik; Müller, Ewald

    2006-04-28

    We investigate new paths to supermassive black hole formation by considering the general relativistic evolution of a differentially rotating polytrope with a toroidal shape. We find that this polytrope is unstable to nonaxisymmetric modes, which leads to a fragmentation into self-gravitating, collapsing components. In the case of one such fragment, we apply a simplified adaptive mesh refinement technique to follow the evolution to the formation of an apparent horizon centered on the fragment. This is the first study of the onset of nonaxisymmetric dynamical instabilities of supermassive stars in full general relativity.

  5. Is There a Size Limit for Supermassive Black Holes?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-09-01

    Supermassive black holes (SMBHs) lurk in the centers of galaxies, and weve measured their masses to range from hundreds of thousands to ten billion solar masses. But is there a maximum mass that these monsters are limited to?Observed MaximumSince the era when the first SMBHs formed, enough time has passed for them to potentially grow to monstrous size, assuming a sufficient supply of fuel.Instead, however, we observe that SMBHs in the centers of the largest local-universe galaxies max out at a top mass of a few times 1010 solar masses. Even more intriguingly, this limit appears to be redshift-independent: we see the same maximum mass of a few 1010 solar masses for SMBHs fueling the brightest of quasars at redshifts up to z~7.Accretion rate (solid) and star formation rate (dashed) vs. radius in a star-forming accretion disk, for several different values of black-hole mass. Though accretion rates start out very high at large radius, they drop to just a few solar masses per year at small radii, because much of the gas is lost to star formation in the disk. [Inayoshi Haiman 2016]So why dont we see any giants larger than around 10 billion solar masses, regardless of where we look? Two astronomers from Columbia University, Kohei Inayoshi (Simons Fellow) and Zoltn Haiman, suggest that there is a limiting mass for SMBHs thats set by small-scale physical processes, rather than large processes like galaxy evolution, star formation history, or background cosmology.Challenges for AccretionGrowing an SMBH thats more massive than 1010 solar masses requires gas to be quickly funneled from the outer regions of the galaxy (hundreds of light-years out), through the large accretion disk that surrounds the black hole, and into the nuclear region (light-year scales): the gas must be brought in at rates as high as 1,000 solar masses per year.Modeling this process, Inayoshi and Haiman demonstrate that at such high rates, the majority of the gas instead gets stuck in the disk, causing

  6. Recoiling supermassive black holes: a search in the nearby universe

    SciTech Connect

    Lena, D.; Robinson, A.; Axon, D. J.; Merritt, D.; Marconi, A.; Capetti, A.; Batcheldor, D.

    2014-11-10

    The coalescence of a binary black hole can be accompanied by a large gravitational recoil due to anisotropic emission of gravitational waves. A recoiling supermassive black hole (SBH) can subsequently undergo long-lived oscillations in the potential well of its host galaxy, suggesting that offset SBHs may be common in the cores of massive ellipticals. We have analyzed Hubble Space Telescope archival images of 14 nearby core ellipticals, finding evidence for small (≲ 10 pc) displacements between the active galactic nucleus (AGN; the location of the SBH) and the center of the galaxy (the mean photocenter) in 10 of them. Excluding objects that may be affected by large-scale isophotal asymmetries, we consider six galaxies to have detected displacements, including M87, where a displacement was previously reported by Batcheldor et al. In individual objects, these displacements can be attributed to residual gravitational recoil oscillations following a major or minor merger within the last few gigayears. For plausible merger rates, however, there is a high probability of larger displacements than those observed, if SBH coalescence took place in these galaxies. Remarkably, the AGN-photocenter displacements are approximately aligned with the radio source axis in four of the six galaxies with displacements, including three of the four having relatively powerful kiloparsec-scale jets. This suggests intrinsic asymmetries in radio jet power as a possible displacement mechanism, although approximate alignments are also expected for gravitational recoil. Orbital motion in SBH binaries and interactions with massive perturbers can produce the observed displacement amplitudes but do not offer a ready explanation for the alignments.

  7. Quasars: a supermassive rotating toroidal black hole interpretation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spivey, R. J.

    2000-08-01

    A supermassive rotating toroidal black hole (TBH) is proposed as the fundamental structure of quasars and other jet-producing active galactic nuclei. Rotating protogalaxies gather matter from the central gaseous region leading to the birth of massive toroidal stars, the internal nuclear reactions of which proceed very rapidly. Once the nuclear fuel is spent, gravitational collapse produces a slender ring-shaped TBH remnant. Transitory electron and neutron degeneracy stabilized collapse phases, although possible, are unlikely owing to the large masses involved thus these events are typically the first supernovae of the host galaxies. Given time, the TBH mass increases through continued accretion by several orders of magnitude, the event horizon swells whilst the central aperture shrinks. The difference in angular velocities between the accreting matter and the TBH induces a magnetic field that is strongest in the region of the central aperture and innermost ergoregion. Owing to the presence of negative energy states when such a gravitational vortex is immersed in an electromagnetic field, circumstances are near ideal for energy extraction via non-thermal radiation including the Penrose process and superradiant scattering. This establishes a self-sustaining mechanism whereby the transport of angular momentum away from the quasar by relativistic bi-directional jets reinforces both the modulating magnetic field and the TBH/accretion disc angular velocity differential. Continued mass-capture by the TBH results in contraction of the central aperture until the TBH topology transitions to being spheroidal, extinguishing quasar behaviour. Similar mechanisms may be operating in microquasars, supernovae and sources of repeating gamma-ray bursts when neutron density or black hole tori arise. Long-term TBH stability seems to require either a negative cosmological constant, a non-stationary space-time resulting from the presence of accreting matter or the intervention of quantum

  8. RECOILING SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN SPIN-FLIP RADIO GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, F. K.; Wang Dong; Chen Xian

    2012-02-20

    Numerical relativity simulations predict that coalescence of supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries leads not only to a spin flip but also to a recoiling of the merger remnant SMBHs. In the literature, X-shaped radio sources are popularly suggested to be candidates for SMBH mergers with spin flip of jet-ejecting SMBHs. Here we investigate the spectral and spatial observational signatures of the recoiling SMBHs in radio sources undergoing black hole spin flip. Our results show that SMBHs in most spin-flip radio sources have mass ratio q {approx}> 0.3 with a minimum possible value q{sub min} {approx_equal} 0.05. For major mergers, the remnant SMBHs can get a kick velocity as high as 2100 km s{sup -1} in the direction within an angle {approx}< 40 Degree-Sign relative to the spin axes of remnant SMBHs, implying that recoiling quasars are biased to be with high Doppler-shifted broad emission lines while recoiling radio galaxies are biased to large apparent spatial off-center displacements. We also calculate the distribution functions of line-of-sight velocity and apparent spatial off-center displacements for spin-flip radio sources with different apparent jet reorientation angles. Our results show that the larger the apparent jet reorientation angle is, the larger the Doppler-shifting recoiling velocity and apparent spatial off-center displacement will be. We investigate the effects of recoiling velocity on the dust torus in spin-flip radio sources and suggest that recoiling of SMBHs would lead to 'dust-poor' active galactic nuclei. Finally, we collect a sample of 19 X-shaped radio objects and for each object give the probability of detecting the predicted signatures of recoiling SMBH.

  9. Triplets of supermassive black holes: astrophysics, gravitational waves and detection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amaro-Seoane, Pau; Sesana, Alberto; Hoffman, Loren; Benacquista, Matthew; Eichhorn, Christoph; Makino, Junichiro; Spurzem, Rainer

    2010-03-01

    Supermassive black holes (SMBHs) found in the centres of many galaxies are understood to play a fundamental, active role in the cosmological structure formation process. In hierarchical formation scenarios, SMBHs are expected to form binaries following the merger of their host galaxies. If these binaries do not coalesce before the merger with a third galaxy, the formation of a black hole triple system is possible. Numerical simulations of the dynamics of triples within galaxy cores exhibit phases of very high eccentricity (as high as e ~ 0.99). During these phases, intense bursts of gravitational radiation can be emitted at orbital periapsis, which produces a gravitational wave signal at frequencies substantially higher than the orbital frequency. The likelihood of detection of these bursts with pulsar timing and the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) is estimated using several population models of SMBHs with masses >rsim 107 Msolar. Assuming that 10 per cent or more of binaries are in triple systems, we find that up to a few dozen of these bursts will produce residuals >1 ns, within the sensitivity range of forthcoming pulsar timing arrays. However, most of such bursts will be washed out in the underlying confusion noise produced by all the other `standard' SMBH binaries emitting in the same frequency window. A detailed data analysis study would be required to assess resolvability of such sources. Implementing a basic resolvability criterion, we find that the chance of catching a resolvable burst at a 1 ns precision level is 2-50 per cent, depending on the adopted SMBH evolution model. On the other hand, the probability of detecting bursts produced by massive binaries (masses >~107Msolar) with LISA is negligible.

  10. Radio Telescopes Provide Key Clue on Black Hole Growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2007-01-01

    -understood processes involving a spinning disk of material being drawn toward the black hole at the disk's center. "An outflow from a black hole can regulate its growth by pushing back on material being drawn toward it. This is an important aspect of black hole development. Our observations offer new and unique information on how this process works for intermediate-mass black holes," Ho said. "Intermediate-mass black holes may have been the starting points for the supermassive black holes that we now see throughout the Universe. By studying this contemporary analog to those earlier objects, we hope to learn how the less-massive ones grew into the more-massive ones," Wrobel explained. The black hole in NGC 4395 was added to a small number of known intermediate-mass black holes in 2005, when a research team led by Brad Peterson of the Ohio State University calculated its mass based on ultraviolet observations. Other ultraviolet and X-ray observations gave tantalizing hints that material might be flowing outward from the black hole. "Fortunately, this object also is detectable by radio telescopes, so we could use very high precision radio observing techniques to make extremely detailed images," Wrobel said. Wrobel and Ho used a technique called Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI), in which multiple radio-telescope antennas are used together to simulate a much larger "virtual telescope," providing extremely great resolving power, or ability to see fine detail. The astronomers used all of NRAO's telescopes in their coordinated VLBI array, including the continent-wide Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA), the 27-antenna Very Large Array (VLA) in New Mexico, and the giant Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia. The combination of antennas spread far apart as well as the large amount of signal-collecting area in this system allowed the scientists to make a detailed image of the faint radio emission caused by fast-moving electrons in the suspected outflow from the black

  11. Low-mass black holes as the remnants of primordial black hole formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greene, Jenny E.

    2012-12-01

    Bridging the gap between the approximately ten solar mass `stellar mass' black holes and the `supermassive' black holes of millions to billions of solar masses are the elusive `intermediate-mass' black holes. Their discovery is key to understanding whether supermassive black holes can grow from stellar-mass black holes or whether a more exotic process accelerated their growth soon after the Big Bang. Currently, tentative evidence suggests that the progenitors of supermassive black holes were formed as ~104-105Msolar black holes via the direct collapse of gas. Ongoing searches for intermediate-mass black holes at galaxy centres will help shed light on this formation mechanism.

  12. Searching with the Large Binocular Telescope for Accreting Supermassive Black Holes in Bulgeless Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferguson, Jason; Constantin, Anca; Satyapal, Shobita; Rothberg, Barry

    2016-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that supermassive black holes are created and evolve in bulgeless galaxies, revealing pathways for merger free, secular growth. Constraints on the fraction of bulgeless galaxies that host an AGN remain, however, extremely limited. Following the recent discovery of a large population of bulgeless galaxies with red mid-infrared colors, that are highly suggestive of heated dust by powerful accreting massive black holes, we have employed the Large Binocular Telescope to investigate the near-IR spectra of six of these systems. We present here the data and measurements of near-infrared hydrogen molecular and recombination lines. We find no evidence for broad components of the Paschen Alpha emission lines, suggesting the AGNs are either too weak or too absorbed to be detected. Based on new estimates of extinction and comparisons with optical measurements we discuss the likelihood of these systems being heavily obscured AGN or galactic nuclei with vigorous, yet dust embedded star formation.

  13. Coevolution (Or Not) of Supermassive Black Holes and Host Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kormendy, John; Ho, Luis C.

    2013-08-01

    Supermassive black holes (BHs) have been found in 85 galaxies by dynamical modeling of spatially resolved kinematics. The Hubble Space Telescope revolutionized BH research by advancing the subject from its proof-of-concept phase into quantitative studies of BH demographics. Most influential was the discovery of a tight correlation between BH mass [Formula: see text] and the velocity dispersion σ of the bulge component of the host galaxy. Together with similar correlations with bulge luminosity and mass, this led to the widespread belief that BHs and bulges coevolve by regulating each other's growth. Conclusions based on one set of correlations from [Formula: see text] in brightest cluster ellipticals to [Formula: see text] in the smallest galaxies dominated BH work for more than a decade. New results are now replacing this simple story with a richer and more plausible picture in which BHs correlate differently with different galaxy components. A reasonable aim is to use this progress to refine our understanding of BH-galaxy coevolution. BHs with masses of 105-106M⊙ are found in many bulgeless galaxies. Therefore, classical (elliptical-galaxy-like) bulges are not necessary for BH formation. On the other hand, although they live in galaxy disks, BHs do not correlate with galaxy disks. Also, any [Formula: see text] correlations with the properties of disk-grown pseudobulges and dark matter halos are weak enough to imply no close coevolution. The above and other correlations of host-galaxy parameters with each other and with [Formula: see text] suggest that there are four regimes of BH feedback. (1) Local, secular, episodic, and stochastic feeding of small BHs in largely bulgeless galaxies involves too little energy to result in coevolution. (2) Global feeding in major, wet galaxy mergers rapidly grows giant BHs in short-duration, quasar-like events whose energy feedback does affect galaxy evolution. The resulting hosts are classical bulges and coreless

  14. Astronomers Dissect a Supermassive Black Hole with Natural Magnifying Glasses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2008-12-01

    Combining a double natural "magnifying glass" with the power of ESO's Very Large Telescope, astronomers have scrutinised the inner parts of the disc around a supermassive black hole 10 billion light-years away. They were able to study the disc with a level of detail a thousand times better than that of the best telescopes in the world, providing the first observational confirmation of the prevalent theoretical models of such discs. Omega Centauri ESO PR Photo 47a/08 The Einstein Cross The team of astronomers from Europe and the US studied the "Einstein Cross", a famous cosmic mirage. This cross-shaped configuration consists of four images of a single very distant source. The multiple images are a result of gravitational lensing by a foreground galaxy, an effect that was predicted by Albert Einstein as a consequence of his theory of general relativity. The light source in the Einstein Cross is a quasar approximately ten billion light-years away, whereas the foreground lensing galaxy is ten times closer. The light from the quasar is bent in its path and magnified by the gravitational field of the lensing galaxy. This magnification effect, known as "macrolensing", in which a galaxy plays the role of a cosmic magnifying glass or a natural telescope, proves very useful in astronomy as it allows us to observe distant objects that would otherwise be too faint to explore using currently available telescopes. "The combination of this natural magnification with the use of a big telescope provides us with the sharpest details ever obtained," explains Frédéric Courbin, leader of the programme studying the Einstein Cross with ESO's Very Large Telescope. In addition to macrolensing by the galaxy, stars in the lensing galaxy act as secondary lenses to produce an additional magnification. This secondary magnification is based on the same principle as macrolensing, but on a smaller scale, and since stars are much smaller than galaxies, is known as "microlensing". As the stars are

  15. Uncovering Binary Supermassive Black Holes in Merging Galaxy Pairs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNulty, Paul; Satyapal, Shobita; Ellison, Sara L.; Secrest, Nathan; Gliozzi, Mario; Rothberg, Barry

    2016-01-01

    It is now well known that virtually all galaxies host a central supermassive black hole (SMBH) and that galaxy interactions are ubiquitous. Theory predicts these interactions would funnel gas toward the central regions of galaxies, potentially triggering gas accretion onto the SMBH, causing them to appear as binary active galactic nuclei (AGN). However, despite decades of searching and strong theoretical reasons that they should exist, observationally confirmed cases of binary AGNs are extremely rare, and most have been discovered serendipitously. Since galaxy mergers are likely to be characterized by dusty environments, it is possible that the optical signatures of a significant number of binary AGNs are obscured. Observations from the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) may hold the key for increasing the rate of discovery of binary AGN in late-stage mergers. Starting with a sample of ~4,000 galaxy pairs, we searched for mid-IR signatures of binary AGNs. In this poster, we report on the detection frequency of binary AGNs identified through mid-infrared observations and explore its dependence on merger stage.

  16. Toward Precision Supermassive Black Hole Masses Using Megamaser Disks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van den Bosch, Remco C. E.; Greene, Jenny E.; Braatz, James A.; Constantin, Anca; Kuo, Cheng-Yu

    2016-03-01

    Megamaser disks provide the most precise and accurate extragalactic supermassive black hole (BH) masses. Here we describe a search for megamasers in nearby galaxies using the Green Bank Telescope (GBT). We focus on galaxies where we believe that we can resolve the gravitational sphere of influence of the BH and derive a stellar or gas dynamical measurement with optical or NIR observations. Since there are only a handful of super massive BHs that have direct BH mass measurements from more than one method, even a single galaxy with a megamaser disk and a stellar dynamical BH mass would provide necessary checks on the stellar dynamical methods. We targeted 87 objects from the Hobby-Eberly Telescope Massive Galaxy Survey, and detected no new maser disks. Most of the targeted objects are elliptical galaxies with typical stellar velocity dispersions of 250 km s-1 and distances within 130 Mpc. We discuss the implications of our non-detections, whether they imply a threshold X-ray luminosity required for masing, or possibly reflect the difficulty of maintaining a masing disk around much more massive (≳ {10}8 {M}⊙ ) BHs at a low Eddington ratio. Given the power of maser disks for probing BH accretion and demographics, we suggest that future maser searches should endeavour to remove remaining sample biases, in order to sort out the importance of these covariant effects.

  17. Concurrent Supermassive Black Hole and Galazy Growth: Linking Environment and Nuclear Activity in Zeta Equals 2.23 H Alpha Emitters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lehmer, B. D.; Lucy, A. B.; Alexander, D. M.; Best, P. N.; Geach, J. E.; Harrison, C. M.; Hornschemeier, A. E.; Matsuda, Y.; Mullaney, J. R.; Smail, Ian; Sobral, D.; Swinbank, A. M.

    2013-01-01

    We present results from an approximately equal 100 ks Chandra observation of the 2QZ Cluster 1004+00 structure at z = 2.23 (hereafter 2QZ Clus). 2QZ Clus was originally identified as an overdensity of four optically-selected QSOs at z = 2.23 within a 15 × 15 arcmin square region. Narrow-band imaging in the near-IR (within the K band) revealed that the structure contains an additional overdensity of 22 z = 2.23 H alpha-emitting galaxies (HAEs), resulting in 23 unique z = 2.23 HAEs/QSOs (22 within the Chandra field of view). Our Chandra observations reveal that three HAEs in addition to the four QSOs harbor powerfully accreting supermassive black holes (SMBHs), with 2-10 keV luminosities of approximately equal (8-60) × 10(exp 43) erg s(exp-1) and X-ray spectral slopes consistent with unobscured active galactic nucleus (AGN). Using a large comparison sample of 210 z = 2.23 HAEs in the Chandra-COSMOS field (C-COSMOS), we find suggestive evidence that the AGN fraction increases with local HAE galaxy density. The 2QZ Clus HAEs reside in a moderately overdense environment (a factor of approximately equal 2 times over the field), and after excluding optically-selected QSOs, we find that the AGN fraction is a factor of approximately equal 3.5(+3.8/ -2.2) times higher than C-COSMOS HAEs in similar environments. Using stacking analyses of the Chandra data and Herschel SPIRE observations at 250micrometers, we respectively estimate mean SMBH accretion rates ( M(BH)) and star formation rates (SFRs) for the 2QZ Clus and C-COSMOS samples. We find that the mean 2QZ Clus HAE stacked X-ray luminosity is QSO-like (L(2-10 keV) approximately equal [6-10] × 10(exp 43) erg s(exp -1)), and the implied M(BH)/SFR approximately equal (1.6-3.2) × 10(exp -3) is broadly consistent with the local M(BH)/Stellar Mass relation and z approximately equal 2 X-ray selected AGN. In contrast, the C-COSMOS HAEs are on average an order of magnitude less X-ray luminous and have M(BH)/SFR approximately

  18. CONCURRENT SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE AND GALAXY GROWTH: LINKING ENVIRONMENT AND NUCLEAR ACTIVITY IN z = 2.23 H{alpha} EMITTERS

    SciTech Connect

    Lehmer, B. D.; Hornschemeier, A. E.; Lucy, A. B.; Alexander, D. M.; Harrison, C. M.; Mullaney, J. R.; Swinbank, A. M.; Best, P. N.; Geach, J. E.; Matsuda, Y.; Smail, Ian; Sobral, D.

    2013-03-10

    We present results from a Almost-Equal-To 100 ks Chandra observation of the 2QZ Cluster 1004+00 structure at z = 2.23 (hereafter 2QZ Clus). 2QZ Clus was originally identified as an overdensity of four optically-selected QSOs at z = 2.23 within a 15 Multiplication-Sign 15 arcmin{sup 2} region. Narrow-band imaging in the near-IR (within the K band) revealed that the structure contains an additional overdensity of 22 z = 2.23 H{alpha}-emitting galaxies (HAEs), resulting in 23 unique z = 2.23 HAEs/QSOs (22 within the Chandra field of view). Our Chandra observations reveal that three HAEs in addition to the four QSOs harbor powerfully accreting supermassive black holes (SMBHs), with 2-10 keV luminosities of Almost-Equal-To (8-60) Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 43} erg s{sup -1} and X-ray spectral slopes consistent with unobscured active galactic nucleus (AGN). Using a large comparison sample of 210 z = 2.23 HAEs in the Chandra-COSMOS field (C-COSMOS), we find suggestive evidence that the AGN fraction increases with local HAE galaxy density. The 2QZ Clus HAEs reside in a moderately overdense environment (a factor of Almost-Equal-To 2 times over the field), and after excluding optically-selected QSOs, we find that the AGN fraction is a factor of Almost-Equal-To 3.5{sup +3.8}{sub -2.2} times higher than C-COSMOS HAEs in similar environments. Using stacking analyses of the Chandra data and Herschel SPIRE observations at 250 {mu}m, we respectively estimate mean SMBH accretion rates ( M-dot{sub BH}) and star formation rates (SFRs) for the 2QZ Clus and C-COSMOS samples. We find that the mean 2QZ Clus HAE stacked X-ray luminosity is QSO-like (L{sub 2-10{sub keV}} Almost-Equal-To [6-10] Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 43} erg s{sup -1}), and the implied M-dot{sub BH}/SFR Almost-Equal-To (1.6-3.2) Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -3} is broadly consistent with the local M{sub BH}/M{sub *} relation and z Almost-Equal-To 2 X-ray selected AGN. In contrast, the C-COSMOS HAEs are on average an order

  19. The coevolution of galaxies and supermassive black holes: a local perspective.

    PubMed

    Heckman, Timothy M; Kauffmann, Guinevere

    2011-07-01

    One of the most fascinating discoveries in the past decade was that galaxies typically contain a centrally located black hole with a mass that is millions or even billions of times that of the Sun. There is now compelling evidence that we cannot understand how galaxies formed and evolved without understanding the life cycles of these supermassive black holes (and vice versa). We summarize the current understanding of this coevolution of galaxies and supermassive black holes (based largely on observations of the local, present-day universe) and describe prospects for the future.

  20. Observing the dynamics of supermassive black hole binaries with pulsar timing arrays.

    PubMed

    Mingarelli, C M F; Grover, K; Sidery, T; Smith, R J E; Vecchio, A

    2012-08-24

    Pulsar timing arrays are a prime tool to study unexplored astrophysical regimes with gravitational waves. Here, we show that the detection of gravitational radiation from individually resolvable supermassive black hole binary systems can yield direct information about the masses and spins of the black holes, provided that the gravitational-wave-induced timing fluctuations both at the pulsar and at Earth are detected. This in turn provides a map of the nonlinear dynamics of the gravitational field and a new avenue to tackle open problems in astrophysics connected to the formation and evolution of supermassive black holes. We discuss the potential, the challenges, and the limitations of these observations.

  1. Formation and coalescence of cosmological supermassive-black-hole binaries in supermassive-star collapse.

    PubMed

    Reisswig, C; Ott, C D; Abdikamalov, E; Haas, R; Mösta, P; Schnetter, E

    2013-10-11

    We study the collapse of rapidly rotating supermassive stars that may have formed in the early Universe. By self-consistently simulating the dynamics from the onset of collapse using three-dimensional general-relativistic hydrodynamics with fully dynamical spacetime evolution, we show that seed perturbations in the progenitor can lead to the formation of a system of two high-spin supermassive black holes, which inspiral and merge under the emission of powerful gravitational radiation that could be observed at redshifts z is approximately equal or > to 10 with the DECIGO or Big Bang Observer gravitational-wave observatories, assuming supermassive stars in the mass range 10(4)-10(6)M[symbol: see text]. The remnant is rapidly spinning with dimensionless spin a*=0.9. The surrounding accretion disk contains ~10% of the initial mass. PMID:24160586

  2. Music from the heavens - Gravitational waves from supermassive black hole mergers in the EAGLE simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salcido, Jaime; Bower, Richard G.; Theuns, Tom; McAlpine, Stuart; Schaller, Matthieu; Crain, Robert A.; Schaye, Joop; Regan, John

    2016-08-01

    We estimate the expected event rate of gravitational wave signals from mergers of supermassive black holes that could be resolved by a space-based interferometer, such as the Evolved Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (eLISA), utilising the reference cosmological hydrodynamical simulation from the EAGLE suite. These simulations assume a ΛCDM cosmogony with state-of-the-art subgrid models for radiative cooling, star formation, stellar mass loss, and feedback from stars and accreting black holes. They have been shown to reproduce the observed galaxy population with unprecedented fidelity. We combine the merger rates of supermassive black holes in EAGLE with the latest phenomenological waveform models to calculate the gravitational waves signals from the intrinsic parameters of the merging black holes. The EAGLE models predict ˜2 detections per year by a gravitational wave detector such as eLISA. We find that these signals are largely dominated by mergers between seed mass black holes merging at redshifts between z ˜ 2 and z ˜ 1. In order to investigate the dependence on the assumed black hole seed mass, we introduce an additional model with a black hole seed mass an order of magnitude smaller than in our reference model. We also consider a variation of the reference model where a prescription for the expected delays in the black hole merger timescale has been included after their host galaxies merge. We find that the merger rate is similar in all models, but that the initial black hole seed mass could be distinguished through their detected gravitational waveforms. Hence, the characteristic gravitational wave signals detected by eLISA will provide profound insight into the origin of supermassive black holes and the initial mass distribution of black hole seeds.

  3. Music from the heavens - gravitational waves from supermassive black hole mergers in the EAGLE simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salcido, Jaime; Bower, Richard G.; Theuns, Tom; McAlpine, Stuart; Schaller, Matthieu; Crain, Robert A.; Schaye, Joop; Regan, John

    2016-08-01

    We estimate the expected event rate of gravitational wave signals from mergers of supermassive black holes that could be resolved by a space-based interferometer, such as the Evolved Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (eLISA), utilizing the reference cosmological hydrodynamical simulation from the EAGLE suite. These simulations assume a Lambda cold dark matter cosmogony with state-of-the-art subgrid models for radiative cooling, star formation, stellar mass loss, and feedback from stars and accreting black holes. They have been shown to reproduce the observed galaxy population with unprecedented fidelity. We combine the merger rates of supermassive black holes in EAGLE with the latest phenomenological waveform models to calculate the gravitational waves signals from the intrinsic parameters of the merging black holes. The EAGLE models predict ˜2 detections per year by a gravitational wave detector such as eLISA. We find that these signals are largely dominated by mergers between seed mass black holes merging at redshifts between z ˜ 2 and z ˜ 1. In order to investigate the dependence on the assumed black hole seed mass, we introduce an additional model with a black hole seed mass an order of magnitude smaller than in our reference model. We also consider a variation of the reference model where a prescription for the expected delays in the black hole merger time-scale has been included after their host galaxies merge. We find that the merger rate is similar in all models, but that the initial black hole seed mass could be distinguished through their detected gravitational waveforms. Hence, the characteristic gravitational wave signals detected by eLISA will provide profound insight into the origin of supermassive black holes and the initial mass distribution of black hole seeds.

  4. Spin evolution of supermassive black holes and galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merritt, David; Vasiliev, Eugene

    2012-11-01

    The spin angular momentum S of a supermassive black hole (SBH) precesses due to torques from orbiting stars, and the stellar orbits precess due to dragging of inertial frames by the spinning hole. We solve the coupled post-Newtonian equations describing the joint evolution of S and the stellar angular momenta Lj, j=1…N in spherical, rotating nuclear star clusters. In the absence of gravitational interactions between the stars, two evolutionary modes are found: (1) nearly uniform precession of S about the total angular momentum vector of the system and (2) damped precession, leading, in less than one precessional period, to alignment of S with the angular momentum of the rotating cluster. Beyond a certain distance from the SBH, the time scale for angular momentum changes due to gravitational encounters between the stars is shorter than spin-orbit precession times. We present a model, based on the Ornstein-Uhlenbeck equation, for the stochastic evolution of star clusters due to gravitational encounters and use it to evaluate the evolution of S in nuclei where changes in the Lj are due to frame dragging close to the SBH and to encounters farther out. Long-term evolution in this case is well described as uniform precession of the SBH about the cluster’s rotational axis, with an increasingly important stochastic contribution when SBH masses are small. Spin precessional periods are predicted to be strongly dependent on nuclear properties, but typical values are ˜107-108yr for low-mass SBHs in dense nuclei, ˜108-1010yr for SBH masses ˜108M⊙, and ˜1010-1011yr for the most massive SBHs. We compare the evolution of SBH spins in stellar nuclei to the case of torquing by an inclined, gaseous accretion disk.

  5. The light up and early evolution of high redshift Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Comastri, Andrea; Brusa, Marcella; Aird, James; Lanzuisi, Giorgio

    2016-07-01

    The known AGN population at z > 6 is made by luminous optical QSO hosting Supermassive Black Holes (M > 10 ^{9}solar masses), likely to represent the tip of the iceberg of the luminosity and mass function. According to theoretical models for structure formation, Massive Black Holes (M _{BH} 10^{4-7} solar masses) are predicted to be abundant in the early Universe (z > 6). The majority of these lower luminosity objects are expected to be obscured and severely underepresented in current optical near-infrared surveys. The detection of such a population would provide unique constraints on the Massive Black Holes formation mechanism and subsequent growth and is within the capabilities of deep and large area ATHENA surveys. After a summary of the state of the art of present deep XMM and Chandra surveys, at z >3-6 also mentioning the expectations for the forthcoming eROSITA all sky survey; I will present the observational strategy of future multi-cone ATHENA Wide Field Imager (WFI) surveys and the expected breakthroughs in the determination of the luminosity function and its evolution at high (> 4) and very high (>6) redshifts.

  6. Direct formation of supermassive black holes via multi-scale gas inflows in galaxy mergers.

    PubMed

    Mayer, L; Kazantzidis, S; Escala, A; Callegari, S

    2010-08-26

    Observations of distant quasars indicate that supermassive black holes of billions of solar masses already existed less than a billion years after the Big Bang. Models in which the 'seeds' of such black holes form by the collapse of primordial metal-free stars cannot explain the rapid appearance of these supermassive black holes because gas accretion is not sufficiently efficient. Alternatively, these black holes may form by direct collapse of gas within isolated protogalaxies, but current models require idealized conditions, such as metal-free gas, to prevent cooling and star formation from consuming the gas reservoir. Here we report simulations showing that mergers between massive protogalaxies naturally produce the conditions for direct collapse into a supermassive black hole with no need to suppress cooling and star formation. Merger-driven gas inflows give rise to an unstable, massive nuclear gas disk of a few billion solar masses, which funnels more than 10(8) solar masses of gas to a sub-parsec-scale gas cloud in only 100,000 years. The cloud undergoes gravitational collapse, which eventually leads to the formation of a massive black hole. The black hole can subsequently grow to a billion solar masses on timescales of about 10(8) years by accreting gas from the surrounding disk.

  7. Energy input from quasars regulates the growth and activity of black holes and their host galaxies.

    PubMed

    Di Matteo, Tiziana; Springel, Volker; Hernquist, Lars

    2005-02-10

    In the early Universe, while galaxies were still forming, black holes as massive as a billion solar masses powered quasars. Supermassive black holes are found at the centres of most galaxies today, where their masses are related to the velocity dispersions of stars in their host galaxies and hence to the mass of the central bulge of the galaxy. This suggests a link between the growth of the black holes and their host galaxies, which has indeed been assumed for a number of years. But the origin of the observed relation between black hole mass and stellar velocity dispersion, and its connection with the evolution of galaxies, have remained unclear. Here we report simulations that simultaneously follow star formation and the growth of black holes during galaxy-galaxy collisions. We find that, in addition to generating a burst of star formation, a merger leads to strong inflows that feed gas to the supermassive black hole and thereby power the quasar. The energy released by the quasar expels enough gas to quench both star formation and further black hole growth. This determines the lifetime of the quasar phase (approaching 100 million years) and explains the relationship between the black hole mass and the stellar velocity dispersion.

  8. Megaparsec relativistic jets launched from an accreting supermassive black hole in an extreme spiral galaxy

    SciTech Connect

    Bagchi, Joydeep; Vivek, M.; Srianand, Raghunathan; Gopal-Krishna; Vikram, Vinu; Hota, Ananda; Biju, K. G.; Sirothia, S. K.; Jacob, Joe

    2014-06-20

    The radio galaxy phenomenon is directly connected to mass-accreting, spinning supermassive black holes found in the active galactic nuclei. It is still unclear how the collimated jets of relativistic plasma on hundreds to thousands of kiloparsec scales form and why they are nearly always launched from the nuclei of bulge-dominated elliptical galaxies and not flat spirals. Here we present the discovery of the giant radio source J2345–0449 (z = 0.0755), a clear and extremely rare counterexample where relativistic jets are ejected from a luminous and massive spiral galaxy on a scale of ∼1.6 Mpc, the largest known so far. Extreme physical properties observed for this bulgeless spiral host, such as its high optical and infrared luminosity, large dynamical mass, rapid disk rotation, and episodic jet activity, are possibly the results of its unusual formation history, which has also assembled, via gas accretion from a disk, its central black hole of mass >2 × 10{sup 8} M {sub ☉}. The very high mid-IR luminosity of the galaxy suggests that it is actively forming stars and still building a massive disk. We argue that the launch of these powerful jets is facilitated by an advection-dominated, magnetized accretion flow at a low Eddington rate onto this unusually massive (for a bulgeless disk galaxy) and possibly fast spinning central black hole. Therefore, J2345–0449 is an extremely rare, unusual galactic system whose properties challenge the standard paradigms for black hole growth and the formation of relativistic jets in disk galaxies. Thus, it provides fundamental insight into accretion disk-relativistic jet coupling processes.

  9. Understanding the build-up of supermassive black holes and galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrera, Francisco; Ueda, Yoshihiro; Georgakakis, Antonis

    2016-07-01

    One of the main open questions in modern Astrophysics is understanding the coupled growth of supermassive black holes by accretion and their host galaxies via star formation, from their peak at redshifts z~ 1-4 to the present time. The generic scenario proposed involves an early phase of intense black hole growth that takes place behind large obscuring columns of inflowing dust and gas clouds. It is postulated that this is followed by a blow-out stage during which some form of AGN feedback controls the fate of the interstellar medium and hence, the evolution of the galaxy. X-rays are essential for testing this scenario as they uniquely probe AGN at both the early heavily obscured stage and the later blow-out phase. X-ray spectral analysis can identify the smoking gun evidence of heavily obscured black hole growth (e.g. intense iron Kalpha line). It therefore provides the most robust method for compiling clean samples of deeply shrouded AGN with well-defined selection functions and unbiased determinations of their intrinsic properties (accretion luminosity, obscuring column). X-rays are also the best window for studying in detail AGN feedback. This process ultimately originates in the innermost regions close to the supermassive black hole and is dominated, in terms of energy and mass flux, by highly ionisedmaterial that remains invisible at other wavelengths. The most important epoch for investigating the relation between AGN and galaxies is the redshift range z~1-4, when most black holes and stars we see in the present-day Universe were put in place. Unfortunately, exhaustive efforts with current high-energy telescopes only scrape the tip of the iceberg of the most obscured AGN population. Moreover, Xray studies of the incidence, nature and energetics of AGN feedback are limited to the local Universe. The Athena observatory will provide the technological leap required for a breakthrough in our understanding of AGN and galaxy evolution at the heyday of the Universe

  10. Black holes

    PubMed Central

    Brügmann, B.; Ghez, A. M.; Greiner, J.

    2001-01-01

    Recent progress in black hole research is illustrated by three examples. We discuss the observational challenges that were met to show that a supermassive black hole exists at the center of our galaxy. Stellar-size black holes have been studied in x-ray binaries and microquasars. Finally, numerical simulations have become possible for the merger of black hole binaries. PMID:11553801

  11. Constraints on individual supermassive black hole binaries from pulsar timing array limits on continuous gravitational waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schutz, Katelin; Ma, Chung-Pei

    2016-06-01

    Pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) are placing increasingly stringent constraints on the strain amplitude of continuous gravitational waves emitted by supermassive black hole binaries on subparsec scales. In this paper, we incorporate independent information about the dynamical masses Mbh of supermassive black holes in specific galaxies at known distances and use this additional information to further constrain whether or not those galaxies could host a detectable supermassive black hole binary. We estimate the strain amplitudes from individual binaries as a function of binary mass ratio for two samples of nearby galaxies: (1) those with direct dynamical measurements of Mbh in the literature, and (2) the 116 most massive early-type galaxies (and thus likely hosts of the most massive black holes) within 108 Mpc from the MASSIVE Survey. Our exploratory analysis shows that the current PTA upper limits on continuous waves (as a function of angular position in the sky) can already constrain the mass ratios of hypothetical black hole binaries in many galaxies in our samples. The constraints are stronger for galaxies with larger Mbh and at smaller distances. For the black holes with Mbh ≳ 5 × 109 M⊙ at the centres of NGC 1600, NGC 4889, NGC 4486 (M87), and NGC 4649 (M60), any binary companion in orbit within the PTA frequency bands would have to have a mass ratio of a few per cent or less.

  12. UNLEASHING POSITIVE FEEDBACK: LINKING THE RATES OF STAR FORMATION, SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE ACCRETION, AND OUTFLOWS IN DISTANT GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Silk, Joseph

    2013-08-01

    Pressure-regulated star formation is a simple variant on the usual supernova-regulated star formation efficiency that controls the global star formation rate as a function of cold gas content in star-forming galaxies, and accounts for the Schmidt-Kennicutt law in both nearby and distant galaxies. Inclusion of active galactic nucleus (AGN) induced pressure, by jets and/or winds that flow back onto a gas-rich disk, can lead, under some circumstances, to significantly enhanced star formation rates, especially at high redshift and most likely followed by the more widely accepted phase of star formation quenching. Simple expressions are derived that relate supermassive black hole growth, star formation, and outflow rates. The ratios of black hole to spheroid mass and of both black hole accretion and outflow rates to star formation rate are predicted as a function of time. I suggest various tests of the AGN-triggered star formation hypothesis.

  13. General Relativistic Simulations of Magnetized Plasmas around Merging Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giacomazzo, Bruno; Baker, John; Miller, M. Coleman; Reynolds, Christopher; van Meter, James

    2012-03-01

    Coalescing supermassive black hole binaries are produced by the mergers of galaxies and they are among the most powerful sources of gravitational waves that can be detected by space gravitational observatories. In many cases it is believed that the merger of supermassive black holes may happen in presence of matter and magnetic fields and in this case the gravitational wave signal may be accompanied by an electro-magnetic counterpart. We present the first general relativistic simulations of a magnetized plasma around merging supermassive black holes using the general relativistic magnetohydrodynamic code Whisky. By considering different magnetic field strengths, going from non-magnetically dominated to magnetically dominated regimes, we explore how magnetic fields affect the dynamics of the plasma and the possible emission of electromagnetic signals.

  14. Tidal disruption of a star by a supermassive black hole

    SciTech Connect

    Laguna, P.; Miller, W.A.; Zurek, W.H.

    1991-01-01

    The analysis of stars in galactic nuclei that are captured and tidally disrupted by a black hole of mass > 10{sup 6} M{sub {circle dot}} requires the inclusion of general relativistic effects. We present the first numerical study of tidal breakup of a 1M{sub {circle dot}} main sequence star by a 10{sup 7} M{sub {circle dot}} black hole. We use a smoothed particle code to solve the hydrodynamic equations for a relativistic fluid in a static curved spacetime geometry to analyze, among other things, the fraction of the debris captured by the hole and the velocity of fragments escaping the hole.

  15. What drives the growth of black holes?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexander, D. M.; Hickox, R. C.

    2012-06-01

    Massive black holes (BHs) are at once exotic and yet ubiquitous, residing at the centers of massive galaxies in the local Universe. Recent years have seen remarkable advances in our understanding of how these BHs form and grow over cosmic time, during which they are revealed as Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN). However, despite decades of research, we still lack a coherent picture of the physical drivers of BH growth, the connection between the growth of BHs and their host galaxies, the role of large-scale environment on the fueling of BHs, and the impact of BH-driven outflows on the growth of galaxies. In this paper we review our progress in addressing these key issues, motivated by the science presented at the "What drives the growth of black holes?" workshop held at Durham on 26-29th July 2010, and discuss how these questions may be tackled with current and future facilities.

  16. Coevolution of Supermassive Black Holes and Galaxies across cosmic times

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aversa, Rossella

    2015-10-01

    Understanding how supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and galaxies coevolve within their host dark matter (DM) halos is a fundamental issue in astrophysics. This thesis is aimed to shed light on this topic. As a first step, we employ the recent wide samples of far-infrared (FIR) selected galaxies followed-up in X-rays, and of X-ray/optically selected active galactic nuclei (AGNs) followed-up in the FIR band, along with the classic data on AGN and stellar luminosity functions at redshift z & 1.5, to probe different stages in the coevolution of SMBHs and their host galaxies. The results of this analysis indicate the following scenario: (i) the star formation in the host galaxy proceeds within a heavily dust-enshrouded medium, at an almost constant rate, over a timescale . 0.5 - 1 Gyr, and then abruptly declines due to quasar feedback; (ii) part of the interstellar medium loses angular momentum, reaches the circum-nuclear regions, at a rate proportional to the star formation, and is temporarily stored into a massive reservoir/proto-torus, wherefrom it can be promptly accreted; (iii) the black hole (BH) grows by accretion in a self-regulated regime with radiative power that can slightly exceed the Eddington limit (L/LEdd . 4), particularly at the highest redshifts; (iv) the ensuing energy feedback from massive BHs, at its maximum, exceeds the stellar one and removes the interstellar gas, thus stopping the star formation and the fueling of the reservoir; (v) afterwards, if the gas stored in the reservoir is enough, a phase of supply-limited accretion follows, whose rate exponentially declines with a timescale of ∼3 e-folding times. We also discuss how the detailed properties and the specific evolution of the reservoir can be investigated via coordinated, high-resolution observations of starforming, strongly lensed galaxies in the (sub-)mm band with ALMA, and in the X-ray band with Chandra and the next generation of X-ray instruments. According to the scenario described

  17. Coevolution of Supermassive Black Holes and Galaxies across cosmic times

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aversa, Rossella

    2015-10-01

    Understanding how supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and galaxies coevolve within their host dark matter (DM) halos is a fundamental issue in astrophysics. This thesis is aimed to shed light on this topic. As a first step, we employ the recent wide samples of far-infrared (FIR) selected galaxies followed-up in X-rays, and of X-ray/optically selected active galactic nuclei (AGNs) followed-up in the FIR band, along with the classic data on AGN and stellar luminosity functions at redshift z & 1.5, to probe different stages in the coevolution of SMBHs and their host galaxies. The results of this analysis indicate the following scenario: (i) the star formation in the host galaxy proceeds within a heavily dust-enshrouded medium, at an almost constant rate, over a timescale . 0.5 - 1 Gyr, and then abruptly declines due to quasar feedback; (ii) part of the interstellar medium loses angular momentum, reaches the circum-nuclear regions, at a rate proportional to the star formation, and is temporarily stored into a massive reservoir/proto-torus, wherefrom it can be promptly accreted; (iii) the black hole (BH) grows by accretion in a self-regulated regime with radiative power that can slightly exceed the Eddington limit (L/LEdd . 4), particularly at the highest redshifts; (iv) the ensuing energy feedback from massive BHs, at its maximum, exceeds the stellar one and removes the interstellar gas, thus stopping the star formation and the fueling of the reservoir; (v) afterwards, if the gas stored in the reservoir is enough, a phase of supply-limited accretion follows, whose rate exponentially declines with a timescale of ∼3 e-folding times. We also discuss how the detailed properties and the specific evolution of the reservoir can be investigated via coordinated, high-resolution observations of starforming, strongly lensed galaxies in the (sub-)mm band with ALMA, and in the X-ray band with Chandra and the next generation of X-ray instruments. According to the scenario described

  18. The growth efficiency of high-redshift black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pacucci, Fabio; Volonteri, Marta; Ferrara, Andrea

    2015-09-01

    The observational evidence that Super-Massive Black Holes (M• ˜ 109-10 M⊙) are already in place less than 1 Gyr after the big bang poses stringent time constraints on the growth efficiency of their seeds. Among proposed possibilities, the formation of massive (˜103-6 M⊙) seeds and/or the occurrence of super-Eddington (dot{M}>dot{M}_{Edd}) accretion episodes may contribute to the solution of this problem. In this work, using a set of astrophysically motivated initial conditions, we analytically and numerically investigate the accretion flow on to high-redshift (z ˜ 10) black holes to understand the physical requirements favouring rapid and efficient growth. Our model identifies a `feeding-dominated' accretion regime and a `feedback-limited' one, the latter being characterized by intermittent (duty cycles D ≲ 0.5) and inefficient growth, with recurring outflow episodes. We find that low-mass seeds (≲103-4 M⊙) evolve in the feedback-limited regime, while more massive seeds (≳105-6 M⊙) grow very rapidly as they are found in the feeding-dominated regime. In addition to the standard accretion model with a fixed matter-energy conversion factor (ɛ = 0.1), we have also explored slim disc models, appropriate for super-Eddington accretion, where radiation is trapped in the disc and the radiative efficiency is reduced (ɛ ≲ 0.04), which may ensure a continuous growth with dot{M} ≫ dot{M}_{Edd} (up to {˜ } 300 dot{M}_{Edd} in our simulations). Under these conditions, outflows play a negligible role and a black hole can accrete 80-100 per cent of the gas mass of the host halo (˜107 M⊙) in ˜10 Myr, while in feedback-limited systems we predict that black holes can accrete only up to ˜15 per cent of the available mass.

  19. Spin and Mass of the Supermassive Black Hole in the Galactic Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dokuchaev, V. I.

    2015-03-01

    The promising observational signatures for the measurement of black hole mass and spin are the azimuthal and latitudinal oscillation frequencies of the bright spots in the accretion flow and also the frequency of black hole event horizon rotation. Interpretation of the known quasi-periodic oscillations data by dint of a signal modulation from the hot spots in the accreting plasma reveals the Kerr metric rotation parameter, a = 0.65 ± 0.05, and mass, M = (4.2 ± 0.2)106M⊙, of the supermassive black hole in the Galactic center. The observed first 11.5 min quasi-periodic oscillation period is identified with a period of the black hole event horizon rotation, and, respectively, the second 19 min period is identified with a latitudinal oscillation period of hot spots in the accretion flow.

  20. Spin and mass of the supermassive black hole at the Galactic center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dokuchaev, V. I.

    The promising observational signatures for the measurement of black hole mass and spin are the azimuthal and latitudinal oscillation frequencies of the bright spots in the accretion flow and also the frequency of black hole event horizon rotation. Interpretation of the known quasi-periodic oscillations data by dint of a signal modulation from the hot spots in the accreting plasma reveals the Kerr metric rotation parameter, a = 0.65±0.05, and mass, M = (4.2±0.2)106M⊙, of the supermassive black hole in the Galactic center. The observed first 11.5 min quasi-periodic oscillation period is identified with a period of the black hole event horizon rotation, and, respectively, the second 19 min period is identified with a latitudinal oscillation period of hot spots in the accretion flow.

  1. Gravitational-wave limits from pulsar timing constrain supermassive black hole evolution.

    PubMed

    Shannon, R M; Ravi, V; Coles, W A; Hobbs, G; Keith, M J; Manchester, R N; Wyithe, J S B; Bailes, M; Bhat, N D R; Burke-Spolaor, S; Khoo, J; Levin, Y; Osłowski, S; Sarkissian, J M; van Straten, W; Verbiest, J P W; Wang, J-B

    2013-10-18

    The formation and growth processes of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) are not well constrained. SMBH population models, however, provide specific predictions for the properties of the gravitational-wave background (GWB) from binary SMBHs in merging galaxies throughout the universe. Using observations from the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array, we constrain the fractional GWB energy density (Ω(GW)) with 95% confidence to be Ω(GW)(H0/73 kilometers per second per megaparsec)(2) < 1.3 × 10(-9) (where H0 is the Hubble constant) at a frequency of 2.8 nanohertz, which is approximately a factor of 6 more stringent than previous limits. We compare our limit to models of the SMBH population and find inconsistencies at confidence levels between 46 and 91%. For example, the standard galaxy formation model implemented in the Millennium Simulation Project is inconsistent with our limit with 50% probability.

  2. Gravitational-wave limits from pulsar timing constrain supermassive black hole evolution.

    PubMed

    Shannon, R M; Ravi, V; Coles, W A; Hobbs, G; Keith, M J; Manchester, R N; Wyithe, J S B; Bailes, M; Bhat, N D R; Burke-Spolaor, S; Khoo, J; Levin, Y; Osłowski, S; Sarkissian, J M; van Straten, W; Verbiest, J P W; Wang, J-B

    2013-10-18

    The formation and growth processes of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) are not well constrained. SMBH population models, however, provide specific predictions for the properties of the gravitational-wave background (GWB) from binary SMBHs in merging galaxies throughout the universe. Using observations from the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array, we constrain the fractional GWB energy density (Ω(GW)) with 95% confidence to be Ω(GW)(H0/73 kilometers per second per megaparsec)(2) < 1.3 × 10(-9) (where H0 is the Hubble constant) at a frequency of 2.8 nanohertz, which is approximately a factor of 6 more stringent than previous limits. We compare our limit to models of the SMBH population and find inconsistencies at confidence levels between 46 and 91%. For example, the standard galaxy formation model implemented in the Millennium Simulation Project is inconsistent with our limit with 50% probability. PMID:24136962

  3. The Equations of Motion of Compact Binaries in the Neighborhood of Supermassive Black Hole

    SciTech Connect

    Gorbatsievich, Alexander; Bobrik, Alexey

    2010-03-24

    By the use of Einstein-Infeld-Hoffmann method, the equations of motion of a binary star system in the field of a supermassive black hole are derived. In spite of the fact that the motion of a binary system as a whole can be relativistic or even ultra-relativistic with respect to the supermassive black hole, it is shown, that under the assumption of non-relativistic relative motion of the stars in binary system, the motion of the binary system as a whole satisfies the Mathisson-Papapetrou equations with additional terms depending on quadrupole moments. Exemplary case of ultrarelativistic motion of a binary neutron star in the vicinity of non-rotating black hole is considered. It it shown that the motion of binary's center of mass may considerably differ from geodesic motion.

  4. Comparison of black hole growth in galaxy mergers with gasoline and ramses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gabor, Jared M.; Capelo, Pedro R.; Volonteri, Marta; Bournaud, Frédéric; Bellovary, Jillian; Governato, Fabio; Quinn, Thomas

    2016-07-01

    Supermassive black hole dynamics during galaxy mergers is crucial in determining the rate of black hole mergers and cosmic black hole growth. As simulations achieve higher resolution, it becomes important to assess whether the black hole dynamics is influenced by the treatment of the interstellar medium in different simulation codes. We compare simulations of black hole growth in galaxy mergers with two codes: the smoothed particle hydrodynamics code gasoline, and the adaptive mesh refinement code ramses. We seek to identify predictions of these models that are robust despite differences in hydrodynamic methods and implementations of subgrid physics. We find that the general behavior is consistent between codes. Black hole accretion is minimal while the galaxies are well-separated (and even as they fly by within 10 kpc at the first pericenter). At late stages, when the galaxies pass within a few kpc, tidal torques drive nuclear gas inflow that triggers bursts of black hole accretion accompanied by star formation. We also note quantitative discrepancies that are model dependent: our ramses simulations show less star formation and black hole growth, and a smoother gas distribution with larger clumps and filaments than our gasoline simulations. We attribute these differences primarily to the subgrid models for black hole fueling, feedback, and gas thermodynamics. The main conclusion is that differences exist quantitatively between codes, and this should be kept in mind when making comparisons with observations. However, both codes capture the same dynamical behaviors in terms of triggering black hole accretion, star formation, and black hole dynamics, which is reassuring.

  5. Simulating the growth of Intermediate Mass Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pacucci, Fabio; Ferrara, Andrea

    2015-03-01

    Theoretical models predict that a population of intermediate-mass black holes (IMBHs) of mass M• ≈ 104-5 M⊙ might form at high (z ≳ 10) redshift by different processes. Such objects would represent the seeds out of which z ≳ 6 supermassive black holes grow. We numerically investigate the radiation-hydrodynamic evolution governing the growth of such seeds via accretion of primordial gas within their parent dark matter halo of virial temperature Tvir ˜ 104 K. We find that the accretion on to a direct collapse black hole of initial mass M0 = 105 M⊙ occurs at an average rate dot{M}_{•} ≃ 1.35 dot{M}_Edd ˜eq 0.1 M_{{⊙} yr^{-1}}, is intermittent (duty cycle ≲ 50 per cent) and lasts ≈142 Myr; the system emits on average at super-Eddington luminosities, progressively becoming more luminous as the density of the inner mass shells, directly feeding the central object, increases. Finally, when ≈90 per cent of the gas mass has been accreted (in spite of an average super-Eddington emission) on to the black hole, whose final mass is ˜7 × 106 M⊙, the remaining gas is ejected from the halo due to a powerful radiation burst releasing a peak luminosity Lpeak ˜ 3 × 1045 erg s-1. The IMBH is Compton-thick during most of the evolution, reaching a column density NH ˜ 1025 cm-2 in the late stages of the simulation. We briefly discuss the observational implications of the model.

  6. Lense-Thirring precession around supermassive black holes during tidal disruption events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franchini, Alessia; Lodato, Giuseppe; Facchini, Stefano

    2016-01-01

    A tidal disruption event occurs when a star wanders close enough to a black hole to be disrupted by its tidal force. The debris of a tidally disrupted star are expected to form an accretion disc around the supermassive black hole. The light curves of these events sometimes show a quasi-periodic modulation of the flux that can be associated with the precession of the accretion disc due to the Lense-Thirring (`frame-dragging') effect. Since the initial star orbit is in general inclined with respect to the black hole spin, this misalignment combined with the Lense-Thirring effect leads to a warp in the disc. In this paper, we provide a simple model of the system composed by a thick and narrow accretion disc surrounding a spinning supermassive black hole, with the aim to: (a) compute the expected precession period as a function of the system parameters, (b) discuss the conditions that have to be satisfied in order to have rigid precession, (c) investigate the alignment process, highlighting how different mechanisms play a role leading the disc and the black hole angular momenta into alignment.

  7. A Normal Supermassive Black Hole in NGC 1277

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graham, Alister W.; Durré, Mark; Savorgnan, Giulia A. D.; Medling, Anne M.; Batcheldor, Dan; Scott, Nicholas; Watson, Beverly; Marconi, Alessandro

    2016-03-01

    The identification of galaxies with “overly massive” black holes requires two measurements: a black hole mass (Mbh) and a host spheroid mass ({M}{{sph,\\ast }}). Here we provide our measurements for NGC 1277. Our structural decomposition reveals that NGC 1277 is dominated by a “classical” spheroid with a Sérsic index n = 5.3, a half-light radius {R}{{e,major}}=2.1 {{kpc}}, and a stellar mass of 2.7× {10}11\\quad {M}⊙ (using {M}*/{L}V=11.65, Martín-Navarro et al.). This mass is an order of magnitude greater than originally reported. Using the latest Mbh-n, Mbh-{M}{{sph,\\ast }}, and Mbh-σ relations, the expected black hole mass is, respectively, ({0.57}-0.40+1.29)× {10}9\\quad {M}⊙ , ({1.58}-1.13+4.04)× {10}9\\quad {M}⊙ , and ({2.27}-1.44+4.04)× {10}9\\quad {M}⊙ (using σ = 300 km s-1) for which the “sphere-of-influence” is 0.″31. Our new kinematical maps obtained from laser guide star assisted, adaptive optics on the Keck I Telescope dramatically reaffirm the presence of the inner, nearly edge-on, disk seen in the galaxy image. We also report that this produces a large velocity shear (˜400 km s-1) across the inner 0.″2 (70 pc) plus elevated values of \\sqrt{{σ }2+{V}2} across the inner (+/- 3\\buildrel{\\prime\\prime}\\over{.} 8)× (+/- 0\\buildrel{\\prime\\prime}\\over{.} 6) region of the galaxy. Our new multi-Gaussian expansion (MGE) models and Jeans Anisotropic MGE analysis struggled to match this extended component. Our optimal black hole mass, albeit a probable upper limit because of the disk is 1.2 × 109 M⊙ (M/{L}V=12.3). This is an order of magnitude smaller than originally reported and 4 times smaller than recently reported. It gives an {M}{{bh}}/{M}{{sph,\\ast }} ratio of 0.45% in agreement with the median (≈0.5%) and range (0.1%-5.0%) observed in non-dwarf, early-type galaxies. This result highlights the need for caution with inner disks.

  8. Era of Galaxy and Black Hole Growth Spurt Discovered

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-04-01

    Distant galaxies undergoing intense bursts of star formation have been shown by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory to be fertile growing grounds for the largest black holes in the Universe. Collisions between galaxies in the early Universe may be the ultimate cause for both the accelerated star formation and black hole growth. By combining the deepest X-ray image ever obtained with submillimeter and optical observations, an international team of scientists has found evidence that some extremely luminous adolescent galaxies and their central black holes underwent a phenomenal spurt of growth more than 10 billion years ago. This concurrent black hole and galaxy growth spurt is only seen in these galaxies and may have set the stage for the birth of quasars - distant galaxies that contain the largest and most active black holes in the Universe. Simulation of a Galaxy Collision Simulation of a Galaxy Collision "The extreme distances of these galaxies allow us to look back in time, and take a snapshot of how today's largest galaxies looked when they were producing most of their stars and growing black holes," said David Alexander of the University of Cambridge, UK, and lead author of a paper in the April 7, 2005 issue of Nature that describes this work. The galaxies studied by Alexander and his colleagues are known as submillimeter galaxies, so-called because they were originally identified by the James Clerk Maxwell submillimeter telescope (JCMT) on Mauna Kea in Hawaii. The submillimeter observations along with optical data from Keck indicate these galaxies had an unusually large amount of gas. The gas in each galaxy was forming into stars at a rate of about one per day, or 100 times the present rate in the Milky Way galaxy. The Chandra X-ray data show that the supermassive black holes in the galaxies were also growing at the same time. Chandra X-ray Image of CDFN Chandra X-ray Image of CDFN These galaxies are very faint and it is only with the deepest observations of the

  9. A close-pair binary in a distant triple supermassive black hole system.

    PubMed

    Deane, R P; Paragi, Z; Jarvis, M J; Coriat, M; Bernardi, G; Fender, R P; Frey, S; Heywood, I; Klöckner, H-R; Grainge, K; Rumsey, C

    2014-07-01

    Galaxies are believed to evolve through merging, which should lead to some hosting multiple supermassive black holes. There are four known triple black hole systems, with the closest black hole pair being 2.4 kiloparsecs apart (the third component in this system is at 3 kiloparsecs), which is far from the gravitational sphere of influence (about 100 parsecs for a black hole with mass one billion times that of the Sun). Previous searches for compact black hole systems concluded that they were rare, with the tightest binary system having a separation of 7 parsecs (ref. 10). Here we report observations of a triple black hole system at redshift z = 0.39, with the closest pair separated by about 140 parsecs and significantly more distant from Earth than any other known binary of comparable orbital separation. The effect of the tight pair is to introduce a rotationally symmetric helical modulation on the structure of the large-scale radio jets, which provides a useful way to search for other tight pairs without needing extremely high resolution observations. As we found this tight pair after searching only six galaxies, we conclude that tight pairs are more common than hitherto believed, which is an important observational constraint for low-frequency gravitational wave experiments. PMID:24990745

  10. A close-pair binary in a distant triple supermassive black hole system.

    PubMed

    Deane, R P; Paragi, Z; Jarvis, M J; Coriat, M; Bernardi, G; Fender, R P; Frey, S; Heywood, I; Klöckner, H-R; Grainge, K; Rumsey, C

    2014-07-01

    Galaxies are believed to evolve through merging, which should lead to some hosting multiple supermassive black holes. There are four known triple black hole systems, with the closest black hole pair being 2.4 kiloparsecs apart (the third component in this system is at 3 kiloparsecs), which is far from the gravitational sphere of influence (about 100 parsecs for a black hole with mass one billion times that of the Sun). Previous searches for compact black hole systems concluded that they were rare, with the tightest binary system having a separation of 7 parsecs (ref. 10). Here we report observations of a triple black hole system at redshift z = 0.39, with the closest pair separated by about 140 parsecs and significantly more distant from Earth than any other known binary of comparable orbital separation. The effect of the tight pair is to introduce a rotationally symmetric helical modulation on the structure of the large-scale radio jets, which provides a useful way to search for other tight pairs without needing extremely high resolution observations. As we found this tight pair after searching only six galaxies, we conclude that tight pairs are more common than hitherto believed, which is an important observational constraint for low-frequency gravitational wave experiments.

  11. A supermassive black hole in an ultra-compact dwarf galaxy.

    PubMed

    Seth, Anil C; van den Bosch, Remco; Mieske, Steffen; Baumgardt, Holger; den Brok, Mark; Strader, Jay; Neumayer, Nadine; Chilingarian, Igor; Hilker, Michael; McDermid, Richard; Spitler, Lee; Brodie, Jean; Frank, Matthias J; Walsh, Jonelle L

    2014-09-18

    Ultra-compact dwarf galaxies are among the densest stellar systems in the Universe. These systems have masses of up to 2 × 10(8) solar masses, but half-light radii of just 3-50 parsecs. Dynamical mass estimates show that many such dwarfs are more massive than expected from their luminosity. It remains unclear whether these high dynamical mass estimates arise because of the presence of supermassive black holes or result from a non-standard stellar initial mass function that causes the average stellar mass to be higher than expected. Here we report adaptive optics kinematic data of the ultra-compact dwarf galaxy M60-UCD1 that show a central velocity dispersion peak exceeding 100 kilometres per second and modest rotation. Dynamical modelling of these data reveals the presence of a supermassive black hole with a mass of 2.1 × 10(7) solar masses. This is 15 per cent of the object's total mass. The high black hole mass and mass fraction suggest that M60-UCD1 is the stripped nucleus of a galaxy. Our analysis also shows that M60-UCD1's stellar mass is consistent with its luminosity, implying a large population of previously unrecognized supermassive black holes in other ultra-compact dwarf galaxies.

  12. A supermassive black hole in an ultra-compact dwarf galaxy.

    PubMed

    Seth, Anil C; van den Bosch, Remco; Mieske, Steffen; Baumgardt, Holger; den Brok, Mark; Strader, Jay; Neumayer, Nadine; Chilingarian, Igor; Hilker, Michael; McDermid, Richard; Spitler, Lee; Brodie, Jean; Frank, Matthias J; Walsh, Jonelle L

    2014-09-18

    Ultra-compact dwarf galaxies are among the densest stellar systems in the Universe. These systems have masses of up to 2 × 10(8) solar masses, but half-light radii of just 3-50 parsecs. Dynamical mass estimates show that many such dwarfs are more massive than expected from their luminosity. It remains unclear whether these high dynamical mass estimates arise because of the presence of supermassive black holes or result from a non-standard stellar initial mass function that causes the average stellar mass to be higher than expected. Here we report adaptive optics kinematic data of the ultra-compact dwarf galaxy M60-UCD1 that show a central velocity dispersion peak exceeding 100 kilometres per second and modest rotation. Dynamical modelling of these data reveals the presence of a supermassive black hole with a mass of 2.1 × 10(7) solar masses. This is 15 per cent of the object's total mass. The high black hole mass and mass fraction suggest that M60-UCD1 is the stripped nucleus of a galaxy. Our analysis also shows that M60-UCD1's stellar mass is consistent with its luminosity, implying a large population of previously unrecognized supermassive black holes in other ultra-compact dwarf galaxies. PMID:25230660

  13. Detection of Gravitational Wave Emission by Supermassive Black Hole Binaries Through Tidal Disruption Flares

    PubMed Central

    Hayasaki, Kimitake; Loeb, Abraham

    2016-01-01

    Galaxy mergers produce supermassive black hole binaries, which emit gravitational waves prior to their coalescence. We perform three-dimensional hydrodynamic simulations to study the tidal disruption of stars by such a binary in the final centuries of its life. We find that the gas stream of the stellar debris moves chaotically in the binary potential and forms accretion disks around both black holes. The accretion light curve is modulated over the binary orbital period owing to relativistic beaming. This periodic signal allows to detect the decay of the binary orbit due to gravitational wave emission by observing two tidal disruption events that are separated by more than a decade. PMID:27767188

  14. Prospects for measuring supermassive black hole masses with future extremely large telescopes

    SciTech Connect

    Do, Tuan; Wright, Shelley A.; Barth, Aaron J.; Barton, Elizabeth J.; Simard, Luc; Larkin, James E.; Moore, Anna M.; Wang, Lianqi; Ellerbroek, Brent

    2014-04-01

    The next generation of giant-segmented mirror telescopes (>20 m) will enable us to observe galactic nuclei at much higher angular resolution and sensitivity than ever before. These capabilities will introduce a revolutionary shift in our understanding of the origin and evolution of supermassive black holes by enabling more precise black hole mass measurements in a mass range that is unreachable today. We present simulations and predictions of the observations of nuclei that will be made with the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) and the adaptive optics assisted integral-field spectrograph IRIS, which is capable of diffraction-limited spectroscopy from Z band (0.9 μm) to K band (2.2 μm). These simulations, for the first time, use realistic values for the sky, telescope, adaptive optics system, and instrument to determine the expected signal-to-noise ratio of a range of possible targets spanning intermediate mass black holes of ∼10{sup 4} M {sub ☉} to the most massive black holes known today of >10{sup 10} M {sub ☉}. We find that IRIS will be able to observe Milky Way mass black holes out the distance of the Virgo Cluster, and will allow us to observe many more of the brightest cluster galaxies where the most massive black holes are thought to reside. We also evaluate how well the kinematic moments of the velocity distributions can be constrained at the different spectral resolutions and plate scales designed for IRIS. We find that a spectral resolution of ∼8000 will be necessary to measure the masses of intermediate mass black holes. By simulating the observations of galaxies found in Sloan Digital Sky Survey DR7, we find that over 10{sup 5} massive black holes will be observable at distances between 0.005 < z < 0.18 with the estimated sensitivity and angular resolution provided by access to Z-band (0.9 μm) spectroscopy from IRIS and the TMT adaptive optics system. These observations will provide the most accurate dynamical measurements of black hole masses to

  15. THE FIRST SPECTROSCOPICALLY RESOLVED SUB-PARSEC ORBIT OF A SUPERMASSIVE BINARY BLACK HOLE

    SciTech Connect

    Bon, E.; Jovanovic, P.; Bon, N.; Popovic, L. C.; Marziani, P.; Shapovalova, A. I.; Borka Jovanovic, V.; Borka, D.; Sulentic, J.

    2012-11-10

    One of the most intriguing scenarios proposed to explain how active galactic nuclei are triggered involves the existence of a supermassive binary black hole (BH) system in their cores. Here, we present an observational evidence for the first spectroscopically resolved sub-parsec orbit of a such system in the core of Seyfert galaxy NGC 4151. Using a method similar to those typically used for spectroscopic binary stars, we obtained radial velocity curves of the supermassive binary system, from which we calculated orbital elements and made estimates about the masses of the components. Our analysis shows that periodic variations in the light and radial velocity curves can be accounted for by an eccentric, sub-parsec Keplerian orbit with a 15.9 year period. The flux maximum in the light curve corresponds to the approaching phase of the secondary component toward the observer. According to the obtained results, we speculate that the periodic variations in the observed H{alpha} line shape and flux are due to shock waves generated by the supersonic motion of the components through the surrounding medium. Given the large observational effort needed to reveal this spectroscopically resolved binary orbital motion, we suggest that many such systems may exist in similar objects even if they are hard to find. Detecting more of them will provide us with insight into the BH mass growth process.

  16. Flares from stars tidally disrupted by supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komossa, St.

    2016-04-01

    Stellar tidal disruption events are unique probes of accretion physics and disk winds under extreme conditions. Their luminous flares of radiation are signposts of intermediate-mass black holes (BHs) and recoiling BHs. In X-rays, they have the potential to probe GR effects near the last stable orbit. Some of the events launch relativistic jets, and provide us with a powerful new method of understanding the physics of jet formation and evolution in a quiescent environment. About 30-40 candidate events have been identified by now, mostly in the X-rays and the optical. Events will be detected in the thousands in upcoming sky surveys, enabling statistical studies and rapid multi-wavelength follow-ups. Here, I provide a review of the field, including most recent results.

  17. THE ROLE OF NUCLEAR STAR CLUSTERS IN ENHANCING SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE FEEDING RATES DURING GALAXY MERGERS

    SciTech Connect

    Naiman, J. P.; Ramirez-Ruiz, E.; Debuhr, J.; Ma, C.-P.

    2015-04-20

    During galaxy mergers the gas falls to the center, triggers star formation, and feeds the rapid growth of supermassive black holes (SMBHs). SMBHs respond to this fueling by supplying energy back to the ambient gas. Numerical studies suggest that this feedback is necessary to explain why the properties of SMBHs and the formation of bulges are closely related. This intimate link between the SMBH’s mass and the large scale dynamics and luminosity of the host has proven to be a difficult issue to tackle with simulations due to the inability to resolve all the relevant length scales simultaneously. In this paper we simulate SMBH growth at high-resolution with FLASH, accounting for the gravitational focusing effects of nuclear star clusters (NSCs), which appear to be ubiquitous in galactic nuclei. In the simulations, the NSC core is resolved by a minimum cell size of about 0.001 pc or approximately 10{sup −3} of the cluster’s radius. We discuss the conditions required for effective gas funneling to occur, which are mainly dominated by a relationship between NSC velocity dispersion and the local sound speed, and provide a sub-grid prescription for the augmentation of central SMBH accretion rates in the presence of NSCs. For the conditions expected to persist in the centers of merging galaxies, the resultant large central gas densities in NSCs should produce drastically enhanced embedded SMBH accretion rates—up to an order of magnitude increase can be achieved for gas properties resembling those in large-scale galaxy merger simulations. This will naturally result in faster black hole growth rates and higher luminosities than predicted by the commonly used Bondi–Hoyle–Lyttleton accretion formalism.

  18. Tidal disruptions by supermassive black holes - Hydrodynamic evolution of stars on a Schwarzschild background

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Laguna, Pablo; Miller, Warner A.; Zurek, Wojciech H.; Davies, Melvyn B.

    1993-01-01

    We present a three-dimensional numerical study of tidal disruption of a main-sequence star by a supermassive black hole. The simulations include general relativistic effects which are important in this regime. We analyze stars in a marginally bound orbit around the black hole with pericentric separation of a few Schwarzschild radii. We show that during a close passage, as a result of relativistic effects analogous to the perihelion shift, the trajectories of the debris of the star fan out into a crescent-like shape centered on the black hole. We also discuss the increase of the central density of the star as it approaches pericentric distance, the fraction of the debris accreted by the hole, its accretion rate, the distribution of debris orbits bound to the hole, and the velocity of unbound ejected material. We compare these results with the disruption of the star by a Newtonian point mass.

  19. Songlines from Direct Collapse Seed Black Holes: Effects of X-Rays on Black Hole Growth and Stellar Populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aykutalp, Aycin; Wise, John H.; Spaans, Marco; Meijerink, Rowin

    2014-12-01

    In the last decade, the growth of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) has been intricately linked to galaxy formation and evolution and is a key ingredient in the assembly of galaxies. To investigate the origin of SMBHs, we perform cosmological simulations that target the direct collapse black hole seed formation scenario in the presence of two different strong Lyman-Werner (LW) background fields. These simulations include the X-ray irradiation from a central massive black hole (MBH), H2 self-shielding, and stellar feedback from metal-free and metal-enriched stars. We find in both simulations that local X-ray feedback induces metal-free star formation ~0.5 Myr after the MBH forms. The MBH accretion rate reaches a maximum of 10-3 M ⊙ yr-1 in both simulations. However, the duty cycle differs and is derived to be 6% and 50% for the high and low LW cases, respectively. The MBH in the high LW case grows only ~6% in 100 Myr compared to 16% in the low LW case. We find that the maximum accretion rate is determined by the local gas thermodynamics, whereas the duty cycle is determined by the large-scale gas dynamics and gas reservoir. We conclude that radiative feedback from the central MBH plays an important role in star formation in the nuclear regions and stifling initial MBH growth relative to the typical Eddington rate argument, and that initial MBH growth might be affected by the local LW radiation field.

  20. Spin and mass of the supermassive black hole in the Galactic Center

    SciTech Connect

    Dokuchaev, V. I.

    2015-12-15

    A new method for exact determination of the masses and spins of black holes from the observations of quasi-periodic oscillations is discussed. The detected signal from the hot clumps in the accretion plasma must contain modulations with two characteristic frequencies: the frequency of rotation of the black hole event horizon and the frequency of the latitudinal precession of the clump’s orbit. Application of the method of two characteristic frequencies for interpretation of the observed quasi-periodic oscillations from the supermassive black hole in the Galactic center in the X-rays and in the near IR region yields the most exact, for the present, values of the mass and the spin (Kerr parameter) of the Sgr A* black hole: M = (4.2 ± 0.2) × 10{sup 6}M{sub ⊙} and a = 0.65 ± 0.05. The observed quasi-periodic oscillations with a period of about 11.5 min are identified as the black hole event horizon rotation period and those with a period of about 19 min are identified as the latitudinal oscillation period of the hot spot orbits in the accretion disk.

  1. Spin and mass of the supermassive black hole in the Galactic Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dokuchaev, V. I.

    2015-12-01

    A new method for exact determination of the masses and spins of black holes from the observations of quasi-periodic oscillations is discussed. The detected signal from the hot clumps in the accretion plasma must contain modulations with two characteristic frequencies: the frequency of rotation of the black hole event horizon and the frequency of the latitudinal precession of the clump's orbit. Application of the method of two characteristic frequencies for interpretation of the observed quasi-periodic oscillations from the supermassive black hole in the Galactic center in the X-rays and in the near IR region yields the most exact, for the present, values of the mass and the spin (Kerr parameter) of the Sgr A* black hole: M = (4.2 ± 0.2) × 106 M ⊙ and a = 0.65 ± 0.05. The observed quasi-periodic oscillations with a period of about 11.5 min are identified as the black hole event horizon rotation period and those with a period of about 19 min are identified as the latitudinal oscillation period of the hot spot orbits in the accretion disk.

  2. Fossil gas and the electromagnetic precursor of supermassive binary black hole mergers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Philip; Strubbe, Linda E.; Menou, Kristen; Quataert, Eliot

    2010-09-01

    Using a 1D height integrated model, we calculate the evolution of an unequal mass binary black hole with a coplanar gas disc that contains a gap due to the presence of the secondary black hole. Viscous evolution of the outer circumbinary disc initially hardens the binary, while the inner disc drains on to the primary (central) black hole. As long as the inner disc remains cool and thin at low (rather than becoming hot and geometrically thick), the mass of the inner disc reaches an asymptotic mass typically ~10-3-10-4Msolar. Once the semimajor axis shrinks below a critical value, angular momentum losses from gravitational waves dominate over viscous transport in hardening the binary. The inner disc then no longer responds viscously to the inspiraling black holes. Instead, tidal interactions with the secondary rapidly drive the inner disc into the primary. Tidal and viscous dissipation in the inner disc lead to a late time brightening in luminosity, L ~ t-5/4minus, where tminus is the time prior to the final merger. This late time brightening peaks ~1 d prior to the final merger at ~0.1LEdd. This behaviour is relatively robust because of self-regulation in the coupled viscous-gravitational evolution of such binary systems. It constitutes a unique electromagnetic signature of a binary supermassive black hole merger and may allow the host galaxy to be identified if used in conjunction with the Laser Interferometric Space Antenna localization.

  3. Event-horizon-scale structure in the supermassive black hole candidate at the Galactic Centre.

    PubMed

    Doeleman, Sheperd S; Weintroub, Jonathan; Rogers, Alan E E; Plambeck, Richard; Freund, Robert; Tilanus, Remo P J; Friberg, Per; Ziurys, Lucy M; Moran, James M; Corey, Brian; Young, Ken H; Smythe, Daniel L; Titus, Michael; Marrone, Daniel P; Cappallo, Roger J; Bock, Douglas C-J; Bower, Geoffrey C; Chamberlin, Richard; Davis, Gary R; Krichbaum, Thomas P; Lamb, James; Maness, Holly; Niell, Arthur E; Roy, Alan; Strittmatter, Peter; Werthimer, Daniel; Whitney, Alan R; Woody, David

    2008-09-01

    The cores of most galaxies are thought to harbour supermassive black holes, which power galactic nuclei by converting the gravitational energy of accreting matter into radiation. Sagittarius A* (Sgr A*), the compact source of radio, infrared and X-ray emission at the centre of the Milky Way, is the closest example of this phenomenon, with an estimated black hole mass that is 4,000,000 times that of the Sun. A long-standing astronomical goal is to resolve structures in the innermost accretion flow surrounding Sgr A*, where strong gravitational fields will distort the appearance of radiation emitted near the black hole. Radio observations at wavelengths of 3.5 mm and 7 mm have detected intrinsic structure in Sgr A*, but the spatial resolution of observations at these wavelengths is limited by interstellar scattering. Here we report observations at a wavelength of 1.3 mm that set a size of 37(+16)(-10) microarcseconds on the intrinsic diameter of Sgr A*. This is less than the expected apparent size of the event horizon of the presumed black hole, suggesting that the bulk of Sgr A* emission may not be centred on the black hole, but arises in the surrounding accretion flow.

  4. General Relativistic Simulations of Magnetized Plasmas around Merging Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giacomazzo, Bruno; Baker, John G.; Miller, M. Coleman; Reynolds, Christopher S.; van Meter, James R.

    2012-06-01

    Coalescing supermassive black hole binaries are produced by the mergers of galaxies and are the most powerful sources of gravitational waves accessible to space-based gravitational observatories. Some such mergers may occur in the presence of matter and magnetic fields and hence generate an electromagnetic counterpart. In this Letter, we present the first general relativistic simulations of magnetized plasma around merging supermassive black holes using the general relativistic magnetohydrodynamic code Whisky. By considering different magnetic field strengths, going from non-magnetically dominated to magnetically dominated regimes, we explore how magnetic fields affect the dynamics of the plasma and the possible emission of electromagnetic signals. In particular, we observe a total amplification of the magnetic field of ~2 orders of magnitude, which is driven by the accretion onto the binary and that leads to much stronger electromagnetic signals, more than a factor of 104 larger than comparable calculations done in the force-free regime where such amplifications are not possible.

  5. The shortest-known-period star orbiting our Galaxy's supermassive black hole.

    PubMed

    Meyer, L; Ghez, A M; Schödel, R; Yelda, S; Boehle, A; Lu, J R; Do, T; Morris, M R; Becklin, E E; Matthews, K

    2012-10-01

    Stars with short orbital periods at the center of our Galaxy offer a powerful probe of a supermassive black hole. Over the past 17 years, the W. M. Keck Observatory has been used to image the galactic center at the highest angular resolution possible today. By adding to this data set and advancing methodologies, we have detected S0-102, a star orbiting our Galaxy's supermassive black hole with a period of just 11.5 years. S0-102 doubles the number of known stars with full phase coverage and periods of less than 20 years. It thereby provides the opportunity, with future measurements, to resolve degeneracies in the parameters describing the central gravitational potential and to test Einstein's theory of general relativity in an unexplored regime.

  6. Resolving the Bondi Accretion Flow toward the Supermassive Black Hole of NGC 3115 with Chandra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, Ka-Wah; Irwin, J.; Million, E.; Yukita, M.; Mathews, W.; Bregman, J.

    2011-09-01

    Gas undergoing Bondi accretion on to a supermassive black hole (SMBH) becomes hotter toward smaller radii. We searched for this signature with a Chandra observation of the hot gas in NGC 3115, which optical observation show has a very massive SMBH. Our observations show that the gas temperature rises toward the galaxy center as expected in all accretion models in which the black hole is gravitationally capturing the ambient gas. The data support that the Bondi radius is at least about 4-5 arcsec (188-235 pc), suggesting a supermassive blackhole of two billion solar masses that is consistent with the upper end of the optical results. The density profile within the Bondi radius has a power law index of 1.03, and we will discuss the interpretations of the results.

  7. The shortest-known-period star orbiting our Galaxy's supermassive black hole.

    PubMed

    Meyer, L; Ghez, A M; Schödel, R; Yelda, S; Boehle, A; Lu, J R; Do, T; Morris, M R; Becklin, E E; Matthews, K

    2012-10-01

    Stars with short orbital periods at the center of our Galaxy offer a powerful probe of a supermassive black hole. Over the past 17 years, the W. M. Keck Observatory has been used to image the galactic center at the highest angular resolution possible today. By adding to this data set and advancing methodologies, we have detected S0-102, a star orbiting our Galaxy's supermassive black hole with a period of just 11.5 years. S0-102 doubles the number of known stars with full phase coverage and periods of less than 20 years. It thereby provides the opportunity, with future measurements, to resolve degeneracies in the parameters describing the central gravitational potential and to test Einstein's theory of general relativity in an unexplored regime. PMID:23042888

  8. Spin properties of supermassive black holes with powerful outflows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daly, Ruth. A.

    2016-05-01

    Relationships between beam power and accretion disc luminosity are studied for a sample of 55 high excitation radio galaxies (HERG), 13 low excitation radio galaxies (LERG), and 29 radio loud quasars (RLQ) with powerful outflows. The ratio of beam power to disc luminosity tends to be high for LERG, low for RLQ, and spans the full range of values for HERG. Writing general expressions for the disc luminosity and beam power and applying the empirically determined relationships allows a function that parametrizes the spins of the holes to be estimated. Interestingly, one of the solutions that is consistent with the data has a functional form that is remarkably similar to that expected in the generalized Blandford-Znajek model with a magnetic field that is similar in form to that expected in magnetically arrested disk (MAD) and advection-dominated accretion flow (ADAF) models. Values of the spin function, obtained independent of specific outflow models, suggest that spin and active galactic nucleus type are not related for these types of sources. The spin function can be used to solve for black hole spin in the context of particular outflow models, and one example is provided.

  9. DISCOVERY OF AN ACTIVE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE IN THE BULGELESS GALAXY NGC 4561

    SciTech Connect

    Salvo, C. Araya; Mathur, S.; Ghosh, H.; Ferrarese, L.

    2012-10-01

    We present XMM-Newton observations of the Chandra-detected nuclear X-ray source in NGC 4561. The hard X-ray spectrum can be described by a model composed of an absorbed power law with {Gamma} = 2.5{sup +0.4}{sub -0.3} and column density N{sub H} = 1.9{sup +0.1}{sub -0.2} Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 22} atoms cm{sup -2}. The absorption-corrected luminosity of the source is L(0.2-10.0 keV) =2.5 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 41} erg s{sup -1}, with bolometric luminosity over 3 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 42} erg s{sup -1}. Based on the spectrum and the luminosity, we identify the nuclear X-ray source in NGC 4561 to be an active galactic nucleus (AGN), with a black hole (BH) of mass M{sub BH} >2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 4} M{sub Sun }. The presence of a supermassive black hole at the center of this bulgeless galaxy shows that BH masses are not necessarily related to bulge properties, contrary to general belief. Observations such as these call into question several theoretical models of BH-galaxy coevolution that are based on merger-driven BH growth; secular processes clearly play an important role. Several emission lines are detected in the soft X-ray spectrum of the source which can be well parameterized by an absorbed diffuse thermal plasma with non-solar abundances of some heavy elements. Similar soft X-ray emission is observed in spectra of Seyfert 2 galaxies and low-luminosity AGNs, suggesting an origin in the circumnuclear plasma.

  10. MASSES OF NEARBY SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES WITH VERY LONG BASELINE INTERFEROMETRY

    SciTech Connect

    Johannsen, Tim; Psaltis, Dimitrios; Marrone, Daniel P.; Oezel, Feryal; Gillessen, Stefan; Doeleman, Sheperd S.; Fish, Vincent L.

    2012-10-10

    Dynamical mass measurements to date have allowed determinations of the mass M and the distance D of a number of nearby supermassive black holes. In the case of Sgr A*, these measurements are limited by a strong correlation between the mass and distance scaling roughly as M {approx} D {sup 2}. Future very long baseline interferometric (VLBI) observations will image a bright and narrow ring surrounding the shadow of a supermassive black hole, if its accretion flow is optically thin. In this paper, we explore the prospects of reducing the correlation between mass and distance with the combination of dynamical measurements and VLBI imaging of the ring of Sgr A*. We estimate the signal-to-noise ratio of near-future VLBI arrays that consist of five to six stations, and we simulate measurements of the mass and distance of Sgr A* using the expected size of the ring image and existing stellar ephemerides. We demonstrate that, in this best-case scenario, VLBI observations at 1 mm can improve the error on the mass by a factor of about two compared to the results from the monitoring of stellar orbits alone. We identify the additional sources of uncertainty that such imaging observations have to take into account. In addition, we calculate the angular diameters of the bright rings of other nearby supermassive black holes and identify the optimal targets besides Sgr A* that could be imaged by a ground-based VLBI array or future space-VLBI missions allowing for refined mass measurements.

  11. Shaping the relation between the mass of supermassive black holes and the velocity dispersion of galactic bulges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chan, M. H.

    2013-05-01

    I use the fact that the radiation emitted by the accretion disk of supermassive black hole can heat up the surrounding gas in the protogalaxy to achieve hydrostatic equilibrium during the galaxy formation. The correlation between the black hole mass M BH and velocity dispersion σ thus naturally arises. The result generally agrees with empirical fittings from observational data, even with M BH ≤106 M ⊙. This model provides a clear picture on how the properties of the galactic supermassive black holes are connected with the kinetic properties of the galactic bulges.

  12. DISCOVERY OF AN H{alpha} EMITTING DISK AROUND THE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE OF M31

    SciTech Connect

    Menezes, R. B.; Steiner, J. E.; Ricci, T. V.

    2013-01-10

    Due to its proximity, the mass of the supermassive black hole in the nucleus of the Andromeda galaxy (M31), the most massive black hole in the Local Group of galaxies, has been measured by several methods involving the kinematics of a stellar disk which surrounds it. We report here the discovery of an eccentric H{alpha} emitting disk around the black hole at the center of M31 and show how modeling this disk can provide an independent determination of the mass of the black hole. Our model implies a mass of 5.0{sup +0.8}{sub -1.0} Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 7} M{sub Sun} for the central black hole, consistent with the average of determinations by methods involving stellar dynamics, and compatible (at 1{sigma} level) with measurements obtained from the most detailed models of the stellar disk around the central black hole. This value is also consistent with the M-{sigma} relation. In order to make a comparison, we applied our simulation on the stellar kinematics in the nucleus of M31 and concluded that the parameters obtained for the stellar disk are not formally compatible with the parameters obtained for the H{alpha} emitting disk. This result suggests that the stellar and the H{alpha} emitting disks are intrinsically different from each other. A plausible explanation is that the H{alpha} emission is associated with a gaseous disk. This hypothesis is supported by the detection of traces of weaker nebular lines in the nuclear region of M31. However, we cannot exclude the possibility that the H{alpha} emission is, at least partially, generated by stars.

  13. H I OBSERVATIONS OF THE SUPERMASSIVE BINARY BLACK HOLE SYSTEM IN 0402+379

    SciTech Connect

    Rodriguez, C.; Taylor, G. B.; Pihlstroem, Y. M.; Zavala, R. T.; Peck, A. B.

    2009-05-20

    We have recently discovered a supermassive binary black hole system with a projected separation between the two black holes of 7.3 pc in the radio galaxy 0402+379 (Rodriguez et al. 2006). This is the most compact supermassive binary black hole pair yet imaged by more than two orders of magnitude. We present Global VLBI observations at 1.3464 GHz of this radio galaxy, taken to improve the quality of the H I data. Two absorption lines are found toward the southern jet of the source, one redshifted by 370 {+-} 10 km s{sup -1} and the other blueshifted by 700 {+-} 10 km s{sup -1} with respect to the systemic velocity of the source, which, along with the results obtained for the opacity distribution over the source, suggests the presence of two mass clumps rotating around the central region of the source. We propose a model consisting of a geometrically thick disk, of which we only see a couple of clumps, that reproduces the velocities measured from the H I absorption profiles. These clumps rotate in circular Keplerian orbits around an axis that crosses one of the supermassive black holes of the binary system in 0402+379. We find an upper limit for the inclination angle of the twin jets of the source to the line of sight of {theta} = 66 deg., which, according to the proposed model, implies a lower limit on the central mass of {approx}7 x 10{sup 8} M {sub sun} and a lower limit for the scale height of the thick disk of {approx}12 pc.

  14. Off The Beaten Path: Modeling the Dynamics of Supermassive Black Holes in Cosmological Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tremmel, Michael J.; Governato, Fabio; Volonteri, Marta; Quinn, Thomas R.

    2015-01-01

    Cosmological simulations are an essential tool to understand the co-evolution of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and their host galaxies. However, the limited resolution of these simulations presents unique challenges to successfully modeling black hole dynamics. We present a novel, physically motivated method for improving the dynamics of black holes in cosmological simulations, by accounting for the unresolved dynamical friction that SMBHs feel from stars and dark matter. We show how this approach, which naturally scales with resolution, is a major step forward compared to more commonly used 'advection' models that often assume SMBHs sink very rapidly toward the center of their host galaxies. Here, we demonstrate that our method is able to prevent numerical heating of SMBHs while allowing for realistic dynamics.Our implementation will allow us to more realistically model SMBH dynamics, accretion, and mergers in cosmological simulations, giving us the ability to better understand how SMBHs grow with their host galaxies. This also provides an opportunity for more detailed studies of SMBHs in dwarf galaxies, which can give crucial insight into constraining black hole seed formation models.

  15. A strong magnetic field around the supermassive black hole at the centre of the Galaxy.

    PubMed

    Eatough, R P; Falcke, H; Karuppusamy, R; Lee, K J; Champion, D J; Keane, E F; Desvignes, G; Schnitzeler, D H F M; Spitler, L G; Kramer, M; Klein, B; Bassa, C; Bower, G C; Brunthaler, A; Cognard, I; Deller, A T; Demorest, P B; Freire, P C C; Kraus, A; Lyne, A G; Noutsos, A; Stappers, B; Wex, N

    2013-09-19

    Earth's nearest candidate supermassive black hole lies at the centre of the Milky Way. Its electromagnetic emission is thought to be powered by radiatively inefficient accretion of gas from its environment, which is a standard mode of energy supply for most galactic nuclei. X-ray measurements have already resolved a tenuous hot gas component from which the black hole can be fed. The magnetization of the gas, however, which is a crucial parameter determining the structure of the accretion flow, remains unknown. Strong magnetic fields can influence the dynamics of accretion, remove angular momentum from the infalling gas, expel matter through relativistic jets and lead to synchrotron emission such as that previously observed. Here we report multi-frequency radio measurements of a newly discovered pulsar close to the Galactic Centre and show that the pulsar's unusually large Faraday rotation (the rotation of the plane of polarization of the emission in the presence of an external magnetic field) indicates that there is a dynamically important magnetic field near the black hole. If this field is accreted down to the event horizon it provides enough magnetic flux to explain the observed emission--from radio to X-ray wavelengths--from the black hole. PMID:23945588

  16. A strong magnetic field around the supermassive black hole at the centre of the Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eatough, R. P.; Falcke, H.; Karuppusamy, R.; Lee, K. J.; Champion, D. J.; Keane, E. F.; Desvignes, G.; Schnitzeler, D. H. F. M.; Spitler, L. G.; Kramer, M.; Klein, B.; Bassa, C.; Bower, G. C.; Brunthaler, A.; Cognard, I.; Deller, A. T.; Demorest, P. B.; Freire, P. C. C.; Kraus, A.; Lyne, A. G.; Noutsos, A.; Stappers, B.; Wex, N.

    2013-09-01

    Earth's nearest candidate supermassive black hole lies at the centre of the Milky Way. Its electromagnetic emission is thought to be powered by radiatively inefficient accretion of gas from its environment, which is a standard mode of energy supply for most galactic nuclei. X-ray measurements have already resolved a tenuous hot gas component from which the black hole can be fed. The magnetization of the gas, however, which is a crucial parameter determining the structure of the accretion flow, remains unknown. Strong magnetic fields can influence the dynamics of accretion, remove angular momentum from the infalling gas, expel matter through relativistic jets and lead to synchrotron emission such as that previously observed. Here we report multi-frequency radio measurements of a newly discovered pulsar close to the Galactic Centre and show that the pulsar's unusually large Faraday rotation (the rotation of the plane of polarization of the emission in the presence of an external magnetic field) indicates that there is a dynamically important magnetic field near the black hole. If this field is accreted down to the event horizon it provides enough magnetic flux to explain the observed emission--from radio to X-ray wavelengths--from the black hole.

  17. Astronomical constraints on quantum theories of cold dark matter - II. Supermassive black holes and luminous matter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spivey, S. C.; Musielak, Z. E.; Fry, J. L.

    2015-04-01

    Our previous model of quantum cold dark matter (QCDM) is expanded to include the influence of supermassive black holes located at centres of different galaxies and galactic luminous (baryonic) matter distributions. The inclusion of a black hole to the galactic potential is shown to produce a more concentrated halo with a cuspier core. The addition of a small-scale galactic luminous matter distribution also concentrates the halo, while a large-scale distribution diffuses it; nevertheless, in either case the smooth core of the halo is preserved. Effects caused by including a non-linear scattering term are investigated by solving the Gross-Pitaevskii equation. The obtained results demonstrate that the scattering term produces a rounder and more diffuse density profile. Moreover, adding a sufficiently large black hole in combination with this term results in an even cuspier profile than the black hole alone. As a result of all these additions, our extended QCDM model can be applied to a much larger range of dark matter halo shapes and sizes.

  18. A strong magnetic field around the supermassive black hole at the centre of the Galaxy.

    PubMed

    Eatough, R P; Falcke, H; Karuppusamy, R; Lee, K J; Champion, D J; Keane, E F; Desvignes, G; Schnitzeler, D H F M; Spitler, L G; Kramer, M; Klein, B; Bassa, C; Bower, G C; Brunthaler, A; Cognard, I; Deller, A T; Demorest, P B; Freire, P C C; Kraus, A; Lyne, A G; Noutsos, A; Stappers, B; Wex, N

    2013-09-19

    Earth's nearest candidate supermassive black hole lies at the centre of the Milky Way. Its electromagnetic emission is thought to be powered by radiatively inefficient accretion of gas from its environment, which is a standard mode of energy supply for most galactic nuclei. X-ray measurements have already resolved a tenuous hot gas component from which the black hole can be fed. The magnetization of the gas, however, which is a crucial parameter determining the structure of the accretion flow, remains unknown. Strong magnetic fields can influence the dynamics of accretion, remove angular momentum from the infalling gas, expel matter through relativistic jets and lead to synchrotron emission such as that previously observed. Here we report multi-frequency radio measurements of a newly discovered pulsar close to the Galactic Centre and show that the pulsar's unusually large Faraday rotation (the rotation of the plane of polarization of the emission in the presence of an external magnetic field) indicates that there is a dynamically important magnetic field near the black hole. If this field is accreted down to the event horizon it provides enough magnetic flux to explain the observed emission--from radio to X-ray wavelengths--from the black hole.

  19. Do Nuclear Star Clusters and Supermassive Black Holes Follow the Same Host-Galaxy Correlations?

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Erwin, Peter; Gadotti, Dimitri Alexei

    2012-01-01

    Smore » tudies have suggested that there is a strong correlation between the masses of nuclear star clusters (NSCs) and their host galaxies, a correlation which is said to be an extension of the well-known correlations between supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and their host galaxies. But careful analysis of disk galaxies—including 2D bulge/disk/bar decompositions—shows that whileMBHs correlate with the stellar mass of the bulge component of galaxies, the masses of NSCs correlate much better with the total galaxy stellar mass. In addition, the mass ratio M NSC / M ⋆ ,  tot for NSCs in spirals (at least those with Hubble typesc and later) is typically an order of magnitude smaller than the mass ratio M BH / M ⋆ ,  bul ofMBHs. The absence of a universal “central massive object” correlation argues against common formation and growth mechanisms for bothMBHs and NSCs. We also discuss evidence for a break in the NSC-host galaxy correlation, galaxies with Hubble types earlier thanbc appear to host systematically more massive NSCs than do typesc and later.« less

  20. Sensitive Spitzer Photometry of Supermassive Black Holes at the Final Stage of Adolescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shemmer, Ohad; Netzer, Hagai; Mor, Rivay; Trakhtenbrot, Benny

    2011-05-01

    We propose to obtain sensitive Spitzer snapshot observations of a unique sample of 35 Sloan Digital Sky Survey quasars at redshift 4.8 for which we obtained reliable, Mg II-based determinations of the supermassive black hole (SMBH) mass and normalized accretion rate (L/L_Edd). These quasars appear to mark the final stage of SMBH `adolescence' in the history of the Universe as their SMBHs are significantly less massive and their L/L_Edd values are significantly higher with respect to their counterparts at lower redshifts. Our observations will provide both 1) deep coverage of the fields around these quasars which will be utilized as crucial priors for our approved Herschel/SPIRE observations of these sources, and 2) coverage of the rest-frame optical SEDs of these fast accreting quasars. The results will maximize our ability to measure the star-formation rate in the host galaxies of these quasars using Herschel. We will thus be able to investigate correlations between SMBH growth and star-forming activity in the early Universe. The Spitzer photometry will also provide invaluable information about the shape of the rest-frame optical continuum in these quasars which will be used to search for extreme disk properties that may be signatures of the remarkably high accretion rates in these sources.

  1. Formation of dark matter tori around supermassive black holes via the eccentric Kozai-Lidov mechanism

    SciTech Connect

    Naoz, Smadar; Silk, Joseph

    2014-11-10

    We explore the effects of long-term secular perturbations on the distribution of dark matter particles around supermassive black hole (BH) binaries. We show that in the hierarchical (in separation) three-body problem, one of the BHs and a dark matter particle form an inner binary. Gravitational perturbations from the BH companion, on a much wider orbit, can cause the dark matter particle to reach extremely high eccentricities and even get accreted onto the BH by what is known as the eccentric Kozai-Lidov (EKL) mechanism. We show that this may produce a torus-like configuration for the dark matter distribution around the less massive member of the BH binary. We first consider an intermediate BH (IMBH) in the vicinity of our galactic center, which may be a relic of a past minor merger. We show that if the IMBH is close enough (i.e., near the stellar disk) the EKL mechanism is very efficient in exciting the eccentricity of dark matter particles in near-polar configurations to extremely high values where they are accreted by the IMBH. We show that this mechanism is even more effective if the central BH grows in mass, where we have assumed adiabatic growth. Because near-polar configurations are disrupted, a torus-like shape is formed. We also show that this behavior is also likely to be relevant for supermassive BH binaries. We suggest that if the BHs are spinning, the accreted dark matter particles may linger in the ergosphere, and thereby generate self-annihilations and produce an indirect signature of potential interest.

  2. EXPLORING THE UNUSUALLY HIGH BLACK-HOLE-TO-BULGE MASS RATIOS IN NGC 4342 AND NGC 4291: THE ASYNCHRONOUS GROWTH OF BULGES AND BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdan, Akos; Forman, William R.; Kraft, Ralph P.; Li, Zhiyuan; Vikhlinin, Alexey; Nulsen, Paul E. J.; Jones, Christine; Zhuravleva, Irina; Churazov, Eugene; Mihos, J. Christopher; Harding, Paul; Guo, Qi; Schindler, Sabine

    2012-07-10

    We study two nearby early-type galaxies, NGC 4342 and NGC 4291, that host unusually massive black holes relative to their low stellar mass. The observed black-hole-to-bulge mass ratios of NGC 4342 and NGC 4291 are 6.9{sup +3.8}{sub -2.3}% and 1.9% {+-} 0.6%, respectively, which significantly exceed the typical observed ratio of {approx}0.2%. As a consequence of the exceedingly large black-hole-to-bulge mass ratios, NGC 4342 and NGC 4291 are Almost-Equal-To 5.1{sigma} and Almost-Equal-To 3.4{sigma} outliers from the M{sub .}-M{sub bulge} scaling relation, respectively. In this paper, we explore the origin of the unusually high black-hole-to-bulge mass ratio. Based on Chandra X-ray observations of the hot gas content of NGC 4342 and NGC 4291, we compute gravitating mass profiles, and conclude that both galaxies reside in massive dark matter halos, which extend well beyond the stellar light. The presence of dark matter halos around NGC 4342 and NGC 4291 and a deep optical image of the environment of NGC 4342 indicate that tidal stripping, in which {approx}> 90% of the stellar mass was lost, cannot explain the observed high black-hole-to-bulge mass ratios. Therefore, we conclude that these galaxies formed with low stellar masses, implying that the bulge and black hole did not grow in tandem. We also find that the black hole mass correlates well with the properties of the dark matter halo, suggesting that dark matter halos may play a major role in regulating the growth of the supermassive black holes.

  3. Cosmological evolution of supermassive black holes in galactic centers unveiled by hard X-ray observations

    PubMed Central

    UEDA, Yoshihiro

    2015-01-01

    We review the current understanding of the cosmological evolution of supermassive black holes in galactic centers elucidated by X-ray surveys of active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Hard X-ray observations at energies above 2 keV are the most efficient and complete tools to find “obscured” AGNs, which are dominant populations among all AGNs. Combinations of surveys with various flux limits and survey area have enabled us to determine the space number density and obscuration properties of AGNs as a function of luminosity and redshift. The results have essentially solved the origin of the X-ray background in the energy band below ∼10 keV. The downsizing (or anti-hierarchical) evolution that more luminous AGNs have the space-density peak at higher redshifts has been discovered, challenging theories of galaxy and black hole formation. Finally, we summarize unresolved issues on AGN evolution and prospects for future X-ray missions. PMID:25971656

  4. Cosmological evolution of supermassive black holes in galactic centers unveiled by hard X-ray observations.

    PubMed

    Ueda, Yoshihiro

    2015-01-01

    We review the current understanding of the cosmological evolution of supermassive black holes in galactic centers elucidated by X-ray surveys of active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Hard X-ray observations at energies above 2 keV are the most efficient and complete tools to find "obscured" AGNs, which are dominant populations among all AGNs. Combinations of surveys with various flux limits and survey area have enabled us to determine the space number density and obscuration properties of AGNs as a function of luminosity and redshift. The results have essentially solved the origin of the X-ray background in the energy band below ∼10 keV. The downsizing (or anti-hierarchical) evolution that more luminous AGNs have the space-density peak at higher redshifts has been discovered, challenging theories of galaxy and black hole formation. Finally, we summarize unresolved issues on AGN evolution and prospects for future X-ray missions.

  5. Cosmological evolution of supermassive black holes in galactic centers unveiled by hard X-ray observations.

    PubMed

    Ueda, Yoshihiro

    2015-01-01

    We review the current understanding of the cosmological evolution of supermassive black holes in galactic centers elucidated by X-ray surveys of active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Hard X-ray observations at energies above 2 keV are the most efficient and complete tools to find "obscured" AGNs, which are dominant populations among all AGNs. Combinations of surveys with various flux limits and survey area have enabled us to determine the space number density and obscuration properties of AGNs as a function of luminosity and redshift. The results have essentially solved the origin of the X-ray background in the energy band below ∼10 keV. The downsizing (or anti-hierarchical) evolution that more luminous AGNs have the space-density peak at higher redshifts has been discovered, challenging theories of galaxy and black hole formation. Finally, we summarize unresolved issues on AGN evolution and prospects for future X-ray missions. PMID:25971656

  6. Rapid Formation of Supermassive Black Hole Binaries in Galaxy Mergers with Gas

    SciTech Connect

    Mayer, L.; Kazantzidis, S.; Madau, P.; Colpi, M.; Quinn, T.; Wadsley, J.; /McMaster U.

    2008-03-24

    Supermassive black holes (SMBHs) are a ubiquitous component of the nuclei of galaxies. It is normally assumed that, following the merger of two massive galaxies, a SMBH binary will form, shrink due to stellar or gas dynamical processes and ultimately coalesce by emitting a burst of gravitational waves. However, so far it has not been possible to show how two SMBHs bind during a galaxy merger with gas due to the difficulty of modeling a wide range of spatial scales. Here we report hydrodynamical simulations that track the formation of a SMBH binary down to scales of a few light years following the collision between two spiral galaxies. A massive, turbulent nuclear gaseous disk arises as a result of the galaxy merger. The black holes form an eccentric binary in the disk in less than a million years as a result of the gravitational drag from the gas rather than from the stars.

  7. Low-mass black holes as the remnants of primordial black hole formation.

    PubMed

    Greene, Jenny E

    2012-01-01

    Bridging the gap between the approximately ten solar mass 'stellar mass' black holes and the 'supermassive' black holes of millions to billions of solar masses are the elusive 'intermediate-mass' black holes. Their discovery is key to understanding whether supermassive black holes can grow from stellar-mass black holes or whether a more exotic process accelerated their growth soon after the Big Bang. Currently, tentative evidence suggests that the progenitors of supermassive black holes were formed as ∼10(4)-10(5) M(⊙) black holes via the direct collapse of gas. Ongoing searches for intermediate-mass black holes at galaxy centres will help shed light on this formation mechanism.

  8. Low-mass black holes as the remnants of primordial black hole formation.

    PubMed

    Greene, Jenny E

    2012-01-01

    Bridging the gap between the approximately ten solar mass 'stellar mass' black holes and the 'supermassive' black holes of millions to billions of solar masses are the elusive 'intermediate-mass' black holes. Their discovery is key to understanding whether supermassive black holes can grow from stellar-mass black holes or whether a more exotic process accelerated their growth soon after the Big Bang. Currently, tentative evidence suggests that the progenitors of supermassive black holes were formed as ∼10(4)-10(5) M(⊙) black holes via the direct collapse of gas. Ongoing searches for intermediate-mass black holes at galaxy centres will help shed light on this formation mechanism. PMID:23250434

  9. SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN THE HIERARCHICAL UNIVERSE: A GENERAL FRAMEWORK AND OBSERVATIONAL TESTS

    SciTech Connect

    Shen Yue

    2009-10-10

    We present a simple framework for the growth and evolution of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in the hierarchical structure formation paradigm, adopting the general idea that quasar activity is triggered in major mergers. In our model, black hole accretion is triggered during major mergers (mass ratio approx>0.3) of host dark matter halos. The successive evolution of quasar luminosities follows a universal light-curve (LC) form during which the growth of the SMBH is modeled self-consistently: an initial exponential growth at a constant Eddington ratio of order unity until it reaches the peak luminosity, followed by a power-law decay. Assuming that the peak luminosity correlates with the post-merger halo mass, we convolve the LC with the triggering rate of quasar activity to predict the quasar luminosity function (LF). Our model reproduces the observed LF at 0.5 < z < 4.5 for the full luminosity ranges probed by current optical and X-ray surveys. At z < 0.5, our model underestimates the LF at L {sub bol} < 10{sup 45} erg s{sup -1}, allowing room for the active galactic nuclei (AGNs) activity triggered by secular processes instead of major mergers. At z > 4.5, in order to reproduce the observed quasar abundance, the typical quasar hosts must shift to lower mass halos, and/or minor mergers can also trigger quasar activity. Our model reproduces both the observed redshift evolution and luminosity dependence of the linear bias of quasar/AGN clustering. Due to the scatter between instantaneous luminosity and halo mass, quasar/AGN clustering weakly depends on luminosity at low-to-intermediate luminosities; but the linear bias rises rapidly with luminosity at the high luminosity end and at high redshift. In our model, the Eddington ratio distribution is roughly lognormal, which broadens and shifts to lower mean values from high luminosity quasars (L {sub bol} approx> 10{sup 46} erg s{sup -1}) to low-luminosity AGNs (L {sub bol} approx< 10{sup 45} erg s{sup -1}), in good

  10. THE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE MASS-SPHEROID STELLAR MASS RELATION FOR SERSIC AND CORE-SERSIC GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, Nicholas; Graham, Alister W; Schombert, James

    2013-05-01

    We have examined the relationship between supermassive black hole mass (M{sub BH}) and the stellar mass of the host spheroid (M{sub sph,*}) for a sample of 75 nearby galaxies. To derive the spheroid stellar masses we used improved Two Micron All Sky Survey K{sub s}-band photometry from the ARCHANGEL photometry pipeline. Dividing our sample into core-Sersic and Sersic galaxies, we find that they are described by very different M{sub BH}-M{sub sph,*} relations. For core-Sersic galaxies-which are typically massive and luminous, with M{sub BH} {approx}> 2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 8} M{sub Sun }-we find M{sub BH}{proportional_to} M{sub sph,*}{sup 0.97{+-}0.14}, consistent with other literature relations. However, for the Sersic galaxies-with typically lower masses, M{sub sph,*} {approx}< 3 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 10} M{sub Sun }-we find M{sub BH}{proportional_to}M{sub sph,*}{sup 2.22{+-}0.58}, a dramatically steeper slope that differs by more than 2 standard deviations. This relation confirms that, for Sersic galaxies, M{sub BH} is not a constant fraction of M{sub sph,*}. Sersic galaxies can grow via the accretion of gas which fuels both star formation and the central black hole, as well as through merging. Their black hole grows significantly more rapidly than their host spheroid, prior to growth by dry merging events that produce core-Sersic galaxies, where the black hole and spheroid grow in lockstep. We have additionally compared our Sersic M{sub BH}-M{sub sph,*} relation with the corresponding relation for nuclear star clusters, confirming that the two classes of central massive object follow significantly different scaling relations.

  11. SONGLINES FROM DIRECT COLLAPSE SEED BLACK HOLES: EFFECTS OF X-RAYS ON BLACK HOLE GROWTH AND STELLAR POPULATIONS

    SciTech Connect

    Aykutalp, Aycin; Wise, John H.; Spaans, Marco; Meijerink, Rowin

    2014-12-20

    In the last decade, the growth of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) has been intricately linked to galaxy formation and evolution and is a key ingredient in the assembly of galaxies. To investigate the origin of SMBHs, we perform cosmological simulations that target the direct collapse black hole seed formation scenario in the presence of two different strong Lyman-Werner (LW) background fields. These simulations include the X-ray irradiation from a central massive black hole (MBH), H{sub 2} self-shielding, and stellar feedback from metal-free and metal-enriched stars. We find in both simulations that local X-ray feedback induces metal-free star formation ∼0.5 Myr after the MBH forms. The MBH accretion rate reaches a maximum of 10{sup –3} M {sub ☉} yr{sup –1} in both simulations. However, the duty cycle differs and is derived to be 6% and 50% for the high and low LW cases, respectively. The MBH in the high LW case grows only ∼6% in 100 Myr compared to 16% in the low LW case. We find that the maximum accretion rate is determined by the local gas thermodynamics, whereas the duty cycle is determined by the large-scale gas dynamics and gas reservoir. We conclude that radiative feedback from the central MBH plays an important role in star formation in the nuclear regions and stifling initial MBH growth relative to the typical Eddington rate argument, and that initial MBH growth might be affected by the local LW radiation field.

  12. Action growth for AdS black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cai, Rong-Gen; Ruan, Shan-Ming; Wang, Shao-Jiang; Yang, Run-Qiu; Peng, Rong-Hui

    2016-09-01

    Recently a Complexity-Action (CA) duality conjecture has been proposed, which relates the quantum complexity of a holographic boundary state to the action of a Wheeler-DeWitt (WDW) patch in the anti-de Sitter (AdS) bulk. In this paper we further investigate the duality conjecture for stationary AdS black holes and derive some exact results for the growth rate of action within the Wheeler-DeWitt (WDW) patch at late time approximation, which is supposed to be dual to the growth rate of quantum complexity of holographic state. Based on the results from the general D-dimensional Reissner-Nordström (RN)-AdS black hole, rotating/charged Bañados-Teitelboim-Zanelli (BTZ) black hole, Kerr-AdS black hole and charged Gauss-Bonnet-AdS black hole, we present a universal formula for the action growth expressed in terms of some thermodynamical quantities associated with the outer and inner horizons of the AdS black holes. And we leave the conjecture unchanged that the stationary AdS black hole in Einstein gravity is the fastest computer in nature.

  13. Mergers of Supermassive Black Hole Binaries in Gas-rich Environments: Models of Event Rates and Electromagnetic Signatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanaka, Takamitsu

    2011-12-01

    Supermassive black holes permeate the observable Universe, residing in the nuclei of all or nearly all nearby massive galaxies and powering luminous quasars as far as ten billion light years away. These monstrous objects must grow through a combination of gas accretion and mergers of less massive black holes. The direct detection of the mergers by future gravitational-wave detectors will be a momentous scientific achievement, providing tests of general relativity and revealing the cosmic evolution of supermassive black holes. An additional --- and arguably equally rewarding --- challenge is the concomitant observation of merging supermassive black holes with both gravitational and electromagneticwaves. Such synergistic, "multi-messenger" studies can probe the expansion history of the Universe and shed light on the details of accretion astrophysics. This thesis examines the mergers of supermassive black hole binaries and the observable signatures of these events. First, we consider the formation scenarios for the earliest supermassive black holes. This investigation is motivated by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey observation of a quasar that appears to be powered by a supermassive black hole with a mass of billions of solar masses, already in place one billion years after the Big Bang. Second, we develop semianalytic, time-dependent-models for the thermal emission from circumbinary gas disks around merging black holes. Our calculations corroborate the qualitative conclusion of a previous study that for black hole mergers detectable by a space-based gravitational-wave observatory, a gas disk near the merger remnant may exhibit a dramatic brightening of soft X-rays on timescales of several years. Our results suggest that this "afterglow" may become detectable more quickly after the merger than previously estimated. Third, we investigate whether these afterglow episodes could be observed serendipitously by forthcoming wide-field, high-cadence electromagnetic surveys

  14. Stationary observers on the symmetry axis of rotating supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrásek, Martin; Hledík, Stanislav

    2007-12-01

    Generalizing the results obtained by Semerák, O. (1993) [Semerák, O. (1993), Stationary Frames in the Kerr Field, Gen. Relativity Gravitation, 10 (1045)], an interesting difference between the Kerr and Kerr-de Sitter geometries has been found. In the case of freely falling stationary observers located on the axis of symmetry, rotating supermassive black holes (not necessarily fast rotating) behave differently from the same bodies for which the present value of cosmological constant is not included. An interesting family of "freely falling stationary observers" is described.

  15. SIMPLE FIT OF DATA RELATING SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE MASS TO GALAXY PITCH ANGLE

    SciTech Connect

    Ringermacher, Harry I.; Mead, Lawrence R.

    2009-06-15

    Seigar et al. have recently demonstrated a new, tight correlation between galactic central supermassive black hole (BH) mass and the pitch angle of the spiral arm in disk galaxies which they attribute to other indirect correlations. They fit a double power law, governed by five parameters, to the BH mass as a function of pitch. Noting the features of their fitted curve, we show that a simple linear proportion of the BH mass to the cotangent of the pitch angle can obtain the same fit, within error. Such a direct, elegant fit may help shed light on the nature of the correlation.

  16. Gravitational radiation from a spinning compact object around a supermassive Kerr black hole in circular orbit

    SciTech Connect

    Han Wenbiao

    2010-10-15

    The gravitational waves and energy radiation from a spinning compact object with stellar mass in a circular orbit in the equatorial plane of a supermassive Kerr black hole are investigated in this paper. The effect of how the spin acts on energy and angular moment fluxes is discussed in detail. The calculation results indicate that the spin of a small body should be considered in waveform-template production for the upcoming gravitational wave detections. It is clear that when the direction of spin axes is the same as the orbitally angular momentum ('positive' spin), spin can decrease the energy fluxes which radiate to infinity. For antidirection spin ('negative'), the energy fluxes to infinity can be enlarged. And the relations between fluxes (both infinity and horizon) and spin look like quadratic functions. From frequency shift due to spin, we estimate the wave-phase accumulation during the inspiraling process of the particle. We find that the time of particle inspiral into the black hole is longer for positive spin and shorter for negative compared with the nonspinning particle. Especially, for extreme spin value, the energy radiation near the horizon of the extreme Kerr black hole is much more than that for the nonspinning one. And consequently, the maximum binging energy of the extreme spinning particle is much larger than that of the nonspinning particle.

  17. A gas cloud on its way towards the supermassive black hole at the Galactic Centre.

    PubMed

    Gillessen, S; Genzel, R; Fritz, T K; Quataert, E; Alig, C; Burkert, A; Cuadra, J; Eisenhauer, F; Pfuhl, O; Dodds-Eden, K; Gammie, C F; Ott, T

    2012-01-01

    Measurements of stellar orbits provide compelling evidence that the compact radio source Sagittarius A* at the Galactic Centre is a black hole four million times the mass of the Sun. With the exception of modest X-ray and infrared flares, Sgr A* is surprisingly faint, suggesting that the accretion rate and radiation efficiency near the event horizon are currently very low. Here we report the presence of a dense gas cloud approximately three times the mass of Earth that is falling into the accretion zone of Sgr A*. Our observations tightly constrain the cloud's orbit to be highly eccentric, with an innermost radius of approach of only ∼3,100 times the event horizon that will be reached in 2013. Over the past three years the cloud has begun to disrupt, probably mainly through tidal shearing arising from the black hole's gravitational force. The cloud's dynamic evolution and radiation in the next few years will probe the properties of the accretion flow and the feeding processes of the supermassive black hole. The kilo-electronvolt X-ray emission of Sgr A* may brighten significantly when the cloud reaches pericentre. There may also be a giant radiation flare several years from now if the cloud breaks up and its fragments feed gas into the central accretion zone. PMID:22170607

  18. Further evidence for a supermassive black hole mass-pitch angle relation

    SciTech Connect

    Berrier, Joel C.; Kennefick, Daniel; Kennefick, Julia D.; Hartley, Matthew; Lacy, Claud H. S.; Davis, Benjamin L.; Barrows, Robert Scott; Shields, Doug; Seigar, Marc S.; Bentz, Misty C.

    2013-06-01

    We present new and stronger evidence for a previously reported relationship between galactic spiral arm pitch angle P (a measure of the tightness of spiral structure) and the mass M {sub BH} of a disk galaxy's nuclear supermassive black hole (SMBH). We use an improved method to accurately measure the spiral arm pitch angle in disk galaxies to generate quantitative data on this morphological feature for 34 galaxies with directly measured black hole masses. We find a relation of log (M/M {sub ☉}) = (8.21 ± 0.16) – (0.062 ± 0.009)P. This method is compared with other means of estimating black hole mass to determine its effectiveness and usefulness relative to other existing relations. We argue that such a relationship is predicted by leading theories of spiral structure in disk galaxies, including the density wave theory. We propose this relationship as a tool for estimating SMBH masses in disk galaxies. This tool is potentially superior when compared to other methods for this class of galaxy and has the advantage of being unambiguously measurable from imaging data alone.

  19. ON THE HYDRODYNAMIC INTERPLAY BETWEEN A YOUNG NUCLEAR STARBURST AND A CENTRAL SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE

    SciTech Connect

    Hueyotl-Zahuantitla, Filiberto; Tenorio-Tagle, Guillermo; Silich, Sergiy; Wuensch, Richard; Palous, Jan

    2010-06-10

    We present one-dimensional numerical simulations, which consider the effects of radiative cooling and gravity on the hydrodynamics of the matter reinserted by stellar winds and supernovae within young nuclear starbursts (NSBs) with a central supermassive black hole (SMBH). The simulations confirm our previous semi-analytic results for low-energetic starbursts, evolving in a quasi-adiabatic regime, and extend them to more powerful starbursts evolving in the catastrophic cooling regime. The simulations show a bimodal hydrodynamic solution in all cases. They present a quasi-stationary accretion flow onto the black hole, defined by the matter reinserted by massive stars within the stagnation volume and a stationary starburst wind, driven by the high thermal pressure acquired in the region between the stagnation and the starburst radii. In the catastrophic cooling regime, the stagnation radius rapidly approaches the surface of the starburst region, as one considers more massive starbursts. This leads to larger accretion rates onto the SMBH and concurrently to powerful winds able to inhibit interstellar matter from approaching the NSB. Our self-consistent model thus establishes a direct physical link between the SMBH accretion rate and the nuclear star formation activity of the host galaxy and provides a good upper limit to the accretion rate onto the central black hole.

  20. Active galaxies. A strong magnetic field in the jet base of a supermassive black hole.

    PubMed

    Martí-Vidal, Ivan; Muller, Sébastien; Vlemmings, Wouter; Horellou, Cathy; Aalto, Susanne

    2015-04-17

    Active galactic nuclei (AGN) host some of the most energetic phenomena in the universe. AGN are thought to be powered by accretion of matter onto a rotating disk that surrounds a supermassive black hole. Jet streams can be boosted in energy near the event horizon of the black hole and then flow outward along the rotation axis of the disk. The mechanism that forms such a jet and guides it over scales from a few light-days up to millions of light-years remains uncertain, but magnetic fields are thought to play a critical role. Using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), we have detected a polarization signal (Faraday rotation) related to the strong magnetic field at the jet base of a distant AGN, PKS 1830-211. The amount of Faraday rotation (rotation measure) is proportional to the integral of the magnetic field strength along the line of sight times the density of electrons. The high rotation measures derived suggest magnetic fields of at least tens of Gauss (and possibly considerably higher) on scales of the order of light-days (0.01 parsec) from the black hole. PMID:25883352

  1. Active galaxies. A strong magnetic field in the jet base of a supermassive black hole.

    PubMed

    Martí-Vidal, Ivan; Muller, Sébastien; Vlemmings, Wouter; Horellou, Cathy; Aalto, Susanne

    2015-04-17

    Active galactic nuclei (AGN) host some of the most energetic phenomena in the universe. AGN are thought to be powered by accretion of matter onto a rotating disk that surrounds a supermassive black hole. Jet streams can be boosted in energy near the event horizon of the black hole and then flow outward along the rotation axis of the disk. The mechanism that forms such a jet and guides it over scales from a few light-days up to millions of light-years remains uncertain, but magnetic fields are thought to play a critical role. Using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), we have detected a polarization signal (Faraday rotation) related to the strong magnetic field at the jet base of a distant AGN, PKS 1830-211. The amount of Faraday rotation (rotation measure) is proportional to the integral of the magnetic field strength along the line of sight times the density of electrons. The high rotation measures derived suggest magnetic fields of at least tens of Gauss (and possibly considerably higher) on scales of the order of light-days (0.01 parsec) from the black hole.

  2. A gas cloud on its way towards the supermassive black hole at the Galactic Centre.

    PubMed

    Gillessen, S; Genzel, R; Fritz, T K; Quataert, E; Alig, C; Burkert, A; Cuadra, J; Eisenhauer, F; Pfuhl, O; Dodds-Eden, K; Gammie, C F; Ott, T

    2011-12-14

    Measurements of stellar orbits provide compelling evidence that the compact radio source Sagittarius A* at the Galactic Centre is a black hole four million times the mass of the Sun. With the exception of modest X-ray and infrared flares, Sgr A* is surprisingly faint, suggesting that the accretion rate and radiation efficiency near the event horizon are currently very low. Here we report the presence of a dense gas cloud approximately three times the mass of Earth that is falling into the accretion zone of Sgr A*. Our observations tightly constrain the cloud's orbit to be highly eccentric, with an innermost radius of approach of only ∼3,100 times the event horizon that will be reached in 2013. Over the past three years the cloud has begun to disrupt, probably mainly through tidal shearing arising from the black hole's gravitational force. The cloud's dynamic evolution and radiation in the next few years will probe the properties of the accretion flow and the feeding processes of the supermassive black hole. The kilo-electronvolt X-ray emission of Sgr A* may brighten significantly when the cloud reaches pericentre. There may also be a giant radiation flare several years from now if the cloud breaks up and its fragments feed gas into the central accretion zone.

  3. Gas squeezing during the merger of a supermassive black hole binary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerioli, Alice; Lodato, Giuseppe; Price, Daniel J.

    2016-03-01

    We study accretion rates during the gravitational wave-driven merger of a binary supermassive black hole embedded in an accretion disc, formed by gas driven to the centre of the galaxy. We use 3D simulations performed with PHANTOM, a smoothed particle hydrodynamics code. Contrary to previous investigations, we show that there is evidence of a `squeezing phenomenon', caused by the compression of the inner disc gas when the secondary black hole spirals towards the primary. This causes an increase in the accretion rates that always exceed the Eddington rate. We have studied the main features of the phenomenon for a mass ratio q = 10-3 between the black holes, including the effects of numerical resolution, the secondary accretion radius and the disc thickness. With our disc model with a low aspect ratio, we show that the mass expelled from the orbit of the secondary is negligible (<5 per cent of the initial disc mass), different to the findings of previous 2D simulations with thicker discs. The increase in the accretion rates in the last stages of the merger leads to an increase in luminosity, making it possible to detect an electromagnetic precursor of the gravitational wave signal emitted by the coalescence.

  4. Dark-matter haloes and the M-σ relation for supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larkin, Adam C.; McLaughlin, Dean E.

    2016-10-01

    We develop models of two-component spherical galaxies to establish scaling relations linking the properties of spheroids at z = 0 (total stellar masses, effective radii Re and velocity dispersions within Re) to the properties of their dark-matter haloes at both z = 0 and higher redshifts. Our main motivation is the widely accepted idea that the accretion-driven growth of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in protogalaxies is limited by quasar-mode feedback and gas blow-out. The SMBH masses, MBH, should then be connected to the dark-matter potential wells at the redshift zqso of the blow-out. We specifically consider the example of a power-law dependence on the maximum circular speed in a protogalactic dark-matter halo: M_{BH}∝ V^4_{d,pk}, as could be expected if quasar-mode feedback were momentum-driven. For haloes with a given Vd,pk at a given zqso ≥ 0, our model scaling relations give a typical stellar velocity dispersion σap(Re) at z = 0. Thus, they transform a theoretical MBH-Vd,pk relation into a prediction for an observable MBH-σap(Re) relation. We find the latter to be distinctly non-linear in log-log space. Its shape depends on the generic redshift evolution of haloes in a Λ cold dark matter cosmology and the systematic variation of stellar-to-dark matter mass fraction at z = 0, in addition to any assumptions about the physics underlying the MBH-Vd,pk relation. Despite some clear limitations of the form we use for MBH versus Vd,pk, and even though we do not include any SMBH growth through dry mergers at low redshift, our results for MBH-σap(Re) compare well to data for local early types if we take zqso ˜ 2-4.

  5. Unbound Debris Streams and Remnants Resulting from the Tidal Disruptions of Stars by Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guillochon, James; McCourt, Michael; Chen, Xian; Johnson, Michael D.; Berger, Edo

    2016-05-01

    The kinetic energy of a star in orbit about a supermassive black hole is a significant fraction of its rest mass energy when its periapse is comparable to its tidal radius. Upon its destruction, a fraction of this energy is extracted and injected into the stellar debris, half of which becomes unbound from the black hole, with the fastest material moving at ˜ 0.03c. In this paper, we present a formalism for determining the fate of these unbound debris streams (UDSs) as they depart from the black hole and interact with the surrounding gas. As the density and velocity varies along the length of a UDS, we find that hydrodynamical drag quickly shapes UDSs into loop-like structures, with the densest portions of the streams leading portions of lower density. As UDSs travel outwards, their drag against the ISM increases quadratically with distance, which causes UDSs to deposit their momentum and energy into the ambient medium before the surrounding shocked ISM has a chance to cool. This sudden injection of ˜ {10}50 erg into the ambient medium generates a Sedov-like unbound debris remnant (UDR) that mimics supernova remnants (SNRs) in energetics and appearance, accelerates particles which will produce cosmic rays and synchrotron emission, and provides momentum feedback into the molecular clouds surrounding a black hole. We estimate that a few of these UDRs might be present within a couple degrees of the Galactic Center masquerading as SNRs, and that the UDR scenario is a plausible explanation for Sgr A east.

  6. Direct collapse to supermassive black hole seeds: comparing the AMR and SPH approaches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Yang; Nagamine, Kentaro; Shlosman, Isaac

    2016-07-01

    We provide detailed comparison between the adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) code ENZO-2.4 and the smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH)/N-body code GADGET-3 in the context of isolated or cosmological direct baryonic collapse within dark matter (DM) haloes to form supermassive black holes. Gas flow is examined by following evolution of basic parameters of accretion flows. Both codes show an overall agreement in the general features of the collapse; however, many subtle differences exist. For isolated models, the codes increase their spatial and mass resolutions at different pace, which leads to substantially earlier collapse in SPH than in AMR cases due to higher gravitational resolution in GADGET-3. In cosmological runs, the AMR develops a slightly higher baryonic resolution than SPH during halo growth via cold accretion permeated by mergers. Still, both codes agree in the build-up of DM and baryonic structures. However, with the onset of collapse, this difference in mass and spatial resolution is amplified, so evolution of SPH models begins to lag behind. Such a delay can have effect on formation/destruction rate of H2 due to UV background, and on basic properties of host haloes. Finally, isolated non-cosmological models in spinning haloes, with spin parameter λ ˜ 0.01-0.07, show delayed collapse for greater λ, but pace of this increase is faster for AMR. Within our simulation set-up, GADGET-3 requires significantly larger computational resources than ENZO-2.4 during collapse, and needs similar resources, during the pre-collapse, cosmological structure formation phase. Yet it benefits from substantially higher gravitational force and hydrodynamic resolutions, except at the end of collapse.

  7. Supermassive black hole seed formation at high redshifts: long-term evolution of the direct collapse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shlosman, Isaac; Choi, Jun-Hwan; Begelman, Mitchell C.; Nagamine, Kentaro

    2016-02-01

    We use cosmological adaptive mesh refinement code ENZO zoom-in simulations to study the long-term evolution of the collapsing gas within dark matter haloes at z. This direct collapse process is a leading candidate for rapid formation of supermassive black hole (SMBH) seeds. To circumvent the Courant condition at small radii, we apply the sink particle method, focusing on evolution on scales ˜0.01-10 pc. The collapse proceeds in two stages, with the secondary runaway happening within the central 10 pc. The sink particles form when the collapsing gas requires additional refinement of the grid size at the highest refinement level. Their growth is negligible with the sole exception of the central seed which grows dramatically to Mseed ˜ 2 × 106 M⊙ in ˜2 Myr, confirming the feasibility of this path to the SMBH. The variability of angular momentum in the accreted gas results in the formation of two misaligned discs. Both discs lie within the Roche limit of the central seed. While the inner disc is geometrically thin and weakly asymmetric, the outer disc flares due to turbulent motions as a result of the massive inflow along a pair of penetrating filaments. The filamentary inflow determines the dominant Fourier modes in this disc - these modes have a non-self-gravitational origin. We do not confirm that m = 1 is a dominant mode that drives the inflow in the presence of a central massive object. The overall configuration appears to be generic, and is expected to form when the central seed becomes sufficiently massive.

  8. Supermassive black hole formation at high redshifts via direct collapse in a cosmological context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, Jun-Hwan; Shlosman, Isaac; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    2015-07-01

    We study the early stage of the formation of seed supermassive black holes via direct collapse in dark matter (DM) haloes, in the cosmological context. We perform high-resolution zoom-in simulations of such collapse at high z. Using the adaptive mesh refinement code ENZO, we resolve the formation and growth of a DM halo, until its virial temperature reaches ˜104 K, atomic cooling turns on, and collapse ensues. We demonstrate that direct collapse proceeds in two stages, although they are not well separated. The first stage is triggered by the onset of atomic cooling, and leads to rapidly increasing accretion rate with radius, from dot{M}˜ 0.1 M_{⊙} yr^{-1} at the halo virial radius to few M⊙ yr-1, around the scale radius Rs ˜ 30 pc of the NFW DM density profile. The second stage of the collapse commences when the gas density takes precedence over the DM density. This is associated with the gas decoupling from the DM gravitational potential. The ensuing collapse approximates that of an isothermal sphere with dot{M}{(r)}˜ const. We confirm that the gas loses its angular momentum through non-axisymmetric perturbations and gravitational torques, to overcome the centrifugal barrier. During the course of the collapse, this angular momentum transfer process happens on nearly all spatial scales, and the angular momentum vector of the gas varies with position and time. Collapsing gas also exhibits supersonic turbulent motions which suppress gas fragmentation, and are characterized by density PDF consisting of a lognormal part and a high-density power-law tail.

  9. X-RAY CONSTRAINTS ON THE LOCAL SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE OCCUPATION FRACTION

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Brendan P.; Gallo, Elena; Baldassare, Vivienne; Greene, Jenny E.; Kelly, Brandon C.; Treu, Tommaso; Woo, Jong-Hak

    2015-01-20

    Distinct seed formation mechanisms are imprinted upon the fraction of dwarf galaxies currently containing a central supermassive black hole. Seeding by Population III remnants is expected to produce a higher occupation fraction than is generated with direct gas collapse precursors. Chandra observations of nearby early-type galaxies can directly detect even low-level supermassive black hole activity, and the active fraction immediately provides a firm lower limit to the occupation fraction. Here, we use the volume-limited AMUSE surveys of ∼200 optically selected early-type galaxies to characterize simultaneously, for the first time, the occupation fraction and the scaling of L {sub X} with M {sub star}, accounting for intrinsic scatter, measurement uncertainties, and X-ray limits. For early-type galaxies with M {sub star} < 10{sup 10} M {sub ☉}, we obtain a lower limit to the occupation fraction of >20% (at 95% confidence), but full occupation cannot be excluded. The preferred dependence of log L {sub X} upon log M {sub star} has a slope of ∼0.7-0.8, consistent with the ''downsizing'' trend previously identified from the AMUSE data set, and a uniform Eddington efficiency is disfavored at ∼2σ. We provide guidelines for the future precision with which these parameters may be refined with larger or more sensitive samples.

  10. Suppressing star formation in quiescent galaxies with supermassive black hole winds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheung, Edmond; Bundy, Kevin; Cappellari, Michele; Peirani, Sébastien; Rujopakarn, Wiphu; Westfall, Kyle; Yan, Renbin; Bershady, Matthew; Greene, Jenny E.; Heckman, Timothy M.; Drory, Niv; Law, David R.; Masters, Karen L.; Thomas, Daniel; Wake, David A.; Weijmans, Anne-Marie; Rubin, Kate; Belfiore, Francesco; Vulcani, Benedetta; Chen, Yan-Mei; Zhang, Kai; Gelfand, Joseph D.; Bizyaev, Dmitry; Roman-Lopes, A.; Schneider, Donald P.

    2016-05-01

    Quiescent galaxies with little or no ongoing star formation dominate the population of galaxies with masses above 2 × 1010 times that of the Sun; the number of quiescent galaxies has increased by a factor of about 25 over the past ten billion years (refs 1, 2, 3, 4). Once star formation has been shut down, perhaps during the quasar phase of rapid accretion onto a supermassive black hole, an unknown mechanism must remove or heat the gas that is subsequently accreted from either stellar mass loss or mergers and that would otherwise cool to form stars. Energy output from a black hole accreting at a low rate has been proposed, but observational evidence for this in the form of expanding hot gas shells is indirect and limited to radio galaxies at the centres of clusters, which are too rare to explain the vast majority of the quiescent population. Here we report bisymmetric emission features co-aligned with strong ionized-gas velocity gradients from which we infer the presence of centrally driven winds in typical quiescent galaxies that host low-luminosity active nuclei. These galaxies are surprisingly common, accounting for as much as ten per cent of the quiescent population with masses around 2 × 1010 times that of the Sun. In a prototypical example, we calculate that the energy input from the galaxy’s low-level active supermassive black hole is capable of driving the observed wind, which contains sufficient mechanical energy to heat ambient, cooler gas (also detected) and thereby suppress star formation.

  11. Warping and tearing of misaligned circumbinary disks around eccentric supermassive black hole binaries

    SciTech Connect

    Hayasaki, K.; Sohn, B.W.; Jung, T.; Zhao, G.; Okazaki, A.T.; Naito, T. E-mail: bwsohn@kasi.re.kr E-mail: thjung@kasi.re.kr E-mail: tsuguya@ygu.ac.jp

    2015-07-01

    We study the warping and tearing of a geometrically thin, non-self-gravitating disk surrounding binary supermassive black holes on an eccentric orbit. The circumbinary disk is significantly misaligned with the binary orbital plane, and is subject to the time-dependent tidal torques. In principle, such a disk is warped and precesses, and is torn into mutually misaligned rings in the region, where the tidal precession torques are stronger than the local viscous torques. We derive the tidal-warp and tearing radii of the misaligned circumbinary disks around eccentric SMBH binaries. We find that in disks with the viscosity parameter α larger than a critical value depending on the disk aspect ratio, the disk warping appears outside the tearing radius. This condition is expressed for small amplitude warps as α > √H/(3r) for H/r∼<0.1, where H is the disk scale height. If α < √H/(3r), only the disk tearing occurs because the tidal warp radius is inside the tearing radius, where most of disk material is likely to rapidly accrete onto SMBHs. In warped and torn disks, both the tidal-warp and the tearing radii most strongly depend on the binary semi-major axis, although they also mildly depend on the other orbital and disk parameters. This strong dependence enables us to estimate the semi-major axis, once the tidal warp or tearing radius is determined observationally: for the tidal warp radius of 0.1 pc, the semi-major axis is estimated to be ∼10{sup −2} pc for 10{sup 7} M{sub ⊙} black hole with typical orbital and disk parameters. We also briefly discuss the possibility that central objects of observed warped maser disks in active galactic nuclei are supermassive black hole binaries.

  12. Suppressing star formation in quiescent galaxies with supermassive black hole winds.

    PubMed

    Cheung, Edmond; Bundy, Kevin; Cappellari, Michele; Peirani, Sébastien; Rujopakarn, Wiphu; Westfall, Kyle; Yan, Renbin; Bershady, Matthew; Greene, Jenny E; Heckman, Timothy M; Drory, Niv; Law, David R; Masters, Karen L; Thomas, Daniel; Wake, David A; Weijmans, Anne-Marie; Rubin, Kate; Belfiore, Francesco; Vulcani, Benedetta; Chen, Yan-mei; Zhang, Kai; Gelfand, Joseph D; Bizyaev, Dmitry; Roman-Lopes, A; Schneider, Donald P

    2016-05-26

    Quiescent galaxies with little or no ongoing star formation dominate the population of galaxies with masses above 2 × 10(10) times that of the Sun; the number of quiescent galaxies has increased by a factor of about 25 over the past ten billion years (refs 1-4). Once star formation has been shut down, perhaps during the quasar phase of rapid accretion onto a supermassive black hole, an unknown mechanism must remove or heat the gas that is subsequently accreted from either stellar mass loss or mergers and that would otherwise cool to form stars. Energy output from a black hole accreting at a low rate has been proposed, but observational evidence for this in the form of expanding hot gas shells is indirect and limited to radio galaxies at the centres of clusters, which are too rare to explain the vast majority of the quiescent population. Here we report bisymmetric emission features co-aligned with strong ionized-gas velocity gradients from which we infer the presence of centrally driven winds in typical quiescent galaxies that host low-luminosity active nuclei. These galaxies are surprisingly common, accounting for as much as ten per cent of the quiescent population with masses around 2 × 10(10) times that of the Sun. In a prototypical example, we calculate that the energy input from the galaxy's low-level active supermassive black hole is capable of driving the observed wind, which contains sufficient mechanical energy to heat ambient, cooler gas (also detected) and thereby suppress star formation. PMID:27225122

  13. INTERACTION OF RECOILING SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES WITH STARS IN GALACTIC NUCLEI

    SciTech Connect

    Li Shuo; Liu, F. K.; Berczik, Peter; Spurzem, Rainer; Chen Xian E-mail: fkliu@bac.pku.edu.cn

    2012-03-20

    Supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) are the products of frequent galaxy mergers. The coalescence of the SMBHBs is a distinct source of gravitational wave (GW) radiation. The detections of the strong GW radiation and their possible electromagnetic counterparts are essential. Numerical relativity suggests that the post-merger supermassive black hole (SMBH) gets a kick velocity up to 4000 km s{sup -1} due to the anisotropic GW radiations. Here, we investigate the dynamical coevolution and interaction of the recoiling SMBHs and their galactic stellar environments with one million direct N-body simulations including the stellar tidal disruption by the recoiling SMBHs. Our results show that the accretion of disrupted stars does not significantly affect the SMBH dynamical evolution. We investigate the stellar tidal disruption rates as a function of the dynamical evolution of oscillating SMBHs in the galactic nuclei. Our simulations show that most stellar tidal disruptions are contributed by the unbound stars and occur when the oscillating SMBHs pass through the galactic center. The averaged disruption rate is {approx}10{sup -6} M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}, which is about an order of magnitude lower than that by a stationary SMBH at similar galactic nuclei. Our results also show that a bound star cluster is around the oscillating SMBH of about {approx}0.7% the black hole mass. In addition, we discover a massive cloud of unbound stars following the oscillating SMBH. We also investigate the dependence of the results on the SMBH masses and density slopes of the galactic nuclei.

  14. Suppressing star formation in quiescent galaxies with supermassive black hole winds.

    PubMed

    Cheung, Edmond; Bundy, Kevin; Cappellari, Michele; Peirani, Sébastien; Rujopakarn, Wiphu; Westfall, Kyle; Yan, Renbin; Bershady, Matthew; Greene, Jenny E; Heckman, Timothy M; Drory, Niv; Law, David R; Masters, Karen L; Thomas, Daniel; Wake, David A; Weijmans, Anne-Marie; Rubin, Kate; Belfiore, Francesco; Vulcani, Benedetta; Chen, Yan-mei; Zhang, Kai; Gelfand, Joseph D; Bizyaev, Dmitry; Roman-Lopes, A; Schneider, Donald P

    2016-05-25

    Quiescent galaxies with little or no ongoing star formation dominate the population of galaxies with masses above 2 × 10(10) times that of the Sun; the number of quiescent galaxies has increased by a factor of about 25 over the past ten billion years (refs 1-4). Once star formation has been shut down, perhaps during the quasar phase of rapid accretion onto a supermassive black hole, an unknown mechanism must remove or heat the gas that is subsequently accreted from either stellar mass loss or mergers and that would otherwise cool to form stars. Energy output from a black hole accreting at a low rate has been proposed, but observational evidence for this in the form of expanding hot gas shells is indirect and limited to radio galaxies at the centres of clusters, which are too rare to explain the vast majority of the quiescent population. Here we report bisymmetric emission features co-aligned with strong ionized-gas velocity gradients from which we infer the presence of centrally driven winds in typical quiescent galaxies that host low-luminosity active nuclei. These galaxies are surprisingly common, accounting for as much as ten per cent of the quiescent population with masses around 2 × 10(10) times that of the Sun. In a prototypical example, we calculate that the energy input from the galaxy's low-level active supermassive black hole is capable of driving the observed wind, which contains sufficient mechanical energy to heat ambient, cooler gas (also detected) and thereby suppress star formation.

  15. The supermassive black hole and double nucleus of the core elliptical NGC 5419

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazzalay, Ximena; Thomas, Jens; Saglia, Roberto P.; Wegner, Gary A.; Bender, Ralf; Erwin, Peter; Fabricius, Maximilian H.; Rusli, Stephanie P.

    2016-11-01

    We obtained adaptive-optics assisted SINFONI observations of the central regions of the giant elliptical galaxy NGC 5419 with a spatial resolution of 0.2 arcsec (≈55 pc). NGC 5419 has a large depleted stellar core with a radius of 1.58 arcsec (430 pc). HST and SINFONI images show a point source located at the galaxy's photocentre, which is likely associated with the low-luminosity AGN previously detected in NGC 5419. Both the HST and SINFONI images also show a second nucleus, off-centred by 0.25 arcsec (≈70 pc). Outside of the central double nucleus, we measure an almost constant velocity dispersion of σ ˜ 350 km s-1. In the region where the double nucleus is located, the dispersion rises steeply to a peak value of ˜420 km s-1. In addition to the SINFONI data, we also obtained stellar kinematics at larger radii from the South African Large Telescope. While NGC 5419 shows low rotation (v < 50 km s-1), the central regions (inside ˜4 rb) clearly rotate in the opposite direction to the galaxy's outer parts. We use orbit-based dynamical models to measure the black hole mass of NGC 5419 from the kinematical data outside of the double nuclear structure. The models imply M_BH=7.2^{+2.7}_{-1.9} × 10^9 M⊙. The enhanced velocity dispersion in the region of the double nucleus suggests that NGC 5419 possibly hosts two supermassive black holes at its centre, separated by only ≈70 pc. Yet our measured MBH is consistent with the black hole mass expected from the size of the galaxy's depleted stellar core. This suggests, that systematic uncertainties in MBH related to the secondary nucleus are small.

  16. The Quest for the Largest Depleted Galaxy Core: Supermassive Black Hole Binaries and Stalled Infalling Satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonfini, Paolo; Graham, Alister W.

    2016-10-01

    Partially depleted cores are practically ubiquitous in luminous early-type galaxies (M B ≲ -20.5 mag) and are typically smaller than 1 kpc. In one popular scenario, supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries—established during dry (i.e., gas-poor) galaxy mergers—kick out the stars from a galaxy’s central region via three-body interactions. Here, this “binary black hole scouring scenario” is probed at its extremes by investigating the two galaxies reported to have the largest partially depleted cores found to date: 2MASX J09194427+5622012 and 2MASX J17222717+3207571 (the brightest galaxy in Abell 2261). We have fit these galaxy’s two-dimensional light distribution using the core-Sérsic model and found that the former galaxy has a core-Sérsic break radius {R}b,{cS}=0.55 {{kpc}}, which is three times smaller than the published value. We use this galaxy to caution that other reportedly large break radii may too have been overestimated if they were derived using the “sharp-transition” (inner core)-to-(outer Sérsic) model. In the case of 2MASX J17222717+3207571, we obtain R b,cS = 3.6 kpc. While we confirm that this is the biggest known partially depleted core of any galaxy, we stress that it is larger than expected from the evolution of SMBH binaries—unless one invokes substantial gravitational-wave-induced (black hole-)recoil events. Given the presence of multiple nuclei located (in projection) within the core radius of this galaxy, we explored and found support for the alternative “stalled infalling perturber” core-formation scenario, in which this galaxy’s core could have been excavated by the action of an infalling massive perturber.

  17. Do Circumnuclear Dense Gas Disks Drive Mass Accretion onto Supermassive Black Holes?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Izumi, Takuma; Kawakatu, Nozomu; Kohno, Kotaro

    2016-08-01

    We present a positive correlation between the mass of dense molecular gas ({M}{{dense}}) of ˜100 pc scale circumnuclear disks (CNDs) and the black hole mass accretion rate ({\\dot{M}}{{BH}}) in a total of 10 Seyfert galaxies, based on data compiled from the literature and an archive (median aperture θ med = 220 pc). A typical {M}{{dense}} of CNDs is 107–8 {M}ȯ , estimated from the luminosity of the dense gas tracer, the HCN(1–0) emission line. Because dense molecular gas is the site of star formation, this correlation is virtually equivalent to the one between the nuclear star-formation rate and {\\dot{M}}{{BH}} revealed previously. Moreover, the {M}{{dense}}{--}{\\dot{M}}{{BH}} correlation was tighter for CND-scale gas than for the gas on kiloparsec or larger scales. This indicates that CNDs likely play an important role in fueling black holes, whereas greater than kiloparesec scale gas does not. To demonstrate a possible approach for studying the CND-scale accretion process with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, we used a mass accretion model where angular momentum loss due to supernova explosions is vital. Based on the model prediction, we suggest that only the partial fraction of the mass accreted from the CND ({\\dot{M}}{{acc}}) is consumed as {\\dot{M}}{{BH}}. However, {\\dot{M}}{{acc}} agrees well with the total nuclear mass flow rate (i.e., {\\dot{M}}{{BH}} + outflow rate). Although these results are still tentative with large uncertainties, they support the view that star formation in CNDs can drive mass accretion onto supermassive black holes in Seyfert galaxies.

  18. A STRONGLY MAGNETIZED PULSAR WITHIN THE GRASP OF THE MILKY WAY'S SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE

    SciTech Connect

    Rea, N.; Torres, D. F.; Papitto, A.; Camero-Arranz, A.; Esposito, P.; Mereghetti, S.; Tiengo, A.; Pons, J. A.; Viganò, D.; Turolla, R.; Israel, G. L.; Stella, L.; Possenti, A.; Burgay, M.; Perna, R.; Ponti, G.; Baganoff, F. K.; Haggard, D.; Zane, S.; Minter, A.; and others

    2013-10-01

    The center of our Galaxy hosts a supermassive black hole, Sagittarius (Sgr) A*. Young, massive stars within 0.5 pc of Sgr A* are evidence of an episode of intense star formation near the black hole a few million years ago, which might have left behind a young neutron star traveling deep into Sgr A*'s gravitational potential. On 2013 April 25, a short X-ray burst was observed from the direction of the Galactic center. With a series of observations with the Chandra and the Swift satellites, we pinpoint the associated magnetar at an angular distance of 2.4 ± 0.3 arcsec from Sgr A*, and refine the source spin period and its derivative (P = 3.7635537(2) s and P-dot = 6.61(4)×10{sup -12} s s{sup –1}), confirmed by quasi simultaneous radio observations performed with the Green Bank Telescope and Parkes Radio Telescope, which also constrain a dispersion measure of DM = 1750 ± 50 pc cm{sup –3}, the highest ever observed for a radio pulsar. We have found that this X-ray source is a young magnetar at ≈0.07-2 pc from Sgr A*. Simulations of its possible motion around Sgr A* show that it is likely (∼90% probability) in a bound orbit around the black hole. The radiation front produced by the past activity from the magnetar passing through the molecular clouds surrounding the Galactic center region might be responsible for a large fraction of the light echoes observed in the Fe fluorescence features.

  19. Evidence of a Supermassive Black Hole in the Galaxy NGC 1023 From The Nuclear Stellar Dynamics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bower, G. A.; Green, R. F.; Bender, R.; Gebhardt, K.; Lauer, T. R.; Magorrian, J.; Richstone, D. O.; Danks, A.; Gull, T.; Hutchings, J.

    2000-01-01

    We analyze the nuclear stellar dynamics of the SBO galaxy NGC 1023, utilizing observational data both from the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph aboard the Hubble Space Telescope and from the ground. The stellar kinematics measured from these long-slit spectra show rapid rotation (V equals approx. 70 km/s at a distance of O.1 deg = 4.9 pc from the nucleus) and increasing velocity dispersion toward the nucleus (where sigma = 295 +/- 30 km/s). We model the observed stellar kinematics assuming an axisymmetric mass distribution with both two and three integrals of motion. Both modeling techniques point to the presence of a central dark compact mass (which presumably is a supermassive black hole) with confidence > 99%. The isotropic two-integral models yield a best-fitting black hole mass of (6.0 +/- 0.4) x 10(exp 7) solar masses and mass-to-light ratio (M/L(sub v)) of 5.38 +/- 0.08, and the goodness-of-fit (CHI(exp 2)) is insensitive to reasonable values for the galaxy's inclination. The three-integral models, which non-parametrically fit the observed line-of-sight velocity distribution as a function of position in the galaxy, suggest a black hole mass of (3.9 +/- 0.4) x 10(exp 7) solar masses and M/L(sub v) of 5.56 +/- 0.02 (internal errors), and the edge-on models are vastly superior fits over models at other inclinations. The internal dynamics in NGC 1023 as suggested by our best-fit three-integral model shows that the velocity distribution function at the nucleus is tangentially anisotropic, suggesting the presence of a nuclear stellar disk. The nuclear line of sight velocity distribution has enhanced wings at velocities >= 600 km/s from systemic, suggesting that perhaps we have detected a group of stars very close to the central dark mass.

  20. Do Circumnuclear Dense Gas Disks Drive Mass Accretion onto Supermassive Black Holes?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Izumi, Takuma; Kawakatu, Nozomu; Kohno, Kotaro

    2016-08-01

    We present a positive correlation between the mass of dense molecular gas ({M}{{dense}}) of ˜100 pc scale circumnuclear disks (CNDs) and the black hole mass accretion rate ({\\dot{M}}{{BH}}) in a total of 10 Seyfert galaxies, based on data compiled from the literature and an archive (median aperture θ med = 220 pc). A typical {M}{{dense}} of CNDs is 107-8 {M}⊙ , estimated from the luminosity of the dense gas tracer, the HCN(1-0) emission line. Because dense molecular gas is the site of star formation, this correlation is virtually equivalent to the one between the nuclear star-formation rate and {\\dot{M}}{{BH}} revealed previously. Moreover, the {M}{{dense}}{--}{\\dot{M}}{{BH}} correlation was tighter for CND-scale gas than for the gas on kiloparsec or larger scales. This indicates that CNDs likely play an important role in fueling black holes, whereas greater than kiloparesec scale gas does not. To demonstrate a possible approach for studying the CND-scale accretion process with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, we used a mass accretion model where angular momentum loss due to supernova explosions is vital. Based on the model prediction, we suggest that only the partial fraction of the mass accreted from the CND ({\\dot{M}}{{acc}}) is consumed as {\\dot{M}}{{BH}}. However, {\\dot{M}}{{acc}} agrees well with the total nuclear mass flow rate (i.e., {\\dot{M}}{{BH}} + outflow rate). Although these results are still tentative with large uncertainties, they support the view that star formation in CNDs can drive mass accretion onto supermassive black holes in Seyfert galaxies.

  1. UPDATED MASS SCALING RELATIONS FOR NUCLEAR STAR CLUSTERS AND A COMPARISON TO SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, Nicholas; Graham, Alister W.

    2013-02-15

    We investigate whether or not nuclear star clusters and supermassive black holes (SMBHs) follow a common set of mass scaling relations with their host galaxy's properties, and hence can be considered to form a single class of central massive object (CMO). We have compiled a large sample of galaxies with measured nuclear star cluster masses and host galaxy properties from the literature and fit log-linear scaling relations. We find that nuclear star cluster mass, M {sub NC}, correlates most tightly with the host galaxy's velocity dispersion: log M {sub NC} = (2.11 {+-} 0.31)log ({sigma}/54) + (6.63 {+-} 0.09), but has a slope dramatically shallower than the relation defined by SMBHs. We find that the nuclear star cluster mass relations involving host galaxy (and spheroid) luminosity and stellar and dynamical mass, intercept with but are in general shallower than the corresponding black hole scaling relations. In particular, M {sub NC}{proportional_to}M {sup 0.55{+-}0.15} {sub Gal,dyn}; the nuclear cluster mass is not a constant fraction of its host galaxy or spheroid mass. We conclude that nuclear stellar clusters and SMBHs do not form a single family of CMOs.

  2. A PROBABLE MILLI-PARSEC SUPERMASSIVE BINARY BLACK HOLE IN THE NEAREST QUASAR MRK 231

    SciTech Connect

    Yan, Chang-Shuo; Lu, Youjun; Dai, Xinyu; Yu, Qingjuan

    2015-08-10

    Supermassive binary black holes (BBHs) are unavoidable products of galaxy mergers and are expected to exist in the cores of many quasars. Great effort has been made during the past several decades to search for BBHs among quasars; however, observational evidence for BBHs remains elusive and ambiguous, which is difficult to reconcile with theoretical expectations. In this paper, we show that the distinct optical-to-UV spectrum of Mrk 231 can be well interpreted as emission from accretion flows onto a BBH, with a semimajor axis of ∼590 AU and an orbital period of ∼1.2 years. The flat optical and UV continua are mainly emitted from a circumbinary disk and a mini-disk around the secondary black hole (BH), respectively; and the observed sharp drop off and flux deficit at λ ∼ 4000–2500 Å is due to a gap (or hole) opened by the secondary BH migrating within the circumbinary disk. If confirmed by future observations, this BBH will provide a unique laboratory to study the interplay between BBHs and accretion flows onto them. Our result also demonstrates a new method to find sub-parsec scale BBHs by searching for deficits in the optical-to-UV continuum among the spectra of quasars.

  3. A highly magnetized twin-jet base pinpoints a supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baczko, A.-K.; Schulz, R.; Kadler, M.; Ros, E.; Perucho, M.; Krichbaum, T. P.; Böck, M.; Bremer, M.; Grossberger, C.; Lindqvist, M.; Lobanov, A. P.; Mannheim, K.; Martí-Vidal, I.; Müller, C.; Wilms, J.; Zensus, J. A.

    2016-09-01

    Supermassive black holes (SMBH) are essential for the production of jets in radio-loud active galactic nuclei (AGN). Theoretical models based on (Blandford & Znajek 1977, MNRAS, 179, 433) extract the rotational energy from a Kerr black hole, which could be the case for NGC 1052, to launch these jets. This requires magnetic fields on the order of 103G to 104G. We imaged the vicinity of the SMBH of the AGN NGC 1052 with the Global Millimetre VLBI Array and found a bright and compact central feature that is smaller than 1.9 light days (100 Schwarzschild radii) in radius. Interpreting this as a blend of the unresolved jet bases, we derive the magnetic field at 1 Schwarzschild radius to lie between 200 G and ~ 8.3 × 104 G consistent with Blandford & Znajek models. The VLBI images shown in Figs. 3 and 4 are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (http://130.79.128.5) or via http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/593/A47

  4. The Future of High-Energy Astrophysics: Prospects for Supermassive Black Hole Discoveries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niel Brandt, W.

    2011-09-01

    I will describe a few of the most exciting prospects for learning about the physics, demography, and ecology of growing supermassive black holes over the coming 1-2 decades. Facilities that are largely built (e.g., ALMA, EVLA, NuSTAR), are under construction (e.g., Astro-H, e-ROSITA), are expected to be built (e.g., LSST), or will hopefully be built (e.g., Athena, JANUS, LISA-lite) should enable wide-ranging discoveries about the high-energy processes in active galaxies. They will also provide strong connections with the enormous and still growing data archives from current X-ray and gamma-ray missions.

  5. Compact symmetric objects and supermassive binary black holes in the VLBA Imaging and Polarimetry Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tremblay, S. E.; Taylor, G. B.; Ortiz, A. A.; Tremblay, C. D.; Helmboldt, J. F.; Romani, R. W.

    2016-06-01

    We present multifrequency Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) follow-up observations of VLBA Imaging and Polarimetry Survey sources identified as likely compact symmetric objects (CSOs) or supermassive binary black holes (SBBHs). We also present new spectroscopic redshifts for 11 sources observed with the Hobby-Eberly Telescope. While no new SBBHs can be confirmed from these observations, we have identified 24 CSOs in the sample, 15 of which are newly designated, and refuted 52 candidates leaving 33 unconfirmed candidates. This is the first large uniform sample of CSOs which can be used to elicit some of the general properties of these sources, including morphological evolution and environmental interaction. We have detected polarized emission from two of these CSOs the properties of which are consistent with active galactic nuclei unification schemes.

  6. Gravitational waves from binary supermassive black holes missing in pulsar observations.

    PubMed

    Shannon, R M; Ravi, V; Lentati, L T; Lasky, P D; Hobbs, G; Kerr, M; Manchester, R N; Coles, W A; Levin, Y; Bailes, M; Bhat, N D R; Burke-Spolaor, S; Dai, S; Keith, M J; Osłowski, S; Reardon, D J; van Straten, W; Toomey, L; Wang, J-B; Wen, L; Wyithe, J S B; Zhu, X-J

    2015-09-25

    Gravitational waves are expected to be radiated by supermassive black hole binaries formed during galaxy mergers. A stochastic superposition of gravitational waves from all such binary systems would modulate the arrival times of pulses from radio pulsars. Using observations of millisecond pulsars obtained with the Parkes radio telescope, we constrained the characteristic amplitude of this background, A(c,yr), to be <1.0 × 10(-15) with 95% confidence. This limit excludes predicted ranges for A(c,yr) from current models with 91 to 99.7% probability. We conclude that binary evolution is either stalled or dramatically accelerated by galactic-center environments and that higher-cadence and shorter-wavelength observations would be more sensitive to gravitational waves.

  7. Selection bias in dynamically measured supermassive black hole samples: consequences for pulsar timing arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sesana, Alberto; Shankar, Francesco; Bernardi, Mariangela; Sheth, Ravi K.

    2016-11-01

    Supermassive black hole -- host galaxy relations are key to the computation of the expected gravitational wave background (GWB) in the pulsar timing array (PTA) frequency band. It has been recently pointed out that standard relations adopted in GWB computations are in fact biased-high. We show that when this selection bias is taken into account, the expected GWB in the PTA band is a factor of about three smaller than previously estimated. Compared to other scaling relations recently published in the literature, the median amplitude of the signal at $f=1$yr$^{-1}$ drops from $1.3\\times10^{-15}$ to $4\\times10^{-16}$. Although this solves any potential tension between theoretical predictions and recent PTA limits without invoking other dynamical effects (such as stalling, eccentricity or strong coupling with the galactic environment), it also makes the GWB detection more challenging.

  8. Gravitational waves from binary supermassive black holes missing in pulsar observations.

    PubMed

    Shannon, R M; Ravi, V; Lentati, L T; Lasky, P D; Hobbs, G; Kerr, M; Manchester, R N; Coles, W A; Levin, Y; Bailes, M; Bhat, N D R; Burke-Spolaor, S; Dai, S; Keith, M J; Osłowski, S; Reardon, D J; van Straten, W; Toomey, L; Wang, J-B; Wen, L; Wyithe, J S B; Zhu, X-J

    2015-09-25

    Gravitational waves are expected to be radiated by supermassive black hole binaries formed during galaxy mergers. A stochastic superposition of gravitational waves from all such binary systems would modulate the arrival times of pulses from radio pulsars. Using observations of millisecond pulsars obtained with the Parkes radio telescope, we constrained the characteristic amplitude of this background, A(c,yr), to be <1.0 × 10(-15) with 95% confidence. This limit excludes predicted ranges for A(c,yr) from current models with 91 to 99.7% probability. We conclude that binary evolution is either stalled or dramatically accelerated by galactic-center environments and that higher-cadence and shorter-wavelength observations would be more sensitive to gravitational waves. PMID:26404832

  9. MULTIPLE TIDAL DISRUPTIONS AS AN INDICATOR OF BINARY SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE SYSTEMS

    SciTech Connect

    Wegg, Christopher; Nate Bode, J.

    2011-09-01

    We find that the majority of systems hosting multiple tidal disruptions (TDs) are likely to contain hard binary supermassive black hole (SMBH) systems, and also show that the rates of these repeated events are high enough to be detected by the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) over its lifetime. Therefore, these multiple TD events provide a novel method for identifying SMBH binary systems with parsec to subparsec separations. The rates of TDs are investigated using simulations of non-interacting stars initially orbiting a primary SMBH and the potential of the model stellar cusp. The stars are then evolved forward in time and perturbed by a secondary SMBH inspiraling from the edge of the cusp to its stalling radius. We find with conservative magnitude estimates that the next-generation transient survey LSST should detect multiple TDs in approximately three galaxies over five years of observation, though less conservative estimates could increase this rate by an order of magnitude.

  10. MILKY WAY SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE: DYNAMICAL FEEDING FROM THE CIRCUMNUCLEAR ENVIRONMENT

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, Hauyu Baobab; Hsieh, Pei-Ying; Ho, Paul T. P.; Su, Yu-Nung; Wright, Melvyn; Sun, Ai-Lei; Minh, Young Chol

    2012-09-10

    The supermassive black hole (SMBH), Sgr A*, at the Galactic center is surrounded by a molecular circumnuclear disk (CND) lying between 1.5 and 4 pc radii. The irregular and clumpy structures of the CND suggest dynamical evolution and episodic feeding of gas toward the central SMBH. New sensitive data from the Submillimeter Array and Green Bank Telescope reveal several >5-10 pc scale molecular arms, which either directly connect to the CND or may penetrate inside the CND. The CND appears to be the convergence of the innermost parts of large-scale gas streamers, which are responding to the central gravitational potential well. Rather than being a quasi-stationary structure, the CND may be dynamically evolving, incorporating inflow via streamers, and feeding gas toward the center.

  11. Large scale direct galaxy collision simulations with central supermassive binary black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sobolenko, Margaryta; Berczik, Peter; Spurzem, Rainer

    2016-02-01

    We present a set of, large scale direct N-body simulations of the galaxy collision with the central Supermassive Black Hole Binary (SMBHB) system. Based on our simulations which include the accurate Post Newtonian (PN) relativistic dynamical corrections we can estimated the merging time for the real astrophysical object. Each galaxy initially was represented as a set of particles (up to N=500k) with Plummer distribution. The SMBHBs system is described using the two special high mass, i.e. ``relativistic'', particles. The interaction between these two particles have an extra PN correction terms (up to 3.5PN). Merging time upper limit was obtained for the closely interacting galaxy system NGC 6240.

  12. Milky Way Supermassive Black Hole: Dynamical Feeding from the Circumnuclear Environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Hauyu Baobab; Hsieh, Pei-Ying; Ho, Paul T. P.; Su, Yu-Nung; Wright, Melvyn; Sun, Ai-Lei; Minh, Young Chol

    2012-09-01

    The supermassive black hole (SMBH), Sgr A*, at the Galactic center is surrounded by a molecular circumnuclear disk (CND) lying between 1.5 and 4 pc radii. The irregular and clumpy structures of the CND suggest dynamical evolution and episodic feeding of gas toward the central SMBH. New sensitive data from the Submillimeter Array and Green Bank Telescope reveal several >5-10 pc scale molecular arms, which either directly connect to the CND or may penetrate inside the CND. The CND appears to be the convergence of the innermost parts of large-scale gas streamers, which are responding to the central gravitational potential well. Rather than being a quasi-stationary structure, the CND may be dynamically evolving, incorporating inflow via streamers, and feeding gas toward the center.

  13. The origin and growth of the first black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schawinski, Kevin

    2015-08-01

    I will present recent results on the search for black hole growth at the highest redshifts in the deepest Chandra X-ray observations: a startling lack of faint AGN in z>5 galaxies is starting to place interesting constraints on formation and early growth scenarios. At the same time, circumstantial evidence from both observations and theory points to late formation of black hole seeds in moderate mass galaxies as a viable channel. Dense sub-galactic clumps and major mergers are plausible formation sites perhaps even to z~0. I will also present the outlook for future X-ray missions such as ATHENA in tracing black hole growth at unprecedented levels using X-ray variability.

  14. THE M {sub BH}-L {sub SPHEROID} RELATION AT HIGH AND LOW MASSES, THE QUADRATIC GROWTH OF BLACK HOLES, AND INTERMEDIATE-MASS BLACK HOLE CANDIDATES

    SciTech Connect

    Graham, Alister W.; Scott, Nicholas

    2013-02-20

    From a sample of 72 galaxies with reliable supermassive black hole masses M {sub bh}, we derive the M {sub bh}-(host spheroid luminosity, L) relation for (1) the subsample of 24 core-Sersic galaxies with partially depleted cores, and (2) the remaining subsample of 48 Sersic galaxies. Using K{sub s} -band Two Micron All Sky Survey data, we find the near-linear relation M {sub bh}{proportional_to}L {sup 1.10{+-}0.20} {sub K{sub s}} for the core-Sersic spheroids thought to be built in additive dry merger events, while we find the relation M {sub bh}{proportional_to}L {sup 2.73{+-}0.55}{sub K{sub s}} for the Sersic spheroids built from gas-rich processes. After converting literature B-band disk galaxy magnitudes into inclination- and dust-corrected bulge magnitudes, via a useful new equation presented herein, we obtain a similar result. Unlike with the M {sub bh}-(velocity dispersion) diagram, which is also updated here using the same galaxy sample, it remains unknown whether barred and non-barred Sersic galaxies are offset from each other in the M {sub bh}-L diagram. While black hole feedback has typically been invoked to explain what was previously thought to be a nearly constant M {sub bh}/M {sub Spheroid} mass ratio of {approx}0.2%, we advocate that the near-linear M {sub bh}-L and M {sub bh}-M {sub Spheroid} relations observed at high masses may have instead arisen largely from the additive dry merging of galaxies. We argue that feedback results in a dramatically different scaling relation, such that black hole mass scales roughly quadratically with the spheroid mass in Sersic galaxies. We therefore introduce a revised cold-gas 'quasar' mode feeding equation for semi-analytical models to reflect what we dub the quadratic growth of black holes in Sersic galaxies built amidst gas-rich processes. Finally, we use our new Sersic M {sub bh}-L equations to predict the masses of candidate intermediate mass black holes in almost 50 low-luminosity spheroids containing

  15. Cosmic black-hole hair growth and quasar OJ287

    SciTech Connect

    Horbatsch, M.W.; Burgess, C.P. E-mail: cburgess@perimeterinstitute.ca

    2012-05-01

    An old result (astro-ph/9905303) by Jacobson implies that a black hole with Schwarzschild radius r{sub s} acquires scalar hair, Q∝r{sub s}{sup 2}μ, when the (canonically normalized) scalar field in question is slowly time-dependent far from the black hole, ∂{sub t}φ ≅ μM{sub p} with μr{sub s} << 1 time-independent. Such a time dependence could arise in scalar-tensor theories either from cosmological evolution, or due to the slow motion of the black hole within an asymptotic spatial gradient in the scalar field. Most remarkably, the amount of scalar hair so induced is independent of the strength with which the scalar couples to matter. We argue that Jacobson's Miracle Hair-Growth Formula{sup ©} implies, in particular, that an orbiting pair of black holes can radiate dipole radiation, provided only that the two black holes have different masses. Quasar OJ287, situated at redshift z ≅ 0.306, has been argued to be a double black-hole binary system of this type, whose orbital decay recently has been indirectly measured and found to agree with the predictions of General Relativity to within 6%. We argue that the absence of observable scalar dipole radiation in this system yields the remarkable bound |μ| < (16 days){sup −1} on the instantaneous time derivative at this redshift (as opposed to constraining an average field difference, Δφ, over cosmological times), provided only that the scalar is light enough to be radiated — i.e. m∼<10{sup −23} eV — independent of how the scalar couples to matter. This can also be interpreted as constraining (in a more model-dependent way) the binary's motion relative to any spatial variation of the scalar field within its immediate vicinity within its host galaxy.

  16. A LARGE SYSTEMATIC SEARCH FOR CLOSE SUPERMASSIVE BINARY AND RAPIDLY RECOILING BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Eracleous, Michael; Boroson, Todd A.; Halpern, Jules P.; Liu Jia

    2012-08-01

    We have carried out a systematic search for subparsec supermassive black hole (BH) binaries among z {approx}< 0.7 Sloan Digital Sky Survey quasars. These are predicted by models of supermassive BH and host galaxy coevolution, therefore their census and population properties constitute an important test of these models. In our working hypothesis, one of the two BHs accretes at a much higher rate than the other and carries with it the only broad emission line region of the system, making the system analogous to a single-lined spectroscopic binary star. Accordingly, we used spectroscopic principal component analysis to search for broad H{beta} emission lines that are displaced from the quasar rest frame by |{Delta} v| {approx}> 1000 km s{sup -1}. This method also yields candidates for rapidly recoiling BHs. Of the 88 candidates, several were previously reported in the literature. We found a correlation between the peak offset and skewness of the broad H{beta} profiles, suggesting a common physical explanation for these profiles. We carried out follow-up spectroscopic observations of 68 objects to search for changes in the peak velocities of the H{beta} lines. We measured statistically significant changes in 14 objects, with implied accelerations between -120 and +120 km s{sup -1} yr{sup -1}. Interpreting the offset broad emission lines as signatures of supermassive binaries is subject to many caveats. Many more follow-up observations over a long temporal baseline are needed to characterize the variability pattern of the broad lines and test that it is consistent with orbital motion. The possibility that some of the objects in this sample are rapidly recoiling BHs remains open.

  17. A Large Systematic Search for Close Supermassive Binary and Rapidly Recoiling Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eracleous, Michael; Boroson, Todd A.; Halpern, Jules P.; Liu, Jia

    2012-08-01

    We have carried out a systematic search for subparsec supermassive black hole (BH) binaries among z <~ 0.7 Sloan Digital Sky Survey quasars. These are predicted by models of supermassive BH and host galaxy coevolution, therefore their census and population properties constitute an important test of these models. In our working hypothesis, one of the two BHs accretes at a much higher rate than the other and carries with it the only broad emission line region of the system, making the system analogous to a single-lined spectroscopic binary star. Accordingly, we used spectroscopic principal component analysis to search for broad Hβ emission lines that are displaced from the quasar rest frame by |Δ v| >~ 1000 km s-1. This method also yields candidates for rapidly recoiling BHs. Of the 88 candidates, several were previously reported in the literature. We found a correlation between the peak offset and skewness of the broad Hβ profiles, suggesting a common physical explanation for these profiles. We carried out follow-up spectroscopic observations of 68 objects to search for changes in the peak velocities of the Hβ lines. We measured statistically significant changes in 14 objects, with implied accelerations between -120 and +120 km s-1 yr-1. Interpreting the offset broad emission lines as signatures of supermassive binaries is subject to many caveats. Many more follow-up observations over a long temporal baseline are needed to characterize the variability pattern of the broad lines and test that it is consistent with orbital motion. The possibility that some of the objects in this sample are rapidly recoiling BHs remains open.

  18. BLINDLY DETECTING ORBITAL MODULATIONS OF JETS FROM MERGING SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    O'Shaughnessy, R.; Kaplan, D. L.; Kamble, A.; Sesana, A. E-mail: kaplan@uwm.edu E-mail: alberto.sesana@aei.mpg.de

    2011-12-20

    In the last few years before merger, supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries will rapidly inspiral and precess in a magnetic field imposed by a surrounding circumbinary disk. Multiple simulations suggest that this relative motion will convert some of the local energy to a Poynting-dominated outflow, with a luminosity {approx}10{sup 43} erg s{sup -1} (B/10{sup 4} G){sup 2}(M/10{sup 8} M{sub Sun }){sup 2}(v/0.4c){sup 2}, some of which may emerge as synchrotron emission at frequencies near 1 GHz where current and planned wide-field radio surveys will operate. On top of a secular increase in power (and v) on the gravitational wave inspiral timescale, orbital motion will produce significant, detectable modulations, both on orbital periods and (if black hole spins are not aligned with the binary's total angular momenta) spin-orbit precession timescales. Because the gravitational wave merger time increases rapidly with separation, we find that vast numbers of these transients are ubiquitously predicted, unless explicitly ruled out (by low efficiency {epsilon}) or obscured (by accretion geometry f{sub geo}). If the fraction of Poynting flux converted to radio emission times the fraction of lines of sight accessible f{sub geo} is sufficiently large (f{sub geo}{epsilon} > 2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -4} for a 1 year orbital period), at least one event is accessible to future blind surveys at a nominal 10{sup 4} deg{sup 2} with 0.5 mJy sensitivity. Our procedure generalizes to other flux-limited surveys designed to investigate electromagnetic (EM) signatures associated with many modulations produced by merging SMBH binaries.

  19. The Formation of Galaxies and Supermassive Black Holes: Insights and Puzzles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Somerville, Rachel S.

    2014-01-01

    Galaxies exist at a nexus of physical scales, molded by physics ranging from the “small” scales of star formation and accretion onto nuclear black holes, up to the very large scales of the cosmic web. It is this special property that makes galaxies so fascinating and so challenging to study, both observationally and theoretically. The past two decades have seen enormous progress in our understanding of how galaxies form and evolve. We have surveyed slices of the sky at many wavelengths, and built sophisticated models and simulations that attempt to capture the complex array of physics that influences galaxy evolution. We are only now coming into possession of large samples of galaxies for which we can study the internal structure as well as the large scale environment in detail, from the epoch of ‘cosmic high noon’ ( 2) to the present. At the same time, numerical simulations set within a cosmological framework have only recently succeeded in building galaxies with realistic internal structures. It has been known for several years that galaxies are growing in mass and radius, experiencing morphological transformation, and ‘downsizing’ their star formation activity over cosmic time. Now, new observations are painting a picture in which the internal structure of galaxies (size and morphology) is intimately linked with their star formation activity and formation history. There are hints that the co-evolution of supermassive black holes with their host galaxies may be the driving force behind these correlations - but this remains controversial. While cosmological simulations set within the hierarchical formation scenario of Cold Dark Matter currently offer a plausible story for interpreting these observations, many puzzles remain. I will review recent insights gleaned from deep multi-wavelength surveys and state-of-the-art theoretical models and simulations, as well as highlight the open questions and challenges for the future.

  20. RESOLVING THE BONDI ACCRETION FLOW TOWARD THE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE OF NGC 3115 WITH CHANDRA

    SciTech Connect

    Wong, Ka-Wah; Irwin, Jimmy A.; Yukita, Mihoko; Million, Evan T.; Mathews, William G.

    2011-07-20

    Gas undergoing Bondi accretion onto a supermassive black hole (SMBH) becomes hotter toward smaller radii. We searched for this signature with a Chandra observation of the hot gas in NGC 3115, which optical observations show has a very massive SMBH. Our analysis suggests that we are resolving, for the first time, the accretion flow within the Bondi radius of an SMBH. We show that the temperature is rising toward the galaxy center as expected in all accretion models in which the black hole is gravitationally capturing the ambient gas. There is no hard central point source that could cause such an apparent rise in temperature. The data support that the Bondi radius is at about 4''-5'' (188-235 pc), suggesting an SMBH of 2 x 10{sup 9} M{sub sun} that is consistent with the upper end of the optical results. The density profile within the Bondi radius has a power-law index of 1.03{sup +0.23}{sub -0.21}, which is consistent with gas in transition from the ambient medium and the accretion flow. The accretion rate at the Bondi radius is determined to be M-dot{sub B} = 2.2x10{sup -2} M{sub sun} yr{sup -1}. Thus, the accretion luminosity with 10% radiative efficiency at the Bondi radius (10{sup 44} erg s{sup -1}) is about six orders of magnitude higher than the upper limit of the X-ray luminosity of the nucleus.

  1. The evolving corona and evidence for jet launching from the supermassive black hole in Markarian 335

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilkins, Daniel; Gallo, Luigi C.

    2015-01-01

    Through detailed analysis of the X-rays that are reflected from the accretion disc, it is possible to probe structures right down to the innermost stable circular orbit and event horizon around the supermassive black holes in AGN. By measuring the illumination pattern of the accretion disc, along with reverberation time lags between variability in the X-ray continuum and reflection, unprecedented detail of the geometry and spatial extent of the corona that produces the X-ray continuum has emerged when the observed data are combined with insight gained from general relativistic ray tracing simulations.We conducted detailed analysis of both the X-ray continuum and its reflection from the accretion disc in the narrow line Seyfert 1 galaxy Markarian 335, over observations spanning nearly a decade to measure the underlying changes in the structure of the X-ray emitting corona that gave rise to more than an order of magnitude variation in luminosity.Underlying this long timescale variability lies much more complex patterns of behaviour on short timescales. We are, for the first time, able to observe and measure the changes in the structure of the corona that give rise to transient phenomena including a flare in the X-ray emission seen during a low flux state by Suzaku in July 2013. This flaring event was found to mark a reconfiguration of the corona while there is evidence that the flare itself was cased by an aborted jet-launching event. More recently, detailed analysis of a NuSTAR target of opportunity observation is letting us understand the sudden increase in X-ray flux by a factor of 15 in Markarian 335 seen in September 2014.These observations allow us to trace, from observations, the evolution of the X-ray emitting corona that gives rise to not only the extreme variability seen in the X-ray emission from AGN, but also the processes by which jets and other outflow are launched from the extreme environments around black holes. This gives us important insight into

  2. Relativistic cross sections of mass stripping and tidal disruption of a star by a super-massive rotating black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivanov, P. B.; Chernyakova, M. A.

    2006-03-01

    Aims.We consider the problem of tidal disruption of a star by a super-massive rotating black hole.Methods. Using a numerically fast Lagrangian model of a tidally disrupted star developed in our previous works, we survey the parameter space of the problem and find regions where the total disruption of the star or a partial mass loss from the star takes place as a result of fly-by around the black hole. Our treatment is based on General Relativity, and we consider a range of black hole masses where the tidal disruption competes with the relativistic effect of direct capture of stars by the black hole. We model the star as a full polytrope with n=1.5 with the solar mass and radius. We show that our results can also be used to obtain the amount of mass lost by stars with different stellar masses and radii.Results.We find that the results can be conveniently represented on the plane of specific orbital angular momenta of the star (jθ, jφ). We calculate the contours of a given mass loss of the star on this plane, for a given black hole mass M, rotational parameter a and inclination of the trajectory of the star with respect to the black hole equatorial plane. In the following such contours are referred to as the tidal cross sections. It is shown that the tidal cross sections can be approximated as circles symmetric above the axis jφ=0, and shifted with respect to the origin of the coordinates in the direction of negative jθ. The radii and shifts of these circles are obtained numerically for the black hole masses in the range 5× 105~M⊙-109~M⊙ and different values of a. It is shown that when a=0 tidal disruption takes place for M < 5× 107~M⊙ and when a≈ 1 tidal disruption is possible for M < 109~M⊙.

  3. The effects of x-rays on star formation and black hole growth in young galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spaans, Marco; Aykutalp, Aycin; Wise, John H.; Meijerink, Rowin

    2012-09-01

    We investigate the growth of seed black holes in young galaxies and the impact of their X-ray feedback. We have performed two simulations using the adaptive mesh refinement hydrodynamical code Enzo, for the singular collapse scenario in the presence of a UV background radiation field of 105 and 103 J21. We have extended Enzo to include X-ray chemistry driven by a seed black hole with an initial mass of 5×104Msolar. Radiation transfer is performed polychromatically using the module Moray and H2 self-shielding is included. We use two different star formation recipes for the creation of Pop III and PopII/I stars and their feedback effects. We find that in the high UV background radiation case, no Pop III stars are formed until at least z = 10, due to the low H2 fractions (10-8). In the low UV background case the H2 abundances are orders of magnitude higher and pop III star formation is efficient, as is metal enrichment. We find that the production of X-rays drives an H II region that pushes out gas in the high UV background case and leads to a low duty cycle. For the low UV background run black hole accretion enjoys a duty cycle of 50%. We conclude that seed black holes with masses of 5×104Msolar, which are formed through the singular collapse of an atomic cooling halo under the influence of low (high) UV background radiation field, can(not) be the origin of supermassive black holes that we see at z = 6.

  4. ENHANCED ACCRETION RATES OF STARS ON SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES BY STAR-DISK INTERACTIONS IN GALACTIC NUCLEI

    SciTech Connect

    Just, Andreas; Yurin, Denis; Makukov, Maxim; Berczik, Peter; Omarov, Chingis; Spurzem, Rainer; Vilkoviskij, Emmanuil Y.

    2012-10-10

    We investigate the dynamical interaction of a central star cluster surrounding a supermassive black hole (SMBH) and a central accretion disk (AD). The dissipative force acting on stars in the disk leads to an enhanced mass flow toward the SMBH and to an asymmetry in the phase space distribution due to the rotating AD. The AD is considered as a stationary Keplerian rotating disk, which is vertically extended in order to employ a fully self-consistent treatment of stellar dynamics including the dissipative force originating from star-gas ram pressure effects. The stellar system is treated with a direct high-accuracy N-body integration code. A star-by-star representation, desirable in N-body simulations, cannot be extended to real particle numbers yet. Hence, we carefully discuss the scaling behavior of our model with regard to particle number and tidal accretion radius. The main idea is to find a family of models for which the ratio of two-body relaxation time and dissipation time (for kinetic energy of stellar orbits) is constant, which then allows us to extrapolate our results to real parameters of galactic nuclei. Our model is derived from basic physical principles and as such it provides insight into the role of physical processes in galactic nuclei, but it should be regarded as a first step toward more realistic and more comprehensive simulations. Nevertheless, the following conclusions appear to be robust: the star accretion rate onto the AD and subsequently onto the SMBH is enhanced by a significant factor compared to purely stellar dynamical systems neglecting the disk. This process leads to enhanced fueling of central disks in active galactic nuclei (AGNs) and to an enhanced rate of tidal stellar disruptions. Such disruptions may produce electromagnetic counterparts in the form of observable X-ray flares. Our models improve predictions for their rates in quiescent galactic nuclei. We do not yet model direct stellar collisions in the gravitational potential

  5. Confined-exotic-matter wormholes with no gluing effects—Imaging supermassive wormholes and black holes

    SciTech Connect

    Azreg-Aïnou, Mustapha

    2015-07-01

    We classify wormholes endowed with redshift effects and finite mass into three types. Type I wormholes have their radial pressure dying out faster, as one moves away from the throat, than any other component of the stress-energy and thus violate the least the local energy conditions. In type II (resp. III) wormholes the radial and transverse pressures are asymptotically proportional and die out faster (resp. slower) than the energy density. We introduce a novel and generalizable method for deriving, with no cutoff in the stress-energy or gluing, a class of each of the three wormhole types. We focus on type I wormholes and construct different asymptotically flat solutions with finite, upper- and lower-bounded, mass M. It is observed that the radial pressure is negative, and the null energy condition is violated, only inside a narrow layer, adjacent to the throat, of relative spacial extent ε. Reducing the relative size of the layer, without harming the condition of traversability, yields an inverse square law of ε versus M for supermassive wormholes. We show that the diameter of the shadow of this type I supermassive wormhole overlaps with that of the black hole candidate at the center of the Milky Way and that the recent derivation, using the up-to-date millimeter-wavelength very long baseline interferometry made in Astrophys. J. (795) (2014) 134 [\\arXivid(1409.4690)], remains inconclusive. We show that redshift-free wormholes, with positive energy density, have one of their barotropic equations of state in the phantom regime (at least in the region adjacent to the throat), have their stress energy tensor traceless, and are anisotropic. They are all type III wormholes having their variable equations of state approaching 1 and −1 at spatial infinity. We also introduce a new approach for deriving new redshift-free wormholes.

  6. Confined-exotic-matter wormholes with no gluing effects—Imaging supermassive wormholes and black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azreg-Aïnou, Mustapha

    2015-07-01

    We classify wormholes endowed with redshift effects and finite mass into three types. Type I wormholes have their radial pressure dying out faster, as one moves away from the throat, than any other component of the stress-energy and thus violate the least the local energy conditions. In type II (resp. III) wormholes the radial and transverse pressures are asymptotically proportional and die out faster (resp. slower) than the energy density. We introduce a novel and generalizable method for deriving, with no cutoff in the stress-energy or gluing, a class of each of the three wormhole types. We focus on type I wormholes and construct different asymptotically flat solutions with finite, upper- and lower-bounded, mass M. It is observed that the radial pressure is negative, and the null energy condition is violated, only inside a narrow layer, adjacent to the throat, of relative spacial extent epsilon. Reducing the relative size of the layer, without harming the condition of traversability, yields an inverse square law of epsilon versus M for supermassive wormholes. We show that the diameter of the shadow of this type I supermassive wormhole overlaps with that of the black hole candidate at the center of the Milky Way and that the recent derivation, using the up-to-date millimeter-wavelength very long baseline interferometry made in Astrophys. J. {795} (2014) 134 [\\arXivid{1409.4690}], remains inconclusive. We show that redshift-free wormholes, with positive energy density, have one of their barotropic equations of state in the phantom regime (at least in the region adjacent to the throat), have their stress energy tensor traceless, and are anisotropic. They are all type III wormholes having their variable equations of state approaching 1 and -1 at spatial infinity. We also introduce a new approach for deriving new redshift-free wormholes.

  7. Supermassive Black Holes, AGN Feedback, and Hot X-ray Coronae in Early Type Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forman, William R.; Anderson, Michael E.; Churazov, Eugene; Nulsen, Paul; Jones, Christine; Kraft, Ralph P.

    2016-06-01

    We present the analysis of a sample of more than 200 nearby, early type galaxies observed with the Chandra X-ray Observatory. We exclude resolved point sources, and model the emission from both unresolved X-ray binaries and CVs and ABs to derive the residual thermal emission from the hot atmosphere around each galaxy. We compute the X-ray luminosity of the central supermassive black hole (SMBH). Using galaxy velocity dispersion (or stellar mass) as a proxy for SMBH mass, we derive the Eddington ratios for these low luminosity AGN. We present the X-ray luminosity and gas temperature of the hot coronae as a function of stellar mass (a proxy for dark matter halo mass) and central velocity dispersion to look for anomalously X-ray bright gaseous coronae and to determine the stellar (or halo) mass, below which galactic winds may be important. For hot coronae with X-ray cavities, we derive the "mechanical" power of SMBHs and compare these to their radiative luminosities.

  8. A possible close supermassive black-hole binary in a quasar with optical periodicity.

    PubMed

    Graham, Matthew J; Djorgovski, S G; Stern, Daniel; Glikman, Eilat; Drake, Andrew J; Mahabal, Ashish A; Donalek, Ciro; Larson, Steve; Christensen, Eric

    2015-02-01

    Quasars have long been known to be variable sources at all wavelengths. Their optical variability is stochastic and can be due to a variety of physical mechanisms; it is also well-described statistically in terms of a damped random walk model. The recent availability of large collections of astronomical time series of flux measurements (light curves) offers new data sets for a systematic exploration of quasar variability. Here we report the detection of a strong, smooth periodic signal in the optical variability of the quasar PG 1302-102 with a mean observed period of 1,884 ± 88 days. It was identified in a search for periodic variability in a data set of light curves for 247,000 known, spectroscopically confirmed quasars with a temporal baseline of about 9 years. Although the interpretation of this phenomenon is still uncertain, the most plausible mechanisms involve a binary system of two supermassive black holes with a subparsec separation. Such systems are an expected consequence of galaxy mergers and can provide important constraints on models of galaxy formation and evolution.

  9. Swift Coalescence of Supermassive Black Holes in Cosmological Mergers of Massive Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khan, Fazeel Mahmood; Fiacconi, Davide; Mayer, Lucio; Berczik, Peter; Just, Andreas

    2016-09-01

    Supermassive black holes (SMBHs) are ubiquitous in galaxies with a sizable mass. It is expected that a pair of SMBHs originally in the nuclei of two merging galaxies would form a binary and eventually coalesce via a burst of gravitational waves. So far, theoretical models and simulations, focusing only on limited phases of the orbital decay of SMBHs under idealized conditions of the galaxy hosts, have been unable to directly predict the SMBH merger timescale from ab-initio galaxy formation theory. The predicted SMBH merger timescales are long, of order Gyrs, which could be problematic for future gravitational wave (GW) searches. Here, we present the first multi-scale ΛCDM cosmological simulation that follows the orbital decay of a pair of SMBHs in a merger of two typical massive galaxies at z∼ 3, all the way to the final coalescence driven by GW emission. The two SMBHs, with masses ∼ {10}8 {M}ȯ , settle quickly in the nucleus of the merger remnant. The remnant is triaxial and extremely dense due to the dissipative nature of the merger and the intrinsic compactness of galaxies at high redshift. Such properties naturally allow a very efficient hardening of the SMBH binary. The SMBH merger occurs in only ∼10 Myr after the galactic cores have merged, which is two orders of magnitude smaller than the Hubble time.

  10. XMM-Newton reveals matter accreting onto the central supermassive black hole of NGC 2617

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giustini, M.

    2016-06-01

    NGC 2617 (z=0.042) underwent a strong broad-band outburst during 2013/14, concurrently switching from being a Seyfert 1.8 to be a Seyfert 1.0 sometimes during the previous 10 years. Thanks to the combination of the large effective area and the good spectral resolution of the EPIC-pn onboard XMM-Newton, striking insights about the very inner accretion flow of this AGN have been revealed. In particular, persistent Fe K absorption redshifted by ˜ 35,000 km/s was solidly detected in two observations spaced by one month: a highly ionised flow of mass toward the central supermassive black hole of NGC 2617 has started to be traced. So far NGC 2617 is a quasi-unique observational example: what are the perspectives of enlarging these studies in the future? Thanks to current large and prolonged optical surveys like the SDSS/BOSS, many "optically changing-look AGN" like NGC 2617 are being discovered month after month: XMM-Newton has the ideal instruments to perform a proper X-ray study of such objects in the near future. I will assess the impact of XMM-Newton on studying the dynamics of the inner accretion flow in AGN in a systematic way and in synergy with near- and mid-future X-ray instruments such as (ASTRO-H)Hitomi and ATHENA.

  11. Can Supermassive Black Holes Influence the Evolution of their Host Galaxies?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tombesi, Francesco; Veilleux, Sylvain; Reeves, James; Reynolds, Christopher S.

    2016-04-01

    Powerful winds driven by active galactic nuclei (AGN) are often invoked to play a fundamental role in the evolution of both supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and their host galaxies, quenching star formation and explaining the tight SMBH-galaxy relations. A strong support of this "quasar-mode" feedback came from the recent X-ray observation of a mildly relativistic accretion disk wind in the ultraluminous infrared galaxy IRAS F11119+3257 hosting a luminous quasar at the center. Energetics arguments indicate a connection with a massive, large-scale molecular outflow observed in infrared with Herschel. This seems to be in agreement with theoretical models in which AGN winds drive hot bubbles in the host galaxy medium, thereby providing a link between the SMBH and the gas out of which stars form. This work was the “cover story” of the March 26th 2015 issue of Nature. Revolutionary improvements in this field are expected from ASTRO-H and Athena.

  12. VERY HIGH ENERGY {gamma}-RAY EMISSION FROM PASSIVE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES: CONSTRAINTS FOR NGC 1399

    SciTech Connect

    Pedaletti, G.; Wagner, S. J.; Rieger, F. M.

    2011-09-10

    Very high energy (VHE, >100 GeV) {gamma}-rays are expected to be emitted from the vicinity of supermassive black holes (SMBHs), irrespective of their activity state. In the magnetosphere of rotating SMBH, efficient acceleration of charged particles can take place through various processes. These particles could reach energies up to E {approx} 10{sup 19} eV. VHE {gamma}-ray emission from these particles is then feasible via leptonic or hadronic processes. Therefore, passive systems, where the lack of a strong photon field allows the VHE {gamma}-rays to escape, are expected to be detected by Cherenkov telescopes. We present results from recent VHE experiments on the passive SMBH in the nearby elliptical galaxy NGC 1399. No {gamma}-ray signal has been found, neither by the H.E.S.S. experiment nor in the Fermi data analyzed here. We discuss possible implications for the physical characteristics of the system. We conclude that in a scenario where particles are accelerated in vacuum gaps in the magnetosphere, only a fraction {approx}0.3 of the gap is available for particle acceleration, indicating that the system is unlikely to be able to accelerate protons up to E {approx} 10{sup 19} eV.

  13. Modelling the cosmological co-evolution of supermassive black holes and galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marulli, F.; Bonoli, S.; Branchini, E.; Moscardini, L.; Springel, V.; White, S. D. M.

    2008-10-01

    We model the cosmological co-evolution of galaxies and their central supermassive black holes (BHs) within a semi-analytical framework developed on the outputs of the Millennium Simulation. This model, described in detail by Croton et al. and De Lucia and Blaizot, introduces a `radio mode' feedback from AGN at the centre of X-ray emitting atmospheres in galaxy groups and clusters. We investigate how well this model can reproduce the physical properties of BHs and AGN. We analyse the scaling relations, the fundamental plane and the mass function of BHs, and compare them with the most recent observational data. Moreover, we extend the semi-analytic model to follow the evolution of the BH mass accretion and its conversion into radiation, and compare the derived AGN bolometric luminosity function with the observed one. While we find for the most part a very good agreement between predicted and observed BH properties, the semi-analytic model underestimates the number density of luminous AGN at high redshifts, independently of the adopted Eddington factor and accretion efficiency. However, an agreement with the observations is possible within the framework of our model, provided it is assumed that the cold gas fraction accreted by BHs at high redshifts is larger than at low redshifts.

  14. Infalling clouds on to supermassive black hole binaries - I. Formation of discs, accretion and gas dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goicovic, F. G.; Cuadra, J.; Sesana, A.; Stasyszyn, F.; Amaro-Seoane, P.; Tanaka, T. L.

    2016-01-01

    There is compelling evidence that most - if not all - galaxies harbour a supermassive black hole (SMBH) at their nucleus; hence binaries of these massive objects are an inevitable product of the hierarchical evolution of structures in the Universe, and represent an important but thus-far elusive phase of galaxy evolution. Gas accretion via a circumbinary disc is thought to be important for the dynamical evolution of SMBH binaries, as well as in producing luminous emission that can be used to infer their properties. One plausible source of the gaseous fuel is clumps of gas formed due to turbulence and gravitational instabilities in the interstellar medium, that later fall towards and interact with the binary. In this context, we model numerically the evolution of turbulent clouds in near-radial infall on to equal-mass SMBH binaries, using a modified version of the SPH (smoothed particle hydrodynamics) code GADGET-3. We present a total of 12 simulations that explore different possible pericentre distances and relative inclinations, and show that the formation of circumbinary discs and discs around each SMBH (`mini-discs') depend on those parameters. We also study the dynamics of the formed discs, and the variability of the feeding rate on to the SMBHs in the different configurations.

  15. Detecting Eccentric Supermassive Black Hole Binaries with Pulsar Timing Arrays: Resolvable Source Strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, S. R.; Huerta, E. A.; Gair, J. R.; McWilliams, S. T.

    2016-01-01

    The couplings between supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) and their environments within galactic nuclei have been well studied as part of the search for solutions to the final parsec problem. The scattering of stars by the binary or the interaction with a circumbinary disk may efficiently drive the system to sub-parsec separations, allowing the binary to enter a regime where the emission of gravitational waves can drive it to merger within a Hubble time. However, these interactions can also affect the orbital parameters of the binary. In particular, they may drive an increase in binary eccentricity which survives until the system’s gravitational-wave (GW) signal enters the pulsar-timing array (PTA) band. Therefore, if we can measure the eccentricity from observed signals, we can potentially deduce some of the properties of the binary environment. To this end, we build on previous techniques to present a general Bayesian pipeline with which we can detect and estimate the parameters of an eccentric SMBHB system with PTAs. Additionally, we generalize the PTA {{ F }}{{e}}-statistic to eccentric systems, and show that both this statistic and the Bayesian pipeline are robust when studying circular or arbitrarily eccentric systems. We explore how eccentricity influences the detection prospects of single GW sources, as well as the detection penalty incurred by employing a circular waveform template to search for eccentric signals, and conclude by identifying important avenues for future study.

  16. Low-level supermassive black hole activity and star formation in isolated ellipticals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinkus, Charlotte; Miller, Brendan; Gallo, Elena

    2016-01-01

    We present and discuss Chandra ACIS-S X-ray observations of six early-type galaxies located within cosmic voids. The targeted galaxies have comparable stellar masses of 6-9e10 solar but span a wide range of star formation rates, from 0.03 to 6.5 solar masses per year. These data permit clean investigation of the link, if any, between star formation and low-level supermassive black hole activity. We isolate the nuclear X-ray emission associated with SMBH activity through analyzing the X-ray surface brightness profiles and calculating the predicted X-ray binary contamination within the extraction aperture. The galaxies with higher star formation rates also tend to have greater SMBH-associated X-ray luminosities, perhaps suggestive of a mutual dependence on cold gas. We also compare our void galaxies to cluster early-type galaxies of similar stellar mass, finding that the void galaxies have, on average, more compact optical surface brightness profiles along with greater X-ray luminosities.

  17. New Evidence for High Activity of the Supermassive Black Hole in our Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nobukawa, M.; Ryu, S. G.; Tsuru, T. G.; Koyama, K.

    2011-10-01

    Prominent K-shell emission lines of neutral iron (hereafter Fe I-K lines) and hard-continuum X-rays from molecular clouds (MCs) in the Sagittarius B (Sgr B) region were found in two separate Suzaku observations in 2005 and 2009. The X-ray flux of the Fe I-K lines decreased in correlation with the hard-continuum flux by a factor of 0.4-0.5 in four years, which is almost equal to the light traveling across the MCs. The rapid and correlated time variability, the equivalent width of the Fe I-K lines, and the K edge absorption depth of Fe I are consistently explained by "X-ray echoes" due to the fluorescent and Thomson scattering of an X-ray flare from an external source. The required flux of the X-ray flare depends on the distance to the MCs and its time duration. Even for a case with a minimum distance, the flux is larger than those of the brightest Galactic X-ray sources. Based on these facts, we conclude that the supermassive black hole Sgr A* exhibited a large flare a few hundred years ago with a luminosity of more than 4 × 1039 erg s-1. The "X-ray echo" from Sgr B, located a few hundred light-years from Sgr A*, has now reached the Earth.

  18. NEW EVIDENCE FOR HIGH ACTIVITY OF THE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE IN OUR GALAXY

    SciTech Connect

    Nobukawa, M.; Ryu, S. G.; Tsuru, T. G.; Koyama, K.

    2011-10-01

    Prominent K-shell emission lines of neutral iron (hereafter Fe I-K lines) and hard-continuum X-rays from molecular clouds (MCs) in the Sagittarius B (Sgr B) region were found in two separate Suzaku observations in 2005 and 2009. The X-ray flux of the Fe I-K lines decreased in correlation with the hard-continuum flux by a factor of 0.4-0.5 in four years, which is almost equal to the light traveling across the MCs. The rapid and correlated time variability, the equivalent width of the Fe I-K lines, and the K edge absorption depth of Fe I are consistently explained by 'X-ray echoes' due to the fluorescent and Thomson scattering of an X-ray flare from an external source. The required flux of the X-ray flare depends on the distance to the MCs and its time duration. Even for a case with a minimum distance, the flux is larger than those of the brightest Galactic X-ray sources. Based on these facts, we conclude that the supermassive black hole Sgr A* exhibited a large flare a few hundred years ago with a luminosity of more than 4 x 10{sup 39} erg s{sup -1}. The 'X-ray echo' from Sgr B, located a few hundred light-years from Sgr A*, has now reached the Earth.

  19. Swift Coalescence of Supermassive Black Holes in Cosmological Mergers of Massive Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khan, Fazeel Mahmood; Fiacconi, Davide; Mayer, Lucio; Berczik, Peter; Just, Andreas

    2016-09-01

    Supermassive black holes (SMBHs) are ubiquitous in galaxies with a sizable mass. It is expected that a pair of SMBHs originally in the nuclei of two merging galaxies would form a binary and eventually coalesce via a burst of gravitational waves. So far, theoretical models and simulations, focusing only on limited phases of the orbital decay of SMBHs under idealized conditions of the galaxy hosts, have been unable to directly predict the SMBH merger timescale from ab-initio galaxy formation theory. The predicted SMBH merger timescales are long, of order Gyrs, which could be problematic for future gravitational wave (GW) searches. Here, we present the first multi-scale ΛCDM cosmological simulation that follows the orbital decay of a pair of SMBHs in a merger of two typical massive galaxies at z˜ 3, all the way to the final coalescence driven by GW emission. The two SMBHs, with masses ˜ {10}8 {M}⊙ , settle quickly in the nucleus of the merger remnant. The remnant is triaxial and extremely dense due to the dissipative nature of the merger and the intrinsic compactness of galaxies at high redshift. Such properties naturally allow a very efficient hardening of the SMBH binary. The SMBH merger occurs in only ˜10 Myr after the galactic cores have merged, which is two orders of magnitude smaller than the Hubble time.

  20. LISA observations of supermassive black holes: Parameter estimation using full post-Newtonian inspiral waveforms

    SciTech Connect

    Trias, Miquel; Sintes, Alicia M.

    2008-01-15

    We study parameter estimation of supermassive black hole binary systems in the final stage of inspiral using the full post-Newtonian gravitational waveforms. We restrict our analysis to systems in circular orbit with negligible spins, in the mass range 10{sup 8}M{sub {center_dot}}-10{sup 5}M{sub {center_dot}}, and compare the results with those arising from the commonly used restricted post-Newtonian approximation. The conclusions of this work are particularly important with regard to the astrophysical reach of future Laser Interferometer Space Antenna measurements. Our analysis clearly shows that modeling the inspiral with the full post-Newtonian waveform, not only extends the reach to higher mass systems, but also improves in general the parameter estimation. In particular, there are remarkable improvements in angular resolution and distance measurement for systems with a total mass higher than 5x10{sup 6}M{sub {center_dot}}, as well as a large improvement in the mass determination.

  1. The impact of reionization on the formation of supermassive black hole seeds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Jarrett L.; Whalen, Daniel J.; Agarwal, Bhaskar; Paardekooper, Jan-Pieter; Khochfar, Sadegh

    2014-11-01

    Direct collapse black holes (DCBHs) formed from the collapse of atomically cooled primordial gas in the early Universe are strong candidates for the seeds of supermassive BHs. DCBHs are thought to form in atomic cooling haloes in the presence of a strong molecule-dissociating, Lyman-Werner (LW) radiation field. Given that star-forming galaxies are likely to be the source of the LW radiation in this scenario, ionizing radiation from these galaxies may accompany the LW radiation. We present cosmological simulations resolving the collapse of primordial gas into an atomic cooling halo, including the effects of both LW and ionizing radiation. We find that in cases where the gas is not self-shielded from the ionizing radiation, the collapse can be delayed by ˜25 Myr. When the ionized gas does collapse, the free electrons that are present catalyse H2 formation. In turn, H2 cooling becomes efficient in the centre of the halo, and DCBH formation is prevented. We emphasize, however, that in many cases the gas collapsing into atomic cooling haloes at high redshift is self-shielding to ionizing radiation. Therefore, it is only in a fraction of such haloes in which DCBH formation is prevented due to reionization.

  2. NANOGrav Limits on Continuous Gravitational Waves from Supermassive Black Hole Binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ellis, Justin

    2014-03-01

    Gravitational Waves (GWs) are tiny ripples in the fabric of space-time predicted by Einstein's theory of General Relativity. Pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) offer a unique opportunity to detect low frequency GWs in the near future. Such a detection would be complementary to both LIGO and future space based GW efforts. In the low (1e-9 - 1e-7 Hz) frequency band, the expected source of GWs is a stochastic background resulting from the ensemble of supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) formed during the merger of galaxies, and possibly a few nearby/massive sources that will be individually resolvable. In this talk we will discuss continuous wave search efforts using the current NANOGrav data releases. We will briefly outline both Bayesian and Frequentist search and upper limit pipelines and present preliminary results for sky averaged and targeted upper limits on the strain amplitude using both techniques. Finally we present sensitivity projections for future NANOGrav observations and comment on the plausibility of detection based on current simulations of SMBHBs.

  3. An estimate of the probability of capture of a binary star by a supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dremova, G. N.; Dremov, V. V.; Tutukov, A. V.

    2016-08-01

    A simple model for the dynamics of stars located in a sphere with a radius of one-tenth of the central parsec, designed to enable estimation of the probability of capture in the close vicinity ( r < 10-3 pc) of a supermassive black hole (SMBH) is presented. In the case of binary stars, such a capture with a high probability results in the formation of a hyper-velocity star. The population of stars in a sphere of radius <0.1 pc is calculated based on data for the Galactic rotation curve. To simulate the distortion of initially circular orbits of stars, these are subjected to a series of random shock encounters ("kicks"), whose net effect is to "push" these binary systems into the region of potential formation of hyper-velocity stars. The mean crossing time of the border of the close vicinity of the SMBH ( r < 10-3 pc) by the stellar orbit can be used to estimate the probability that a binary system is captured, followed by the possible ejection of a hyper-velocity star.

  4. A possible close supermassive black-hole binary in a quasar with optical periodicity.

    PubMed

    Graham, Matthew J; Djorgovski, S G; Stern, Daniel; Glikman, Eilat; Drake, Andrew J; Mahabal, Ashish A; Donalek, Ciro; Larson, Steve; Christensen, Eric

    2015-02-01

    Quasars have long been known to be variable sources at all wavelengths. Their optical variability is stochastic and can be due to a variety of physical mechanisms; it is also well-described statistically in terms of a damped random walk model. The recent availability of large collections of astronomical time series of flux measurements (light curves) offers new data sets for a systematic exploration of quasar variability. Here we report the detection of a strong, smooth periodic signal in the optical variability of the quasar PG 1302-102 with a mean observed period of 1,884 ± 88 days. It was identified in a search for periodic variability in a data set of light curves for 247,000 known, spectroscopically confirmed quasars with a temporal baseline of about 9 years. Although the interpretation of this phenomenon is still uncertain, the most plausible mechanisms involve a binary system of two supermassive black holes with a subparsec separation. Such systems are an expected consequence of galaxy mergers and can provide important constraints on models of galaxy formation and evolution. PMID:25561176

  5. Can supermassive black holes influence the evolution of their host galaxies?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tombesi, F.; Cappi, M.; Reeves, J.; Braito, V.; Veilleux, S.; Reynolds, C.; Lobban, A.

    2016-06-01

    Powerful winds driven by active galactic nuclei (AGN) are often invoked to play a fundamental role in the evolution of both supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and their host galaxies, quenching star formation and explaining the tight SMBH-galaxy relations. A strong support of this "quasar mode" feedback came from the recent X-ray observation of a mildly relativistic accretion disk wind in an ultraluminous infrared galaxy and its connection with a large-scale molecular outflow observed in the IR with Herschel, suggesting a direct link between the SMBH and the gas out of which stars form. Spectroscopic observations, especially in the X-ray band, suggest that such accretion disk winds may be common in local AGN and quasars. However, their origin and characteristics are still not fully understood. Detailed theoretical models and simulations focused on radiation, magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) or a combination of these two processes, to investigate the possible acceleration mechanisms and dynamics of these winds. XMM-Newton provided a fundamental contribution to these studies and it will still provide the highest effective area in the critical Fe K band of the spectrum until the launch of Athena. Very important improvements are expected from the high energy resolution of the Hitomi X-ray Observatory.

  6. Gravitational Wave Driven Mergers and Coalescence Time of Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khan, Fazeel Mahmood; Berczik, Peter; Just, Andreas

    2016-07-01

    The evolution of Supermassive Black Holes (SMBHs) initially embedded in the centers of merging galaxies is studied from the onset of galaxy mergers till coalescence. We performed direct N-body simulations using the highly efficient and massively parallel phi-GPU code capable to run on GPU supported high performance computer clusters. Post-Newtonian terms up to order 3.5 are used to drive the SMBH binary evolution in the relativistic regime. We find that SMBH binaries coalesce well within one billion year when our models are scaled to dense cuspy galaxies at low redshift. Here higher central densities provide larger supply of stars to efficiently extract energy from the SMBH binary orbit and shrink it to the phase where gravitational wave (GW) emission becomes dominant leading to the coalescence of the SMBHs. On the other hand, mergers of models that are representative of giant elliptical galaxies having central cores result in less efficient extraction of binary's orbit energy due to the lower stellar densities in the center. However, high value of eccentricities witnessed for SMBH binaries in such galaxy mergers ensure that the GW emission dominated phase sets in at larger values of the semi-major axis. This helps to compensate for the less efficient energy extraction during the phase dominated by stellar encounters resulting in mergers of SMBHs in about one billion years after the formation of binary.

  7. Rapid growth of seed black holes in the early universe by supra-exponential accretion.

    PubMed

    Alexander, Tal; Natarajan, Priyamvada

    2014-09-12

    Mass accretion by black holes (BHs) is typically capped at the Eddington rate, when radiation's push balances gravity's pull. However, even exponential growth at the Eddington-limited e-folding time t(E) ~ few × 0.01 billion years is too slow to grow stellar-mass BH seeds into the supermassive luminous quasars that are observed when the universe is 1 billion years old. We propose a dynamical mechanism that can trigger supra-exponential accretion in the early universe, when a BH seed is bound in a star cluster fed by the ubiquitous dense cold gas flows. The high gas opacity traps the accretion radiation, while the low-mass BH's random motions suppress the formation of a slowly draining accretion disk. Supra-exponential growth can thus explain the puzzling emergence of supermassive BHs that power luminous quasars so soon after the Big Bang.

  8. Rapid growth of seed black holes in the early universe by supra-exponential accretion.

    PubMed

    Alexander, Tal; Natarajan, Priyamvada

    2014-09-12

    Mass accretion by black holes (BHs) is typically capped at the Eddington rate, when radiation's push balances gravity's pull. However, even exponential growth at the Eddington-limited e-folding time t(E) ~ few × 0.01 billion years is too slow to grow stellar-mass BH seeds into the supermassive luminous quasars that are observed when the universe is 1 billion years old. We propose a dynamical mechanism that can trigger supra-exponential accretion in the early universe, when a BH seed is bound in a star cluster fed by the ubiquitous dense cold gas flows. The high gas opacity traps the accretion radiation, while the low-mass BH's random motions suppress the formation of a slowly draining accretion disk. Supra-exponential growth can thus explain the puzzling emergence of supermassive BHs that power luminous quasars so soon after the Big Bang. PMID:25103410

  9. Supermassive black holes and central star clusters: Connection with the host galaxy kinematics and color

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zasov, A. V.; Cherepashchuk, A. M.

    2013-11-01

    The relationship between the masses of the central, supermassive black holes ( M bh) and of the nuclear star clusters ( M nc) of disk galaxies with various parameters galaxies are considered: the rotational velocity at R = 2 kpc V (2), the maximum rotational velocity V max, the indicative dynamical mass M 25, the integrated mass of the stellar population M *, and the integrated color index B-V. The rotational velocities andmasses of the central objects were taken from the literature. Themass M nc correlatesmore closely with the kinematic parameters and the disk mass than M bh, including with the velocity V max, which is closely related to the virial mass of the dark halo. On average, lenticular galaxies are characterized by higher masses M bh compared to other types of galaxies with similar characteristics. The dependence of the blackhole mass on the color index is bimodal: galaxies of the red group (red-sequence) with B-V >0.6-0.7 which are mostly early-type galaxies with weak star formation, differ appreciably from blue galaxies, which have higher values of M nc and M bh. At the dependences we consider between the masses of the central objects and the parameters of the host galaxies (except for the dependence of M bh on the central velocity dispersion), the red-group galaxies have systematically higher M bh values, even when the host-galaxy parameters are similar. In contrast, in the case of nuclear star clusters, the blue and red galaxies form unified sequences. The results agree with scenarios in which most red-group galaxies form as a result of the partial or complete loss of interstellar gas in a stage of high nuclear activity in galaxies whose central black-hole masses exceed 106-107 M ⊙ (depending on the mass of the galaxy itself). The bulk of disk galaxies with M bh > 107 M ⊙ are lenticular galaxies (types S0, E/S0) whose disks are practically devoid of gas.

  10. The Nearest Black Hole

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor); Garcia, Michael

    2005-01-01

    The goal of this program is to study black holes, both in our Galaxy and in nearby galaxies. We aim to study both 'stellar mass' x-ray binaries containing black holes (both in our Galaxy and in nearby galaxies), and super-massive black holes in nearby galaxies.

  11. CONNECTING STAR FORMATION QUENCHING WITH GALAXY STRUCTURE AND SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES THROUGH GRAVITATIONAL HEATING OF COOLING FLOWS

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Fulai

    2014-12-20

    Recent observations suggested that star formation quenching in galaxies is related to galaxy structure. Here we propose a new mechanism to explain the physical origin of this correlation. We assume that while quenching is maintained in quiescent galaxies by a feedback mechanism, cooling flows in the hot halo gas can still develop intermittently. We study cooling flows in a large suite of around 90 hydrodynamic simulations of an isolated galaxy group, and find that the flow development depends significantly on the gravitational potential well in the central galaxy. If the galaxy's gravity is not strong enough, cooling flows result in a central cooling catastrophe, supplying cold gas and feeding star formation to galactic bulges. When the bulge grows prominent enough, compressional heating starts to offset radiative cooling and maintains cooling flows in a long-term hot mode without producing a cooling catastrophe. Our model thus describes a self-limited growth channel for galaxy bulges and naturally explains the connection between quenching and bulge prominence. In particular, we explicitly demonstrate that M{sub ∗}/R{sub eff}{sup 1.5} is a good structural predictor of quenching. We further find that the gravity from the central supermassive black hole also affects the bimodal fate of cooling flows, and we predict a more general quenching predictor to be M{sub bh}{sup 1.6}M{sub ∗}/R{sub eff}{sup 1.5}, which may be tested in future observational studies.

  12. Constraints on the Nature of CID-42: Recoil Kick or Supermassive Black Hole Pair?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blecha, Laura; Civano, Francesca; Elvis, Martin; Loeb, Abraham

    2012-01-01

    The galaxy CXOC J100043.1+020637, also known as CID-42, is a highly unusual object. An apparent galaxy merger remnant, it displays signatures of both an inspiraling, kiloparsecscale active galactic nucleus (AGN) pair and of a recoiling AGN with a kick velocity approximately greater than 1300 km s(exp -1). Among recoiling AGN candidates, CID-42 alone has both spatial offsets (in optical and X-ray bands) and spectroscopic offsets. In order to constrain the relative likelihood of both scenarios, we develop models using hydrodynamic galaxy merger simulations coupled with radiative transfer calculations. Our gas-rich, major merger models are generally well matched to the galactic morphology and to the inferred stellar mass and star formation rate. We show that a recoiling supermassive black hole (SMBH) in CID-42 should be observable as an AGN at the time of observation. However, in order for the recoiling AGN to produce narrow-line emission, it must be observed shortly after the kick while it still inhabits a dense gaseous region, implying a large total kick velocity (vk approximately greater than 2000 km s(exp -1)). For the dual AGN scenario, an unusually large broad-line offset is required, and the best match to the observed morphology requires a galaxy that is less luminous than CID-42. Further, the lack of X-ray emission from one of the two optical nuclei is not easily attributed to an intrinsically quiescent SMBH or to a Compton-thick galactic environment. While the current data do not allow either the recoiling or the dual AGN scenario for CID-42 to be excluded, our models highlight the most relevant parameters for distinguishing these possibilities with future observations. In particular, high-quality, spatially-resolved spectra that can pinpoint the origin of the broad and narrow line features will be critical for determining the nature of this unique source.

  13. SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN A STAR-FORMING GASEOUS CIRCUMNUCLEAR DISK

    SciTech Connect

    Del Valle, L.; Escala, A.; Molina, J.; Maureira-Fredes, C.; Amaro-Seoane, P.; Cuadra, J.

    2015-09-20

    Using N-body/smoothed particle hydrodynamics simulations we study the evolution of the separation of a pair of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) embedded in a star-forming circumnuclear disk (CND). This type of disk is expected to be formed in the central kiloparsec of the remnant of gas-rich galaxy mergers. Our simulations indicate that orbital decay of the SMBHs occurs more quickly when the mean density of the CND is higher, due to increased dynamical friction. However, in simulations where the CND is fragmented in high-density gaseous clumps (clumpy CND), the orbits of the SMBHs are erratically perturbed by the gravitational interaction with these clumps, delaying, in some cases, the orbital decay of the SMBHs. The densities of these gaseous clumps in our simulations and in recent studies of clumpy CNDs are two orders of magnitude higher than the observed density of molecular clouds in isolated galaxies or ultraluminous infrared galaxies (ULIRGs), thus, we expect that SMBH orbits are perturbed less in real CNDs than in the simulated CNDs of this study and other recent studies. We also find that the migration timescale has a weak dependence on the star formation rate of the CND. Furthermore, the migration timescale of an SMBH pair in a star-forming clumpy CND is at most a factor of three longer than the migration timescale of a pair of SMBHs in a CND modeled with more simple gas physics. Therefore, we estimate that the migration timescale of the SMBHs in a clumpy CND is on the order of 10{sup 7} years.

  14. Supermassive Black Hole Binaries: Environment and Galaxy Host Properties of PTA and eLISA sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez Palafox, Eva

    2015-08-01

    Supermassive black hole (BH) binaries would comprise the strongest sources of gravitational waves (GW) once they reach ≪ 1pc separations, for both pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) and space based (SB) detectors. While BH binaries coalescences constitute a natural outcome of the cosmological standard model and galaxy mergers, their dynamical evolution is still poorly understood and therefore their abundances at different stages. We use a dynamical model for the decay of BH binaries coupled with a cosmological simulation and semi-empirical approaches to the occupation of haloes by galaxies and BHs, in order to follow the evolution of the properties distribution of galaxies hosting BH binaries candidates to decay due to GWs emission. Our models allow us to relax simplifying hypothesis about the binaries occupation in galaxies and their mass, as well as redshift evolution. Following previously proposed electromagnetic (EM) signatures of binaries in the subparsec regime, that include spectral features and variability, we model possible distributions of such signatures and alsoset upper limits to their lifespan. We found a bimodal distribution of hosts properties, corresponding to BH binaries suitable to be detected by PTA and the ones detectable only from space missions, as eLISA. Although it has been discussed that the peak of eLISA sources may happen at high z, we show that there must be a population of such sources in the nearby Universe that might show detectable EM signatures, representing an important laboratory for multimessenger astrophysics. We found a weak dependence of galaxy host properties on the binaries occupation, that can be traced back to the BH origin. The combination of the host correlations reported here with the expected EM signal, may be helpful to verify the presence of nearby GW candidates, and to distinguish them from ’regular’ intrinsic AGN variability.

  15. Estimating the fossil disc mass during supermassive black hole mergers: the importance of torque implementation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tazzari, M.; Lodato, G.

    2015-05-01

    In this paper, we revisit the issue of estimating the `fossil' disc mass in the circumprimary disc, during the merger of a supermassive black hole binary. As the binary orbital decay speeds up due to the emission of gravitational waves, the gas in the circumprimary disc might be forced to accrete rapidly and could in principle provide a significant electromagnetic counterpart to the gravitational wave emission. Since the luminosity of such flare is proportional to the gaseous mass in the circumprimary disc, estimating such mass accurately is important. Previous investigations of this issue have produced contradictory results, with some authors estimating super-Eddington flares and large disc mass, while others suggesting that the `fossil' disc mass is very low, even less than a Jupiter mass. Here, we perform simple 1D calculations to show that such very low estimates of the disc mass are an artefact of the specific implementation of the tidal torque in 1D models. In particular, for moderate mass ratios of the binary, the usual formula for the torque used in 1D models significantly overestimates the width of the gap induced by the secondary and this artificially leads to a very small leftover circumprimary disc. Using a modified torque, calibrated to reproduce the correct gap width as estimated by 3D models, leads to fossil disc masses of the order of one solar mass. The rapid accretion of the whole circumprimary disc would produce peak luminosities of the order of 1-20 times the Eddington luminosity. Even if a significant fraction of the gas escapes accretion by flowing out the secondary orbit during the merger (an effect not included in our calculations), we would still predict close to Eddington luminosities that might be easily detected.

  16. Evolution of Supermassive Black Hole Binaries and Acceleration of Jet Precession in Galactic Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, F. K.; Chen, X.

    2007-12-01

    Supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) are expected with the hierarchical galaxy formation model. Currently, physics processes dominating the evolution of a SMBHB are unclear. An interesting question is whether we could observationally determine the evolution of SMBHBs and give constraints on the physical processes. Jet precession has been observed in many active galactic nuclei (AGNs) and is generally attributed to disk precession. In this paper we calculate the time variation of jet precession and conclude that jet precession is accelerated in SMBHB systems but decelerated in others. The acceleration of jet precession, dPpr/dt, is related to the jet precession timescale, Ppr, and the SMBHB evolution timescale, τa, as dPpr/dt~=-Λ(Ppr/τa). Our calculations based on the models for jet precession and SMBHB evolution show that dPpr/dt can be as high as about -1.0, with a typical value of -0.2, and can be easily detected. We discuss the differential jet precession for NGC 1275 that has been observed in the literature. If its observed rapid acceleration of jet precession is true, the jet precession is due to the orbital motion of an unbound SMBHB with a mass ratio of q~0.76. When jets precess from ancient bubbles to the currently active jets, the separation of the SMBHB decreases from about 1.46 kpc to 0.80 kpc, with an averaged decreasing velocity of da/dt~=-1.54×106 cm s-1 and an evolution timescale of τa~7.5×107 yr. However, if we assume steady jet precession for many cycles, the observations imply a hard SMBHB with a mass ratio of a q~0.21 and a separation of a~0.29 pc.

  17. PHYSICS OF THE GALACTIC CENTER CLOUD G2, ON ITS WAY TOWARD THE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE

    SciTech Connect

    Burkert, A.; Schartmann, M.; Alig, C.; Gillessen, S.; Genzel, R.; Fritz, T. K.; Eisenhauer, F.

    2012-05-01

    We investigate the origin, structure, and evolution of the small gas cloud G2, which is on an orbit almost straight into the Galactic central supermassive black hole (SMBH). G2 is a sensitive probe of the hot accretion zone of Sgr A*, requiring gas temperatures and densities that agree well with models of captured shock-heated stellar winds. Its mass is equal to the critical mass below which cold clumps would be destroyed quickly by evaporation. Its mass is also constrained by the fact that at apocenter its sound crossing timescale was equal to its infall timescale. Our numerical simulations show that the observed structure and evolution of G2 can be well reproduced if it forms in pressure equilibrium with its surroundings in 1995 at a distance from the SMBH of 7.6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 16} cm. If the cloud had formed at apocenter in the 'clockwise' stellar disk as expected from its orbit, it would be torn into a very elongated spaghetti-like filament by 2011, which is not observed. This problem can be solved if G2 is the head of a larger, shell-like structure that formed at apocenter. Our numerical simulations show that this scenario explains not only G2's observed kinematical and geometrical properties but also the Br{gamma} observations of a low surface brightness gas tail that trails the cloud. In 2013, while passing the SMBH, G2 will break up into a string of droplets that within the next 30 years will mix with the surrounding hot gas and trigger cycles of active galactic nucleus activity.

  18. The Coevolution of Supermassive Black Holes and Massive Galaxies at High Redshift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lapi, A.; Raimundo, S.; Aversa, R.; Cai, Z.-Y.; Negrello, M.; Celotti, A.; De Zotti, G.; Danese, L.

    2014-02-01

    We exploit the recent, wide samples of far-infrared (FIR) selected galaxies followed up in X-rays and of X-ray/optically selected active galactic nuclei (AGNs) followed up in the FIR band, along with the classic data on AGNs and stellar luminosity functions at high redshift z >~ 1.5, to probe different stages in the coevolution of supermassive black holes (BHs) and host galaxies. The results of our analysis indicate the following scenario: (1) the star formation in the host galaxy proceeds within a heavily dust-enshrouded medium at an almost constant rate over a timescale <~ 0.5-1 Gyr and then abruptly declines due to quasar feedback, over the same timescale; (2) part of the interstellar medium loses angular momentum, reaches the circum-nuclear regions at a rate proportional to the star formation, and is temporarily stored in a massive reservoir/proto-torus wherefrom it can be promptly accreted; (3) the BH grows by accretion in a self-regulated regime with radiative power that can slightly exceed the Eddington limit L/L Edd <~ 4, particularly at the highest redshifts; (4) for massive BHs, the ensuing energy feedback at its maximum exceeds the stellar one and removes the interstellar gas, thus stopping the star formation and the fueling of the reservoir; (5) afterward, if the latter has retained enough gas, a phase of supply-limited accretion follows, exponentially declining with a timescale of about two e-folding times. We also discuss how the detailed properties and the specific evolution of the reservoir can be investigated via coordinated, high-resolution observations of star-forming, strongly lensed galaxies in the (sub-)mm band with ALMA and in the X-ray band with Chandra and the next-generation X-ray instruments.

  19. Hunting a wandering supermassive black hole in the M31 halo hermitage

    SciTech Connect

    Miki, Yohei; Mori, Masao; Kawaguchi, Toshihiro; Saito, Yuriko

    2014-03-10

    In the hierarchical structure formation scenario, galaxies enlarge through multiple merging events with less massive galaxies. In addition, the Magorrian relation indicates that almost all galaxies are occupied by a central supermassive black hole (SMBH) of mass 10{sup –3} times the mass of its spheroidal component. Consequently, SMBHs are expected to wander in the halos of their host galaxies following a galaxy collision, although evidence of this activity is currently lacking. We investigate a current plausible location of an SMBH wandering in the halo of the Andromeda galaxy (M31). According to theoretical studies of N-body simulations, some of the many substructures in the M31 halo are remnants of a minor merger occurring about 1 Gyr ago. First, to evaluate the possible parameter space of the infalling orbit of the progenitor, we perform numerous parameter studies using a graphics processing unit cluster. To reduce uncertainties in the predicted position of the expected SMBH, we then calculate the time evolution of the SMBH in the progenitor dwarf galaxy from N-body simulations using the plausible parameter sets. Our results show that the SMBH lies within the halo (∼20-50 kpc from the M31 center), closer to the Milky Way than the M31 disk. Furthermore, the predicted current positions of the SMBH were restricted to an observational field of 0.°6 × 0.°7 in the northeast region of the M31 halo. We also discuss the origin of the infalling orbit of the satellite galaxy and its relationships with the recently discovered vast thin disk plane of satellite galaxies around M31.

  20. Accretion and Orbital Inspiral in Gas-assisted Supermassive Black Hole Binary Mergers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rafikov, Roman R.

    2016-08-01

    Many galaxies are expected to harbor binary supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in their centers. Their interaction with the surrounding gas results in the accretion and exchange of angular momentum via tidal torques, facilitating binary inspiral. Here, we explore the non-trivial coupling between these two processes and analyze how the global properties of externally supplied circumbinary disks depend on the binary accretion rate. By formulating our results in terms of the angular momentum flux driven by internal stresses, we come up with a very simple classification of the possible global disk structures, which differ from the standard constant \\dot{M} accretion disk solution. The suppression of accretion by the binary tides, leading to a significant mass accumulation in the inner disk, accelerates binary inspiral. We show that once the disk region strongly perturbed by the viscously transmitted tidal torque exceeds the binary semimajor axis, the binary can merge in less than its mass-doubling time due to accretion. Thus, unlike the inspirals driven by stellar scattering, the gas-assisted merger can occur even if the binary is embedded in a relatively low-mass disk (lower than its own mass). This is important for resolving the “last parsec” problem for SMBH binaries and understanding powerful gravitational wave sources in the universe. We argue that the enhancement of accretion by the binary found in some recent simulations cannot persist for a long time and should not affect the long-term orbital inspiral. We also review existing simulations of SMBH binary-disk coupling and propose a numerical setup which is particularly well suited to verifying our theoretical predictions.

  1. The coevolution of supermassive black holes and massive galaxies at high redshift

    SciTech Connect

    Lapi, A.; Raimundo, S.; Aversa, R.; Cai, Z.-Y.; Celotti, A.; De Zotti, G.; Danese, L.; Negrello, M.

    2014-02-20

    We exploit the recent, wide samples of far-infrared (FIR) selected galaxies followed up in X-rays and of X-ray/optically selected active galactic nuclei (AGNs) followed up in the FIR band, along with the classic data on AGNs and stellar luminosity functions at high redshift z ≳ 1.5, to probe different stages in the coevolution of supermassive black holes (BHs) and host galaxies. The results of our analysis indicate the following scenario: (1) the star formation in the host galaxy proceeds within a heavily dust-enshrouded medium at an almost constant rate over a timescale ≲ 0.5-1 Gyr and then abruptly declines due to quasar feedback, over the same timescale; (2) part of the interstellar medium loses angular momentum, reaches the circum-nuclear regions at a rate proportional to the star formation, and is temporarily stored in a massive reservoir/proto-torus wherefrom it can be promptly accreted; (3) the BH grows by accretion in a self-regulated regime with radiative power that can slightly exceed the Eddington limit L/L {sub Edd} ≲ 4, particularly at the highest redshifts; (4) for massive BHs, the ensuing energy feedback at its maximum exceeds the stellar one and removes the interstellar gas, thus stopping the star formation and the fueling of the reservoir; (5) afterward, if the latter has retained enough gas, a phase of supply-limited accretion follows, exponentially declining with a timescale of about two e-folding times. We also discuss how the detailed properties and the specific evolution of the reservoir can be investigated via coordinated, high-resolution observations of star-forming, strongly lensed galaxies in the (sub-)mm band with ALMA and in the X-ray band with Chandra and the next-generation X-ray instruments.

  2. Physics of the Galactic Center Cloud G2, on Its Way toward the Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burkert, A.; Schartmann, M.; Alig, C.; Gillessen, S.; Genzel, R.; Fritz, T. K.; Eisenhauer, F.

    2012-05-01

    We investigate the origin, structure, and evolution of the small gas cloud G2, which is on an orbit almost straight into the Galactic central supermassive black hole (SMBH). G2 is a sensitive probe of the hot accretion zone of Sgr A*, requiring gas temperatures and densities that agree well with models of captured shock-heated stellar winds. Its mass is equal to the critical mass below which cold clumps would be destroyed quickly by evaporation. Its mass is also constrained by the fact that at apocenter its sound crossing timescale was equal to its infall timescale. Our numerical simulations show that the observed structure and evolution of G2 can be well reproduced if it forms in pressure equilibrium with its surroundings in 1995 at a distance from the SMBH of 7.6 × 1016 cm. If the cloud had formed at apocenter in the "clockwise" stellar disk as expected from its orbit, it would be torn into a very elongated spaghetti-like filament by 2011, which is not observed. This problem can be solved if G2 is the head of a larger, shell-like structure that formed at apocenter. Our numerical simulations show that this scenario explains not only G2's observed kinematical and geometrical properties but also the Brγ observations of a low surface brightness gas tail that trails the cloud. In 2013, while passing the SMBH, G2 will break up into a string of droplets that within the next 30 years will mix with the surrounding hot gas and trigger cycles of active galactic nucleus activity.

  3. HIGH-FREQUENCY GRAVITATIONAL WAVES FROM SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES: PROSPECTS FOR LIGO-VIRGO DETECTIONS

    SciTech Connect

    Kocsis, Bence

    2013-02-15

    It is commonly assumed that ground-based gravitational wave (GW) instruments will not be sensitive to supermassive black holes (SMBHs) because the characteristic GW frequencies are far below the {approx}10-1000 Hz sensitivity bands of terrestrial detectors. Here, however, we explore the possibility of SMBH GWs to leak to higher frequencies. In particular, if the high-frequency spectral tail asymptotes to h-tilde (f){proportional_to}f{sup -{alpha}}, where {alpha} {<=} 2, then the spectral amplitude is a constant or increasing function of the mass M at a fixed frequency f >> c {sup 3}/GM. This will happen if the time-domain waveform or its derivative exhibits a discontinuity. Ground-based instruments could search for these universal spectral tails to detect or rule out such features irrespective of their origin. We identify the following processes which may generate high-frequency signals: (1) gravitational bremsstrahlung of ultrarelativistic objects in the vicinity of an SMBH, (2) ringdown modes excited by an external process that has a high-frequency component or terminates abruptly, and (3) gravitational lensing echoes and diffraction. We estimate the order of magnitude of the detection signal-to-noise ratio for each mechanism (1, 2, and 3) as a function of the waveform parameters. In particular for (3), SMBHs produce GW echoes of inspiraling stellar mass binaries in galactic nuclei with a delay of a few minutes to hours. The lensed primary signal and GW echo are both amplified if the binary is within a {approx}10 deg (r/100M){sup -1/2} cone behind the SMBH relative to the line of sight at a distance r from the SMBH. For the rest of the binaries near SMBHs, the amplitude of the GW echo is {approx}0.1(r/100M){sup -1} of the primary signal on average.

  4. Accretion and Orbital Inspiral in Gas-assisted Supermassive Black Hole Binary Mergers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rafikov, Roman R.

    2016-08-01

    Many galaxies are expected to harbor binary supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in their centers. Their interaction with the surrounding gas results in the accretion and exchange of angular momentum via tidal torques, facilitating binary inspiral. Here, we explore the non-trivial coupling between these two processes and analyze how the global properties of externally supplied circumbinary disks depend on the binary accretion rate. By formulating our results in terms of the angular momentum flux driven by internal stresses, we come up with a very simple classification of the possible global disk structures, which differ from the standard constant \\dot{M} accretion disk solution. The suppression of accretion by the binary tides, leading to a significant mass accumulation in the inner disk, accelerates binary inspiral. We show that once the disk region strongly perturbed by the viscously transmitted tidal torque exceeds the binary semimajor axis, the binary can merge in less than its mass-doubling time due to accretion. Thus, unlike the inspirals driven by stellar scattering, the gas-assisted merger can occur even if the binary is embedded in a relatively low-mass disk (lower than its own mass). This is important for resolving the “last parsec” problem for SMBH binaries and understanding powerful gravitational wave sources in the universe. We argue that the enhancement of accretion by the binary found in some recent simulations cannot persist for a long time and should not affect the long-term orbital inspiral. We also review existing simulations of SMBH binary–disk coupling and propose a numerical setup which is particularly well suited to verifying our theoretical predictions.

  5. ENHANCED OFF-CENTER STELLAR TIDAL DISRUPTIONS BY SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN MERGING GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, F. K.; Chen, Xian E-mail: chenxian@pku.edu.cn

    2013-04-10

    Off-center stellar tidal disruption flares have been suggested to be a powerful probe of recoiling supermassive black holes (SMBHs) out of galactic centers due to anisotropic gravitational wave radiations. However, off-center tidal flares can also be produced by SMBHs in merging galaxies. In this paper, we computed the tidal flare rates by dual SMBHs in two merging galaxies before the SMBHs become self-gravitationally bounded. We employ an analytical model to calculate the tidal loss-cone feeding rates for both SMBHs, taking into account two-body relaxation of stars, tidal perturbations by the companion galaxy, and chaotic stellar orbits in triaxial gravitational potential. We show that for typical SMBHs with masses 10{sup 7} M{sub Sun }, the loss-cone feeding rates are enhanced by mergers up to {Gamma} {approx} 10{sup -2} yr{sup -1}, about two orders of magnitude higher than those by single SMBHs in isolated galaxies and about four orders of magnitude higher than those by recoiling SMBHs. The enhancements are mainly due to tidal perturbations by the companion galaxy. We suggest that off-center tidal flares are overwhelmed by those from merging galaxies, making the identification of recoiling SMBHs challenging. Based on the calculated rates, we estimate the relative contributions of tidal flare events by single, binary, and dual SMBH systems during cosmic time. Our calculations show that the off-center tidal disruption flares by un-bound SMBHs in merging galaxies contribute a fraction comparable to that by single SMBHs in isolated galaxies. We conclude that off-center tidal disruptions are powerful tracers of the merging history of galaxies and SMBHs.

  6. Black holes in binary stellar systems and galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cherepashchuk, A. M.

    2014-04-01

    In the last 40 years, following pioneering papers by Ya B Zeldovich and E E Salpeter, in which a powerful energy release from nonspherical accretion of matter onto a black hole (BH) was predicted, many observational studies of black holes in the Universe have been carried out. To date, the masses of several dozen stellar-mass black holes (M_BH = (4{-}20) M_\\odot) in X-ray binary systems and of several hundred supermassive black holes (M_BH = (10^{6}{-}10^{10}) M_\\odot) in galactic nuclei have been measured. The estimated radii of these massive and compact objects do not exceed several gravitational radii. For about ten stellar-mass black holes and several dozen supermassive black holes, the values of the dimensionless angular momentum a_* have been estimated, which, in agreement with theoretical predictions, do not exceed the limiting value a_* = 0.998. A new field of astrophysics, so-called black hole demography, which studies the birth and growth of black holes and their evolutionary connection to other objects in the Universe, namely stars, galaxies, etc., is rapidly developing. In addition to supermassive black holes, massive stellar clusters are observed in galactic nuclei, and their evolution is distinct from that of supermassive black holes. The evolutionary relations between supermassive black holes in galactic centers and spheroidal stellar components (bulges) of galaxies, as well as dark-matter galactic haloes are brought out. The launch into Earth's orbit of the space radio interferometer RadioAstron opened up the real possibility of finally proving that numerous discovered massive and highly compact objects with properties very similar to those of black holes make up real black holes in the sense of Albert Einstein's General Relativity. Similar proofs of the existence of black holes in the Universe can be obtained by intercontinental radio interferometry at short wavelengths \\lambda \\lesssim 1 mm (the international program, Event Horizon Telescope).

  7. Subaru and e-Merlin observations of NGC 3718. Diaries of a supermassive black hole recoil?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markakis, K.; Dierkes, J.; Eckart, A.; Nishiyama, S.; Britzen, S.; García-Marín, M.; Horrobin, M.; Muxlow, T.; Zensus, J. A.

    2015-08-01

    photometric and spectroscopic characteristics. These characteristics combined with the observed spatial NIR and radio emission offsets, the relative redshift between the broad and the narrow Hα line, the limited star formation activity, and AGN feedback strongly imply the existence of a supermassive black hole recoil. Finally, we discuss a possible interpretation that could naturally incorporate all these findings into one physically consistent picture. Appendices are available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.orgBased on data collected at Subaru Telescope, which is operated by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan.

  8. HUNTING FOR SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN NEARBY GALAXIES WITH THE HOBBY–EBERLY TELESCOPE

    SciTech Connect

    Bosch, Remco C. E. van den; Yıldırım, Akin; Gebhardt, Karl; Walsh, Jonelle L.; Gültekin, Kayhan

    2015-05-15

    We have conducted an optical long-slit spectroscopic survey of 1022 galaxies using the 10 m Hobby–Eberly Telescope (HET) at McDonald Observatory. The main goal of the HET Massive Galaxy Survey (HETMGS) is to find nearby galaxies that are suitable for black hole mass measurements. In order to measure accurately the black hole mass, one should kinematically resolve the region where the black hole dominates the gravitational potential. For most galaxies, this region is much less than an arcsecond. Thus, black hole masses are best measured in nearby galaxies with telescopes that obtain high spatial resolution. The HETMGS focuses on those galaxies predicted to have the largest sphere-of-influence, based on published stellar velocity dispersions or the galaxy fundamental plane. To ensure coverage over galaxy types, the survey targets those galaxies across a face-on projection of the fundamental plane. We present the sample selection and resulting data products from the long-slit observations, including central stellar kinematics and emission line ratios. The full data set, including spectra and resolved kinematics, is available online. Additionally, we show that the current crop of black hole masses are highly biased toward dense galaxies and that especially large disks and low dispersion galaxies are under-represented. This survey provides the necessary groundwork for future systematic black hole mass measurement campaigns.

  9. Science with the space-based interferometer eLISA: Supermassive black hole binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klein, Antoine; Barausse, Enrico; Sesana, Alberto; Petiteau, Antoine; Berti, Emanuele; Babak, Stanislav; Gair, Jonathan; Aoudia, Sofiane; Hinder, Ian; Ohme, Frank; Wardell, Barry

    2016-01-01

    We compare the science capabilities of different eLISA mission designs, including four-link (two-arm) and six-link (three-arm) configurations with different arm lengths, low-frequency noise sensitivities and mission durations. For each of these configurations we consider a few representative massive black hole formation scenarios. These scenarios are chosen to explore two physical mechanisms that greatly affect eLISA rates, namely (i) black hole seeding, and (ii) the delays between the merger of two galaxies and the merger of the black holes hosted by those galaxies. We assess the eLISA parameter estimation accuracy using a Fisher matrix analysis with spin-precessing, inspiral-only waveforms. We quantify the information present in the merger and ringdown by rescaling the inspiral-only Fisher matrix estimates using the signal-to-noise ratio from nonprecessing inspiral-merger-ringdown phenomenological waveforms, and from a reduced set of precessing numerical relativity/post-Newtonian hybrid waveforms. We find that all of the eLISA configurations considered in our study should detect some massive black hole binaries. However, configurations with six links and better low-frequency noise will provide much more information on the origin of black holes at high redshifts and on their accretion history, and they may allow the identification of electromagnetic counterparts to massive black hole mergers.

  10. Hunting for Supermassive Black Holes in Nearby Galaxies With the Hobby-Eberly Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van den Bosch, Remco C. E.; Gebhardt, Karl; Gültekin, Kayhan; Yıldırım, Akin; Walsh, Jonelle L.

    2015-05-01

    We have conducted an optical long-slit spectroscopic survey of 1022 galaxies using the 10 m Hobby-Eberly Telescope (HET) at McDonald Observatory. The main goal of the HET Massive Galaxy Survey (HETMGS) is to find nearby galaxies that are suitable for black hole mass measurements. In order to measure accurately the black hole mass, one should kinematically resolve the region where the black hole dominates the gravitational potential. For most galaxies, this region is much less than an arcsecond. Thus, black hole masses are best measured in nearby galaxies with telescopes that obtain high spatial resolution. The HETMGS focuses on those galaxies predicted to have the largest sphere-of-influence, based on published stellar velocity dispersions or the galaxy fundamental plane. To ensure coverage over galaxy types, the survey targets those galaxies across a face-on projection of the fundamental plane. We present the sample selection and resulting data products from the long-slit observations, including central stellar kinematics and emission line ratios. The full data set, including spectra and resolved kinematics, is available online. Additionally, we show that the current crop of black hole masses are highly biased toward dense galaxies and that especially large disks and low dispersion galaxies are under-represented. This survey provides the necessary groundwork for future systematic black hole mass measurement campaigns.

  11. DUAL SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE CANDIDATES IN THE AGN AND GALAXY EVOLUTION SURVEY

    SciTech Connect

    Comerford, Julia M.; Schluns, Kyle; Greene, Jenny E.; Cool, Richard J.

    2013-11-01

    Dual supermassive black holes (SMBHs) with kiloparsec-scale separations in merger-remnant galaxies are informative tracers of galaxy evolution, but the avenue for identifying them in large numbers for such studies is not yet clear. One promising approach is to target spectroscopic signatures of systems where both SMBHs are fueled as dual active galactic nuclei (AGNs), or where one SMBH is fueled as an offset AGN. Dual AGNs may produce double-peaked narrow AGN emission lines, while offset AGNs may produce single-peaked narrow AGN emission lines with line-of-sight velocity offsets relative to the host galaxy. We search for such dual and offset systems among 173 Type 2 AGNs at z < 0.37 in the AGN and Galaxy Evolution Survey (AGES), and we find two double-peaked AGNs and five offset AGN candidates. When we compare these results to a similar search of the DEEP2 Galaxy Redshift Survey and match the two samples in color, absolute magnitude, and minimum velocity offset, we find that the fraction of AGNs that are dual SMBH candidates increases from z = 0.25 to z = 0.7 by a factor of ∼6 (from 2/70 to 16/91, or 2.9{sup +3.6}{sub -1.9}% to 18{sup +5}{sub -5}%). This may be associated with the rise in the galaxy merger fraction over the same cosmic time. As further evidence for a link with galaxy mergers, the AGES offset and dual AGN candidates are tentatively ∼3 times more likely than the overall AGN population to reside in a host galaxy that has a companion galaxy (from 16/173 to 2/7, or 9{sup +3}{sub -2}% to 29{sub -19}{sup +26}%). Follow-up observations of the seven offset and dual AGN candidates in AGES will definitively distinguish velocity offsets produced by dual SMBHs from those produced by narrow-line region kinematics, and will help sharpen our observational approach to detecting dual SMBHs.

  12. Physical properties of AGN host galaxies as a probe of supermassive black hole feeding mechanisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gatti, M.; Lamastra, A.; Menci, N.; Bongiorno, A.; Fiore, F.

    2015-04-01

    Using an advanced semi-analytical model (SAM) for galaxy formation, we investigated the statistical effects of assuming two different mechanisms for triggering AGN activity on the properties of AGN host galaxies. We considered a first accretion mode where AGN activity is triggered by disk instabilities (DI) in isolated galaxies, and a second feeding mode where galaxy mergers and fly-by events (interactions, IT) are responsible for producing a sudden destabilization of large quantities of gas, causing the mass inflow onto the central supermassive black hole. The effects of including IT and DI modes in our SAM were studied and compared with observations separately to single out the regimes in which they might be responsible for triggering AGN activity. We obtained the following results: i) the predictions of our model concerning the stellar mass functions of AGN hosts point out that both DI and IT modes are able to account for the observed abundance of AGN host galaxies with M∗ ≲ 1011M⊙; for more massive hosts, the DI scenario predicts a much lower space density than the IT model in every redshift bin, lying below the observational estimates for redshift z > 0.8. ii) The analysis of the colour-magnitude diagram of AGN hosts for redshift z < 1.5 can provide a good observational test to effectively distinguish between DI and IT mode, since DIs are expected to yield AGN host galaxy colours skewed towards bluer colours, while in the IT scenario the majority of hosts are expected to reside in the red sequence. iii) While both IT and DI scenarios can account for AGN triggered in main sequence or starburst galaxies, DIs fail in triggering AGN activity in passive galaxies. The lack of DI AGN in passive hosts is rather insensitive to changes in the model describing the DI mass inflow, and it is mainly caused by the criterion for the onset of disk instabilities included in our SAM. iv) The two modes are characterized by a different duration of the AGN phase, with DIs

  13. Properties of galaxies around AGNs with the most massive supermassive black holes revealed by clustering analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shirasaki, Yuji; Komiya, Yutaka; Ohishi, Masatoshi; Mizumoto, Yoshihiko

    2016-04-01

    We present results of the clustering analysis between active galactic nuclei (AGNs) and galaxies at redshift 0.1-1.0, which was performed to investigate the properties of galaxies associated with the AGNs and reveal the nature of the fueling mechanism of supermassive black holes (SMBHs). We used 8059 AGNs/quasi-stellar objects (QSOs) for which virial masses of individual SMBHs were measured, and divided them into four mass groups.Cross-correlation analysis was performed to reconfirm our previous result that cross-correlation length increases with SMBH mass MBH; we obtained consistent results. A linear bias of AGN for each mass group was measured as 1.47 for MBH = 107.5-108.2 M⊙ and 3.08 for MBH = 109-1010 M⊙. The averaged color and luminosity distributions of galaxies around the AGNs/QSOs were also derived for each mass group. The galaxy color Dopt-IR was estimated from a spectral energy distribution (SED) constructed from a catalog derived by merging the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) and the UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey (UKIDSS) catalogs. The distributions of color and luminosity were derived by a subtraction method, which does not require redshift information of galaxies. The main results of this work are as follows. (1) A linear bias increases by a factor of two from the lower-mass group to the highest-mass group. (2) The environment around AGNs with the most massive SMBHs (MBH > 109 M⊙) is dominated by red sequence galaxies. (3) Marginal indication of decline in luminosity function at dimmer side of MIR > -19.5 is found for galaxies around AGNs with MBH = 108.2-109 M⊙ and nearest redshift group (z = 0.1-0.3). These results indicate that AGNs with the most massive SMBHs reside in haloes where a large fraction of galaxies have been transited to the red sequence. The accretion of hot halo gas as well as recycled gas from evolving stars can be one of the plausible mechanisms to fuel the SMBHs above ˜ 109 M⊙.

  14. European Pulsar Timing Array limits on continuous gravitational waves from individual supermassive black hole binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Babak, S.; Petiteau, A.; Sesana, A.; Brem, P.; Rosado, P. A.; Taylor, S. R.; Lassus, A.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Bassa, C. G.; Burgay, M.; Caballero, R. N.; Champion, D. J.; Cognard, I.; Desvignes, G.; Gair, J. R.; Guillemot, L.; Janssen, G. H.; Karuppusamy, R.; Kramer, M.; Lazarus, P.; Lee, K. J.; Lentati, L.; Liu, K.; Mingarelli, C. M. F.; Osłowski, S.; Perrodin, D.; Possenti, A.; Purver, M. B.; Sanidas, S.; Smits, R.; Stappers, B.; Theureau, G.; Tiburzi, C.; van Haasteren, R.; Vecchio, A.; Verbiest, J. P. W.

    2016-01-01

    We have searched for continuous gravitational wave (CGW) signals produced by individually resolvable, circular supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) in the latest European Pulsar Timing Array (EPTA) data set, which consists of ultraprecise timing data on 41-ms pulsars. We develop frequentist and Bayesian detection algorithms to search both for monochromatic and frequency-evolving systems. None of the adopted algorithms show evidence for the presence of such a CGW signal, indicating that the data are best described by pulsar and radiometer noise only. Depending on the adopted detection algorithm, the 95 per cent upper limit on the sky-averaged strain amplitude lies in the range 6 × 10-15 < A < 1.5 × 10-14 at 5 nHz < f < 7 nHz. This limit varies by a factor of five, depending on the assumed source position and the most constraining limit is achieved towards the positions of the most sensitive pulsars in the timing array. The most robust upper limit - obtained via a full Bayesian analysis searching simultaneously over the signal and pulsar noise on the subset of ours six best pulsars - is A ≈ 10-14. These limits, the most stringent to date at f < 10 nHz, exclude the presence of sub-centiparsec binaries with chirp mass M_c>10^9 M_{⊙} out to a distance of about 25 Mpc, and with M_c>10^{10} M_{⊙} out to a distance of about 1Gpc (z ≈ 0.2). We show that state-of-the-art SMBHB population models predict <1 per cent probability of detecting a CGW with the current EPTA data set, consistent with the reported non-detection. We stress, however, that PTA limits on individual CGW have improved by almost an order of magnitude in the last five years. The continuing advances in pulsar timing data acquisition and analysis techniques will allow for strong astrophysical constraints on the population of nearby SMBHBs in the coming years.

  15. Logarithmic Spiral Arm Pitch Angle of Spiral Galaxies: Measurement and Relationship to Galactic Structure and Nuclear Supermassive Black Hole Mass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Benjamin

    In this dissertation, I explore the geometric structure of spiral galaxies and how the visible structure can provide information about the central mass of a galaxy, the density of its galactic disk, and the hidden mass of the supermassive black hole in its nucleus. In order to quantitatively measure the logarithmic spiral pitch angle (a measurement of tightness of the winding) of galactic spiral arms, I led an effort in our research group (the Arkansas Galaxy Evolution Survey) to modify existing two-dimensional fast Fourier transform software to increase its efficacy and accuracy. Using this software, I was able to lead an effort to calculate a black hole mass function (BHMF) for spiral galaxies in our local Universe. This work effectively provides us with a census of local black holes and establishes an endpoint on the evolutionary history of the BHMF for spiral galaxies. Furthermore, my work has indicated a novel fundamental relationship between the pitch angle of a galaxy's spiral arms, the maximum density of neutral atomic hydrogen in its disk, and the stellar mass of its bulge. This result provides strong support for the density wave theory of spiral structure in disk galaxies and poses a critical question of the validity of rival theories for the genesis of spiral structure in disk galaxies.

  16. THE OBSERVED M-{sigma} RELATIONS IMPLY THAT SUPER-MASSIVE BLACK HOLES GROW BY COLD CHAOTIC ACCRETION

    SciTech Connect

    Nayakshin, Sergei; King, Andrew R.; Power, Chris

    2012-07-01

    We argue that current observations of M-{sigma} relations for galaxies can be used to constrain theories of super-massive black holes (SMBHs) feeding. In particular, assuming that SMBH mass is limited only by the feedback on the gas that feeds it, we show that SMBHs fed via a planar galaxy-scale gas flow, such as a disk or a bar, should be much more massive than their counterparts fed by quasi-spherical inflows. This follows from the relative inefficiency of active galactic nucleus feedback on a flattened inflow. We find that even under the most optimistic conditions for SMBH feedback on flattened inflows, the mass at which the SMBH expels the gas disk and terminates its own growth is a factor of several higher than the one established for quasi-spherical inflows. Any beaming of feedback away from the disk and any disk self-shadowing strengthen this result further. Contrary to this theoretical expectation, recent observations have shown that SMBHs in pseudobulge galaxies (which are associated with barred galaxies) are typically under- rather than overmassive when compared with their classical bulge counterparts at a fixed value of {sigma}. We conclude from this that SMBHs are not fed by large (100 pc to many kpc) scale gas disks or bars, most likely because such planar flows are turned into stars too efficiently to allow any SMBH growth. Based on this and other related observational evidence, we argue that most SMBHs grow by chaotic accretion of gas clouds with a small and nearly randomly distributed direction of angular momentum.

  17. Small Seed Black Hole Growth in Various Accretion Regimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gerling-Dunsmore, Hannalore J.; Hopkins, Philip F.

    2016-03-01

    Observational evidence indicates a population of super massive black holes (SMBHs) (~109 -1010M⊙) formed within 1 Gyr after the Big Bang. One proposed means of SMBH formation is accretion onto small seed black holes (BHs) (~ 100M⊙). However, the existence of SMBHs within 1 Gyr requires rapid growth, but conventional models of accretion fail to grow the seed BHs quickly enough. Super Eddington accretion (Ṁ >ṀEddington) may aid in improving growth efficiency. We study small seed BH growth via accretion in 3D, using the magneto-hydrodynamics+gravity code GIZMO. In particular, we consider a BH in a high density turbulent star-forming cloud, and ask whether or not the BH can capture sufficient gas to grow rapidly. We consider both Eddington-limited and super Eddington regimes, and resolve physics on scales from 0.1 pc to 1 kpc while including detailed models for stellar feedback physics, including stellar winds, supernovae, radiation pressure, and photo-ionization. We present results on the viability of different small seed BHs growing into SMBH candidates.

  18. Near-infrared flares from accreting gas around the supermassive black hole at the Galactic Centre.

    PubMed

    Genzel, R; Schödel, R; Ott, T; Eckart, A; Alexander, T; Lacombe, F; Rouan, D; Aschenbach, B

    2003-10-30

    Recent measurements of stellar orbits provide compelling evidence that the compact radio source Sagittarius A* (refs 4, 5) at the Galactic Centre is a 3.6-million-solar-mass black hole. Sgr A* is remarkably faint in all wavebands other than the radio region, however, which challenges current theories of matter accretion and radiation surrounding black holes. The black hole's rotation rate is not known, and therefore neither is the structure of space-time around it. Here we report high-resolution infrared observations of Sgr A* that reveal 'quiescent' emission and several flares. The infrared emission originates from within a few milliarcseconds of the black hole, and traces very energetic electrons or moderately hot gas within the innermost accretion region. Two flares exhibit a 17-minute quasi-periodic variability. If the periodicity arises from relativistic modulation of orbiting gas, the emission must come from just outside the event horizon, and the black hole must be rotating at about half of the maximum possible rate.

  19. Imaging the Supermassive Black Hole Shadow and Jet Base of M87 with the Event Horizon Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Ru-Sen; Broderick, Avery E.; Baron, Fabien; Monnier, John D.; Fish, Vincent L.; Doeleman, Sheperd S.; Pankratius, Victor

    2014-06-01

    The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) is a project to assemble a Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) network of millimeter wavelength dishes that can resolve strong field general relativistic signatures near a supermassive black hole. As planned, the EHT will include enough dishes to enable imaging of the predicted black hole "shadow," a feature caused by severe light bending at the black hole boundary. The center of M87, a giant elliptical galaxy, presents one of the most interesting EHT targets as it exhibits a relativistic jet, offering the additional possibility of studying jet genesis on Schwarzschild radius scales. Fully relativistic models of the M87 jet that fit all existing observational constraints now allow horizon-scale images to be generated. We perform realistic VLBI simulations of M87 model images to examine the detectability of the black shadow with the EHT, focusing on a sequence of model images with a changing jet mass load radius. When the jet is launched close to the black hole, the shadow is clearly visible both at 230 and 345 GHz. The EHT array with a resolution of 20-30 μas resolution (~2-4 Schwarzschild radii) is able to image this feature independent of any theoretical models and we show that imaging methods used to process data from optical interferometers are applicable and effective for EHT data sets. We demonstrate that the EHT is also capable of tracing real-time structural changes on a few Schwarzschild radii scales, such as those implicated by very high-energy flaring activity of M87. While inclusion of ALMA in the EHT is critical for shadow imaging, the array is generally robust against loss of a station.

  20. A Search for Molecular Gas in the Nucleus of M87 and Implications for the Fueling of Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tan, Jonathan C.; Beuther, Henrik; Walter, Fabian; Blackman, Eric G.

    2008-12-01

    Supermassive black holes in giant elliptical galaxies are remarkably faint given their expected accretion rates. This motivates models of radiatively inefficient accretion due to either ion-electron thermal decoupling, generation of outflows that inhibit accretion, or settling of gas to a gravitationally unstable disk that forms stars in preference to feeding the black hole. The latter model predicts the presence of cold molecular gas in a thin disk around the black hole. Here we report Submillimeter Array observations of the nucleus of the giant elliptical galaxy M87 that probe 230 GHz continuum and CO (J = 2-1) line emission. Continuum emission is detected from the nucleus and several knots in the jet, including one that has been undergoing flaring behavior. We estimate a conservative upper limit on the mass of molecular gas within ~100 pc and ±400 km s-1 line-of-sight velocity of the central black hole of ~8 × 106 M⊙, which includes an allowance for possible systematic errors associated with subtraction of the continuum. Ignoring such errors, we have a 3 σ sensitivity to ~3 × 106 M⊙. In fact, the continuum-subtracted spectrum shows weak emission features extending up to 4 σ above the rms dispersion of the line-free channels. These may be artifacts of the continuum subtraction process. Alternatively, if they are interpreted as CO emission, then the implied molecular gas mass is ~5 × 106 M⊙ spread out over a velocity range of 700 km s-1. These constraints on molecular gas mass are close to the predictions of the model of self-gravitating, star-forming accretion disks fed by Bondi accretion (Tan & Blackman 2005).

  1. Jet drifts and flips in radio galaxies as probes of the historical evolution of spin axis in supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saripalli, Lakshmi; Subrahmanyan, Ravi; Hall Roberts, David

    2015-08-01

    Jets in radio galaxies create twin lobes of synchrotron plasma on opposite sides of the host elliptical. The jets are believed to emerge along the spin axis of the central supermassive black hole. The history of evolution in spin axis is traced in the off axis distortions in the radio structure. We have analyzed the radio structures in a large sample of distorted radio galaxies to examine black hole spin axis behavior. These sources are selected specifically to have low axial-ratio structures and hence off-axis distortions that are, however, unbiased with respect to the nature of the distortions.We have imaged 52 radio galaxies having length to width ratio less than 1 to obtain detailed radio structures that enable a tracing of the origin of the off-axis radio emission. The unique sample consists of radio sources where the off axis radio emission originates from strategic locations - regions closer to the host galaxy and from the outer ends of the jets. A third category consists of sources where there is only a swathe of radio emission nearly orthogonal to the radio axis and passing through the central radio core.Our study has highlighted the potential of radio galaxies in tracing black hole spin axis changes over time; we use the occurrence rates of the different categories of sources to derive occurrence rates of drifts and flips in black hole axis. Since the host galaxies are an unbiased sampling of luminous elliptical galaxies, the rates derived are relevant to this parent population (Roberts, Cohen, Lu, Saripalli and Subrahmanyan, 2015, arXiv150203954; Roberts, Saripalli, Subrahmanyan, 2015, arXiv150302021).

  2. Imaging the supermassive black hole shadow and jet base of M87 with the event horizon telescope

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Ru-Sen; Fish, Vincent L.; Doeleman, Sheperd S.; Pankratius, Victor; Broderick, Avery E.; Baron, Fabien; Monnier, John D.

    2014-06-20

    The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) is a project to assemble a Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) network of millimeter wavelength dishes that can resolve strong field general relativistic signatures near a supermassive black hole. As planned, the EHT will include enough dishes to enable imaging of the predicted black hole 'shadow', a feature caused by severe light bending at the black hole boundary. The center of M87, a giant elliptical galaxy, presents one of the most interesting EHT targets as it exhibits a relativistic jet, offering the additional possibility of studying jet genesis on Schwarzschild radius scales. Fully relativistic models of the M87 jet that fit all existing observational constraints now allow horizon-scale images to be generated. We perform realistic VLBI simulations of M87 model images to examine the detectability of the black shadow with the EHT, focusing on a sequence of model images with a changing jet mass load radius. When the jet is launched close to the black hole, the shadow is clearly visible both at 230 and 345 GHz. The EHT array with a resolution of 20-30 μas resolution (∼2-4 Schwarzschild radii) is able to image this feature independent of any theoretical models and we show that imaging methods used to process data from optical interferometers are applicable and effective for EHT data sets. We demonstrate that the EHT is also capable of tracing real-time structural changes on a few Schwarzschild radii scales, such as those implicated by very high-energy flaring activity of M87. While inclusion of ALMA in the EHT is critical for shadow imaging, the array is generally robust against loss of a station.

  3. Spectroastrometry of rotating gas disks for the detection of supermassive black holes in galactic nuclei. I. Method and simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gnerucci, A.; Marconi, A.; Capetti, A.; Axon, D. J.; Robinson, A.

    2010-02-01

    This is the first in a series of papers in which we study the application of spectroastrometry in the context of gas kinematical studies aimed at measuring the mass of supermassive black holes. The spectroastrometrical method consists in measuring the photocenter of light emission in different wavelength or velocity channels. In particular we explore the potential of spectroastrometry of gas emission lines in galaxy nuclei to constrain the kinematics of rotating gas disks and to measure the mass of putative supermassive black holes. By means of detailed simulations and test cases, we show that the fundamental advantage of spectroastrometry is that it can provide information on the gravitational potential of a galaxy on scales significantly smaller (~1/10) than the limit imposed by the spatial resolution of the observations. We then describe a simple method to infer detailed kinematical informations from spectroastrometry in longslit spectra and to measure the mass of nuclear mass concentrations. Such method can be applied straightforwardly to integral field spectra, which do not have the complexities due to a partial spatial covering of the source in the case of longslit spectra.

  4. ALMA FOLLOWS STREAMING OF DENSE GAS DOWN TO 40 pc FROM THE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE IN NGC 1097

    SciTech Connect

    Fathi, Kambiz; Pinol-Ferrer, Nuria; Lundgren, Andreas A.; Wiklind, Tommy; Kohno, Kotaro; Izumi, Takuma; Martin, Sergio; Espada, Daniel; Hatziminaoglou, Evanthia; Imanishi, Masatoshi; Krips, Melanie; Matsushita, Satoki; Meier, David S.; Nakai, Naomasa; Sheth, Kartik; Turner, Jean; Van de Ven, Glenn

    2013-06-20

    We present a kinematic analysis of the dense molecular gas in the central 200 pc of the nearby galaxy NGC 1097, based on Cycle 0 observations with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA). We use the HCN(4-3) line to trace the densest interstellar molecular gas (n{sub H{sub 2}}{approx}10{sup 8} cm{sup -3}), and quantify its kinematics, and estimate an inflow rate for the molecular gas. We find a striking similarity between the ALMA kinematic data and the analytic spiral inflow model that we have previously constructed based on ionized gas velocity fields on larger scales. We are able to follow dense gas streaming down to 40 pc distance from the supermassive black hole in this Seyfert 1 galaxy. In order to fulfill marginal stability, we deduce that the dense gas is confined to a very thin disk, and we derive a dense gas inflow rate of 0.09 M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1} at 40 pc radius. Combined with previous values from the H{alpha} and CO gas, we calculate a combined molecular and ionized gas inflow rate of {approx}0.2 M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1} at 40 pc distance from the central supermassive black hole of NGC 1097.

  5. SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE FORMATION AT HIGH REDSHIFTS VIA DIRECT COLLAPSE: PHYSICAL PROCESSES IN THE EARLY STAGE

    SciTech Connect

    Choi, Jun-Hwan; Shlosman, Isaac; Begelman, Mitchell C. E-mail: shlosman@pa.uky.edu

    2013-09-10

    We use numerical simulations to explore whether direct collapse can lead to the formation of supermassive black hole (SMBH) seeds at high redshifts. Using the adaptive mesh refinement code ENZO, we follow the evolution of gas within slowly tumbling dark matter (DM) halos of M{sub vir} {approx} 2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 8} M{sub Sun} and R{sub vir} {approx} 1 kpc. For our idealized simulations, we adopt cosmologically motivated DM and baryon density profiles and angular momentum distributions. Our principal goal is to understand how the collapsing flow overcomes the centrifugal barrier and whether it is subject to fragmentation which can potentially lead to star formation, decreasing the seed SMBH mass. We find that the collapse proceeds from inside out and leads either to a central runaway or to off-center fragmentation. A disk-like configuration is formed inside the centrifugal barrier, growing via accretion. For models with a more cuspy DM distribution, the gas collapses more and experiences a bar-like perturbation and a central runaway on scales of {approx}< 1-10 pc. We have followed this inflow down to {approx}10{sup -4} pc ({approx}10 AU), where it is estimated to become optically thick. The flow remains isothermal and the specific angular momentum, j, is efficiently transferred by gravitational torques in a cascade of nested bars. This cascade is triggered by finite perturbations from the large-scale mass distribution and by gas self-gravity, and supports a self-similar, disk-like collapse where the axial ratios remain constant. The mass accretion rate shows a global minimum on scales of {approx}1-10 pc at the time of the central runaway. In the collapsing phase, virial supersonic turbulence develops and fragmentation is damped. Models with progressively larger initial DM cores evolve similarly, but the timescales become longer. In models with more organized initial rotation-when the rotation of spherical shells is constrained to be coplanar-a torus forms

  6. NASA Observatory Confirms Black Hole Limits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-02-01

    The very largest black holes reach a certain point and then grow no more, according to the best survey to date of black holes made with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. Scientists have also discovered many previously hidden black holes that are well below their weight limit. These new results corroborate recent theoretical work about how black holes and galaxies grow. The biggest black holes, those with at least 100 million times the mass of the Sun, ate voraciously during the early Universe. Nearly all of them ran out of 'food' billions of years ago and went onto a forced starvation diet. Focus on Black Holes in the Chandra Deep Field North Focus on Black Holes in the Chandra Deep Field North On the other hand, black holes between about 10 and 100 million solar masses followed a more controlled eating plan. Because they took smaller portions of their meals of gas and dust, they continue growing today. "Our data show that some supermassive black holes seem to binge, while others prefer to graze", said Amy Barger of the University of Wisconsin in Madison and the University of Hawaii, lead author of the paper describing the results in the latest issue of The Astronomical Journal (Feb 2005). "We now understand better than ever before how supermassive black holes grow." One revelation is that there is a strong connection between the growth of black holes and the birth of stars. Previously, astronomers had done careful studies of the birthrate of stars in galaxies, but didn't know as much about the black holes at their centers. DSS Optical Image of Lockman Hole DSS Optical Image of Lockman Hole "These galaxies lose material into their central black holes at the same time that they make their stars," said Barger. "So whatever mechanism governs star formation in galaxies also governs black hole growth." Astronomers have made an accurate census of both the biggest, active black holes in the distance, and the relatively smaller, calmer ones closer by. Now, for the first

  7. Competition of supermassive black holes and galactic spheroids in the destruction of globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Charlton, Jane C.; Laguna, Pablo

    1995-01-01

    The globular clusters that we observe in galaxies may be only a fraction of the initial population. Among the evolutionary influences on the population is the destruction of globular clusters by tidal forces as the cluster moves through the field of influence of a disk, a bulge, and/or a putative nuclear component (black hole). We have conducted a series of N-body simulations of globular clusters on bound and marginally bound orbits through poetentials that include black hole and speroidal components. The degree of concentration of the spheroidal component can have a considerable impact on the extent to which a globular cluster is disrupted. If half the mass of a 10(exp 10) solar mass spheroid is concentrated within 800 pc, then only black holes with masses greater than 10(exp 9) solar mass can have a significant tidal influence over that already exerted by the bulge. However, if the matter in the spheroidal component is not so strongly concentrated toward the center of the galaxy, a more modest central black hole (down to 10(exp 8) solar mass) could have a dominant influence on the globular cluster distribution, particularly if many of the clusters were initially on highly radial orbits. Our simulations show that the stars that are stripped from a globular cluster follow orbits with roughly the same eccentricity as the initial cluster orbit, spreading out along the orbit like a 'string of pearls.' Since only clusters on close to radial orbits will suffer substantial disruption, the population of stripped stars will be on orbits of high eccentricity.

  8. 5.0 GHz Continuum eEVN Observations of the Recoiling Supermassive Black Hole Candidate SDSSS J113323.97+550415.8

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perez-Torres, M.; Piconcelli, N. Ramirez-Olivencia E.; Alberdi, A.; Komossa, S.; Herrero-Illana, R.

    2015-04-01

    We report electronic European VLBI Network (eEVN) radio observations of the recoiling supermassive black hole (SMBH) candidate SDSSS J113323.97+550415.8 (=SDSS1133), in the outskirts of the nearby (D=28.9 Mpc) galaxy Mrk 177 (Koss et al.

  9. Rapid growth of black holes in massive star-forming galaxies.

    PubMed

    Alexander, D M; Smail, I; Bauer, F E; Chapman, S C; Blain, A W; Brandt, W N; Ivison, R J

    2005-04-01

    The tight relationship between the masses of black holes and galaxy spheroids in nearby galaxies implies a causal connection between the growth of these two components. Optically luminous quasars host the most prodigious accreting black holes in the Universe, and can account for greater than or approximately equal to 30 per cent of the total cosmological black-hole growth. As typical quasars are not, however, undergoing intense star formation and already host massive black holes (> 10(8)M(o), where M(o) is the solar mass), there must have been an earlier pre-quasar phase when these black holes grew (mass range approximately (10(6)-10(8))M(o)). The likely signature of this earlier stage is simultaneous black-hole growth and star formation in distant (redshift z > 1; >8 billion light years away) luminous galaxies. Here we report ultra-deep X-ray observations of distant star-forming galaxies that are bright at submillimetre wavelengths. We find that the black holes in these galaxies are growing almost continuously throughout periods of intense star formation. This activity appears to be more tightly associated with these galaxies than any other coeval galaxy populations. We show that the black-hole growth from these galaxies is consistent with that expected for the pre-quasar phase.

  10. A rapidly spinning supermassive black hole at the centre of NGC 1365.

    PubMed

    Risaliti, G; Harrison, F A; Madsen, K K; Walton, D J; Boggs, S E; Christensen, F E; Craig, W W; Grefenstette, B W; Hailey, C J; Nardini, E; Stern, Daniel; Zhang, W W

    2013-02-28

    Broad X-ray emission lines from neutral and partially ionized iron observed in active galaxies have been interpreted as fluorescence produced by the reflection of hard X-rays off the inner edge of an accretion disk. In this model, line broadening and distortion result from rapid rotation and relativistic effects near the black hole, the line shape being sensitive to its spin. Alternative models in which the distortions result from absorption by intervening structures provide an equally good description of the data, and there has been no general agreement on which is correct. Recent claims that the black hole (2 × 10(6) solar masses) at the centre of the galaxy NGC 1365 is rotating at close to its maximum possible speed rest on the assumption of relativistic reflection. Here we report X-ray observations of NGC 1365 that reveal the relativistic disk features through broadened Fe-line emission and an associated Compton scattering excess of 10-30 kiloelectronvolts. Using temporal and spectral analyses, we disentangle continuum changes due to time-variable absorption from reflection, which we find arises from a region within 2.5 gravitational radii of the rapidly spinning black hole. Absorption-dominated models that do not include relativistic disk reflection can be ruled out both statistically and on physical grounds.

  11. Erratic Black Hole Regulates Itself

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-03-01

    't entirely understand, the other one gets the upper hand." GRS 1915+105 Chandra X-ray Image of GRS 1915+105 The latest Chandra results also show that the wind and the jet carry about the same amount of matter away from the black hole. This is evidence that the black hole is somehow regulating its accretion rate, which may be related to the toggling between mass expulsion via either a jet or a wind from the accretion disk. Self-regulation is a common topic when discussing supermassive black holes, but this is the first clear evidence for it in stellar-mass black holes. "It is exciting that we may be on the track of explaining two mysteries at the same time: how black hole jets can be shut down and also how black holes regulate their growth," said co-author Julia Lee, assistant professor in the Astronomy department at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. "Maybe black holes can regulate themselves better than the financial markets!" Although micro-quasars and quasars differ in mass by factors of millions, they should show a similarity in behavior when their very different physical scales are taken into account. People Who Read This Also Read... Chandra Data Reveal Rapidly Whirling Black Holes Jet Power and Black Hole Assortment Revealed in New Chandra Image Celebrate the International Year of Astronomy Ghost Remains After Black Hole Eruption "If quasars and micro-quasars behave very differently, then we have a big problem to figure out why, because gravity treats them the same," said Neilsen. "So, our result is actually very reassuring, because it's one more link between these different types of black holes." The timescale for changes in behavior of a black hole should vary in proportion to the mass. For example, an hour-long timescale for changes in GRS 1915 would correspond to about 10,000 years for a supermassive black hole that weighs a billion times the mass of the Sun. "We cannot hope to explore at this level of detail in any single supermassive black hole

  12. Disruption of a red giant star by a supermassive black hole and the case of PS1-10jh

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdanović, Tamara; Cheng, Roseanne M.; Amaro-Seoane, Pau E-mail: rcheng@gatech.edu

    2014-06-20

    The development of a new generation of theoretical models for tidal disruptions is timely, as increasingly diverse events are being captured in surveys of the transient sky. Recently, Gezari et al. reported a discovery of a new class of tidal disruption events: the disruption of a helium-rich stellar core, thought to be a remnant of a red giant (RG) star. Motivated by this discovery and in anticipation of others, we consider tidal interaction of an RG star with a supermassive black hole (SMBH) which leads to the stripping of the stellar envelope and subsequent inspiral of the compact core toward the black hole. Once the stellar envelope is removed the inspiral of the core is driven by tidal heating as well as the emission of gravitational radiation until the core either falls into the SMBH or is tidally disrupted. In the case of the tidal disruption candidate PS1-10jh, we find that there is a set of orbital solutions at high eccentricities in which the tidally stripped hydrogen envelope is accreted by the SMBH before the helium core is disrupted. This places the RG core in a portion of parameter space where strong tidal heating can lift the degeneracy of the compact remnant and disrupt it before it reaches the tidal radius. We consider how this sequence of events explains the puzzling absence of the hydrogen emission lines from the spectrum of PS1-10jh and gives rise to its other observational features.

  13. The Properties of Hypervelocity Stars and S-stars Originating from an Eccentric Disk around a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Šubr, Ladislav; Haas, Jaroslav

    2016-09-01

    Hypervelocity stars (HVSs), which are observed in the Galactic halo, are believed to be accelerated to large velocities by a process of tidal disruption of binary stars passing close to the supermassive black hole (SMBH) which resides in the center of the Galaxy. It is, however, still unclear where these relatively young stars were born and what dynamical process pushed them to nearly radial orbits around the SMBH. In this paper we investigate the possibility that the young binaries originated from a thin eccentric disk, similar to the one currently observed in the Galactic center. By means of direct N-body simulations, we follow the dynamical evolution of an initially thin and eccentric disk of stars with a 100% binary fraction orbiting around the SMBH. Such a configuration leads to Kozai-Lidov oscillations of orbital elements, bringing a considerable number of binaries to the close vicinity of the black hole. Subsequent tidal disruption of these binaries accelerates one of their components to velocities well above the escape velocity from the SMBH, while the second component becomes tightly bound to the SMBH. We describe the main kinematic properties of the escaping and tightly bound stars within our model, and compare them qualitatively to the properties of the observed HVSs and S-stars, respectively. The most prominent feature is strong anisotropy in the directions of the escaping stars, which is observed for Galactic HVSs but has not yet been explained.

  14. The Properties of Hypervelocity Stars and S-stars Originating from an Eccentric Disk around a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Šubr, Ladislav; Haas, Jaroslav

    2016-09-01

    Hypervelocity stars (HVSs), which are observed in the Galactic halo, are believed to be accelerated to large velocities by a process of tidal disruption of binary stars passing close to the supermassive black hole (SMBH) which resides in the center of the Galaxy. It is, however, still unclear where these relatively young stars were born and what dynamical process pushed them to nearly radial orbits around the SMBH. In this paper we investigate the possibility that the young binaries originated from a thin eccentric disk, similar to the one currently observed in the Galactic center. By means of direct N-body simulations, we follow the dynamical evolution of an initially thin and eccentric disk of stars with a 100% binary fraction orbiting around the SMBH. Such a configuration leads to Kozai–Lidov oscillations of orbital elements, bringing a considerable number of binaries to the close vicinity of the black hole. Subsequent tidal disruption of these binaries accelerates one of their components to velocities well above the escape velocity from the SMBH, while the second component becomes tightly bound to the SMBH. We describe the main kinematic properties of the escaping and tightly bound stars within our model, and compare them qualitatively to the properties of the observed HVSs and S-stars, respectively. The most prominent feature is strong anisotropy in the directions of the escaping stars, which is observed for Galactic HVSs but has not yet been explained.

  15. Disruption of a Red Giant Star by a Supermassive Black Hole and the Case of PS1-10jh

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanović, Tamara; Cheng, Roseanne M.; Amaro-Seoane, Pau

    2014-06-01

    The development of a new generation of theoretical models for tidal disruptions is timely, as increasingly diverse events are being captured in surveys of the transient sky. Recently, Gezari et al. reported a discovery of a new class of tidal disruption events: the disruption of a helium-rich stellar core, thought to be a remnant of a red giant (RG) star. Motivated by this discovery and in anticipation of others, we consider tidal interaction of an RG star with a supermassive black hole (SMBH) which leads to the stripping of the stellar envelope and subsequent inspiral of the compact core toward the black hole. Once the stellar envelope is removed the inspiral of the core is driven by tidal heating as well as the emission of gravitational radiation until the core either falls into the SMBH or is tidally disrupted. In the case of the tidal disruption candidate PS1-10jh, we find that there is a set of orbital solutions at high eccentricities in which the tidally stripped hydrogen envelope is accreted by the SMBH before the helium core is disrupted. This places the RG core in a portion of parameter space where strong tidal heating can lift the degeneracy of the compact remnant and disrupt it before it reaches the tidal radius. We consider how this sequence of events explains the puzzling absence of the hydrogen emission lines from the spectrum of PS1-10jh and gives rise to its other observational features.

  16. Precession of Fast S0 Stars in the Vicinity of Supermassive Black Hole in the Galactic Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dokuchaev, V. I.; Eroshenko, Yu. N.; Klimkov, K. S.

    2015-09-01

    We elaborate the model of the influence of the diffuse dark matter, invisible stars or stellar mass black holes on the motion of the observed fast moving S0 stars [1-4] around the supermassive black hole SgrA* in the Galactic center with a mass MBH = 4×10^6 Full-size image (<1 K). We will call all this invisible mass as a dark matter. The additional mass perturbs the elliptical orbits of the S0 mass resulting in the so called Newtonian precession of the elliptical orbits. The major aim of our research is the fitting of the published dates on the observed orbital positions of the S0 stars by the theoretically modeling orbit with a power-law profile of the additional (dark matter) mass. Nowadays the observational data provide only the upper limit on the additional mass. In the nearest years the observations of the S0 stars may provide the real weighing of the dark matter inside the orbits of these S0 stars in the Galactic center. This method is a very perspective for the elucidation of the formation and evolution of the dark matter in the Galactic nucleus.

  17. Active galaxies. A fast and long-lived outflow from the supermassive black hole in NGC 5548.

    PubMed

    Kaastra, J S; Kriss, G A; Cappi, M; Mehdipour, M; Petrucci, P-O; Steenbrugge, K C; Arav, N; Behar, E; Bianchi, S; Boissay, R; Branduardi-Raymont, G; Chamberlain, C; Costantini, E; Ely, J C; Ebrero, J; Di Gesu, L; Harrison, F A; Kaspi, S; Malzac, J; De Marco, B; Matt, G; Nandra, K; Paltani, S; Person, R; Peterson, B M; Pinto, C; Ponti, G; Pozo Nuñez, F; De Rosa, A; Seta, H; Ursini, F; de Vries, C P; Walton, D J; Whewell, M

    2014-07-01

    Supermassive black holes in the nuclei of active galaxies expel large amounts of matter through powerful winds of ionized gas. The archetypal active galaxy NGC 5548 has been studied for decades, and high-resolution x-ray and ultraviolet (UV) observations have previously shown a persistent ionized outflow. An observing campaign in 2013 with six space observatories shows the nucleus to be obscured by a long-lasting, clumpy stream of ionized gas not seen before. It blocks 90% of the soft x-ray emission and causes simultaneous deep, broad UV absorption troughs. The outflow velocities of this gas are up to five times faster than those in the persistent outflow, and, at a distance of only a few light days from the nucleus, it may likely originate from the accretion disk.

  18. Active galaxies. A fast and long-lived outflow from the supermassive black hole in NGC 5548.

    PubMed

    Kaastra, J S; Kriss, G A; Cappi, M; Mehdipour, M; Petrucci, P-O; Steenbrugge, K C; Arav, N; Behar, E; Bianchi, S; Boissay, R; Branduardi-Raymont, G; Chamberlain, C; Costantini, E; Ely, J C; Ebrero, J; Di Gesu, L; Harrison, F A; Kaspi, S; Malzac, J; De Marco, B; Matt, G; Nandra, K; Paltani, S; Person, R; Peterson, B M; Pinto, C; Ponti, G; Pozo Nuñez, F; De Rosa, A; Seta, H; Ursini, F; de Vries, C P; Walton, D J; Whewell, M

    2014-07-01

    Supermassive black holes in the nuclei of active galaxies expel large amounts of matter through powerful winds of ionized gas. The archetypal active galaxy NGC 5548 has been studied for decades, and high-resolution x-ray and ultraviolet (UV) observations have previously shown a persistent ionized outflow. An observing campaign in 2013 with six space observatories shows the nucleus to be obscured by a long-lasting, clumpy stream of ionized gas not seen before. It blocks 90% of the soft x-ray emission and causes simultaneous deep, broad UV absorption troughs. The outflow velocities of this gas are up to five times faster than those in the persistent outflow, and, at a distance of only a few light days from the nucleus, it may likely originate from the accretion disk. PMID:24994647

  19. Accretion of gaseous clumps from the Galactic Centre Mini-spiral onto Milky Way's supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karas, Vladimir; Kunneriath, Devaky; Czerny, Bozena; Rozanska, Agata; Adhikari, Tek P.

    2016-07-01

    Evidence for reflection of X-rays on molecular clouds in the vicinity of Sagittarius A* super-massive black hole (Sgr A* SMBH) suggests that the center of Galaxy was active in its recent history. We investigate the idea of gaseous Mini-spiral pattern as the origin of material triggering this enhanced activity. Collisions between clumps of gas in the Mini-spiral can reduce their angular momentum and set some of the clumps on a plunging trajectory towards Sgr A* SMBH. It turns out that the amount of material in the Mini-spiral region is sufficient to sustain the required level of luminosity. We examine a possibility of Thermal Instability onset to describe the mechanism for elevated accretion during the past period. Our contribution extends a recent paper by including the effect of the Nuclear Star Cluster, which provides additional important contribution to the energy balance of the inter-stellar medium.

  20. Seeds to monsters: tracing the growth of black holes in the universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natarajan, Priyamvada

    2014-05-01

    An overview of our current knowledge of black seed formation models following their growth history over cosmic time is presented. Both light seed formation channels remnants of the first stars and the more massive direct collapse seed formation scenarios are outlined. In particular, the focus is on the implications of these various scenarios and what these initial conditions imply for the highest redshift black holes, the local black hole population, the highest mass black holes at each epoch and the low mass end of the black hole mass function all of which are currently observed. The goal is to present a broad and comprehensive picture of the current status; the open questions and challenges faced by black hole growth models in matching current observational data and the prospects for future observations that will help discriminate between competing models.

  1. Particle acceleration from an inner accretion disc into compact corona and further out: case of an organised magnetic field near a supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karas, Vladimir; Kopacek, Ondrej; Kunneriath, Devaky; Kovar, Jiri; Slany, Petr

    2016-04-01

    Upcoming observational techniques in X-rays and millimeter spectral bands will allow to probe the inner corona of accretion discs near supermassive black holes. Size of this region only a few gravitational radii has been inferred from various circumstantial evidence. To populate ithe region with particles, pair-creation in ergosphere and transport of particles via accretion have been invoked.Electromagnetic fields are a likely agent of acceleration in strong gravity of a rotating black hole. We put forward a scenario with an organised component of the magnetic field near a supermassive black hole. An emergent flow of particles may be induced in a preferentially bi-polar direction. Our mechanism does not seem to be capable of producing ultra-high energy cosmic rays but it does expel particles along unbound trajectories.The mentioned concept is relevant also from a purely theoretical viewpoint of dynamical properties of particle motion in General Relativity, namely, the onset of chaos near a black hole. We conclude that the role of black-hole spin in setting the chaos is more complicated than initially thought (based on http://arxiv.org/abs/1408.2452).

  2. NASA Observatory Confirms Black Hole Limits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-02-01

    The very largest black holes reach a certain point and then grow no more, according to the best survey to date of black holes made with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. Scientists have also discovered many previously hidden black holes that are well below their weight limit. These new results corroborate recent theoretical work about how black holes and galaxies grow. The biggest black holes, those with at least 100 million times the mass of the Sun, ate voraciously during the early Universe. Nearly all of them ran out of 'food' billions of years ago and went onto a forced starvation diet. Focus on Black Holes in the Chandra Deep Field North Focus on Black Holes in the Chandra Deep Field North On the other hand, black holes between about 10 and 100 million solar masses followed a more controlled eating plan. Because they took smaller portions of their meals of gas and dust, they continue growing today. "Our data show that some supermassive black holes seem to binge, while others prefer to graze", said Amy Barger of the University of Wisconsin in Madison and the University of Hawaii, lead author of the paper describing the results in the latest issue of The Astronomical Journal (Feb 2005). "We now understand better than ever before how supermassive black holes grow." One revelation is that there is a strong connection between the growth of black holes and the birth of stars. Previously, astronomers had done careful studies of the birthrate of stars in galaxies, but didn't know as much about the black holes at their centers. DSS Optical Image of Lockman Hole DSS Optical Image of Lockman Hole "These galaxies lose material into their central black holes at the same time that they make their stars," said Barger. "So whatever mechanism governs star formation in galaxies also governs black hole growth." Astronomers have made an accurate census of both the biggest, active black holes in the distance, and the relatively smaller, calmer ones closer by. Now, for the first

  3. The Merger-Free Co-Evolution of Galaxies and Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, Brooke; Smethurst, Rebecca Jane; Lintott, Chris; Galaxy Zoo Team

    2016-06-01

    Calm, "secular" accretion and evolutionary processes, once thought to be relegated to the sidelines of galaxy evolution, are now understood to play a significant role in the buildup of stellar mass in galaxies. Most galaxies are formed and evolve via a mix of secular-driven evolution and more violent processes like strong disk instabilities and galaxy mergers; this makes isolating the effects of secular evolution in galaxies very difficult. Massive pure disk galaxies, lacking the classical or "pseudo" bulge components that arise naturally from mergers and disk instabilities (respectively), are a unique opportunity to study galaxy evolution in the absence of violent processes. Previous studies have disagreed on whether the black hole-galaxy mass correlation is driven by galaxy-galaxy interactions or something more fundamental. Here we present new evidence using a statistically significant sample of AGN hosted in bulgeless disk galaxies at z < 0.2 to constrain black hole-galaxy co-evolution in the absence of mergers.

  4. Is there an ordinary supermassive black hole at the Galactic Center?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zakharov, A. F.

    Now there are two basic observational techniques to investigate a gravitational potential at the Galactic Center, namely, a) monitoring the orbits of bright stars near the Galactic Center to reconstruct a gravitational potential; b) measuring a size and a shape of shadows around black hole giving an alternative possibility to evaluate black hole parameters in mm-band with VLBI-technique. At the moment one can use a small relativistic correction approach for stellar orbit analysis (however, in the future the approximation will not be not precise enough due to enormous progress of observational facilities) while now for smallest structure analysis in VLBI observations one really needs a strong gravitational field approximation. We discuss results of observations, their conventional interpretations, tensions between observations and models and possible hints for a new physics from the observational data and tensions between observations and interpretations. We will discuss an opportunity to use a Schwarzschild metric for data interpretation or we have to use more exotic models such as Reissner - Nordström or Schwarzschild - de-Sitter metrics for better fits.

  5. An ordinary supermassive black hole at the Galactic Center: pro and contra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zakharov, Alexander

    2016-07-01

    Now there are two basic observational techniques to investigate a gravitational potential at the Galactic Center, namely, a) monitoring the orbits of bright stars near the Galactic Center to reconstruct a gravitational potential; b) measuring a size and a shape of shadows around black hole giving an alternative possibility to evaluate black hole parameters in mm-band with VLBI-technique. At the moment one can use a small relativistic correction approach for stellar orbit analysis (however, in the future the approximation will not be not precise enough due to enormous progress of observational facilities) while now for smallest structure analysis in VLBI observations one really needs a strong gravitational field approximation. We discuss results of observations, their conventional interpretations, tensions between observations and models and possible hints for a new physics from the observational data and tensions between observations and interpretations. We will discuss an opportunity to use a Schwarzschild metric for data interpretation or we have to use more exotic models such as Yukawa potential, Reissner -- Nordstrom or Schwarzschild -- de-Sitter metrics for better fits.

  6. Possible Alternatives to the Supermassive Black Hole at the Galactic Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zakharov, A. F.

    2015-12-01

    Now there are two basic observational techniques to investigate a gravitational potential at the Galactic Center, namely, (a) monitoring the orbits of bright stars near the Galactic Center to reconstruct a gravitational potential; (b) measuring the size and shape of shadows around black hole giving an alternative possibility to evaluate black hole parameters in mm-band with VLBI-technique. At the moment, one can use a small relativistic correction approach for stellar orbit analysis (however, in the future the approximation will not be precise enough due to enormous progress of observational facilities) while for smallest structure analysis in VLBI observations one really needs a strong gravitational field approximation. We discuss results of observations, their conventional interpretations, tensions between observations and models and possible hints for a new physics from the observational data and tensions between observations and interpretations. We discuss an opportunity to use a Schwarzschild metric for data interpretation or we have to use more exotic models such as Reissner-Nordstrom or Schwarzschild-de-Sitter metrics for better fits.

  7. Measuring Black Hole Masses in Quasars: The Hows and Whys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Denney, Kelly D.

    2015-08-01

    The co-evolution of galaxies and the supermassive black holes that reside in their centers, combined with the overwhelming success of cosmological models to describe the observed universe through hierarchical growth of structure, suggests that these black holes are necessary building blocks of galaxies. Studying the demographics and growth rates of black holes and the impact of black hole accretion and feedback on the host galaxy and circumgalactic medium are imperative for our understanding of galaxy evolution. The only way to probe these properties at high redshift, where the bulk of stellar-mass assembly and black hole growth takes place, is through studies of quasars - galaxies containing supermassive black holes that are actively accreting. I will discuss recent work to improve the reliability of high redshift quasar black hole mass measurements, and thereby growth rates, and the current best practices for making these measurements. In addition, I will discuss how the intrinsic structure of the quasar itself, including the presence of AGN winds and outflows, is correlated with the data quality of quasar spectra to impact the reliability of quasar black hole masses. Finally, I will briefly discuss international efforts, of both collaborations and resources, toward making direct black hole mass measurements in high redshift quasars.

  8. Erratic Black Hole Regulates Itself

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-03-01

    't entirely understand, the other one gets the upper hand." GRS 1915+105 Chandra X-ray Image of GRS 1915+105 The latest Chandra results also show that the wind and the jet carry about the same amount of matter away from the black hole. This is evidence that the black hole is somehow regulating its accretion rate, which may be related to the toggling between mass expulsion via either a jet or a wind from the accretion disk. Self-regulation is a common topic when discussing supermassive black holes, but this is the first clear evidence for it in stellar-mass black holes. "It is exciting that we may be on the track of explaining two mysteries at the same time: how black hole jets can be shut down and also how black holes regulate their growth," said co-author Julia Lee, assistant professor in the Astronomy department at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. "Maybe black holes can regulate themselves better than the financial markets!" Although micro-quasars and quasars differ in mass by factors of millions, they should show a similarity in behavior when their very different physical scales are taken into account. People Who Read This Also Read... Chandra Data Reveal Rapidly Whirling Black Holes Jet Power and Black Hole Assortment Revealed in New Chandra Image Celebrate the International Year of Astronomy Ghost Remains After Black Hole Eruption "If quasars and micro-quasars behave very differently, then we have a big problem to figure out why, because gravity treats them the same," said Neilsen. "So, our result is actually very reassuring, because it's one more link between these different types of black holes." The timescale for changes in behavior of a black hole should vary in proportion to the mass. For example, an hour-long timescale for changes in GRS 1915 would correspond to about 10,000 years for a supermassive black hole that weighs a billion times the mass of the Sun. "We cannot hope to explore at this level of detail in any single supermassive black hole

  9. Black hole growth in the early Universe is self-regulated and largely hidden from view.

    PubMed

    Treister, Ezequiel; Schawinski, Kevin; Volonteri, Marta; Natarajan, Priyamvada; Gawiser, Eric

    2011-06-15

    The formation of the first massive objects in the infant Universe remains impossible to observe directly and yet it sets the stage for the subsequent evolution of galaxies. Although some black holes with masses more than 10(9) times that of the Sun have been detected in luminous quasars less than one billion years after the Big Bang, these individual extreme objects have limited utility in constraining the channels of formation of the earliest black holes; this is because the initial conditions of black hole seed properties are quickly erased during the growth process. Here we report a measurement of the amount of black hole growth in galaxies at redshift z = 6-8 (0.95-0.7 billion years after the Big Bang), based on optimally stacked, archival X-ray observations. Our results imply that black holes grow in tandem with their host galaxies throughout cosmic history, starting from the earliest times. We find that most copiously accreting black holes at these epochs are buried in significant amounts of gas and dust that absorb most radiation except for the highest-energy X-rays. This suggests that black holes grew significantly more during these early bursts than was previously thought, but because of the obscuration of their ultraviolet emission they did not contribute to the re-ionization of the Universe.

  10. Emission Signatures from Sub-parsec Binary Supermassive Black Holes. I. Diagnostic Power of Broad Emission Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nguyen, Khai; Bogdanović, Tamara

    2016-09-01

    Motivated by advances in observational searches for sub-parsec supermassive black hole binaries (SBHBs) made in the past few years, we develop a semi-analytic model to describe spectral emission-line signatures of these systems. The goal of this study is to aid the interpretation of spectroscopic searches for binaries and to help test one of the leading models of binary accretion flows in the literature: SBHB in a circumbinary disk. In this work, we present the methodology and a comparison of the preliminary model with the data. We model SBHB accretion flows as a set of three accretion disks: two mini-disks that are gravitationally bound to the individual black holes and a circumbinary disk. Given a physically motivated parameter space occupied by sub-parsec SBHBs, we calculate a synthetic database of nearly 15 million broad optical emission-line profiles and explore the dependence of the profile shapes on characteristic properties of SBHBs. We find that the modeled profiles show distinct statistical properties as a function of the semimajor axis, mass ratio, eccentricity of the binary, and the degree of alignment of the triple disk system. This suggests that the broad emission-line profiles from SBHB systems can in principle be used to infer the distribution of these parameters and as such merit further investigation. Calculated profiles are more morphologically heterogeneous than the broad emission lines in observed SBHB candidates and we discuss improved treatment of radiative transfer effects, which will allow a direct statistical comparison of the two groups.

  11. Direct Formation of Supermassive Black Holes in Metal-enriched Gas at the Heart of High-redshift Galaxy Mergers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayer, Lucio; Fiacconi, Davide; Bonoli, Silvia; Quinn, Thomas; Roškar, Rok; Shen, Sijing; Wadsley, James

    2015-09-01

    We present novel 3D multi-scale smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) simulations of gas-rich galaxy mergers between the most massive galaxies at z ˜ 8-10, designed to scrutinize the direct collapse formation scenario for massive black hole seeds proposed in Mayer et al. The simulations achieve a resolution of 0.1 pc, and include both metallicity-dependent optically thin cooling and a model for thermal balance at high optical depth. We consider different formulations of the SPH hydrodynamical equations, including thermal and metal diffusion. When the two merging galaxy cores collide, gas infall produces a compact, optically thick nuclear disk with densities exceeding 10-10 g cm3. The disk rapidly accretes higher angular momentum gas from its surroundings reaching ˜5 pc and a mass of ≳109 M⊙ in only a few 104 years. Outside ≳2 pc it fragments into massive clumps. Instead, supersonic turbulence prevents fragmentation in the inner parsec region, which remains warm (˜3000-6000 K) and develops strong non-axisymmetric modes that cause prominent radial gas inflows (>104 M⊙ yr-1), forming an ultra-dense massive disky core. Angular momentum transport by non-axisymmetric modes should continue below our spatial resolution limit, quickly turning the disky core into a supermassive protostar which can collapse directly into a massive black hole of mass 108-109 M⊙ via the relativistic radial instability. Such a “cold direct collapse” explains naturally the early emergence of high-z QSOs. Its telltale signature would be a burst of gravitational waves in the frequency range of 10-4-10-1 Hz, possibly detectable by the planned eLISA interferometer.

  12. A systematic search for close supermassive black hole binaries in the Catalina Real-time Transient Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graham, Matthew J.; Djorgovski, S. G.; Stern, Daniel; Drake, Andrew J.; Mahabal, Ashish A.; Donalek, Ciro; Glikman, Eilat; Larson, Steve; Christensen, Eric

    2015-10-01

    Hierarchical assembly models predict a population of supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries. These are not resolvable by direct imaging but may be detectable via periodic variability (or nanohertz frequency gravitational waves). Following our detection of a 5.2-year periodic signal in the quasar PG 1302-102, we present a novel analysis of the optical variability of 243 500 known spectroscopically confirmed quasars using data from the Catalina Real-time Transient Survey (CRTS) to look for close (<0.1 pc) SMBH systems. Looking for a strong Keplerian periodic signal with at least 1.5 cycles over a baseline of nine years, we find a sample of 111 candidate objects. This is in conservative agreement with theoretical predictions from models of binary SMBH populations. Simulated data sets, assuming stochastic variability, also produce no equivalent candidates implying a low likelihood of spurious detections. The periodicity seen is likely attributable to either jet precession, warped accretion discs or periodic accretion associated with a close SMBH binary system. We also consider how other SMBH binary candidates in the literature appear in CRTS data and show that none of these are equivalent to the identified objects. Finally, the distribution of objects found is consistent with that expected from a gravitational-wave-driven population. This implies that circumbinary gas is present at small orbital radii and is being perturbed by the black holes. None of the sources is expected to merge within at least the next century. This study opens a new unique window to study a population of close SMBH binaries that must exist according to our current understanding of galaxy and SMBH evolution.

  13. The XMM-Newton spectrum of a candidate recoiling supermassive black hole: An elusive inverted P-Cygni profile

    SciTech Connect

    Lanzuisi, G.; Civano, F.; Marchesi, S.; Hickox, R.; Comastri, A.; Cappelluti, N.; Costantini, E.; Elvis, M.; Fruscione, A.; Mainieri, V.; Jahnke, K.; Komossa, S.; Piconcelli, E.; Vignali, C.; Brusa, M.

    2013-11-20

    We present a detailed spectral analysis of new XMM-Newton data of the source CXOC J100043.1+020637, also known as CID-42, detected in the COSMOS survey at z = 0.359. Previous works suggested that CID-42 is a candidate recoiling supermassive black hole (SMBH) showing also an inverted P-Cygni profile in the X-ray spectra at ∼6 keV (rest) with an iron emission line plus a redshifted absorption line (detected at 3σ in previous XMM-Newton and Chandra observations). Detailed analysis of the absorption line suggested the presence of ionized material flowing into the black hole at high velocity. In the new long XMM-Newton observation, while the overall spectral shape remains constant, the continuum 2-10 keV flux decrease of ∼20% with respect to previous observation and the absorption line is undetected. The upper limit on the intensity of the absorption line is EW < 162 eV. Extensive Monte Carlo simulations show that the nondetection of the line is solely due to variation in the properties of the inflowing material, in agreement with the transient nature of these features, and that the intensity of the line is lower than the previously measured with a probability of 98.8%. In the scenario of CID-42 as a recoiling SMBH, the absorption line can be interpreted as being due to an inflow of gas with variable density that is located in the proximity of the SMBH and recoiling with it. New monitoring observations will be requested to further characterize this line.

  14. Horizon instability of extremal Kerr black holes: Nonaxisymmetric modes and enhanced growth rate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casals, Marc; Gralla, Samuel E.; Zimmerman, Peter

    2016-09-01

    We show that the horizon instability of the extremal Kerr black hole is associated with a singular branch point in the Green function at the superradiant bound frequency. We study generic initial data supported away from the horizon and find an enhanced growth rate due to nonaxisymmetric modes. The growth is controlled by the conformal weight h of each mode. We speculate on connections to near-extremal black holes and holographic duality.

  15. Testing the nature of the supermassive black hole candidate in SgrA* with light curves and images of hot spots

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Zilong; Kong, Lingyao; Bambi, Cosimo

    2014-06-01

    General relativity makes clear predictions about the spacetime geometry around black holes. In the near future, new facilities will have the capability to explore the metric around SgrA*, the supermassive black hole candidate at the center of our Galaxy, and to open a new window to test the Kerr black hole hypothesis. In this paper, we compute light curves and images associated with compact emission regions (hot spots) orbiting around Kerr and non-Kerr black holes. We study how the analysis of the properties of the radiation emitted by a hot spot can be used to test the Kerr nature of SgrA*. We find that the sole observation of the hot spot light curve can at most constrain a combination of the black hole spin and of possible deviations from the Kerr solution. This happens because the same orbital frequency around a Kerr black hole can be found for a non-Kerr object with a different spin parameter. Second order corrections in the light curve due to the background geometry are typically too small to be identified. While the observation of the hot spot centroid track can potentially bound possible deviations from the Kerr solution, that is out of reach for the near future for the Very Large Telescope Interferometer instrument GRAVITY. The Kerr black hole hypothesis could really be tested in the case of the discovery of a radio pulsar in a compact orbit around SgrA*. Radio observations of such a pulsar would provide precise estimates of the mass and the spin of SgrA*, and the combination of these measurements (probing the weak field) with the hot spot light curve information (probing the strong field) may constrain/find possible deviations from the Kerr solution with quite good precision.

  16. Chandra and VLA Observations of Supermassive Black Hole Outbursts in M87 and Implications for Feedback in Early-Type Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forman, William R.; Churazov, E.; Jones, C.

    2013-04-01

    We discuss the effects of supermassive black hole (SMBH) outbursts on the hot atmospheres surrounding massive galaxies as observed with X-ray and radio observations. We initially focus on a detailed study of outbursts from the supermassive black hole in M87 using Chandra and VLA observations. We model the outburst that created the classical Mach 1.2 shock seen in Chandra images and derive the characteristic energy (5x1057 ergs), duration (2 Myrs), and age (12 Myrs) of the outburst from numerical models. We review the outburst history of the SMBH in M87 over the past ~100 Myr. We discuss the implications of the outbursts for feedback in typical early-type galaxy atmospheres.

  17. Supermassive black hole tests of general relativity with eLISA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huwyler, Cédric; Porter, Edward K.; Jetzer, Philippe

    2015-01-01

    Motivated by the parametrized post-Einsteinian (ppE) scheme devised by Yunes and Pretorius, which introduces corrections to the post-Newtonian coefficients of the frequency domain gravitational waveform in order to emulate alternative theories of gravity, we compute analytical time domain waveforms that, after a numerical Fourier transform, aim to represent (phase corrected only) ppE waveforms. In this formalism, alternative theories manifest themselves via corrections to the phase and frequency, as predicted by general relativity (GR), at different post-Newtonian (PN) orders. To present a generic test of alternative theories of gravity, we assume that the coupling constant of each alternative theory is manifestly positive, allowing corrections to the GR waveforms to be either positive or negative. By exploring the capabilities of massive black hole binary GR waveforms in the detection and parameter estimation of corrected time domain ppE signals, using the current eLISA configuration (as presented for the European Space Agency Cosmic Vision L3 mission), we demonstrate that for corrections arising at higher than 1PN order in phase and frequency GR waveforms are sufficient for both detecting and estimating the parameters of alternative theory signals. However, for theories introducing corrections at the 0 and 0.5PN orders, GR waveforms are not capable of covering the entire parameter space, requiring the use of non-GR waveforms for detection and parameter estimation.

  18. Magnetohydrodynamic Accretion Around Supermassive Black Holes : Short-Length Disc for Stronger Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Biswas, Ritabrata

    2016-07-01

    Thin accretion flow, i.e., geometrically thin accretion disc was first studied by Shakura and Sunyaev. Relativistic fluid flows around a black hole produce enormous energy on the cost of permanent lost of the gravitational potential due to the fall into a infinitely sloped gravitational well or to be specific, into a space time singularity. This energy is actually observed in different wavelengths and we specify the source as Active Galactic Nuclei, quasars, Gamma-ray burst sources etc. Eventually, two popular kind of accretion disc models are there. The first one is advection dominated, known as geometrically thin optically thick accretion disc. The other is geometrically thick but optically thin as it does not capture photons inside! The jets formed by accretion phenomena are still not well explained. Size of the accretion disc, power of the jets can be powered by magnetic fields generated by the ionized particles of the accretion flow. We show the exact dependency of the disc size upon the magnetic field present along with the quantity of the central gravitating mass.

  19. X-RAY AND RADIO VARIABILITY OF M31*, THE ANDROMEDA GALAXY NUCLEAR SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE

    SciTech Connect

    Garcia, Michael R.; Hextall, Richard; Galache, Jose; Murray, Stephen S.; Primini, F. A.; Baganoff, Frederick K.; Melia, Fulvio; Sjouwerman, Lorant O.; Williams, Ben

    2010-02-10

    We confirm our earlier tentative detection of M31* in X-rays and measure its light curve and spectrum. Observations in 2004-2005 find M31* rather quiescent in the X-ray and radio. However, X-ray observations in 2006-2007 show M31* to be highly variable at times. A separate variable X-ray source is found near P1, the brighter of the two optical nuclei. The apparent angular Bondi radius of M31* is the largest of any black hole and large enough to be well resolved with Chandra. The diffuse emission within this Bondi radius is found to have an X-ray temperature {approx}0.3 keV and density 0.1 cm{sup -3}, indistinguishable from the hot gas in the surrounding regions of the bulge given the statistics allowed by the current observations. The X-ray source at the location of M31* is consistent with a point source and a power-law spectrum with energy slope 0.9 +- 0.2. Our identification of this X-ray source with M31* is based solely on positional coincidence.

  20. Forming supermassive black hole seeds under the influence of a nearby anisotropic multifrequency source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Regan, John A.; Johansson, Peter H.; Wise, John H.

    2016-07-01

    The photodissociation of H2 by a nearby anisotropic source of radiation is seen as a critical component in creating an environment in which a direct collapse black hole may form. Employing radiative transfer we model the effect of multifrequency (0.76-60 eV) radiation on a collapsing halo at high redshift. We vary both the shape of the spectrum which emits the radiation and the distance to the emitting galaxy. We use blackbody spectra with temperatures of T = 104 K and 105 K and a realistic stellar spectrum. We find that an optimal zone exists between 1 and 4 kpc from the emitting galaxy. If the halo resides too close to the emitting galaxy the photoionizing radiation creates a large H II region which effectively disrupts the collapsing halo, too far from the source and the radiation flux drops below the level of the expected background and the H2 fraction remains too high. When the emitting galaxy is initially placed between 1 and 2 kpc from the collapsing halo, with a spectral shape consistent with a star-forming high-redshift galaxy, then a large central core forms. The mass of the central core is between 5000 and 10 000 M⊙ at a temperature of approximately 1000 K. This core is however surrounded by a reservoir of hotter gas at approximately 8000 K, which leads to mass inflow rates of the order of ˜0.1 M⊙ yr-1.

  1. Orbital kinematics of edge-on bars with and without supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abbott, Caleb; Valluri, Monica; Shen, Juntai; Debattista, Victor P.

    2016-01-01

    Observations of external disk galaxies with bars frequently show boxy or peanut shaped bulges, which have a distinct X-shaped structure when the system is viewed edge-on. Such features are also well documented in N-body simulations, where they arise from the buckling of the bar. The precise nature of the orbits that create this structure is still uncertain. Some studies argue that the bulge/X-shape structure is formed and supported by resonant 2:1 "banana" orbit family, while other argue that they arise from 5:3 "brezel" orbits. Here we examine a set of N-body models of a barred disk galaxy (with and without a central black hole). We generate 2-D maps of projected kinematics both for specific orbit families as well as the full simulation of the bars at different orientations. By examining the line-of-sight velocities, velocity dispersions and 3rd and 4th Gauss-Hermite polynomials we attempt to deduce the type of orbits most likely to produce the X-shaped features. We also generate mock kinematics for the Milky Way bar and predict the kinematical features associated with the X-shape that will be observed with upcoming stellar surveys.

  2. The Megamaser Cosmology Project. III. Accurate Masses of Seven Supermassive Black Holes in Active Galaxies with Circumnuclear Megamaser Disks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuo, C. Y.; Braatz, J. A.; Condon, J. J.; Impellizzeri, C. M. V.; Lo, K. Y.; Zaw, I.; Schenker, M.; Henkel, C.; Reid, M. J.; Greene, J. E.

    2011-01-01

    Observations of H2O masers from circumnuclear disks in active galaxies for the Megamaser Cosmology Project (MCP) allow accurate measurement of the mass of supermassive black holes (BH) in these galaxies. We present the Very Long Baseline Interferometry images and kinematics of water maser emission in six active galaxies: NGC 1194, NGC 2273, NGC 2960 (Mrk 1419), NGC 4388, NGC 6264 and NGC 6323. We use the Keplerian rotation curves of these six megamaser galaxies, plus a seventh previously published, to determine accurate enclosed masses within the central ~0.3 pc of these galaxies, smaller than the radius of the sphere of influence of the central mass in all cases. We also set lower limits to the central mass densities of between 0.12 × 1010 and 61 × 1010 M sun pc-3. For six of the seven disks, the high central densities rule out clusters of stars or stellar remnants as the central objects, and this result further supports our assumption that the enclosed mass can be attributed predominantly to a supermassive BH. The seven BHs have masses ranging between 0.75 × 107 and 6.5 × 107 M sun, with the mass errors dominated by the uncertainty of the Hubble constant. We compare the megamaser BH mass determination with BH mass measured from the virial estimation method. The virial estimation BH mass in four galaxies is consistent with the megamaser BH mass, but the virial mass uncertainty is much greater. Circumnuclear megamaser disks allow the best mass determination of the central BH mass in external galaxies and significantly improve the observational basis at the low-mass end of the M-σsstarf relation. The M-σsstarf relation may not be a single, low-scatter power law as originally proposed. MCP observations continue and we expect to obtain more maser BH masses in the future.

  3. SUPER-CRITICAL GROWTH OF MASSIVE BLACK HOLES FROM STELLAR-MASS SEEDS

    SciTech Connect

    Madau, Piero; Haardt, Francesco; Dotti, Massimo

    2014-04-01

    We consider super-critical accretion with angular momentum onto stellar-mass black holes as a possible mechanism for growing billion-solar-mass black holes from light seeds at early times. We use the radiatively inefficient ''slim disk'' solution—advective, optically thick flows that generalize the standard geometrically thin disk model—to show how mildly super-Eddington intermittent accretion may significantly ease the problem of assembling the first massive black holes when the universe was less than 0.8 Gyr old. Because of the low radiative efficiencies of slim disks around non-rotating as well as rapidly rotating black holes, the mass e-folding timescale in this regime is nearly independent of the spin parameter. The conditions that may lead to super-critical growth in the early universe are briefly discussed.

  4. Super-critical Growth of Massive Black Holes from Stellar-mass Seeds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madau, Piero; Haardt, Francesco; Dotti, Massimo

    2014-04-01

    We consider super-critical accretion with angular momentum onto stellar-mass black holes as a possible mechanism for growing billion-solar-mass black holes from light seeds at early times. We use the radiatively inefficient "slim disk" solution—advective, optically thick flows that generalize the standard geometrically thin disk model—to show how mildly super-Eddington intermittent accretion may significantly ease the problem of assembling the first massive black holes when the universe was less than 0.8 Gyr old. Because of the low radiative efficiencies of slim disks around non-rotating as well as rapidly rotating black holes, the mass e-folding timescale in this regime is nearly independent of the spin parameter. The conditions that may lead to super-critical growth in the early universe are briefly discussed.

  5. High-velocity OH megamasers in IRAS 20100-4156: evidence for a supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harvey-Smith, L.; Allison, J. R.; Green, J. A.; Bannister, K. W.; Chippendale, A.; Edwards, P. G.; Heywood, I.; Hotan, A. W.; Lenc, E.; Marvil, J.; McConnell, D.; Phillips, C. J.; Sault, R. J.; Serra, P.; Stevens, J.; Voronkov, M.; Whiting, M.

    2016-08-01

    We report the discovery of new, high-velocity narrow-line components of the OH megamaser in IRAS 20100-4156. Results from the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP)'s Boolardy Engineering Test Array (BETA) and the Australia Telescope Compact Array (ATCA) provide two independent measurements of the OH megamaser spectrum. We found evidence for OH megamaser clumps at -409 and -562 km s-1 (blue-shifted) from the systemic velocity of the galaxy, in addition to the lines previously known. The presence of such high velocities in the molecular emission from IRAS 20100-4156 could be explained by a ˜50 pc molecular ring enclosing a ˜3.8 billion solar mass black hole. We also discuss two alternatives, i.e. that the narrow-line masers are dynamically coupled to the wind driven by the active galactic nucleus or they are associated with two separate galactic nuclei. The comparison between the BETA and ATCA spectra provides another scientific verification of ASKAP's BETA. Our data, combined with previous measurements of the source enabled us to study the variability of the source over a 26 yr period. The flux density of the brightest OH maser components has reduced by more than a factor of 2 between 1988 and 2015, whereas a secondary narrow-line component has more than doubled in the same time. Plans for high-resolution very long baseline interferometry follow-up of this source are discussed, as are prospects for discovering new OH megamasers during the ASKAP early science programme.

  6. Rich Kozai–Lidov Dynamics in an Initially Thin and Eccentric Stellar Disk around a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haas, Jaroslav; Šubr, Ladislav

    2016-05-01

    There is growing evidence of star formation in the vicinity of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in galactic nuclei. A viable scenario for this process assumes infall of a massive gas cloud toward the SMBH and subsequent formation of a dense accretion disk, which gives birth to the young stars. Numerical hydrodynamical models indicate that this star formation process is rather fast and precedes full circularization of the accretion flow, i.e., the new stars are born on elliptic orbits. By means of direct numerical N-body modeling, we show in this paper that the nonzero eccentricity of the stellar disks around the SMBH leads to an onset of various types of the Kozai–Lidov oscillations of a non-negligible subset of individual orbits in the disk, showing a remarkable robustness of this classical mechanism. Among others, we demonstrate that under certain circumstances, the presence of an additional spherical cluster (which is generally known to damp Kozai–Lidov oscillations) may trigger such oscillations as a result of affecting the internal flow of the angular momentum through the disk. We conclude that the Kozai–Lidov oscillations are capable of substantially modifying the initial structure of the disk (its thickness and distribution of eccentricities, in particular).

  7. What X-ray polarimetry can teach us about the central supermassive black hole of the Milky Way galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marin, Frédéric; Karas, Vladimir; Muleri, Fabio; Soffitta, Paolo; Kunneriath, Devaky

    2016-07-01

    Was Sgr A*, the central supermassive black hole of our own Galaxy, a low luminosity AGN in the past? Despite numerous attempts with spectroscopic and timing analyses, the question remains opened as the origin of irradiation and fluorescence of the 6.4 keV bright giant molecular clouds surrounding Sgr A* is still debated. A possible interpretation, based on Compton scattering processes, implies that the high X-ray luminosity of the nebulae arise from reprocessing of a past outburst of Sgr A*. If true, the reflection nebulae should show strong scattering-induced polarization signatures. Detecting such imprints requires opening a new observational window: X-ray polarimetry. In this presentation, I will summarize the results from past and present polarimetric simulations of the Galactic Center in order to show how a future X-ray polarimeter equipped with imaging detectors, such as XIPE (ESA M4) or IXPE (NASA-SMEX), could prove or rejected the hypothesis of the past active phase of Sgr A*.

  8. Spectroscopic Indication of a Centi-parsec Supermassive Black Hole Binary in the Galactic Center of NGC 5548

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yan-Rong; Wang, Jian-Min; Ho, Luis C.; Lu, Kai-Xing; Qiu, Jie; Du, Pu; Hu, Chen; Huang, Ying-Ke; Zhang, Zhi-Xiang; Wang, Kai; Bai, Jin-Ming

    2016-05-01

    As a natural consequence of cosmological hierarchical structure formation, sub-parsec supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) should be common in galaxies but thus far have eluded spectroscopic identification. Based on four decades of optical spectroscopic monitoring, we report that the nucleus of NGC 5548, a nearby Seyfert galaxy long suspected to have experienced a major merger about 1 billion yr ago, exhibits long-term variability with a period of ˜14 yr in the optical continuum and broad Hβ emission line. Remarkably, the double-peaked profile of Hβ shows systematic velocity changes with a similar period. These pieces of observations plausibly indicate that an SMBHB resides in the center of NGC 5548. The complex, secular variations in the line profiles can be explained by orbital motion of a binary with equal mass and a semimajor axis of ˜22 light-days (corresponding to ˜18 milli-parsec). At a distance of 75 Mpc, NGC 5548 is one of the nearest sub-parsec SMBHB candidates that offers an ideal laboratory for gravitational wave detection.

  9. Multiple periods in the variability of the supermassive black hole binary candidate quasar PG1302-102?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charisi, M.; Bartos, I.; Haiman, Z.; Price-Whelan, A. M.; Márka, S.

    2015-11-01

    Graham et al. discovered a supermassive black hole binary (SMBHB) candidate and identified the detected 5.2 yr period of the optical variability as the orbital period of the binary. Hydrodynamical simulations predict multiple periodic components for the variability of SMBHBs, thus raising the possibility that the true period of the binary is different from 5.2 yr. We analyse the periodogram of PG1302 and find no compelling evidence for additional peaks. We also point out that, despite the 5.2 yr peak being significant if a single source is considered, further analysis is required to account for the fact that PG1302 was selected among a large sample of 247 000 quasars. We derive upper limits on any additional periodic modulations in the available data, by modelling the light curve as the sum of stochastic noise and the known 5.2 yr periodic component, and injecting additional sinusoidal signals. We find that, with the current data, we would be able to detect with high significance (false alarm probability <1 per cent) secondary periodic terms, with periods in the range predicted by the simulations, if the amplitude of the variability was at least ˜0.06 mag (compared to 0.14 mag for the main sinusoid). A three-year follow-up monitoring campaign with weekly observations can increase the sensitivity for detecting secondary peaks by ≈50 per cent, and would allow a more robust test of predictions from hydrodynamical simulations.

  10. How Super-Massive Black Holes grow and shape galaxies. The promise of the Athena X-ray observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barcons, Xavier

    2016-08-01

    X-ray observations are essential to understand and find AGN, as they are emitted from a few Schwarzschild radii from the central Super-Massive Black Hole, they can escape through relatively large amounts of obscuring material and contamination by the host galaxy is minute. The launch of ESA's Athena X-ray observatory in the late 2020s will revolutionise our knowledge about the AGN phenomenon and their demographics. Athena will consist of a large X-ray imaging telescope with two focal plane instruments offering wide-field sensitive imaging and integral field high-resolution X-ray spectroscopy. Athena will be able to constrain the geometry of accretion disk/corona through X-ray reverberation, measure SMBH spins of tens of AGN, measure AGN radiative and mechanical energy output in local and distant AGN, see perform a complete census of obscured and unobscured AGN out to z~2-3 and find hundreds of growing SMBH at z>6 well into the re-ionisation epoch. Athena will complement and work in synergy with other contemporary facilities (ESO's VLT/E-ELT and ALMA among others) to achieve these and other science objectives related to AGN.

  11. The M {sub BH} versus M {sub G}σ{sup 2} relation and the accretion of supermassive black holes

    SciTech Connect

    Feoli, A.

    2014-03-20

    We propose a possible scenario that can explain the physical processes underlying the relation log{sub 10}(M {sub BH}) = b + mlog{sub 10}(M {sub G}σ{sup 2}/c {sup 2}) between the mass M {sub BH} of supermassive black holes, growing in the center of many galaxies, and the kinetic energy of the corresponding bulges (M {sub G} being the bulge mass and σ the velocity dispersion). In a series of papers, this scaling law proved to be very useful to describe the evolution of galaxies thanks to its close similarity to the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram. Studying the relation with different samples of galaxies, we have generally found a slope that can vary between two extremal theoretical possibilities, m = 3/4 and m = 1. We will try to describe a possible scenario compatible with the second one. Finally, we also examine a case of a relation that is linear, not in kinetic energy, but in momentum parameter.

  12. Supermassive black holes (SMBH) at work: M87, a case study of the effects of SMBH outbursts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forman, William; Churazov, Eugene; Jones, Christine; Vikhlinin, Alexey

    2015-03-01

    Supermassive black holes (SMBHs) play key roles in galaxy and cluster evolution. This is most clearly seen in the ``fossil record'' that is imprinted in the gas rich atmospheres of early type galaxies, groups, and clusters by powerful SMBH outbursts. From a detailed X-ray study of M87, we present the properties of a typical SMBH outburst, its evolution, and the energy partition between shocks and the enthalpy of the gas cavities inflated by the SMBH. About 12 Myr ago, the SMBH in M87 inflated a cavity of relativistic plasma which is still centered near the galaxy nucleus. This outburst drove a shock into the surrounding gas. For M87, we show that the outburst duration is a few Myr and that about 50% of the total energy (5 × 1057 ergs) resides in the bubble inflated by the jet from the SMBH, that 25% of the outburst energy is deposited directly into the ambient atmosphere by the shock, and that 25% of the outburst energy is lost from the radiatively bright core as the weak shock moves to large radii. We conclude by describing a future X-ray mission, SMART-X, with < 1'' angular resolution that would allow us to study the evolution of SMBHs and the hot, X-ray emitting atmospheres from high redshifts to the present for M87-like systems.

  13. Rich Kozai-Lidov Dynamics in an Initially Thin and Eccentric Stellar Disk around a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haas, Jaroslav; Šubr, Ladislav

    2016-05-01

    There is growing evidence of star formation in the vicinity of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in galactic nuclei. A viable scenario for this process assumes infall of a massive gas cloud toward the SMBH and subsequent formation of a dense accretion disk, which gives birth to the young stars. Numerical hydrodynamical models indicate that this star formation process is rather fast and precedes full circularization of the accretion flow, i.e., the new stars are born on elliptic orbits. By means of direct numerical N-body modeling, we show in this paper that the nonzero eccentricity of the stellar disks around the SMBH leads to an onset of various types of the Kozai-Lidov oscillations of a non-negligible subset of individual orbits in the disk, showing a remarkable robustness of this classical mechanism. Among others, we demonstrate that under certain circumstances, the presence of an additional spherical cluster (which is generally known to damp Kozai-Lidov oscillations) may trigger such oscillations as a result of affecting the internal flow of the angular momentum through the disk. We conclude that the Kozai-Lidov oscillations are capable of substantially modifying the initial structure of the disk (its thickness and distribution of eccentricities, in particular).

  14. The growth of typical star-forming galaxies and their super massive black holes across cosmic time since z ˜ 2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calhau, João; Sobral, David; Stroe, Andra; Best, Philip; Smail, Ian; Lehmer, Bret; Harrison, Chris; Thomson, Alasdair

    2016-09-01

    Understanding galaxy formation and evolution requires studying the interplay between the growth of galaxies and the growth of their black holes across cosmic time. Here we explore a sample of Hα-selected star-forming galaxies from the HiZELS survey and use the wealth of multi-wavelength data in the COSMOS field (X-rays, far-infrared and radio) to study the relative growth rates between typical galaxies and their central supermassive black holes, from z = 2.23 to z = 0. Typical star-forming galaxies at z ˜ 1 - 2 have black hole accretion rates (dot{M}_BH) of 0.001-0.01M⊙ yr-1 and star formation rates (SFRs) of ˜10-40 M⊙ yr-1, and thus grow their stellar mass much quicker than their black hole mass (3.3±0.2 orders of magnitude faster). However, ˜3% of the sample (the sources detected directly in the X-rays) show a significantly quicker growth of the black hole mass (up to 1.5 orders of magnitude quicker growth than the typical sources). dot{M}_BH falls from z = 2.23 to z = 0, with the decline resembling that of star formation rate density or the typical SFR (SFR★). We find that the average black hole to galaxy growth (dot{M}_BH/SFR) is approximately constant for star-forming galaxies in the last 11 Gyrs. The relatively constant dot{M}_BH/SFR suggests that these two quantities evolve equivalently through cosmic time and with practically no delay between the two.

  15. Selection bias in dynamically measured supermassive black hole samples: its consequences and the quest for the most fundamental relation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shankar, Francesco; Bernardi, Mariangela; Sheth, Ravi K.; Ferrarese, Laura; Graham, Alister W.; Savorgnan, Giulia; Allevato, Viola; Marconi, Alessandro; Läsker, Ronald; Lapi, Andrea

    2016-08-01

    We compare the set of local galaxies having dynamically measured black holes with a large, unbiased sample of galaxies extracted from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. We confirm earlier work showing that the majority of black hole hosts have significantly higher velocity dispersions σ than local galaxies of similar stellar mass. We use Monte Carlo simulations to illustrate the effect on black hole scaling relations if this bias arises from the requirement that the black hole sphere of influence must be resolved to measure black hole masses with spatially resolved kinematics. We find that this selection effect artificially increases the normalization of the Mbh-σ relation by a factor of at least ˜3; the bias for the Mbh-Mstar relation is even larger. Our Monte Carlo simulations and analysis of the residuals from scaling relations both indicate that σ is more fundamental than Mstar or effective radius. In particular, the Mbh-Mstar relation is mostly a consequence of the Mbh-σ and σ-Mstar relations, and is heavily biased by up to a factor of 50 at small masses. This helps resolve the discrepancy between dynamically based black hole-galaxy scaling relations versus those of active galaxies. Our simulations also disfavour broad distributions of black hole masses at fixed σ. Correcting for this bias suggests that the calibration factor used to estimate black hole masses in active galaxies should be reduced to values of fvir ˜ 1. Black hole mass densities should also be proportionally smaller, perhaps implying significantly higher radiative efficiencies/black hole spins. Reducing black hole masses also reduces the gravitational wave signal expected from black hole mergers.

  16. SDSS J0159+0105: A Radio-Quiet Quasar with a Centi-Parsec Supermassive Black Hole Binary Candidate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Zhen-Ya; Butler, Nathaniel R.; Shen, Yue; Jiang, Linhua; Wang, Jun-Xian; Chen, Xian; Cuadra, Jorge

    2016-08-01

    We report a candidate centi-parsec supermassive black hole binary (SMBHB) in the radio-quiet quasar SDSS J0159+0105 at z = 0.217. With a modified Lomb-Scargle code (GLSdeDRW) and auto-correlation analysis, we detect two significant (at P > 99%) periodic signals at ˜741 day and ˜1500 day from the 8.1 yr Catalina V-band light curve of this quasar. The period ratio, which is close to 1:2, is typical of a black hole binary system with a mass ratio of 0.05 < q < 0.8 according to recent numerical simulations. SDSS J0159+0105 has two SDSS spectroscopic observations separated by ˜10 yr. There is a significant change in the broad Hβ profile between the two epochs, which can be explained by a single broad-line region (BLR) around the binary system illuminated by the aforementioned mini-disks, or a stream of gas flowing from the circumbinary disk to one of the SMBHs. From the single BLR assumption and the orbital period t orb ˜ 1500 day, we estimate the total virial masses of M SMBHB ˜ 1.3 × 108 M ⊙, the average distances of BLR of ˜0.04 pc (˜50 lt-day, with ±0.3 dex uncertainty), and an SMBHB separation of d = (0.01 pc){M}8,{tot}1/3 (T rest/3.3 yr)2/3 ˜ 0.013 pc (15 lt-day). Based on analytical work, the postulated circumbinary disk has an inner radius of 2d = 0.026 pc (30 lt-day). SDSS J0159+0105 also displays unusual spectral energy distribution. The unique properties of SDSS J0159+0105 are consistent with it being a centi-parsec SMBHB. This paper uses data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), Catalina Real-time Transient Survey (CRTS), SWIFT, GALEX, 2MASS, and WISE archive.

  17. SDSS J0159+0105: A Radio-Quiet Quasar with a Centi-Parsec Supermassive Black Hole Binary Candidate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Zhen-Ya; Butler, Nathaniel R.; Shen, Yue; Jiang, Linhua; Wang, Jun-Xian; Chen, Xian; Cuadra, Jorge

    2016-08-01

    We report a candidate centi-parsec supermassive black hole binary (SMBHB) in the radio-quiet quasar SDSS J0159+0105 at z = 0.217. With a modified Lomb–Scargle code (GLSdeDRW) and auto-correlation analysis, we detect two significant (at P > 99%) periodic signals at ˜741 day and ˜1500 day from the 8.1 yr Catalina V-band light curve of this quasar. The period ratio, which is close to 1:2, is typical of a black hole binary system with a mass ratio of 0.05 < q < 0.8 according to recent numerical simulations. SDSS J0159+0105 has two SDSS spectroscopic observations separated by ˜10 yr. There is a significant change in the broad Hβ profile between the two epochs, which can be explained by a single broad-line region (BLR) around the binary system illuminated by the aforementioned mini-disks, or a stream of gas flowing from the circumbinary disk to one of the SMBHs. From the single BLR assumption and the orbital period t orb ˜ 1500 day, we estimate the total virial masses of M SMBHB ˜ 1.3 × 108 M ⊙, the average distances of BLR of ˜0.04 pc (˜50 lt-day, with ±0.3 dex uncertainty), and an SMBHB separation of d = (0.01 pc){M}8,{tot}1/3 (T rest/3.3 yr)2/3 ˜ 0.013 pc (15 lt-day). Based on analytical work, the postulated circumbinary disk has an inner radius of 2d = 0.026 pc (30 lt-day). SDSS J0159+0105 also displays unusual spectral energy distribution. The unique properties of SDSS J0159+0105 are consistent with it being a centi-parsec SMBHB. This paper uses data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), Catalina Real-time Transient Survey (CRTS), SWIFT, GALEX, 2MASS, and WISE archive.

  18. Relative growth of black holes and the stellar components of galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menci, N.; Fiore, F.; Bongiorno, A.; Lamastra, A.

    2016-10-01

    Recent observations indicate that the mass of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) correlate differently with different galaxy stellar components. Comparing such observations with the results of "ab initio" galaxy formation models can provide insight on the mechanisms leading to the growth of SMBHs. Here we use a state-of-the-art semi-analytic model of galaxy formation to investigate the correlation of the different galaxy stellar components with the mass of the central SMBH. The stellar mass in the disc, in the bulge, and in the pseudo-bulge of galaxies is related to quiescent star formation, to galaxy interactions, and to the loss of angular momentum following disc instabilities, respectively. Consistently with recent findings, we find that while the predicted bulge masses are tightly correlated with the SMBH masses, the correlation between the latter and the galactic discs shows a much larger scatter, in particular when bulgeless galaxies are considered. In addition, we obtain that the predicted masses of pseudo-bulges shows little or no-correlation with the masses of SMBHs. We track the histories of merging, star formation, and SMBH accretion to investigate the physical processes at the origin of such findings within the context of cosmological models of galaxy formation. Finally, we discuss the effects of variations of our assumed fiducial model on the results.

  19. The role of the supermassive black hole spin in the estimation of the EMRI event rate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amaro-Seoane, Pau; Sopuerta, Carlos F.; Freitag, Marc Dewi

    2013-03-01

    One of the main channels of interactions in galactic nuclei between stars and the central massive black hole (MBH) is the gradual inspiral of compact remnants into the MBH due to the emission of gravitational radiation. This process is known as an `extreme mass ratio inspiral' (EMRI). Previous works about the estimation of how many events space observatories such as LISA will be able to observe during its operational time differ in orders of magnitude, due to the complexity of the problem. Nevertheless, a common result to all investigations is that the possibility that a compact object merges with the MBH after only one intense burst of gravitational waves is much more likely than a slow adiabatic inspiral, an EMRI. The latter is referred to as a `plunge' because the compact object dives into the MBH, crosses the horizon and is lost as a probe of strong gravity for evolved Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (eLISA). The event rates for plunges are orders of magnitude larger than slow inspirals. On the other hand, nature MBH's are most likely Kerr and the magnitude of the spin has been sized up to be high. We calculate the number of periapsis passages that a compact object set on to an extremely radial orbit goes through before being actually swallowed by the Kerr MBH and we then translate it into an event rate for a LISA-like observatory, such as the proposed European Space Agency mission eLISA/New Gravitational wave Observatory. We prove that a `plunging' compact object is conceptually indistinguishable from an adiabatic, slow inspiral; plunges spend on average up to hundred of thousands of cycles in the bandwidth of the detector for a 2 yr mission. This has an important impact on the event rate, enhancing in some cases significantly, depending on the spin of the MBH and the inclination. If the orbit of the EMRI is prograde, the effective size of the MBH becomes smaller for larger spin, whilst if retrograde, it becomes bigger. However, this situation is not

  20. Chandra Data Reveal Rapidly Whirling Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2008-01-01

    A new study using results from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory provides one of the best pieces of evidence yet that many supermassive black holes are spinning extremely rapidly. The whirling of these giant black holes drives powerful jets that pump huge amounts of energy into their environment and affects galaxy growth. A team of scientists compared leading theories of jets produced by rotating supermassive black holes with Chandra data. A sampling of nine giant galaxies that exhibit large disturbances in their gaseous atmospheres showed that the central black holes in these galaxies must be spinning at near their maximum rates. People Who Read This Also Read... NASA’s Swift Satellite Catches First Supernova in The Act of Exploding Black Holes Have Simple Feeding Habits Jet Power and Black Hole Assortment Revealed in New Chandra Image Erratic Black Hole Regulates Itself "We think these monster black holes are spinning close to the limit set by Einstein's theory of relativity, which means that they can drag material around them at close to the speed of light," said Rodrigo Nemmen, a visiting graduate student at Penn State University, and lead author of a paper on the new results presented at American Astronomical Society in Austin, Texas. The research reinforces other, less direct methods previously used which have indicated that some stellar and supermassive black holes are spinning rapidly. According to Einstein's theory, a rapidly spinning black hole makes space itself rotate. This effect, coupled with gas spiraling toward the black hole, can produce a rotating, tightly wound vertical tower of magnetic field that flings a large fraction of the inflowing gas away from the vicinity of the black hole in an energetic, high-speed jet. Computer simulations by other authors have suggested that black holes may acquire their rapid spins when galaxies merge, and through the accretion of gas from their surroundings. "Extremely fast spin might be very common for large

  1. EXTENDED SUBMILLIMETER EMISSION OF THE GALACTIC CENTER AND NEAR-INFRARED/SUBMILLIMETER VARIABILITY OF ITS SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE

    SciTech Connect

    Garcia-Marin, M.; Eckart, A.; Witzel, G.; Bremer, M.; Kunneriath, D.; Sabha, N.; Straubmeier, C.; Weiss, A.; Zamaninasab, M.; Morris, M. R.; Schoedel, R.; Nishiyama, S.; Baganoff, F.; Karas, V.; Dovciak, M.; Duschl, W. J.; Moultaka, J.; Najarro, F.; Muzic, K.; Vogel, S. N.

    2011-09-10

    The innermost tens of parsecs of our Galaxy are characterized by the presence of molecular cloud complexes surrounding Sgr A*, the radiative counterpart of the supermassive black hole ({approx}4 x 10{sup 6} M{sub sun}) at the Galactic center. We seek to distinguish the different physical mechanisms that dominate the molecular clouds at the Galactic center, with special emphasis on the circumnuclear disk (CND). We also want to study the energy flow and model the variable emission of Sgr A*. Our study is based on NIR and submillimeter (sub-mm) observations. Using sub-mm maps, we describe the complex morphology of the molecular clouds and the circumnuclear disk, along with their masses (of order 10{sup 5}-10{sup 6} M{sub sun}), and derive also the temperature and spectral index maps of the regions under study. We conclude that the average temperature of the dust is 14 {+-} 4 K. The spectral index map shows that the 20 and 50 km s{sup -1} clouds are dominated by dust emission. Comparatively, in the CND and its surroundings the spectral indices decrease toward Sgr A* and range between about 1 and -0.6. These values are mostly explained with a combination of dust, synchrotron, and free-free emission in different ratios. The presence of non-thermal emission also accounts for the apparent low temperatures derived in these areas, indicating their unreliability. The Sgr A* light curves show significant flux density excursions in both the NIR and sub-mm domains. We have defined a classification system to account for the NIR variability of Sgr A*. Also, we have modeled on the NIR/sub-mm events. From our modeling results we can infer a sub-mm emission delay with respect to the NIR; we argue that the delay is due to the adiabatic expansion of the synchrotron source components.

  2. THE MURMUR OF THE HIDDEN MONSTER: CHANDRA'S DECADAL VIEW OF THE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE IN M31

    SciTech Connect

    Li Zhiyuan; Garcia, Michael R.; Forman, William R.; Jones, Christine; Kraft, Ralph P.; Lal, Dharam V.; Murray, Stephen S.; Wang, Q. Daniel

    2011-02-10

    The Andromeda galaxy (M31) hosts a central supermassive black hole (SMBH), known as M31*, which is remarkable for its mass ({approx}10{sup 8} M{sub sun}) and extreme radiative quiescence. Over the past decade, the Chandra X-Ray Observatory has pointed to the center of M31 {approx}100 times and accumulated a total exposure of {approx}900 ks. Based on these observations, we present an X-ray study of a highly variable source that we associate with M31* based on positional coincidence. We find that M31* remained in a quiescent state from late 1999 to 2005, exhibiting an average 0.5-8 keV luminosity {approx}<10{sup 36} erg s{sup -1}, or only {approx}10{sup -10} of its Eddington luminosity. We report the discovery of an outburst that occurred on 2006 January 6 during which M31* radiated at {approx}4.3 x 10{sup 37} erg s{sup -1}. After the outburst, M31* entered a more active state that apparently lasts to the present, which is characterized by frequent flux variability around an average luminosity of {approx}4.8 x 10{sup 36} erg s{sup -1}. These flux variations are similar to the X-ray flares found in the SMBH of our Galaxy (Sgr A*), making M31* the second SMBH known to exhibit recurrent flares. Future coordinated X-ray/radio observations will provide useful constraints on the physical origin of the flaring emission and help rule out a possible stellar origin of the X-ray source.

  3. A reduced orbital period for the supermassive black hole binary candidate in the quasar PG 1302-102?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Orazio, D. J.; Haiman, Z.; Duffell, P.; Farris, B. D.; MacFadyen, A. I.

    2015-09-01

    Graham et al. have detected a 5.2 yr periodic optical variability of the quasar PG 1302-102 at redshift z = 0.3, which they interpret as the redshifted orbital period (1 + z)tbin of a putative supermassive black hole binary (SMBHB). Here, we consider the implications of a 3-8 times shorter orbital period, suggested by hydrodynamical simulations of circumbinary discs (CBDs) with nearly equal-mass SMBHBs (q ≡ M2/M1 ≳ 0.3). With the corresponding 2-4 times tighter binary separation, PG 1302 would be undergoing gravitational wave dominated inspiral, and serve as a proof that the BHs can be fuelled and produce bright emission even in this late stage of the merger. The expected fraction of binaries with the shorter tbin, among bright quasars, would be reduced by one to two orders of magnitude, compared to the 5.2 yr period, in better agreement with the rarity of candidates reported by Graham et al. Finally, shorter periods would imply higher binary speeds, possibly imprinting periodicity on the light curves from relativistic beaming, as well as measurable relativistic effects on the Fe K α line. The CBD model predicts additional periodic variability on time-scales of tbin and ≈0.5tbin, as well as periodic variation of broad line widths and offsets relative to the narrow lines, which are consistent with the observations. Future observations will be able to test these predictions and hence the binary+CBD hypothesis for PG 1302.

  4. Characterizing ``Radio Mode'' AGN Outbursts: the Recent 12 Myr History of the Supermassive Black Hole in M87

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forman, William R.; Churazov, Eugene; Jones, Christine; Heinz, Sebastian; Kraft, Ralph P.; Vikhlinin, Alexey

    2016-01-01

    M87, the bright active galaxy dominating the core of the Virgo cluster, is ideal for studying the interaction of a supermassive black hole with a gas rich environment. We combine results from a deep Chandra observation with a simple shock model to derive the properties of the outburst that created the 13 kpc shock previously reported around M87. The principal constraints for the model are 1) the observed temperature and density profiles, 2) the measured Mach number (about 1.2) and radius of the 13 kpc shock, 3) the observed size of the inner cavity (~3 kpc) that serves as the piston to drive the shock, and 4) the absence of a hot, low density plasma surrounding the central cavity. Qualitatively, the absence of a hot, low density (shocked) region surrounding the inner radio lobes (the piston), requires a "slowly" expanding piston and "long" duration outburst rather than a Sedov-like outburst. Quantitatively, a roughly 5 x 1057 ergs outburst that began about 12 Myr ago and lasted about 2 Myr matches all the constraints. In the context of the model, ~20% of the energy is carried by the shock as it expands to large radii while ~80% of the outburst energy is available to heat the core gas. For an outburst repetition rate of about 12 Myrs (the outburst age), 80% of the outburst energy is sufficient to balance radiative cooling. We discuss the outburst history of M87 as chronicled in its radio and X-ray images and the implications of these outbursts for heating gas rich environments.

  5. Fueling-Controlled the Growth of Massive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Escala, A.

    2009-05-01

    We study the relation between nuclear massive black holes and their host spheroid gravitational potential. Using AMR numerical simulations, we analyze how gas is transported into the nuclear (central kpc) regions of galaxies. We study gas fueling onto the inner accretion disk (sub-pc scale) and star formation in a massive nuclear disk like those generally found in proto-spheroids (ULIRGs, SCUBA Galaxies). These sub-pc resolution simulations of gas fueling, which is mainly depleted by star formation, naturally satisfy the `M_BH-M_{virial}' relation, with a scatter considerably less than that observed. We find that a generalized version of the Kennicutt-Schmidt Law for starbursts is satisfied, in which the total gas depletion rate (dot M_gas=dot M_BH + M_SF scales as M_gas/t_orbital. See Escala (2007) for more details about this work.

  6. Super-Eddington growth of the first black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pezzulli, Edwige; Valiante, Rosa; Schneider, Raffaella

    2016-05-01

    The assembly of the first super massive black holes (SMBHs) at z ≳ 6 is still a subject of intense debate. If black holes (BHs) grow at their Eddington rate, they must start from ≳104 M⊙ seeds formed by the direct collapse of gas. Here, we explore the alternative scenario where ˜100 M⊙ BH remnants of the first stars grow at super-Eddington rate via radiatively inefficient slim accretion discs. We use an improved version of the cosmological, data-constrained semi-analytic model GAMETE/QSODUST, where we follow the evolution of nuclear BHs and gas cooling, disc and bulge formation of their host galaxies. Adopting SDSS J1148+5251 (J1148) at z = 6.4 as a prototype of luminous z ≳ 6 quasars, we find that ˜80 per cent of its SMBH mass is grown by super-Eddington accretion, which can be sustained down to z ˜ 10 in dense, gas-rich environments. The average BH mass at z ˜ 20 is MBH ≳ 104 M⊙, comparable to that of direct collapse BHs. At z = 6.4 the AGN-driven mass outflow rate is consistent with the observations and the BH-to-bulge mass ratio is compatible with the local scaling relation. However, the stellar mass in the central 2.5 kpc is closer to the value inferred from CO observations. Finally, ˜20 per cent of J1148 progenitors at z = 7.1 have BH luminosities and masses comparable to ULAS J1120+0641, suggesting that this quasar may be one of the progenitors of J1148.

  7. Chandra Catches "Piranha" Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2007-07-01

    Supermassive black holes have been discovered to grow more rapidly in young galaxy clusters, according to new results from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. These "fast-track" supermassive black holes can have a big influence on the galaxies and clusters that they live in. Using Chandra, scientists surveyed a sample of clusters and counted the fraction of galaxies with rapidly growing supermassive black holes, known as active galactic nuclei (or AGN). The data show, for the first time, that younger, more distant galaxy clusters contained far more AGN than older, nearby ones. Galaxy clusters are some of the largest structures in the Universe, consisting of many individual galaxies, a few of which contain AGN. Earlier in the history of the universe, these galaxies contained a lot more gas for star formation and black hole growth than galaxies in clusters do today. This fuel allows the young cluster black holes to grow much more rapidly than their counterparts in nearby clusters. Illustration of Active Galactic Nucleus Illustration of Active Galactic Nucleus "The black holes in these early clusters are like piranha in a very well-fed aquarium," said Jason Eastman of Ohio State University (OSU) and first author of this study. "It's not that they beat out each other for food, rather there was so much that all of the piranha were able to really thrive and grow quickly." The team used Chandra to determine the fraction of AGN in four different galaxy clusters at large distances, when the Universe was about 58% of its current age. Then they compared this value to the fraction found in more nearby clusters, those about 82% of the Universe's current age. The result was the more distant clusters contained about 20 times more AGN than the less distant sample. AGN outside clusters are also more common when the Universe is younger, but only by factors of two or three over the same age span. "It's been predicted that there would be fast-track black holes in clusters, but we never

  8. Gas infall into atomic cooling haloes: on the formation of protogalactic discs and supermassive black holes at z > 10

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prieto, Joaquin; Jimenez, Raul; Haiman, Zoltán

    2013-12-01

    We have performed hydrodynamical simulations from cosmological initial conditions using the Adaptive Mesh Refinement (AMR) code RAMSES to study atomic cooling haloes (ACHs) at z = 10 with masses in the range 5 × 107 M⊙ ≲ M ≲ 2 × 109 M⊙. We assume the gas has primordial composition and H2-cooling and prior star formation in the haloes have been suppressed. We present a comprehensive analysis of the gas and dark matter (DM) properties of 19 haloes at a spatial resolution of ˜10 (proper) pc, selected from simulations with a total volume of ˜2000 (comoving) Mpc3. This is the largest statistical hydro-simulation study of ACHs at z > 10 to date. We examine the morphology, angular momentum, thermodynamical state and turbulent properties of these haloes, in order to assess the prevalence of discs and massive overdensities that may lead to the formation of supermassive black holes (SMBHs). We find no correlation between either the magnitude or the direction of the angular momentum of the gas and its parent DM halo. Only three of the haloes form rotationally supported cores. Two of the most massive haloes, however, form massive, compact overdense blobs, which migrate to the outer region of the halo. These blobs have an accretion rate between ˜10-1 and 10-3 M⊙ yr-1 (at a distance of 100 pc from their centre), and are possible sites of SMBH formation. Our results suggest that the degree of rotational support and the fate of the gas in a halo is determined by its large-scale environment and merger history. In particular, the two haloes that form overdense blobs are located at knots of the cosmic web, cooled their gas early on (z > 17) and experienced many mergers. The gas in these haloes is thus lumpy and highly turbulent, with Mach numbers M≳ 5. In contrast, the haloes forming rotationally supported cores are relatively more isolated, located mid-way along filaments of the cosmic web, cooled their gas more recently and underwent fewer mergers. As a result, the

  9. THERMAL AND DYNAMICAL PROPERTIES OF GAS ACCRETING ONTO A SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE IN AN ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEUS

    SciTech Connect

    Moscibrodzka, M.; Proga, D.

    2013-04-20

    We study stability of gas accretion in active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Our grid-based simulations cover a radial range from 0.1 to 200 pc, which may enable linking the galactic/cosmological simulations with small-scale black hole (BH) accretion models within a few hundreds of Schwarzschild radii. Here, as in previous studies by our group, we include gas radiative cooling as well as heating by a sub-Eddington X-ray source near the central supermassive BH of 10{sup 8} M{sub Sun }. Our theoretical estimates and simulations show that for the X-ray luminosity, L{sub X} {approx} 0.008 L{sub Edd}, the gas is thermally and convectively unstable within the computational domain. In the simulations, we observe that very tiny fluctuations in an initially smooth, spherically symmetric, accretion flow, grow first linearly and then nonlinearly. Consequently, an initially one-phase flow relatively quickly transitions into a two-phase/cold-hot accretion flow. For L{sub X} = 0.015 L{sub Edd} or higher, the cold clouds continue to accrete but in some regions of the hot phase, the gas starts to move outward. For L{sub X} < 0.015 L{sub Edd}, the cold phase contribution to the total mass accretion rate only moderately dominates over the hot phase contribution. This result might have some consequences for cosmological simulations of the so-called AGN feedback problem. Our simulations confirm the previous results of Barai et al. who used smoothed particle hydrodynamic (SPH) simulations to tackle the same problem. Here, however, because we use a grid-based code to solve equations in one dimension and two dimensions, we are able to follow the gas dynamics at much higher spacial resolution and for longer time compared with the three-dimensional SPH simulations. One of the new features revealed by our simulations is that the cold condensations in the accretion flow initially form long filaments, but at the later times, those filaments may break into smaller clouds advected outward within the

  10. A precessing molecular jet signaling an obscured, growing supermassive black hole in NGC 1377?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aalto, S.; Costagliola, F.; Muller, S.; Sakamoto, K.; Gallagher, J. S.; Dasyra, K.; Wada, K.; Combes, F.; García-Burillo, S.; Kristensen, L. E.; Martín, S.; van der Werf, P.; Evans, A. S.; Kotilainen, J.

    2016-05-01

    (<1 Myr), which could imply that it is young and consistent with the notion that NGC 1377 is caught in a transient phase of its evolution. However, further studies are required to determine the age of the molecular jet, its mass and the role it is playing in the growth of the nucleus of NGC 1377. Based on observations carried out with the ALMA Interferometer. ALMA is a partnership of ESO (representing its member states), NSF (USA) and NINS (Japan), together with NRC (Canada) and NSC and ASIAA (Taiwan), in cooperation with the Republic of Chile. The Joint ALMA Observatory is operated by ESO, AUI/NRAO and NAOJ.FITS files of the reduced data cubes are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (ftp://130.79.128.5) or via http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/590/A73

  11. ULTRAMASSIVE BLACK HOLE COALESCENCE

    SciTech Connect

    Khan, Fazeel Mahmood; Holley-Bockelmann, Kelly; Berczik, Peter E-mail: k.holley@vanderbilt.edu

    2015-01-10

    Although supermassive black holes (SMBHs) correlate well with their host galaxies, there is an emerging view that outliers exist. Henize 2-10, NGC 4889, and NGC 1277 are examples of SMBHs at least an order of magnitude more massive than their host galaxy suggests. The dynamical effects of such ultramassive central black holes is unclear. Here, we perform direct N-body simulations of mergers of galactic nuclei where one black hole is ultramassive to study the evolution of the remnant and the black hole dynamics in this extreme regime. We find that the merger remnant is axisymmetric near the center, while near the large SMBH influence radius, the galaxy is triaxial. The SMBH separation shrinks rapidly due to dynamical friction, and quickly forms a binary black hole; if we scale our model to the most massive estimate for the NGC 1277 black hole, for example, the timescale for the SMBH separation to shrink from nearly a kiloparsec to less than a parsec is roughly 10 Myr. By the time the SMBHs form a hard binary, gravitational wave emission dominates, and the black holes coalesce in a mere few Myr. Curiously, these extremely massive binaries appear to nearly bypass the three-body scattering evolutionary phase. Our study suggests that in this extreme case, SMBH coalescence is governed by dynamical friction followed nearly directly by gravitational wave emission, resulting in a rapid and efficient SMBH coalescence timescale. We discuss the implications for gravitational wave event rates and hypervelocity star production.

  12. A star in a 15.2-year orbit around the supermassive black hole at the centre of the Milky Way.

    PubMed

    Schödel, R; Ott, T; Genzel, R; Hofmann, R; Lehnert, M; Eckart, A; Mouawad, N; Alexander, T; Reid, M J; Lenzen, R; Hartung, M; Lacombe, F; Rouan, D; Gendron, E; Rousset, G; Lagrange, A-M; Brandner, W; Ageorges, N; Lidman, C; Moorwood, A F M; Spyromilio, J; Hubin, N; Menten, K M

    2002-10-17

    Many galaxies are thought to have supermassive black holes at their centres-more than a million times the mass of the Sun. Measurements of stellar velocities and the discovery of variable X-ray emission have provided strong evidence in favour of such a black hole at the centre of the Milky Way, but have hitherto been unable to rule out conclusively the presence of alternative concentrations of mass. Here we report ten years of high-resolution astrometric imaging that allows us to trace two-thirds of the orbit of the star currently closest to the compact radio source (and massive black-hole candidate) Sagittarius A*. The observations, which include both pericentre and apocentre passages, show that the star is on a bound, highly elliptical keplerian orbit around Sgr A*, with an orbital period of 15.2 years and a pericentre distance of only 17 light hours. The orbit with the best fit to the observations requires a central point mass of (3.7 +/- 1.5) x 10(6) solar masses (M(*)). The data no longer allow for a central mass composed of a dense cluster of dark stellar objects or a ball of massive, degenerate fermions.

  13. SPOON-FEEDING GIANT STARS TO SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES: EPISODIC MASS TRANSFER FROM EVOLVING STARS AND THEIR CONTRIBUTION TO THE QUIESCENT ACTIVITY OF GALACTIC NUCLEI

    SciTech Connect

    MacLeod, Morgan; Ramirez-Ruiz, Enrico; Grady, Sean; Guillochon, James

    2013-11-10

    Stars may be tidally disrupted if, in a single orbit, they are scattered too close to a supermassive black hole (SMBH). Tidal disruption events are thought to power luminous but short-lived accretion episodes that can light up otherwise quiescent SMBHs in transient flares. Here we explore a more gradual process of tidal stripping where stars approach the tidal disruption radius by stellar evolution while in an eccentric orbit. After the onset of mass transfer, these stars episodically transfer mass to the SMBH every pericenter passage, giving rise to low-level flares that repeat on the orbital timescale. Giant stars, in particular, will exhibit a runaway response to mass loss and 'spoon-feed' material to the black hole for tens to hundreds of orbital periods. In contrast to full tidal disruption events, the duty cycle of this feeding mode is of order unity for black holes M{sub bh} ∼> 10{sup 7} M{sub ☉}. This mode of quasi-steady SMBH feeding is competitive with indirect SMBH feeding through stellar winds, and spoon-fed giant stars may play a role in determining the quiescent luminosity of local SMBHs.

  14. Black hole accretion disc impacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pihajoki, P.

    2016-04-01

    We present an analytic model for computing the luminosity and spectral evolution of flares caused by a supermassive black hole impacting the accretion disc of another supermassive black hole. Our model includes photon diffusion, emission from optically thin regions and relativistic corrections to the observed spectrum and time-scales. We test the observability of the impact scenario with a simulated population of quasars hosting supermassive black hole binaries. The results indicate that for a moderate binary mass ratio of 0.3, and impact distances of 100 primary Schwarzschild radii, the accretion disc impacts can be expected to equal or exceed the host quasar in brightness at observed wavelength λ = 510 nm up to z = 0.6. We conclude that accretion disc impacts may function as an independent probe for supermassive black hole binaries. We release the code used for computing the model light curves to the community.

  15. Songlines from Direct Collapse Seed Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aykutalp, Aycin; Wise, John; Spaans, Marco; Meijerink, Rowin

    2015-01-01

    In the last decade, the growth of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) has been intricately linked to galaxy formation and evolution, and is a key ingredient in the assembly of galaxies. Observations of SMBHs with masses of 109 solar at high redshifts (z~7) poses challenges to the theory of seed black hole formation and their growth in young galaxies. Fundamental to understanding their existence within the first billion years after the Big Bang, is the identification of their formation processes, growth rate and evolution through cosmic time. We perform cosmological hydrodynamic simulations following the growth of direct collapse seed black holes (DCBH) including X-ray irradiation from the central black hole, stellar feedback both from metal-free and metal-rich stars and H2 self-shielding. These simulations demonstrate that X-ray irradiation from the central black hole regulates its growth and influence the formation of stellar population in the host halo. In particular, X-ray radiation enhances H2 formation in metal-free gas and initially induces the star formation in the halo. However, in the long term, X-ray irradiation from the accreting seed DCBH stifles the initial growth relative to the Eddington rate argument. This further complicates the explanation for the existence of SMBHs in the early universe.

  16. Black Hole Mass Determination Using X-ray Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jang, Insuk

    Supermassive black holes are located at the center of basically every galaxy and their mass appears to be tightly correlated with several galaxy properties, suggesting that black hole and galaxy growths are linked together. Determining the mass of black holes provides crucial information on the galaxy evolution and indeed significant progress has been achieved thanks to optically-based methods. However, since these methods are limited by several factors including absorption and galaxy contamination, it is important to develop and test alternative methods that use different energy bands to constrain the black hole mass. In a recent work we demonstrated that a novel X-ray scaling method, originally introduced for stellar mass black holes, can be reliably extended to estimate the mass of highly-accreting supermassive black holes. Here we investigate the limits of applicability of this method to low-accreting black holes, using a control sample of low-luminosity active galactic nuclei with good-quality X-ray data and with dynamically measured black hole masses. We find the threshold value of the accretion rate for which the X-ray scaling method can still be used. Below this threshold, we provide a simple recipe to constrain the black hole mass based on the inverse correlation between X-ray spectral properties and accretion rate, which was found in several low-accreting black holes and confirmed by our sample. Then, we extend the X-ray scaling method to ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs), which are off-nuclear, point-like X-ray sources, whose nature is still debated. Their high X-ray brightness can be equally well explained by stellar mass black holes accreting at extreme rates or by intermediate mass black holes accreting at regular rates, therefore, constraining their mass may shed light on one of the outstanding questions of high energy astrophysics. Currently, no direct optically-based methods can dynamically determine the mass of ULXs, making X-ray methods the only

  17. Constraining the initial conditions and final outcomes of accretion processes around young stars and supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stone, Jordan M.

    In this thesis I discuss probes of small spatial scales around young stars and protostars and around the supermassive black hole at the galactic center. I begin by describing adaptive optics-fed infrared spectroscopic studies of nascent and newborn binary systems. Binary star formation is a significant mode of star formation that could be responsible for the production of a majority of the galactic stellar population. Better characterization of the binary formation mechanism is important for better understanding many facets of astronomy, from proper estimates of the content of unresolved populations, to stellar evolution and feedback, to planet formation. My work revealed episodic accretion onto the more massive component of the pre-main sequence binary system UY Aur. I also showed changes in the accretion onto the less massive component, revealing contradictory indications of the change in accretion rate when considering disk-based and shock-based tracers. I suggested two scenarios to explain the inconsistency. First, increased accretion should alter the disk structure, puffing it up. This change could obscure the accretion shock onto the central star if the disk is highly inclined. Second, if accretion through the disk is impeded before it makes it all the way onto the central star, then increased disk tracers of accretion would not be accompanied by increased shock tracers. In this case mass must be piling up at some radius in the disk, possibly supplying the material for planet formation or a future burst of accretion. My next project focused on characterizing the atmospheres of very low-mass companions to nearby young stars. Whether these objects form in an extension of the binary-star formation mechanism to very low masses or they form via a different process is an open question. Different accretion histories should result in different atmospheric composition, which can be constrained with spectroscopy. I showed that 3--4mum spectra of a sample of these

  18. Gravitational waves from individual supermassive black hole binaries in circular orbits: limits from the North American nanohertz observatory for gravitational waves

    SciTech Connect

    Arzoumanian, Z.; Brazier, A.; Chatterjee, S.; Cordes, J. M.; Dolch, T.; Lam, M. T.; Burke-Spolaor, S.; Chamberlin, S. J.; Ellis, J. A.; Demorest, P. B.; Deng, X.; Koop, M.; Ferdman, R. D.; Kaspi, V. M.; Garver-Daniels, N.; Lorimer, D. R.; Jenet, F.; Jones, G.; Lazio, T. J. W.; Lommen, A. N.; Collaboration: NANOGrav Collaboration; and others

    2014-10-20

    We perform a search for continuous gravitational waves from individual supermassive black hole binaries using robust frequentist and Bayesian techniques. We augment standard pulsar timing models with the addition of time-variable dispersion measure and frequency variable pulse shape terms. We apply our techniques to the Five Year Data Release from the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves. We find that there is no evidence for the presence of a detectable continuous gravitational wave; however, we can use these data to place the most constraining upper limits to date on the strength of such gravitational waves. Using the full 17 pulsar data set we place a 95% upper limit on the strain amplitude of h {sub 0} ≲ 3.0 × 10{sup –14} at a frequency of 10 nHz. Furthermore, we place 95% sky-averaged lower limits on the luminosity distance to such gravitational wave sources, finding that d{sub L} ≳ 425 Mpc for sources at a frequency of 10 nHz and chirp mass 10{sup 10} M {sub ☉}. We find that for gravitational wave sources near our best timed pulsars in the sky, the sensitivity of the pulsar timing array is increased by a factor of ∼four over the sky-averaged sensitivity. Finally we place limits on the coalescence rate of the most massive supermassive black hole binaries.

  19. THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN BLACK HOLE GROWTH AND STAR FORMATION IN SEYFERT GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Diamond-Stanic, Aleksandar M.; Rieke, George H.

    2012-02-20

    We present estimates of black hole accretion rates (BHARs) and nuclear, extended, and total star formation rates for a complete sample of Seyfert galaxies. Using data from the Spitzer Space Telescope, we measure the active galactic nucleus (AGN) luminosity using the [O IV] {lambda}25.89 {mu}m emission line and the star-forming luminosity using the 11.3 {mu}m aromatic feature and extended 24 {mu}m continuum emission. We find that black hole growth is strongly correlated with nuclear (r < 1 kpc) star formation, but only weakly correlated with extended (r > 1 kpc) star formation in the host galaxy. In particular, the nuclear star formation rate (SFR) traced by the 11.3 {mu}m aromatic feature follows a relationship with the BHAR of the form SFR{proportional_to} M-dot{sub BH}{sup 0.8}, with an observed scatter of 0.5 dex. This SFR-BHAR relationship persists when additional star formation in physically matched r = 1 kpc apertures is included, taking the form SFR{proportional_to} M-dot{sub BH}{sup 0.6}. However, the relationship becomes almost indiscernible when total SFRs are considered. This suggests a physical connection between the gas on sub-kiloparsec and sub-parsec scales in local Seyfert galaxies that is not related to external processes in the host galaxy. It also suggests that the observed scaling between star formation and black hole growth for samples of AGNs will depend on whether the star formation is dominated by a nuclear or an extended component. We estimate the integrated black hole and bulge growth that occurs in these galaxies and find that an AGN duty cycle of 5%-10% would maintain the ratio between black hole and bulge masses seen in the local universe.

  20. An Accretion Model for the Growth of Black Hole in Quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lu, Ye; Cheng, K. S.; Zhang, S. N.

    2003-01-01

    A possible accretion model associated with the ionization instability of quasar disks is proposed to address the growth of the central black hole harbored in the host galaxy. The evolution of quasars in cosmic time is assumed to change from a highly active state to a quiescent state triggered by the S-shaped ionization instability of the quasar accretion disk. For a given external mass transfer rate ionization instability can modify accretion rate in the disk and separates the accretion flows of the disk into three different phases like a S-shape. We suggest that the bright quasars observed today are those quasars with disks in the upper branch of S-shaped instability and the dormant quasars are the system in the lower branch. The disk is assumed to evolve as ADIOS configuration in the lower branch. The mass ratio between black hole and its host galactic bulge is a nature consequence of ADIOS. Our model also demonstrates that a seed black hole 2 x 10(exp 6) solar masses similar to those found in spiral galaxies today is needed to produce a black hole with a final mass 2 x 10(exp 8) solar masses.

  1. A RAPIDLY SPINNING BLACK HOLE POWERS THE EINSTEIN CROSS

    SciTech Connect

    Reynolds, Mark T.; Miller, Jon M.; Reis, Rubens C.; Walton, Dominic J.

    2014-09-01

    Observations over the past 20 yr have revealed a strong relationship between the properties of the supermassive black hole lying at the center of a galaxy and the host galaxy itself. The magnitude of the spin of the black hole will play a key role in determining the nature of this relationship. To date, direct estimates of black hole spin have been restricted to the local universe. Herein, we present the results of an analysis of ∼0.5 Ms of archival Chandra observations of the gravitationally lensed quasar Q 2237+305 (aka the {sup E}instein-cross{sup )}, lying at a redshift of z = 1.695. The boost in flux provided by the gravitational lens allows constraints to be placed on the spin of a black hole at such high redshift for the first time. Utilizing state of the art relativistic disk reflection models, the black hole is found to have a spin of a{sub ∗}=0.74{sub −0.03}{sup +0.06} at the 90% confidence level. Placing a lower limit on the spin, we find a {sub *} ≥ 0.65 (4σ). The high value of the spin for the ∼10{sup 9} M {sub ☉} black hole in Q 2237+305 lends further support to the coherent accretion scenario for black hole growth. This is the most distant black hole for which the spin has been directly constrained to date.

  2. A Rapidly Spinning Black Hole Powers the Einstein Cross

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reynolds, Mark T.; Walton, Dominic J.; Miller, Jon M.; Reis, Rubens C.

    2014-09-01

    Observations over the past 20 yr have revealed a strong relationship between the properties of the supermassive black hole lying at the center of a galaxy and the host galaxy itself. The magnitude of the spin of the black hole will play a key role in determining the nature of this relationship. To date, direct estimates of black hole spin have been restricted to the local universe. Herein, we present the results of an analysis of ~0.5 Ms of archival Chandra observations of the gravitationally lensed quasar Q 2237+305 (aka the "Einstein-cross"), lying at a redshift of z = 1.695. The boost in flux provided by the gravitational lens allows constraints to be placed on the spin of a black hole at such high redshift for the first time. Utilizing state of the art relativistic disk reflection models, the black hole is found to have a spin of a_* = 0.74^{+0.06}_{-0.03} at the 90% confidence level. Placing a lower limit on the spin, we find a * >= 0.65 (4σ). The high value of the spin for the ~109 M ⊙ black hole in Q 2237+305 lends further support to the coherent accretion scenario for black hole growth. This is the most distant black hole for which the spin has been directly constrained to date.

  3. Black Hole Growth and Host Galaxy Co-Evolution Over 8 Billion Years of Cosmic Time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, Brooke D.

    Although much progress has been made in the investigation of the co-evolution of black holes and galaxies, the nature of AGN accretion triggers and AGN-host feedback remain open questions. Using samples of hard X-ray selected, moderate-luminosity AGN and their host galaxies from 0.25 < z < 2.67 in the GOODS deep multi-wavelength survey fields, this thesis assesses the growth rates and histories of these black holes, and uses their host galaxy morphologies and colors to test the applicability of established quasar-triggering models to lower-powered AGN. The analysis includes simulations of over 50,000 AGN+host galaxy images to assess the reliability of AGN-host decomposition, as well as a new technique to separate the spectral energy distribution of an obscured AGN from its dominant host galaxy. Moderate-luminosity AGN span a range of growth rates but are typically in a phase of slow growth (with ≈ 80% of the sample growing at less than 10% of the Eddington limit) with relatively high black hole masses (≈ 75% of the sample has MBH > 5 × 107 M⊙ , implying that they must have been growing at higher rates in the past in order to grow to the masses we observe. Additionally, a significant fraction of the host galaxies of moderate-luminosity AGN are disk-dominated: at the highest redshifts of the sample more than half of the host galaxies have at least 80% of their optical light from a disk. A further one-quarter to one-third of the sample (depending on redshift) has a significant disk contribution, with a stronger, but likely not dominant, bulge. Because major mergers both form bulges and destroy disks, this result indicates that models requiring major mergers to trigger the growth of black holes do not describe the majority of AGN. The range of both black hole growth rates and host galaxy colors and morphologies in the sample imply that secular processes are important to the growth of moderate-luminosity AGN, which collectively comprise a substantial fraction of

  4. Astrophysical Black Holes: Evidence of a Horizon?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colpi, Monica

    In this Lecture Note we first follow a short account of the history of the black hole hypothesis. We then review on the current status of the search for astrophysical black holes with particular attention to the black holes of stellar origin. Later, we highlight a series of observations that reveal the albeit indirect presence of supermassive black holes in galactic nuclei, with mention to forthcoming experiments aimed at testing directly the black hole hypothesis. We further focus on evidences of a black hole event horizon in cosmic sources.

  5. Evidence for Gravitational Infall of Matter onto the Supermassive Black Hole in the Quasar PG 1211+143?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reeves, J. N.; Pounds, K.; Uttley, P.; Kraemer, S.; Mushotzky, R.; Yaqoob, T.; George, I. M.; Turner, T. J.

    2005-11-01

    We report the detection of redshifted iron Kα absorption lines in the Chandra LETG spectrum of the narrow-line quasar PG 1211+143. The absorption lines are observed at 4.22 and 4.93 keV in the quasar spectrum, corresponding to 4.56 and 5.33 keV in the rest frame of PG 1211+143. From Monte Carlo simulations, the chance probability of both lines being false detections is low at 1.36×10-4. Highly redshifted ionized iron Kα (Fe XXV or Fe XXVI) is the most plausible identification for the lines at their observed energies. If identified with H-like iron Kα at 6.97 keV, then the relativistic velocity shifts required are 0.40c and 0.26c. The extreme velocities can be explained by pure gravitational redshift if the matter exists in a stable orbit within 6 gravitational radii of the black hole. This would require a Kerr metric for the black hole. Alternatively, the absorption may be the result of matter infalling directly onto the black hole, with a maximum observed velocity of 0.38c at 6Rg in the Schwarzschild metric. This matter may originate in a failed outflow or jet, which does not escape the gravitational potential of the black hole.

  6. CONSTRAINING SUB-PARSEC BINARY SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN QUASARS WITH MULTI-EPOCH SPECTROSCOPY. I. THE GENERAL QUASAR POPULATION

    SciTech Connect

    Shen, Yue; Liu, Xin; Loeb, Abraham; Tremaine, Scott

    2013-09-20

    We perform a systematic search for sub-parsec binary supermassive black holes (BHs) in normal broad-line quasars at z < 0.8, using multi-epoch Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) spectroscopy of the broad Hβ line. Our working model is that (1) one and only one of the two BHs in the binary is active; (2) the active BH dynamically dominates its own broad-line region (BLR) in the binary system, so that the mean velocity of the BLR reflects the mean velocity of its host BH; (3) the inactive companion BH is orbiting at a distance of a few R{sub BLR}, where R{sub BLR} ∼ 0.01-0.1 pc is the BLR size. We search for the expected line-of-sight acceleration of the broad-line velocity from binary orbital motion by cross-correlating SDSS spectra from two epochs separated by up to several years in the quasar rest frame. Out of ∼700 pairs of spectra for which we have good measurements of the velocity shift between two epochs (1σ error ∼40 km s{sup –1}), we detect 28 systems with significant velocity shifts in broad Hβ, among which 7 are the best candidates for the hypothesized binaries, 4 are most likely due to broad-line variability in single BHs, and the rest are ambiguous. Continued spectroscopic observations of these candidates will easily strengthen or disprove these claims. We use the distribution of the observed accelerations (mostly non-detections) to place constraints on the abundance of such binary systems among the general quasar population. Excess variance in the velocity shift is inferred for observations separated by longer than 0.4 yr (quasar rest frame). Attributing all the excess to binary motion would imply that most of the quasars in this sample must be in binaries, that the inactive BH must be on average more massive than the active one, and that the binary separation is at most a few times the size of the BLR. However, if this excess variance is partly or largely due to long-term broad-line variability, the requirement of a large population of close

  7. Supermassive Black Holes with High Accretion Rates in Active Galactic Nuclei. I. First Results from a New Reverberation Mapping Campaign

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, Pu; Hu, Chen; Lu, Kai-Xing; Wang, Fang; Qiu, Jie; Li, Yan-Rong; Bai, Jin-Ming; Kaspi, Shai; Netzer, Hagai; Wang, Jian-Min; SEAMBH Collaboration

    2014-02-01

    We report first results from a large project to measure black hole (BH) mass in high accretion rate active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Such objects may be different from other AGNs in being powered by slim accretion disks and showing saturated accretion luminosities, but both are not yet fully understood. The results are part of a large reverberation mapping (RM) campaign using the 2.4 m Shangri-La telescope at the Yunnan Observatory in China. The goals are to investigate the gas distribution near the BH and the properties of the central accretion disks, to measure BH mass and Eddington ratios, and to test the feasibility of using such objects as a new type of cosmological candles. The paper presents results for three objects, Mrk 335, Mrk 142, and IRAS F12397+3333, with Hβ time lags relative to the 5100 Å continuum of 10.6^{+1.7}_{-2.9}, 6.4^{+0.8}_{-2.2} and 11.4^{+2.9}_{-1.9} days, respectively. The corresponding BH masses are (8.3_{-3.2}^{+2.6})\\times 10^6\\,M_{\\odot }, (3.4_{-1.2}^{+0.5})\\times 10^6\\,M_{\\odot }, and (7.5_{-4.1}^{+4.3})\\times 10^6\\,M_{\\odot }, and the lower limits on the Eddington ratios are 0.6, 2.3, and 4.6 for the minimal radiative efficiency of 0.038. Mrk 142 and IRAS F12397+333 (extinction corrected) clearly deviate from the currently known relation between Hβ lag and continuum luminosity. The three Eddington ratios are beyond the values expected in thin accretion disks and two of them are the largest measured so far among objects with RM-based BH masses. We briefly discuss implications for slim disks, BH growth, and cosmology.

  8. Black holes in the milky way galaxy.

    PubMed

    Filippenko, A V

    1999-08-31

    Extremely strong observational evidence has recently been found for the presence of black holes orbiting a few relatively normal stars in our Milky Way Galaxy and also at the centers of some galaxies. The former generally have masses of 4-16 times the mass of the sun, whereas the latter are "supermassive black holes" with millions to billions of solar masses. The evidence for a supermassive black hole in the center of our galaxy is especially strong.

  9. The role of stellar relaxation in the formation and evolution of the first massive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yajima, Hidenobu; Khochfar, Sadegh

    2016-04-01

    We present calculations on the formation of massive black holes of 105 M⊙ at z > 6, which can be the seeds of supermassive black holes at z ≳ 6. Under the assumption of compact star cluster formation in merging galaxies, star clusters in haloes of ˜ 108-109 M⊙ can undergo rapid core collapse, leading to the formation of very massive stars (VMSs) of ˜ 1000 M⊙ that collapse directly into black holes with similar masses. Star clusters in haloes of ≳ 109 M⊙ experience Type II supernovae before the formation of VMSs, due to long core-collapse time-scales. We also model the subsequent growth of black holes via accretion of residual stars in clusters. Two-body relaxation refills the loss cones of stellar orbits efficiently at larger radii and resonant relaxation at small radii is the main driver for accretion of stars on to black holes. As a result, more than 90 percent of stars in the initial cluster are swallowed by the central black holes before z = 6. Using dark matter merger trees, we derive black hole mass functions at z = 6-20. The mass function ranges from 103-105 M⊙ at z ≲ 15. Major merging of galaxies of ≳ 4 × 108 M⊙ at z ˜ 20 leads successfully to the formation of ≳ 105 M⊙ black holes by z ≳ 10, which could be the potential seeds of supermassive black holes seen today.

  10. Accretion onto the first stellar mass black holes

    SciTech Connect

    Alvarez, Marcelo A.; Wise, John H.; Abel, Tom

    2009-08-05

    The first stars, forming at redshifts z > 15 in minihalos with M {approx} 10{sup 5-6} M{sub {circle_dot}} may leave behind remnant black holes, which could conceivably have been the 'seeds' for the supermassive black holes observed at z {approx}< 7. We study remnant black hole growth through accretion, including for the first time the radiation emitted due to accretion, with adaptive mesh refinement cosmological radiation-hydrodynamical simulations. The effects of photo-ionization and heating dramatically affect the large-scale inflow, resulting in negligible mass growth. We compare cases with accretion luminosity included and neglected to show that accretion radiation drastically changes the environment within 100 pc of the black hole, increasing gas temperatures by an order of magnitude. Gas densities are reduced and further star formation in the same minihalo is prevented for the two hundred million years we followed. Without radiative feedback included most seed black holes do not gain mass as efficiently as has been hoped for in previous theories, implying that black hole remnants of Pop III stars in minihalos are not likely to be miniquasars. Most importantly, however, our calculations demonstrate that if these black holes are indeed accreting close to the Bondi-Hoyle rate with ten percent radiative efficiency they have a dramatic local effect in regulating star formation in the first galaxies. This suggests a novel mechanism for massive black hole formation - stellar-mass black holes may have suppressed fragmentation and star formation after falling into halos with virial temperatures {approx} 10{sup 4} K, facilitating intermediate mass black hole formation at their centers.

  11. ACCRETION ONTO THE FIRST STELLAR-MASS BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Alvarez, Marcelo A.; Abel, Tom Wise, John H

    2009-08-20

    The first stars, forming at redshifts z > 15 in minihalos with M {approx} 10{sup 5-6} M {sub sun} may leave behind remnant black holes, which could conceivably have been the 'seeds' for the supermassive black holes observed at z {approx}< 7. We study remnant black hole growth through accretion, including for the first time the radiation emitted due to accretion, with adaptive mesh refinement cosmological radiation-hydrodynamical simulations. The effects of photoionization and heating dramatically affect the large-scale inflow, resulting in negligible mass growth. We compare cases with accretion luminosity included and neglected to show that accretion radiation drastically changes the environment within 100 pc of the black hole, increasing gas temperatures by an order of magnitude. Gas densities are reduced and further star formation in the same minihalo is prevented for the 200 million years we followed. Without radiative feedback included most seed black holes do not gain mass as efficiently as has been hoped for in previous theories, implying that black hole remnants of population III stars in minihalos are not likely to be miniquasars. Most importantly, however, our calculations demonstrate that if these black holes are indeed accreting close to the Bondi-Hoyle rate with 10% radiative efficiency they have a dramatic local effect in regulating star formation in the first galaxies. This suggests a novel mechanism for massive black hole formation-stellar-mass black holes may have suppressed fragmentation and star formation after falling into halos with virial temperatures {approx}10{sup 4} K, facilitating massive black hole formation at their centers.

  12. A dust-parallax distance of 19 megaparsecs to the supermassive black hole in NGC 4151.

    PubMed

    Hönig, Sebastian F; Watson, Darach; Kishimoto, Makoto; Hjorth, Jens

    2014-11-27

    The active galaxy NGC 4151 has a crucial role as one of only two active galactic nuclei for which black hole mass measurements based on emission line reverberation mapping can be calibrated against other dynamical techniques. Unfortunately, effective calibration requires accurate knowledge of the distance to NGC 4151, which is not at present available. Recently reported distances range from 4 to 29 megaparsecs. Strong peculiar motions make a redshift-based distance very uncertain, and the geometry of the galaxy and its nucleus prohibit accurate measurements using other techniques. Here we report a dust-parallax distance to NGC 4151 of 19.0(+2.4)(-2.6) megaparsecs. The measurement is based on an adaptation of a geometric method that uses the emission line regions of active galaxies. Because these regions are too small to be imaged with present technology, we use instead the ratio of the physical and angular sizes of the more extended hot-dust emission as determined from time delays and infrared interferometry. This distance leads to an approximately 1.4-fold increase in the dynamical black hole mass, implying a corresponding correction to emission line reverberation masses of black holes if they are calibrated against the two objects with additional dynamical masses. PMID:25428499

  13. A dust-parallax distance of 19 megaparsecs to the supermassive black hole in NGC 4151.

    PubMed

    Hönig, Sebastian F; Watson, Darach; Kishimoto, Makoto; Hjorth, Jens

    2014-11-27

    The active galaxy NGC 4151 has a crucial role as one of only two active galactic nuclei for which black hole mass measurements based on emission line reverberation mapping can be calibrated against other dynamical techniques. Unfortunately, effective calibration requires accurate knowledge of the distance to NGC 4151, which is not at present available. Recently reported distances range from 4 to 29 megaparsecs. Strong peculiar motions make a redshift-based distance very uncertain, and the geometry of the galaxy and its nucleus prohibit accurate measurements using other techniques. Here we report a dust-parallax distance to NGC 4151 of 19.0(+2.4)(-2.6) megaparsecs. The measurement is based on an adaptation of a geometric method that uses the emission line regions of active galaxies. Because these regions are too small to be imaged with present technology, we use instead the ratio of the physical and angular sizes of the more extended hot-dust emission as determined from time delays and infrared interferometry. This distance leads to an approximately 1.4-fold increase in the dynamical black hole mass, implying a corresponding correction to emission line reverberation masses of black holes if they are calibrated against the two objects with additional dynamical masses.

  14. Probing the origin of the iron Kα line around stellar and supermassive black holes using X-ray polarimetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marin, F.; Tamborra, F.

    2014-10-01

    Asymmetric, broad iron lines are a common feature in the X-ray spectra of both X-ray binaries (XRBs) and type-1 Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN). It was suggested that the distortion of the Fe Kα emission results from Doppler and relativistic effects affecting the radiative transfer close to the strong gravitational well of the central compact object: a stellar mass black hole (BH) or neutron star (NS) in the case of XRBs, or a super massive black hole (SMBH) in the case of AGN. However, alternative approaches based on reprocessing and transmission of radiation through surrounding media also attempt to explain the line broadening. So far, spectroscopic and timing analyzes have not yet convinced the whole community to discriminate between the two scenarios. Here we study to which extent X-ray polarimetric measurements of black hole X-ray binaries (BHXRBs) and type-1 AGN could help to identify the possible origin of the line distortion. To do so, we report on recent simulations obtained for the two BH flavors and show that the proposed scenarios are found to behave differently in polarization degree and polarization angle. A relativistic origin for the distortion is found to be more probable in the context of BHXRBs, supporting the idea that the same mechanism should lead the way also for AGN. We show that the discriminating polarization signal could have been detectable by several X-ray polarimetry missions proposed in the past.

  15. Supermassive black holes with high accretion rates in active galactic nuclei. I. First results from a new reverberation mapping campaign

    SciTech Connect

    Du, Pu; Hu, Chen; Qiu, Jie; Li, Yan-Rong; Wang, Jian-Min; Lu, Kai-Xing; Wang, Fang; Bai, Jin-Ming; Kaspi, Shai; Netzer, Hagai; Collaboration: SEAMBH collaboration

    2014-02-10

    We report first results from a large project to measure black hole (BH) mass in high accretion rate active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Such objects may be different from other AGNs in being powered by slim accretion disks and showing saturated accretion luminosities, but both are not yet fully understood. The results are part of a large reverberation mapping (RM) campaign using the 2.4 m Shangri-La telescope at the Yunnan Observatory in China. The goals are to investigate the gas distribution near the BH and the properties of the central accretion disks, to measure BH mass and Eddington ratios, and to test the feasibility of using such objects as a new type of cosmological candles. The paper presents results for three objects, Mrk 335, Mrk 142, and IRAS F12397+3333, with Hβ time lags relative to the 5100 Å continuum of 10.6{sub −2.9}{sup +1.7}, 6.4{sub −2.2}{sup +0.8} and 11.4{sub −1.9}{sup +2.9} days, respectively. The corresponding BH masses are (8.3{sub −3.2}{sup +2.6})×10{sup 6} M{sub ⊙}, (3.4{sub −1.2}{sup +0.5})×10{sup 6} M{sub ⊙}, and (7.5{sub −4.1}{sup +4.3})×10{sup 6} M{sub ⊙}, and the lower limits on the Eddington ratios are 0.6, 2.3, and 4.6 for the minimal radiative efficiency of 0.038. Mrk 142 and IRAS F12397+333 (extinction corrected) clearly deviate from the currently known relation between Hβ lag and continuum luminosity. The three Eddington ratios are beyond the values expected in thin accretion disks and two of them are the largest measured so far among objects with RM-based BH masses. We briefly discuss implications for slim disks, BH growth, and cosmology.

  16. EVIDENCE FOR THREE ACCRETING BLACK HOLES IN A GALAXY AT z {approx} 1.35: A SNAPSHOT OF RECENTLY FORMED BLACK HOLE SEEDS?

    SciTech Connect

    Schawinski, Kevin; Urry, Meg; Treister, Ezequiel; Simmons, Brooke; Natarajan, Priyamvada; Glikman, Eilat

    2011-12-20

    One of the key open questions in cosmology today pertains to understanding when, where, and how supermassive black holes form. While it is clear that mergers likely play a significant role in the growth cycles of black holes, the issue of how supermassive black holes form, and how galaxies grow around them, still needs to be addressed. Here, we present Hubble Space Telescope Wide Field Camera 3/IR grism observations of a clumpy galaxy at z = 1.35, with evidence for 10{sup 6}-10{sup 7} M{sub Sun} rapidly growing black holes in separate sub-components of the host galaxy. These black holes could have been brought into close proximity as a consequence of a rare multiple galaxy merger or they could have formed in situ. Such holes would eventually merge into a central black hole as the stellar clumps/components presumably coalesce to form a galaxy bulge. If we are witnessing the in situ formation of multiple black holes, their properties can inform seed formation models and raise the possibility that massive black holes can continue to emerge in star-forming galaxies as late as z = 1.35 (4.8 Gyr after the big bang).

  17. Acceleration of black hole universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, T. X.; Frederick, C.

    2014-01-01

    Recently, Zhang slightly modified the standard big bang theory and developed a new cosmological model called black hole universe, which is consistent with Mach's principle, governed by Einstein's general theory of relativity, and able to explain all observations of the universe. Previous studies accounted for the origin, structure, evolution, expansion, and cosmic microwave background radiation of the black hole universe, which grew from a star-like black hole with several solar masses through a supermassive black hole with billions of solar masses to the present state with hundred billion-trillions of solar masses by accreting ambient matter and merging with other black holes. This paper investigates acceleration of the black hole universe and provides an alternative explanation for the redshift and luminosity distance measurements of type Ia supernovae. The results indicate that the black hole universe accelerates its expansion when it accretes the ambient matter in an increasing rate. In other words, i.e., when the second-order derivative of the mass of the black hole universe with respect to the time is positive . For a constant deceleration parameter , we can perfectly explain the type Ia supernova measurements with the reduced chi-square to be very close to unity, χ red˜1.0012. The expansion and acceleration of black hole universe are driven by external energy.

  18. Black holes and the multiverse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garriga, Jaume; Vilenkin, Alexander; Zhang, Jun

    2016-02-01

    Vacuum bubbles may nucleate and expand during the inflationary epoch in the early universe. After inflation ends, the bubbles quickly dissipate their kinetic energy; they come to rest with respect to the Hubble flow and eventually form black holes. The fate of the bubble itself depends on the resulting black hole mass. If the mass is smaller than a certain critical value, the bubble collapses to a singularity. Otherwise, the bubble interior inflates, forming a baby universe, which is connected to the exterior FRW region by a wormhole. A similar black hole formation mechanism operates for spherical domain walls nucleating during inflation. As an illustrative example, we studied the black hole mass spectrum in the domain wall scenario, assuming that domain walls interact with matter only gravitationally. Our results indicate that, depending on the model parameters, black holes produced in this scenario can have significant astrophysical effects and can even serve as dark matter or as seeds for supermassive black holes. The mechanism of black hole formation described in this paper is very generic and has important implications for the global structure of the universe. Baby universes inside super-critical black holes inflate eternally and nucleate bubbles of all vacua allowed by the underlying particle physics. The resulting multiverse has a very non-trivial spacetime structure, with a multitude of eternally inflating regions connected by wormholes. If a black hole population with the predicted mass spectrum is discovered, it could be regarded as evidence for inflation and for the existence of a multiverse.

  19. The Growth of Central Black Hole and the Ionization Instability of Quasar Disk

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lu, Ye; Cheng, K. S.; Zhang, S. N.

    2003-01-01

    A possible accretion model associated with the ionization instability of quasar disks is proposed to address the growth of the central black hole harbored in the host galaxy. The evolution of quasars in cosmic time is assumed to change from a highly active state to a quiescent state triggered by the S-shaped ionization instability of the quasar accretion disk. For a given external mass transfer rate supplied by the quasar host galaxy, ionization instability can modify accretion rate in the disk and separates the accretion flows of the disk into three different phases, like a S-shape. We suggest that the bright quasars observed today are those quasars with disks in the upper branch of S-shaped instability, and the faint or 'dormant' quasars are simply the system in the lower branch. The middle branch is the transition state which is unstable. We assume the quasar disk evolves according to the advection-dominated inflow-outflow solutions (ADIOS) configuration in the stable lower branch of S-shaped instability, and Eddington accretion rate is used to constrain the accretion rate in each phase. The mass ratio between black hole and its host galactic bulge is a nature consequence of ADIOS. Our model also demonstrates that a seed black hole (BH) similar to those found in spiral galaxies today is needed to produce a BH with a final mass 2 x 10(exp 8) solar mases.

  20. Dwarf Galaxies with Active Massive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reines, Amy E.; Greene, J. E.; Geha, M. C.

    2014-01-01

    Supermassive black holes (BHs) live at the heart of essentially all massive galaxies with bulges, power AGN, and are thought to be important agents in the evolution of their hosts. However, the birth and growth of the first supermassive BH "seeds" is far from understood. While direct observations of these distant BHs in the infant Universe are unobtainable with current capabilities, massive BHs in present-day dwarf galaxies can place valuable constraints on the masses, formation path, and hosts of supermassive BH seeds. Using optical spectroscopy from the SDSS, we have systematically assembled the largest sample of dwarf galaxies hosting active massive BHs to date. These dwarf galaxies have stellar masses comparable to the Magellanic Clouds and contain some of the least-massive supermassive BHs known.

  1. Quasistationary solutions of scalar fields around accreting black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanchis-Gual, Nicolas; Degollado, Juan Carlos; Izquierdo, Paula; Font, José A.; Montero, Pedro J.

    2016-08-01

    Massive scalar fields can form long-lived configurations around black holes. These configurations, dubbed quasibound states, have been studied both in the linear and nonlinear regimes. In this paper, we show that quasibound states can form in a dynamical scenario in which the mass of the black hole grows significantly due to the capture of infalling matter. We solve the Klein-Gordon equation numerically in spherical symmetry, mimicking the evolution of the spacetime through a sequence of analytic Schwarzschild black hole solutions of increasing mass. It is found that the frequency of oscillation of the quasibound states decreases as the mass of the black hole increases. In addition, accretion leads to an increase of the exponential decay of the scalar field energy. We compare the black hole mass growth rates used in our study with estimates from observational surveys and extrapolate our results to values of the scalar field masses consistent with models that propose scalar fields as dark matter in the universe. We show that, even for unrealistically large mass accretion rates, quasibound states around accreting black holes can survive for cosmological time scales. Our results provide further support to the intriguing possibility of the existence of dark matter halos based on (ultralight) scalar fields surrounding supermassive black holes in galactic centers.

  2. STELLAR-MASS BLACK HOLES IN YOUNG GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Wheeler, J. Craig; Johnson, Vincent E-mail: flint88@mail.utexas.edu

    2011-09-10

    We explore the potential cumulative energy production of stellar-mass black holes in early galaxies. Stellar-mass black holes may accrete substantially from the higher density interstellar media (ISMs) of primordial galaxies, and their energy release would be distributed more uniformly over the galaxies, perhaps providing a different mode of energy feedback into young galaxies than central supermassive black holes. We construct a model for the production and growth of stellar-mass black holes over the first few gigayears of a young galaxy. With the simplifying assumption of a constant density of the ISM, n {approx} 10{sup 4}-10{sup 5} cm{sup -3}, we estimate the number of accreting stellar-mass black holes to be {approx}10{sup 6} and the potential energy production to be as high as 10{sup 61} erg over several billion years. For densities less than 10{sup 5} cm{sup -3}, stellar-mass black holes are unlikely to reach their Eddington limit luminosities. The framework we present could be incorporated in numerical simulations to compute the feedback from stellar-mass black holes with inhomogeneous, evolving ISMs.

  3. Black hole formation in the early Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Latif, M. A.; Schleicher, D. R. G.; Schmidt, W.; Niemeyer, J.

    2013-08-01

    Supermassive black holes with up to a 109 M⊙ dwell in the centres of present-day galaxies, and their presence has been confirmed at z ≥ 6. Their formation at such early epochs is still an enigma. Different pathways have been suggested to assemble supermassive black holes in the first billion years after the big bang. Direct collapse has emerged as a highly plausible scenario to form black holes as it provides seed masses of 105-106 M⊙. Gravitational collapse in atomic cooling haloes with virial temperatures Tvir ≥ 104 K may lead to the formation of massive seed black holes in the presence of an intense background ultraviolet flux. Turbulence plays a central role in regulating accretion and transporting angular momentum. We present here the highest resolution cosmological large eddy simulations to date which track the evolution of high-density regions on scales of 0.25 au beyond the formation of the first peak, and study the impact of subgrid-scale turbulence. The peak density reached in these simulations is 1.2 × 10-8 g cm-3. Our findings show that while fragmentation occasionally occurs, it does not prevent the growth of a central massive object resulting from turbulent accretion and occasional mergers. The central object reaches ˜1000 M⊙ within four free-fall times, and we expect further growth up to 106 M⊙ through accretion in about 1 Myr. The direct collapse model thus provides a viable pathway of forming high-mass black holes at early cosmic times.

  4. Supermassive black holes with high accretion rates in active galactic nuclei. II. The most luminous standard candles in the universe

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Jian-Min; Du, Pu; Hu, Chen; Qiu, Jie; Li, Yan-Rong; Netzer, Hagai; Kaspi, Shai; Bai, Jin-Ming; Wang, Fang; Lu, Kai-Xing; Collaboration: SEAMBH collaboration

    2014-10-01

    This is the second in a series of papers reporting on a large reverberation mapping (RM) campaign to measure black hole (BH) mass in high accretion rate active galactic nuclei (AGNs). The goal is to identify super-Eddington accreting massive black holes (SEAMBHs) and to use their unique properties to construct a new method for measuring cosmological distances. Based on theoretical models, the saturated bolometric luminosity of such sources is proportional to the BH mass, which can be used to obtain their distance. Here we report on five new RM measurements and show that in four of the cases, we can measure the BH mass and three of these sources are SEAMBHs. Together with the three sources from our earlier work, we now have six new sources of this type. We use a novel method based on a minimal radiation efficiency to identify nine additional SEAMBHs from earlier RM-based mass measurements. We use a Bayesian analysis to determine the parameters of the new distance expression and the method uncertainties from the observed properties of the objects in the sample. The ratio of the newly measured distances to the standard cosmological ones has a mean scatter of 0.14 dex, indicating that SEAMBHs can be use as cosmological distance probes. With their high luminosity, long period of activity, and large numbers at high redshifts, SEAMBHs have a potential to extend the cosmic distance ladder beyond the range now explored by Type Ia supernovae.

  5. GALAXY ZOO: THE FUNDAMENTALLY DIFFERENT CO-EVOLUTION OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES AND THEIR EARLY- AND LATE-TYPE HOST GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Schawinski, Kevin; Urry, C. Megan; Virani, Shanil; Coppi, Paolo; Cardamone, Carolin N.; Bamford, Steven P.; Treister, Ezequiel; Lintott, Chris J.; Kaviraj, Sugata; Sarzi, Marc; Keel, William C.; Masters, Karen L.; Nichol, Robert C.; Thomas, Daniel; Ross, Nicholas P.; Andreescu, Dan; Murray, Phil; Raddick, M. Jordan; Szalay, Alex S.; Slosar, Anze

    2010-03-01

    We use data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and visual classifications of morphology from the Galaxy Zoo project to study black hole growth in the nearby universe (z < 0.05) and to break down the active galactic nucleus (AGN) host galaxy population by color, stellar mass, and morphology. We find that the black hole growth at luminosities L[O{sub III}]>10{sup 40} erg s{sup -1} in early- and late-type galaxies is fundamentally different. AGN host galaxies as a population have a broad range of stellar masses (10{sup 10}-10{sup 11} M{sub sun}), reside in the green valley of the color-mass diagram and their central black holes have median masses around 10{sup 6.5} M{sub sun}. However, by comparing early- and late-type AGN host galaxies to their non-active counterparts, we find several key differences: in early-type galaxies, it is preferentially the galaxies with the least massive black holes that are growing, while in late-type galaxies, it is preferentially the most massive black holes that are growing. The duty cycle of AGNs in early-type galaxies is strongly peaked in the green valley below the low-mass end (10{sup 10} M{sub sun}) of the red sequence at stellar masses where there is a steady supply of blue cloud progenitors. The duty cycle of AGNs in late-type galaxies on the other hand peaks in massive (10{sup 11} M{sub sun}) green and red late-types which generally do not have a corresponding blue cloud population of similar mass. At high-Eddington ratios (L/L{sub Edd}>0.1), the only population with a substantial fraction of AGNs are the low-mass green valley early-type galaxies. Finally, the Milky Way likely resides in the 'sweet spot' on the color-mass diagram where the AGN duty cycle of late-type galaxies is highest. We discuss the implications of these results for our understanding of the role of AGNs in the evolution of galaxies.

  6. "Survivor" Black Holes May Be Mid-Sized

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-04-01

    New evidence from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and ESA's XMM-Newton strengthens the case that two mid-sized black holes exist close to the center of a nearby starburst galaxy. These "survivor" black holes avoided falling into the center of the galaxy and could be examples of the seeds required for the growth of supermassive black holes in galaxies, including the one in the Milky Way. For several decades, scientists have had strong evidence for two distinct classes of black hole: the stellar-mass variety with masses about ten times that of the Sun, and the supermassive ones, located at the center of galaxies, that range from hundreds of thousands to billions of solar masses. But a mystery has remained: what about black holes that are in between? Evidence for these objects has remained controversial, and until now there were no strong claims of more than one such black hole in a single galaxy. Recently, a team of researchers has found signatures in X-ray data of two mid-sized black holes in the starburst galaxy M82 located 12 million light years from Earth. "This is the first time that good evidence for two mid-sized black holes has been found in one galaxy," said Hua Feng of the Tsinghua University in China, who led two papers describing the results. "Their location near the center of the galaxy might provide clues about the origin of the Universe's largest black holes - supermassive black holes found in the centers of most galaxies." One possible mechanism for the formation of supermassive black holes involves a chain reaction of collisions of stars in compact star clusters that results in the buildup of extremely massive stars, which then collapse to form intermediate-mass black holes. The star clusters then sink to the center of the galaxy, where the intermediate-mass black holes merge to form a supermassive black hole. In this picture, clusters that were not massive enough or close enough to the center of the galaxy to fall in would survive, as would any

  7. THE DYNAMICS, APPEARANCE, AND DEMOGRAPHICS OF RELATIVISTIC JETS TRIGGERED BY TIDAL DISRUPTION OF STARS IN QUIESCENT SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    De Colle, Fabio; Guillochon, James; Naiman, Jill; Ramirez-Ruiz, Enrico E-mail: jfg@ucolick.org E-mail: enrico@ucolick.org

    2012-12-01

    We examine the consequences of a model in which relativistic jets can be triggered in quiescent massive black holes when a geometrically thick and hot accretion disk forms as a result of the tidal disruption of a star. To estimate the power, thrust, and lifetime of the jet, we use the mass accretion history onto the black hole as calculated by detailed hydrodynamic simulations of the tidal disruption of stars. We go on to determine the states of the interstellar medium in various types of quiescent galactic nuclei, and describe how this external matter can affect jets propagating through it. We use this information, together with a two-dimensional hydrodynamic model of the structure of the relativistic flow, to study the dynamics of the jet, the propagation of which is regulated by the density stratification of the environment and by its injection history. The breaking of symmetry involved in transitioning from one to two dimensions is crucial and leads to qualitatively new phenomena. At early times, as the jet power increases, the high pressure of the cocoon collimates the jet, increasing its shock velocity as compared to that of spherical models. We show that small velocity gradients, induced near or at the source, steepen into internal shocks and provide a source of free energy for particle acceleration and radiation along the jet's channel. The jets terminate at a working surface where they interact strongly with the surrounding medium through a combination of shock waves and instabilities; a continuous flow of relativistic fluid emanating from the nucleus supplies this region with mass, momentum, and energy. Information about the t {sup -5/3} decrease in power supply propagates within the jet at the internal sound speed. As a result, the internal energy at the jet head continues to accumulate until long after the peak feeding rate is reached. An appreciable time delay is thus expected between peaks in the short-wavelength radiation emanating near the jet

  8. Recurrent Outbursts and Jet Ejections Expected in Swift J1644+57: Limit-Cycle Activities in a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawashima, Tomohisa; Ohsuga, Ken; Usui, Ryuichi; Kawai, Nobuyuki; Negoro, Hitoshi; Matsumoto, Ryoji

    2013-08-01

    A tidal disruption event by a supermassive black hole in Swift J1644+57 can trigger limit-cycle oscillations between a supercritically accreting X-ray bright state and a subcritically accreting X-ray dim state. The time evolution of debris gas around a black hole with mass M = 106 M⊙ is studied by performing axisymmetric, two-dimensional radiation hydrodynamic simulations. We assume the α-prescription of viscosity, in which the viscous stress is proportional to the total pressure. The mass supply rate from the outer boundary was assumed to be Msupply = 100LEddfraslc2, where LEdd is the Eddington luminosity, and c is the light speed. Since the mass accretion rate decreases inward by outflows driven by radiation pressure, the state transition from a supercritically accreting slim disk state to a subcritically accreting Shakura-Sunyaev disk starts from the inner disk, and propagates outward on a timescale of one day. The sudden drop of the X-ray flux observed in Swift J1644+57 in 2012 August can be explained by this transition. As long as Msupply exceeds the threshold for the existence of a radiation pressure dominant disk, the accumulation of accreting gas in the subcritically accreting region triggers the transition from a gas pressure dominant Shakura-Sunyaev disk to a slim disk. This transition takes place at t ˜ 50frasl(αfrasl0.1) d after the X-ray darkening. We expect that if α > 0.01, X-ray emission with luminosity gtrsim 1044 erg s-1 and jet ejection will revive in Swift J1644+57 in 2013-2014.

  9. Tidal disruption jets of supermassive black holes as hidden sources of cosmic rays: Explaining the IceCube TeV-PeV neutrinos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xiang-Yu; Liu, Ruo-Yu

    2016-04-01

    Cosmic ray interactions that produce high-energy neutrinos also inevitably generate high-energy gamma rays, which finally contribute to the diffuse high-energy gamma-ray background after they escape the sources. It was recently found that the high flux of neutrinos at ˜30 TeV detected by IceCube lead to a cumulative gamma-ray flux exceeding the Fermi isotropic gamma-ray background at 10-100 GeV, implying that the neutrinos are produced by hidden sources of cosmic rays, where GeV-TeV gamma rays are not transparent. Here we suggest that relativistic jets in tidal disruption events (TDEs) of supermassive black holes are such hidden sources. We consider the jet propagation in an extended, optically thick envelope around the black hole, which results from the ejected material during the disruption. While powerful jets can break free from the envelope, less powerful jets would be choked inside the envelope. The jets accelerate cosmic rays through internal shocks or reverse shocks and further produce neutrinos via interaction with the surrounding dense photons. All three TDE jets discovered so far are not detected by Fermi/LAT, suggesting that GeV-TeV gamma rays are absorbed in these jets. The cumulative neutrino flux from TDE jets can account for the neutrino flux observed by IceCube at PeV energies and may also account for the higher flux at ˜30 TeV if less powerful, choked jets are present in the majority of TDEs.

  10. HST STIS Spectroscopy of the Triple Nucleus of M31: Two Nested Disks in Keplerian Rotation around a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bender, Ralf; Kormendy, John; Bower, Gary; Green, Richard; Thomas, Jens; Danks, Anthony C.; Gull, Theodore; Hutchings, J. B.; Joseph, C. L.; Kaiser, M. E.; Lauer, Tod R.; Nelson, Charles H.; Richstone, Douglas; Weistrop, Donna; Woodgate, Bruce

    2005-09-01

    We present Hubble Space Telescope (HST) spectroscopy of the nucleus of M31 obtained with the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS). Spectra that include the Ca II infrared triplet (λ~=8500 Å) see only the red giant stars in the double brightness peaks P1 and P2. In contrast, spectra taken at λ~=3600-5100 Å are sensitive to the tiny blue nucleus embedded in P2, the lower surface brightness nucleus of the galaxy. P2 has a K-type spectrum, but we find that the blue nucleus has an A-type spectrum: it shows strong Balmer absorption lines. Hence, the blue nucleus is blue not because of AGN light but rather because it is dominated by hot stars. We show that the spectrum is well described by A0 giant stars, A0 dwarf stars, or a 200 Myr old, single-burst stellar population. White dwarfs, in contrast, cannot fit the blue nucleus spectrum. Given the small likelihood for stellar collisions, recent star formation appears to be the most plausible origin of the blue nucleus. In stellar population, size, and velocity dispersion, the blue nucleus is so different from P1 and P2 that we call it P3 and refer to the nucleus of M31 as triple. Because P2 and P3 have very different spectra, we can make a clean decomposition of the red and blue stars and hence measure the light distribution and kinematics of each uncontaminated by the other. The line-of-sight velocity distributions of the red stars near P2 strengthen the support for Tremaine's eccentric disk model. Their wings indicate the presence of stars with velocities of up to 1000 km s-1 on the anti-P1 side of P2. The kinematics of P3 are consistent with a circular stellar disk in Keplerian rotation around a supermassive black hole. If the P3 disk is perfectly thin, then the inclination angle i~=55deg is identical within the errors to the inclination of the eccentric disk models for P1+P2 by Peiris & Tremaine and by Salow & Statler. Both disks rotate in the same sense and are almost coplanar. The observed velocity

  11. The Black Hole Universe Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Tianxi

    2014-06-01

    The black hole universe model is a multiverse model of cosmology recently developed by the speaker. According to this new model, our universe is a fully grown extremely supermassive black hole, which originated from a hot star-like black hole with several solar masses, and gradually grew up from a supermassive black hole with million to billion solar masses to the present state with trillion-trillion solar masses by accreting ambient matter or merging with other black holes. The entire space is structured with infinite layers or universes hierarchically. The innermost three layers include the universe that we live, the inside star-like and supermassive black holes called child universes, and the outside space called mother universe. The outermost layer is infinite in mass, radius, and entropy without an edge and limits to zero for both the matter density and absolute temperature. All layers are governed by the same physics and tend to expand physically in one direction (outward or the direction of increasing entropy). The expansion of a black hole universe decreases its density and temperature but does not alter the laws of physics. The black hole universe evolves iteratively and endlessly without a beginning. When one universe expands out, a new similar one is formed from inside star-like and supermassive black holes. In each of iterations, elements are resynthesized, matter is reconfigurated, and the universe is renewed rather than a simple repeat. The black hole universe is consistent with the Mach principle, observations, and Einsteinian general relativity. It has only one postulate but is able to explain all phenomena occurred in the universe with well-developed physics. The black hole universe does not need dark energy for acceleration and an inflation epoch for flatness, and thus has a devastating impact on the big bang model. In this talk, I will present how this new cosmological model explains the various aspects of the universe, including the origin

  12. Is there life inside black holes?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dokuchaev, V. I.

    2011-12-01

    Bound inside rotating or charged black holes, there are stable periodic planetary orbits, which neither come out nor terminate at the central singularity. Stable periodic orbits inside black holes exist even for photons. These bound orbits may be defined as orbits of the third kind, following the Chandrasekhar classification of particle orbits in the black hole gravitational field. The existence domain for the third-kind orbits is rather spacious, and thus there is place for life inside supermassive black holes in the galactic nuclei. Interiors of the supermassive black holes may be inhabited by civilizations, being invisible from the outside. In principle, one can get information from the interiors of black holes by observing their white hole counterparts.

  13. Two ten-billion-solar-mass black holes at the centres of giant elliptical galaxies.

    PubMed

    McConnell, Nicholas J; Ma, Chung-Pei; Gebhardt, Karl; Wright, Shelley A; Murphy, Jeremy D; Lauer, Tod R; Graham, James R; Richstone, Douglas O

    2011-12-01

    Observational work conducted over the past few decades indicates that all massive galaxies have supermassive black holes at their centres. Although the luminosities and brightness fluctuations of quasars in the early Universe suggest that some were powered by black holes with masses greater than 10 billion solar masses, the remnants of these objects have not been found in the nearby Universe. The giant elliptical galaxy Messier 87 hosts the hitherto most massive known black hole, which has a mass of 6.3 billion solar masses. Here we report that NGC 3842, the brightest galaxy in a cluster at a distance from Earth of 98 megaparsecs, has a central black hole with a mass of 9.7 billion solar masses, and that a black hole of comparable or greater mass is present in NGC 4889, the brightest galaxy in the Coma cluster (at a distance of 103 megaparsecs). These two black holes are significantly more massive than predicted by linearly extrapolating the widely used correlations between black-hole mass and the stellar velocity dispersion or bulge luminosity of the host galaxy. Although these correlations remain useful for predicting black-hole masses in less massive elliptical galaxies, our measurements suggest that different evolutionary processes influence the growth of the largest galaxies and their black holes.

  14. Upper Limits on the Masses of 105 Supermassive Black Holes from Hubble Space Telescope/Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph Archival Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beifiori, A.; Sarzi, M.; Corsini, E. M.; Dalla Bontà, E.; Pizzella, A.; Coccato, L.; Bertola, F.

    2009-02-01

    Based on the modeling of the central emission-line width measured over subarcsecond apertures with the Hubble Space Telescope, we present stringent upper bounds on the mass of the central supermassive black hole, M •, for a sample of 105 nearby galaxies (D < 100 Mpc) spanning a wide range of Hubble types (E-Sc) and values of the central stellar velocity dispersion, σc (58-419 km s-1). For the vast majority of the objects, the derived M • upper limits run parallel and above the well-known M •-σc relation independently of the galaxy distance, suggesting that our nebular line-width measurements trace rather well the nuclear gravitational potential. For values of σc between 90 and 220 km s-1, 68% of our upper limits falls immediately above the M •-σc relation without exceeding the expected M • values by more than a factor 4.1. No systematic trends or offsets are observed in this σc range as a function of the galaxy Hubble type or with respect to the presence of a bar. For 6 of our 12 M • upper limits with σc <90 km s-1, our line-width measurements are more sensitive to the stellar contribution to the gravitational potential, either due to the presence of a nuclear stellar cluster or because of a greater distance compared to the other galaxies at the low-σc end of the M •-σc relation. Conversely, our M • upper bounds appear to lie closer to the expected M • in the most massive elliptical galaxies with values of σc above 220 km s-1. Such a flattening of the M •-σc relation at its high-σc end would appear consistent with a coevolution of supermassive black holes and galaxies driven by dry mergers, although better and more consistent measurements for σc and K-band luminosity are needed for these kinds of objects before systematic effects can be ruled out. Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope obtained at STScI, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Incorporated, under NASA

  15. X-RAY NUCLEAR ACTIVITY IN S{sup 4}G BARRED GALAXIES: NO LINK BETWEEN BAR STRENGTH AND CO-OCCURRENT SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE FUELING

    SciTech Connect

    Cisternas, Mauricio; Knapen, Johan H.; González-Martín, Omaira; Erroz-Ferrer, Santiago; Gadotti, Dimitri A.; Kim, Taehyun; Díaz-García, Simón; Laurikainen, Eija; Salo, Heikki; Comerón, Sébastien; Laine, Jarkko; Ho, Luis C.; Elmegreen, Bruce G.; Zaritsky, Dennis; Hinz, Joannah L.; Sheth, Kartik; Athanassoula, E.; Bosma, Albert; Gil de Paz, Armando; Holwerda, Benne W.; and others

    2013-10-10

    Stellar bars can lead to gas inflow toward the center of a galaxy and stimulate nuclear star formation. However, there is no compelling evidence on whether they also feed a central supermassive black hole: by measuring the fractions of barred active and inactive galaxies, previous studies have yielded conflicting results. In this paper, we aim to understand the lack of observational evidence for bar-driven active galactic nucleus (AGN) activity by studying a sample of 41 nearby (d < 35 Mpc) barred galaxies from the Spitzer Survey for Stellar Structure in Galaxies. We use Chandra observations to measure nuclear 2-10 keV X-ray luminosities and estimate Eddington ratios, together with Spitzer 3.6 μm imaging to quantify the strength of the stellar bar in two independent ways: (1) from its structure, as traced by its ellipticity and boxiness, and (2) from its gravitational torque Q{sub b} , taken as the maximum ratio of the tangential force to the mean background radial force. In this way, rather than discretizing the presence of both stellar bars and nuclear activity, we are able to account for the continuum of bar strengths and degrees of AGN activity. We find nuclear X-ray sources in 31 out of 41 galaxies with median X-ray luminosity and Eddington ratio of L{sub X} = 4.3 × 10{sup 38} erg s{sup –1} and L{sub bol}/L{sub Edd} = 6.9 × 10{sup –6}, respectively, consistent with low-luminosity AGN activity. Including upper limits for those galaxies without nuclear detections, we find no significant correlation between any of the bar strength indicators and the degree of nuclear activity, irrespective of galaxy luminosity, stellar mass, Hubble type, or bulge size. Strong bars do not favor brighter or more efficient nuclear activity, implying that at least for the low-luminosity regime, supermassive black hole fueling is not closely connected to large-scale features.

  16. An actively accreting massive black hole in the dwarf starburst galaxy Henize2-10

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reines, Amy E.; Sivakoff, Gregory R.; Johnson, Kelsey E.; Brogan, Crystal L.

    2011-02-01

    Supermassive black holes are now thought to lie at the heart of every giant galaxy with a spheroidal component, including our own Milky Way. The birth and growth of the first `seed' black holes in the earlier Universe, however, is observationally unconstrained and we are only beginning to piece together a scenario for their subsequent evolution. Here we report that the nearby dwarf starburst galaxy Henize2-10 (refs 5 and 6) contains a compact radio source at the dynamical centre of the galaxy that is spatially coincident with a hard X-ray source. From these observations, we conclude that Henize2-10 harbours an actively accreting central black hole with a mass of approximately one million solar masses. This nearby dwarf galaxy, simultaneously hosting a massive black hole and an extreme burst of star formation, is analogous in many ways to galaxies in the infant Universe during the early stages of black-hole growth and galaxy mass assembly. Our results confirm that nearby star-forming dwarf galaxies can indeed form massive black holes, and that by implication so can their primordial counterparts. Moreover, the lack of a substantial spheroidal component in Henize2-10 indicates that supermassive black-hole growth may precede the build-up of galaxy spheroids.

  17. An actively accreting massive black hole in the dwarf starburst galaxy Henize 2-10.

    PubMed

    Reines, Amy E; Sivakoff, Gregory R; Johnson, Kelsey E; Brogan, Crystal L

    2011-02-01

    Supermassive black holes are now thought to lie at the heart of every giant galaxy with a spheroidal component, including our own Milky Way. The birth and growth of the first 'seed' black holes in the earlier Universe, however, is observationally unconstrained and we are only beginning to piece together a scenario for their subsequent evolution. Here we report that the nearby dwarf starburst galaxy Henize 2-10 (refs 5 and 6) contains a compact radio source at the dynamical centre of the galaxy that is spatially coincident with a hard X-ray source. From these observations, we conclude that Henize 2-10 harbours an actively accreting central black hole with a mass of approximately one million solar masses. This nearby dwarf galaxy, simultaneously hosting a massive black hole and an extreme burst of star formation, is analogous in many ways to galaxies in the infant Universe during the early stages of black-hole growth and galaxy mass assembly. Our results confirm that nearby star-forming dwarf galaxies can indeed form massive black holes, and that by implication so can their primordial counterparts. Moreover, the lack of a substantial spheroidal component in Henize 2-10 indicates that supermassive black-hole growth may precede the build-up of galaxy spheroids.

  18. A Periodically Varying Luminous Quasar at z = 2 from the Pan-STARRS1 Medium Deep Survey: A Candidate Supermassive Black Hole Binary in the Gravitational Wave-Driven Regime

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Tingting; Gezari, Suvi

    2015-08-01

    Supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) should be an inevitable consequence of the hierarchical growth of massive galaxies through mergers, and the strongest sirens of gravitational waves (GWs) in the cosmos. And yet, their direct detection has remained elusive due to the compact (sub-parsec) orbital separations of gravitationally bound SMBHBs. Here we exploit a theoretically predicted signature of a SMBHB in the time domain: periodic variability caused by a mass accretion rate that is modulated by the binary's orbital motion. We report our first significant periodically varying quasar detection from the systematic search in the Pan-STARRS1 (PS1) Medium Deep Survey, a result recently accepted for publication in The Astrophysical Journal Letters. Our SMBHB candidate, PSO J334.2028+01.4075, is a luminous radio-loud quasar at z = 2.060, with extended baseline photometry from the Catalina Real-Time Transient Survey, as well as archival spectroscopy from the FIRST Bright Quasar Survey. The observed period (542 ± 15 days) and estimated black hole mass (log(MBH/M⊙) = 9.97 ± 0.50), correspond to an orbital separation of 7+8-4 Schwarzschild radii (~ 0.006+0.007-0.003 pc), assuming the rest-frame period of the quasar variability traces the orbital period of the binary. This SMBHB candidate, discovered at the peak redshift for SMBH mergers, is in a physically stable configuration for a circumbinary accretion disk, and within the regime of GW-driven orbital decay. Our search with PS1 is a benchmark study for the exciting capabilities of LSST, which will have orders of magnitude larger survey power, and will potentially pinpoint the locations of thousands of SMBHBs in the variable night sky.

  19. A Black Hole in Our Galactic Center

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruiz, Michael J.

    2008-01-01

    An introductory approach to black holes is presented along with astronomical observational data pertaining to the presence of a supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy. Concepts of conservation of energy and Kepler's third law are employed so students can apply formulas from their physics class to determine the mass of the black hole…

  20. Slender Galaxy with Robust Black Hole

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    This plot of data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope indicates that a flat, spiral galaxy called NGC 3621 has a feeding, supermassive black hole lurking within it -- a surprise considering that astronomers thought this particular class of super-thin galaxies lacked big black holes.

    The data were captured by Spitzer's infrared spectrograph, an instrument that cracks infrared light open to reveal the signatures of elements. In this case, the data, or spectrum, for NGC 3621, shows the signature of highly ionized neon -- a sure sign of an active, supermassive black hole. Only a black hole that is actively consuming gas and stars has enough energy to ionize neon to this state. The other features in this plot are polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and chlorine, produced in the gas surrounding stars.

    The results challenge current theories, which hold that supermassive black holes require the bulbous central bulges that poke out from many spiral galaxies to form and grow. NGC 3621 is the second disk galaxy without any bulge found to harbor a supermassive black hole; the first, found in 2003, is NGC 4395. Astronomers have also used Spitzer to find six other mega black holes in thin spirals with only minimal bulges. Together, the findings indicate that, for a galaxy, being plump in the middle is not a necessary condition for growing a rotund black hole.

  1. Binary Black Hole Mergers, Gravitational Waves, and LISA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Centrella, Joan; Baker, J.; Boggs, W.; Kelly, B.; McWilliams, S.; vanMeter, J.

    2008-01-01

    The final merger of comparable mass binary black holes is expected to be the strongest source of gravitational waves for LISA. Since these mergers take place in regions of extreme gravity, we need to solve Einstein's equations of general relativity on a computer in order to calculate these waveforms. For more than 30 years, scientists have tried to compute black hole mergers using the methods of numerical relativity. The resulting computer codes have been plagued by instabilities, causing them to crash well before the black holes in the binary could complete even a single orbit. Within the past few years, however, this situation has changed dramatically, with a series of remarkable breakthroughs. We will present the results of new simulations of black hole mergers with unequal masses and spins, focusing on the gravitational waves emitted and the accompanying astrophysical "kicks." The magnitude of these kicks has bearing on the production and growth of supermassive black holes during the epoch of structure formation, and on the retention of black holes in stellar clusters.

  2. Black Hole Grabs Starry Snack

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2006-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Poster Version

    This artist's concept shows a supermassive black hole at the center of a remote galaxy digesting the remnants of a star. NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer had a 'ringside' seat for this feeding frenzy, using its ultraviolet eyes to study the process from beginning to end.

    The artist's concept chronicles the star being ripped apart and swallowed by the cosmic beast over time. First, the intact sun-like star (left) ventures too close to the black hole, and its own self-gravity is overwhelmed by the black hole's gravity. The star then stretches apart (middle yellow blob) and eventually breaks into stellar crumbs, some of which swirl into the black hole (cloudy ring at right). This doomed material heats up and radiates light, including ultraviolet light, before disappearing forever into the black hole. The Galaxy Evolution Explorer was able to watch this process unfold by observing changes in ultraviolet light.

    The area around the black hole appears warped because the gravity of the black hole acts like a lens, twisting and distorting light.

  3. EVIDENCE FROM THE VERY LONG BASELINE ARRAY THAT J1502SE/SW ARE DOUBLE HOTSPOTS, NOT A SUPERMASSIVE BINARY BLACK HOLE

    SciTech Connect

    Wrobel, J. M.; Walker, R. C.; Fu, H. E-mail: cwalker@nrao.edu

    2014-09-01

    SDSS J150243.09+111557.3 is a merging system at z = 0.39 that hosts two confirmed active galactic nuclei (AGNs), one unobscured and one dust-obscured, offset by several kiloparsecs. Deane et al. recently reported evidence from the European VLBI Network (EVN) that the dust-obscured AGN exhibits two flat-spectrum radio sources, J1502SE/SW, offset by 26 mas (140 pc), with each source being energized by its own supermassive black hole (BH). This intriguing interpretation of a close binary BH was reached after ruling out a double-hotspot scenario, wherein both hotspots are energized by a single, central BH, a configuration occurring in the well-studied compact symmetric objects. When observed with sufficient sensitivity and resolution, an object with double hotspots should have an edge-brightened structure. We report evidence from the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) for just such a structure in an image of the obscured AGN with higher sensitivity and resolution than the EVN images. We thus conclude that a double-hotspot scenario should be reconsidered as a viable interpretation for J1502SE/SW, and suggest further VLBA tests of that scenario. A double-hotspot scenario could have broad implications for feedback in obscured AGNs. We also report a VLBA detection of high-brightness-temperature emission from the unobscured AGN that is offset several kiloparsecs from J1502SE/SW.

  4. Black holes in the Milky Way Galaxy

    PubMed Central

    Filippenko, Alexei V.

    1999-01-01

    Extremely strong observational evidence has recently been found for the presence of black holes orbiting a few relatively normal stars in our Milky Way Galaxy and also at the centers of some galaxies. The former generally have masses of 4–16 times the mass of the sun, whereas the latter are “supermassive black holes” with millions to billions of solar masses. The evidence for a supermassive black hole in the center of our galaxy is especially strong. PMID:10468548

  5. Selection bias in dynamically-measured super-massive black hole samples: its consequences and the quest for the most fundamental relation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shankar, Francesco; Bernardi, M.; Sheth, R. K.; Weinberg, D. H.; Miralda-Escudé, J.; Ferrarese, L.; Graham, A.; Sesana, A.; Lapi, A.; Marconi, A.; Allevato, V.; Savorgnan, G.; Laesker, R.

    2016-08-01

    We compare the set of local galaxies having dynamically measured black holes with a large, unbiased sample of galaxies extracted from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. We confirm earlier work showing that the majority of black hole hosts have significantly higher velocity dispersions sigma than local galaxies of similar stellar mass. We use Monte-Carlo simulations to illustrate the effect on black hole scaling relations if this bias arises from the requirement that the black hole sphere of influence must be resolved to measure black hole masses with spatially resolved kinematics. We find that this selection effect artificially increases the normalization of the Mbh-sigma relation by a factor of at least ~3; the bias for the Mbh-Mstar relation is even larger. Our Monte Carlo simulations and analysis of the residuals from scaling relations both indicate that sigma is more fundamental than Mstar or effective radius. In particular, the Mbh-Mstar relation is mostly a consequence of the Mbh-sigma and sigma-Mstar relations, and is heavily biased by up to a factor of 50 at small masses. This helps resolve the discrepancy between dynamically-based black hole-galaxy scaling relations versus those of active galaxies. Our simulations also disfavour broad distributions of black hole masses at fixed sigma. Correcting for this bias suggests that the calibration factor used to estimate black hole masses in active galaxies should be reduced to values of fvir~1. Black hole mass densities should also be proportionally smaller, perhaps implying significantly higher radiative efficiencies/black hole spins. Reducing black hole masses also reduces the gravitational wave signal expected from black hole mergers.

  6. Are black holes with hair a normal state of matter?

    SciTech Connect

    Nieuwenhuizen, Th. M.

    2011-03-28

    Recent observations put forward that quasars are black holes with a magnetic dipole moment and no event horizon. To model hairy black holes a quantum field for hydrogen is considered in curved space, coupled to the scalar curvature. An exact, regular solution for the interior metric occurs for supermassive black holes. The equation of state is p = -{rho}c{sup 2}/3.

  7. Schwarzschild black holes can wear scalar wigs.

    PubMed

    Barranco, Juan; Bernal, Argelia; Degollado, Juan Carlos; Diez-Tejedor, Alberto; Megevand, Miguel; Alcubierre, Miguel; Núñez, Darío; Sarbach, Olivier

    2012-08-24

    We study the evolution of a massive scalar field surrounding a Schwarzschild black hole and find configurations that can survive for arbitrarily long times, provided the black hole or the scalar field mass is small enough. In particular, both ultralight scalar field dark matter around supermassive black holes and axionlike scalar fields around primordial black holes can survive for cosmological times. Moreover, these results are quite generic in the sense that fairly arbitrary initial data evolve, at late times, as a combination of those long-lived configurations.

  8. Schwarzschild Black Holes can Wear Scalar Wigs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barranco, Juan; Bernal, Argelia; Degollado, Juan Carlos; Diez-Tejedor, Alberto; Megevand, Miguel; Alcubierre, Miguel; Núñez, Darío; Sarbach, Olivier

    2012-08-01

    We study the evolution of a massive scalar field surrounding a Schwarzschild black hole and find configurations that can survive for arbitrarily long times, provided the black hole or the scalar field mass is small enough. In particular, both ultralight scalar field dark matter around supermassive black holes and axionlike scalar fields around primordial black holes can survive for cosmological times. Moreover, these results are quite generic in the sense that fairly arbitrary initial data evolve, at late times, as a combination of those long-lived configurations.

  9. How Often do Giant Black Holes Become Hyperactive?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-12-01

    A new study from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory tells scientists how often the biggest black holes have been active over the last few billion years. This discovery clarifies how supermassive black holes grow and could have implications for how the giant black hole at the center of the Milky Way will behave in the future. Most galaxies, including our own, are thought to contain supermassive black holes at their centers, with masses ranging from millions to billions of times the mass of the Sun. For reasons not entirely understood, astronomers have found that these black holes exhibit a wide variety of activity levels: from dormant to just lethargic to practically hyper. The most lively supermassive black holes produce what are called "active galactic nuclei," or AGN, by pulling in large quantities of gas. This gas is heated as it falls in and glows brightly in X-ray light. "We've found that only about one percent of galaxies with masses similar to the Milky Way contain supermassive black holes in their most active phase," said Daryl Haggard of the University of Washington in Seattle, WA, and Northwestern University in Evanston, IL, who led the study. "Trying to figure out how many of these black holes are active at any time is important for understanding how black holes grow within galaxies and how this growth is affected by their environment." This study involves a survey called the Chandra Multiwavelength Project, or ChaMP, which covers 30 square degrees on the sky, the largest sky area of any Chandra survey to date. Combining Chandra's X-ray images with optical images from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, about 100,000 galaxies were analyzed. Out of those, about 1,600 were X-ray bright, signaling possible AGN activity. Only galaxies out to 1.6 billion light years from Earth could be meaningfully compared to the Milky Way, although galaxies as far away as 6.3 billion light years were also studied. Primarily isolated or "field" galaxies were included, not galaxies

  10. HST WFC3/IR Observations of Active Galactic Nucleus Host Galaxies at z 2: Supermassive Black Holes Grow in Disk Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schawinski, Kevin; Treister, E.; Urry, C.; Cardamone, C.; Simmons, B.; Yi, S.

    2012-05-01

    We present Hubble Space Telescope WFC3/IR imaging data on X-ray and infra-red selected AGN host galaxies at z 2 and find that a majority of them reside in galaxies whose rest-frame optical light profiles have a substantial disk component, or are even dominated by a disk. At the same time, significant disturbances indicative of ongoing major mergers are in the minority. This indicates that secular processes, and not major mergers, may be important in triggering a substantial portion of cosmic black hole growth. KS acknowledges support by NASA through an Einstein Postdoctoral Fellowship (PF9-00069), issued by the Chandra X-ray Observatory Center, which is operated by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory for and on behalf of NASA under contract NAS8-03060.

  11. Theory of Black Hole Accretion Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abramowicz, Marek A.; Björnsson, Gunnlaugur; Pringle, James E.

    1999-03-01

    Part I. Observations of Black Holes: 1. Black holes in our Galaxy: observations P. Charles; 2. Black holes in Active Galactic Nuclei: observations G. M. Madejski; Part II. Physics Close to a Black Hole: 3. Physics of black holes I. D. Novikov; 4. Physics of black hole accretion M. A. Abramowicz; Part III. Turbulence, Viscosity: 5. Disc turbulence and viscosity A. Brandenburg; Part IV. Radiative Processes: 6. The role of electron-positron pairs in accretion flows G. Björnsson; 7. Accretion disc-corona models and X/Y-ray spectra of accreting black holes J. Poutanen; 8. Emission lines: signatures of relativistic rotation A. C. Fabian; Part V. Accretion Discs: 9. Spectral tests of models for accretion disks around black holes J. H. Krolik; 10. Advection-dominated accretion around black holes R. Narayan, R. Mahadevan and E. Quataert; 11. Accretion disc instabilities and advection dominated accretion flows J.-P. Lasota; 12. Magnetic field and multi-phase gas in AGN A. Celotti and M. J. Rees; Part V. Discs in Binary Black Holes: 13. Supermassive binary black holes in galaxies P. Artymowicz; Part VI. Stability of Accretion Discs: 14. Large scale perturbation of an accretion disc by a black hole binary companion J. C. B. Papaloizou, C. Terquem and D. N. C. Lin; 15. Stable oscillations of black hole accretion discs M. Nowak and D. Lehr; Part VI. Coherant Structures: 16. Spotted discs A. Bracco, A. Provenzale, E. A. Spiegel and P. Yecko; Self-organized critically in accretion discs P. Wiita and Y. Xiong; Summary: old and new advances in black hole accretion disc theory R. Svensson.

  12. Theory of Black Hole Accretion Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abramowicz, Marek A.; Björnsson, Gunnlaugur; Pringle, James E.

    2010-08-01

    Part I. Observations of Black Holes: 1. Black holes in our Galaxy: observations P. Charles; 2. Black holes in Active Galactic Nuclei: observations G. M. Madejski; Part II. Physics Close to a Black Hole: 3. Physics of black holes I. D. Novikov; 4. Physics of black hole accretion M. A. Abramowicz; Part III. Turbulence, Viscosity: 5. Disc turbulence and viscosity A. Brandenburg; Part IV. Radiative Processes: 6. The role of electron-positron pairs in accretion flows G. Björnsson; 7. Accretion disc-corona models and X/Y-ray spectra of accreting black holes J. Poutanen; 8. Emission lines: signatures of relativistic rotation A. C. Fabian; Part V. Accretion Discs: 9. Spectral tests of models for accretion disks around black holes J. H. Krolik; 10. Advection-dominated accretion around black holes R. Narayan, R. Mahadevan and E. Quataert; 11. Accretion disc instabilities and advection dominated accretion flows J.-P. Lasota; 12. Magnetic field and multi-phase gas in AGN A. Celotti and M. J. Rees; Part V. Discs in Binary Black Holes: 13. Supermassive binary black holes in galaxies P. Artymowicz; Part VI. Stability of Accretion Discs: 14. Large scale perturbation of an accretion disc by a black hole binary companion J. C. B. Papaloizou, C. Terquem and D. N. C. Lin; 15. Stable oscillations of black hole accretion discs M. Nowak and D. Lehr; Part VI. Coherant Structures: 16. Spotted discs A. Bracco, A. Provenzale, E. A. Spiegel and P. Yecko; Self-organized critically in accretion discs P. Wiita and Y. Xiong; Summary: old and new advances in black hole accretion disc theory R. Svensson.

  13. COEVOLUTION BETWEEN SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES AND BULGES IS NOT VIA INTERNAL FEEDBACK REGULATION BUT BY RATIONED GAS SUPPLY DUE TO ANGULAR MOMENTUM DISTRIBUTION

    SciTech Connect

    Cen, Renyue

    2015-05-20

    We reason that without physical fine-tuning, neither the supermassive black holes (SMBHs) nor the stellar bulges can self-regulate or inter-regulate by driving away already fallen cold gas to produce the observed correlation between them. We suggest an alternative scenario where the observed mass ratios of the SMBHs to bulges reflect the angular momentum distribution of infallen gas such that the mass reaching the stable accretion disk is a small fraction of that reaching the bulge region, averaged over the cosmological timescales. We test this scenario using high-resolution, large-scale cosmological hydrodynamic simulations, without active galactic nucleus (AGN) feedback, assuming the angular momentum distribution of gas landing in the bulge region yields a Mestel disk that is supported by independent simulations resolving the Bondi radii of SMBHs. A mass ratio of 0.1%–0.3% between the very low angular momentum gas that free falls to the subparsec region to accrete to the SMBH and the overall star formation rate is found. This ratio is found to increase with increasing redshift to within a factor of ∼2, suggesting that the SMBH-to-bulge ratio is nearly redshift independent, with a modest increase with redshift, which is a testable prediction. Furthermore, the duty cycle of AGNs with high Eddington ratios is expected to increase significantly with redshift. Finally, while SMBHs and bulges are found to coevolve on ∼30–150 Myr timescales or longer, there is indication that on still smaller timescales, the SMBH accretion and star formation may be less correlated.

  14. Hot versus cold: The dichotomy in spherical accretion of cooling flows onto supermassive black holes in elliptical galaxies, galaxy groups, and clusters

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Fulai; Mathews, William G.

    2014-01-10

    Feedback heating from active galactic nuclei (AGNs) has been commonly invoked to suppress cooling flows predicted in hot gas in elliptical galaxies, galaxy groups, and clusters. Previous studies have focused on if and how AGN feedback heats the gas but have little paid attention to its triggering mechanism. Using spherically symmetric simulations, we investigate how large-scale cooling flows are accreted by central supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in eight well-observed systems and find an interesting dichotomy. In massive clusters, the gas develops a central cooling catastrophe within about the cooling time (typically ∼100-300 Myr), resulting in cold-mode accretion onto SMBHs. However, in our four simulated systems on group and galaxy scales at a low metallicity Z = 0.3 Z {sub ☉}, the gas quickly settles into a long-term state that has a cuspy central temperature profile extending to several tens to about 100 pc. At the more realistic solar metallicity, two groups (with R {sub e} ∼ 4 kpc) still host the long-term, hot-mode accretion. Both accretion modes naturally appear in our idealized calculations where only cooling, gas inflow, and compressional heating are considered. The long-term, hot-mode accretion is maintained by the quickly established closeness between the timescales of these processes, preferably in systems with low gas densities, low gas metallicities, and importantly, compact central galaxies, which result in strong gravitational acceleration and compressional heating at the intermediate radii. Our calculations predict that central cuspy temperature profiles appear more often in smaller systems than galaxy clusters, which instead often host significant cold gas and star formation.

  15. HYDROSTATIC GAS CONSTRAINTS ON SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE MASSES: IMPLICATIONS FOR HYDROSTATIC EQUILIBRIUM AND DYNAMICAL MODELING IN A SAMPLE OF EARLY-TYPE GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Humphrey, Philip J.; Buote, David A.; Brighenti, Fabrizio; Gebhardt, Karl; Mathews, William G.

    2009-10-01

    We present new mass measurements for the supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in the centers of three early-type galaxies. The gas pressure in the surrounding, hot interstellar medium (ISM) is measured through spatially resolved spectroscopy with the Chandra X-ray Observatory, allowing the SMBH mass (M {sub BH}) to be inferred directly under the hydrostatic approximation. This technique does not require calibration against other SMBH measurement methods and its accuracy depends only on the ISM being close to hydrostatic, which is supported by the smooth X-ray isophotes of the galaxies. Combined with results from our recent study of the elliptical galaxy NGC 4649, this brings the number of galaxies with SMBHs measured in this way to four. Of these, three already have mass determinations from the kinematics of either the stars or a central gas disk, and hence join only a handful of galaxies with M {sub BH} measured by more than one technique. We find good agreement between the different methods, providing support for the assumptions implicit in both the hydrostatic and the dynamical models. The stellar mass-to-light ratios for each galaxy inferred by our technique are in agreement with the predictions of stellar population synthesis models assuming a Kroupa initial mass function (IMF). This concurrence implies that no more than {approx}10%-20% of the ISM pressure is nonthermal, unless there is a conspiracy between the shape of the IMF and nonthermal pressure. Finally, we compute Bondi accretion rates (M-dot{sub bondi}), finding that the two galaxies with the highest M-dot{sub bondi} exhibit little evidence of X-ray cavities, suggesting that the correlation with the active galactic nuclei jet power takes time to be established.

  16. Modelling the cosmological co-evolution of supermassive black holes and galaxies - I. BH scaling relations and the AGN luminosity function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marulli, Federico; Bonoli, Silvia; Branchini, Enzo; Moscardini, Lauro; Springel, Volker

    2008-04-01

    We model the cosmological co-evolution of galaxies and their central supermassive black holes (BHs) within a semi-analytical framework developed on the outputs of the Millennium Simulation. This model, described in detail by Croton et al. and De Lucia and Blaizot, introduces a `radio mode' feedback from active galactic nuclei (AGN) at the centre of X-ray emitting atmospheres in galaxy groups and clusters. Thanks to this mechanism, the model can simultaneously explain: (i) the low observed mass dropout rate in cooling flows; (ii) the exponential cut-off in the bright end of the galaxy luminosity function and (iii) the bulge-dominated morphologies and old stellar ages of the most massive galaxies in clusters. This paper is the first of a series in which we investigate how well this model can also reproduce the physical properties of BHs and AGN. Here we analyse the scaling relations, the fundamental plane and the mass function of BHs, and compare them with the most recent observational data. Moreover, we extend the semi-analytic model to follow the evolution of the BH mass accretion and its conversion into radiation, and compare the derived AGN bolometric luminosity function with the observed one. While we find for the most part a very good agreement between predicted and observed BH properties, the semi-analytic model underestimates the number density of luminous AGN at high redshifts, independently of the adopted Eddington factor and accretion efficiency. However, an agreement with the observations is possible within the framework of our model, provided it is assumed that the cold gas fraction accreted by BHs at high redshifts is larger than at low redshifts.

  17. Supermassive black hole formation by direct collapse: keeping protogalactic gas H2 free in dark matter haloes with virial temperatures Tvir > rsim 104 K

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shang, Cien; Bryan, Greg L.; Haiman, Z.

    2010-02-01

    In the absence of H2 molecules, the primordial gas in early dark matter haloes with virial temperatures just above Tvir >~ 104K cools by collisional excitation of atomic H. Although it cools efficiently, this gas remains relatively hot, at a temperature near T ~ 8000 K, and consequently might be able to avoid fragmentation and collapse directly into a supermassive black hole. In order for H2 formation and cooling to be strongly suppressed, the gas must be irradiated by a sufficiently intense ultraviolet (UV) flux. We performed a suite of three-dimensional hydrodynamical adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) simulations of gas collapse in three different protogalactic haloes with Tvir >~ 104K, irradiated by a UV flux with various intensities and spectra. We determined the critical specific intensity, Jcrit21, required to suppress H2 cooling in each of the three haloes. For a hard spectrum representative of metal-free stars, we find (in units of 10-21ergs-1Hz-1sr-1cm-2) 104 < Jcrit21 < 105, while for a softer spectrum, which is characteristic of a normal stellar population, and for which H- dissociation is important, we find 30 < Jcrit21 < 300. These values are a factor of 3-10 lower than previous estimates. We attribute the difference to the higher, more accurate H2 collisional dissociation rate we adopted. The reduction in Jcrit21 exponentially increases the number of rare haloes exposed to supercritical radiation. When H2 cooling is suppressed, gas collapse starts with a delay, but it ultimately proceeds more rapidly. The infall velocity is near the increased sound speed, and an object as massive as M ~ 105Msolar may form at the centre of these haloes, compared to the M ~ 102Msolar stars forming when H2 cooling is efficient.

  18. NuSTAR reveals the extreme properties of the super-Eddington accreting supermassive black hole in PG 1247+267

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lanzuisi, G.; Perna, M.; Comastri, A.; Cappi, M.; Dadina, M.; Marinucci, A.; Masini, A.; Matt, G.; Vagnetti, F.; Vignali, C.; Ballantyne, D. R.; Bauer, F. E.; Boggs, S. E.; Brandt, W. N.; Brusa, M.; Christensen, F. E.; Craig, W. W.; Fabian, A. C.; Farrah, D.; Hailey, C. J.; Harrison, F. A.; Luo, B.; Piconcelli, E.; Puccetti, S.; Ricci, C.; Saez, C.; Stern, D.; Walton, D. J.; Zhang, W. W.

    2016-05-01

    PG1247+267 is one of the most luminous known quasars at z ~ 2 and is a strongly super-Eddington accreting supermassive black hole (SMBH) candidate. We obtained NuSTAR data of this intriguing source in December 2014 with the aim of studying its high-energy emission, leveraging the broad band covered by the new NuSTAR and the archival XMM-Newton data. Several measurements are in agreement with the super-Eddington scenario for PG1247+267: the soft power law (Γ = 2.3 ± 0.1); the weak ionized Fe emission line; and a hint of the presence of outflowing ionized gas surrounding the SMBH. The presence of an extreme reflection component is instead at odds with the high accretion rate proposed for this quasar. This can be explained with three different scenarios; all of them are in good agreement with the existing data, but imply very different conclusions: i) a variable primary power law observed in a low state, superimposed on a reflection component echoing a past, higher flux state; ii) a power law continuum obscured by an ionized, Compton thick, partial covering absorber; and iii) a relativistic disk reflector in a lamp-post geometry, with low coronal height and high BH spin. The first model is able to explain the high reflection component in terms of variability. The second does not require any reflection to reproduce the hard emission, while a rather low high-energy cutoff of ~100 keV is detected for the first time in such a high redshift source. The third model require a face-on geometry, which may affect the SMBH mass and Eddington ratio measurements. Deeper X-ray broad-band data are required in order to distinguish between these possibilities.

  19. Building Black Holes: Supercomputer Cinema

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shapiro, Stuart L.; Teukolsky, Saul A.

    1988-07-01

    A new computer code can solve Einstein's equations of general relativity for the dynamical evolution of a relativistic star cluster. The cluster may contain a large number of stars that move in a strong gravitational field at speeds approaching the speed of light. Unstable star clusters undergo catastrophic collapse to black holes. The collapse of an unstable cluster to a supermassive black hole at the center of a galaxy may explain the origin of quasars and active galactic nuclei. By means of a supercomputer simulation and color graphics, the whole process can be viewed in real time on a movie screen.

  20. OBSCURED GOODS ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI AND THEIR HOST GALAXIES AT z < 1.25: THE SLOW BLACK HOLE GROWTH PHASE

    SciTech Connect

    Simmons, B. D.; Urry, C. M.; Van Duyne, J.; Treister, E.; Koekemoer, A. M.; Grogin, N. A.

    2011-06-20

    We compute black hole masses and bolometric luminosities for 87 obscured active galactic nuclei (AGNs) in the redshift range 0.25 {<=} z {<=} 1.25, selected from the GOODS deep multi-wavelength survey fields via their X-ray emission. We fit the optical images and obtain morphological parameters for the host galaxy, separating the galaxy from its central point source, thereby obtaining a four-band optical spectral energy distribution (SED) for each active nucleus. We calculate bolometric luminosities for these AGNs by reddening a normalized mean SED of GOODS broad-line AGNs to match the observed central point-source SED of each obscured AGN. This estimate of L{sub bol} has a smaller spread than simple bolometric corrections to the X-ray luminosity or direct integration of the observed multi-wavelength SED, suggesting it is a better measure. We estimate central black hole masses from the bulge luminosities. The black hole masses span a wide range, 7 x 10{sup 6} M{sub sun} to 6 x 10{sup 9} M{sub sun}; the median black hole mass is 5 x 10{sup 8} M{sub sun}. The majority of these AGNs have L/L{sub Edd} {<=} 0.01, and we detect no significant evolution of the mean Eddington ratio to z = 1.25. This implies that the bulk of black hole growth in these obscured AGNs must have occurred at z {approx}> 1 and that we are observing these AGNs in a slow- or no-growth state.

  1. GALAXY FORMATION WITH SELF-CONSISTENTLY MODELED STARS AND MASSIVE BLACK HOLES. I. FEEDBACK-REGULATED STAR FORMATION AND BLACK HOLE GROWTH

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Ji-hoon; Abel, Tom; Wise, John H.; Alvarez, Marcelo A.

    2011-09-01

    There is mounting evidence for the coevolution of galaxies and their embedded massive black holes (MBHs) in a hierarchical structure formation paradigm. To tackle the nonlinear processes of galaxy-MBH interaction, we describe a self-consistent numerical framework which incorporates both galaxies and MBHs. The high-resolution adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) code Enzo is modified to model the formation and feedback of molecular clouds at their characteristic scale of 15.2 pc and the accretion of gas onto an MBH. Two major channels of MBH feedback, radiative feedback (X-ray photons followed through full three-dimensional adaptive ray tracing) and mechanical feedback (bipolar jets resolved in high-resolution AMR), are employed. We investigate the coevolution of a 9.2 x 10{sup 11} M{sub sun} galactic halo and its 10{sup 5} M{sub sun} embedded MBH at redshift 3 in a cosmological {Lambda}CDM simulation. The MBH feedback heats the surrounding interstellar medium (ISM) up to 10{sup 6} K through photoionization and Compton heating and locally suppresses star formation in the galactic inner core. The feedback considerably changes the stellar distribution there. This new channel of feedback from a slowly growing MBH is particularly interesting because it is only locally dominant and does not require the heating of gas globally on the disk. The MBH also self-regulates its growth by keeping the surrounding ISM hot for an extended period of time.

  2. Galaxy Formation with Self-Consistently Modeled Stars and Massive Black Holes. I: Feedback-Regulated Star Formation and Black Hole Growth

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Ji-hoon; Wise, John H.; Alvarez, Marcelo A.; Abel, Tom; /KIPAC, Menlo Park /Stanford U., Phys. Dept.

    2011-11-04

    There is mounting evidence for the coevolution of galaxies and their embedded massive black holes (MBHs) in a hierarchical structure formation paradigm. To tackle the nonlinear processes of galaxy-MBH interaction, we describe a self-consistent numerical framework which incorporates both galaxies and MBHs. The high-resolution adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) code Enzo is modified to model the formation and feedback of molecular clouds at their characteristic scale of 15.2 pc and the accretion of gas onto an MBH. Two major channels of MBH feedback, radiative feedback (X-ray photons followed through full three-dimensional adaptive ray tracing) and mechanical feedback (bipolar jets resolved in high-resolution AMR), are employed. We investigate the coevolution of a 9.2 x 10{sup 11} M {circle_dot} galactic halo and its 10{sup 5} {circle_dot} M embedded MBH at redshift 3 in a cosmological CDM simulation. The MBH feedback heats the surrounding interstellar medium (ISM) up to 10{sup 6} K through photoionization and Compton heating and locally suppresses star formation in the galactic inner core. The feedback considerably changes the stellar distribution there. This new channel of feedback from a slowly growing MBH is particularly interesting because it is only locally dominant and does not require the heating of gas globally on the disk. The MBH also self-regulates its growth by keeping the surrounding ISM hot for an extended period of time.

  3. Bolometric luminosity black hole growth time and slim accretion discs in active galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Netzer, Hagai; Trakhtenbrot, Benny

    2014-02-01

    We investigate the accretion rate, bolometric luminosity, black hole (BH) growth time and BH spin in a large active galactic nucleus (AGN) sample under the assumption that all such objects are powered via thin or slim accretion discs (ADs). We use direct estimates of the mass accretion rate, dot{M}, to show that many currently used values of Lbol and L/LEdd are either underestimated or overestimated because they are based on bolometric correction factors that are adjusted to the properties of moderately accreting AGNs and do not take into account the correct combination of BH mass, spin and accretion rate. The consistent application of AD physics to our sample of Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) AGNs leads to the following findings. (1) Even the most conservative assumption about the radiative efficiency of fast-accreting BHs shows that many of these sources must contain slim ADs. We illustrate this by estimating the fraction of such objects at various redshifts. (2) Many previously estimated BH growth times are inconsistent with the AD theory. In particular, the growth times of the fastest accreting BHs were overestimated in the past by large factors with important consequences to AGN evolution. (3) Currently used bolometric correction factors for low accretion rate very massive SDSS BHs are inconsistent with the AD theory. Applying the AD set of assumptions to such objects, combined with standard photoionization calculations of broad emission lines, leads to the conclusion that many such objects must contain fast-spinning BHs.

  4. Unveiling Gargantua: A new search strategy for the most massive central cluster black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brockamp, M.; Baumgardt, H.; Britzen, S.; Zensus, A.

    2016-01-01

    Aims: We aim to unveil the most massive central cluster black holes in the Universe. Methods: We present a new search strategy, which is based on a black hole mass gain sensitive calorimeter and which links the innermost stellar density profile of a galaxy to the adiabatic growth of its central supermassive black hole (SMBH). As a first step we convert observationally inferred feedback powers into SMBH growth rates using reasonable energy conversion efficiency parameters, ɛ. In the main part of this paper we use these black hole growth rates, sorted in logarithmically increasing steps encompassing our whole parameter space, to conduct N-body computations of brightest cluster galaxies (BCGs) with the newly developed Muesli software. For the initial setup of galaxies, we use core-Sérsic models to account for SMBH scouring. Results: We find that adiabatically driven core regrowth is significant at the highest accretion rates. As a result, the most massive black holes should be located in BCGs with less pronounced cores when compared to the predictions of empirical scaling relations, which are usually calibrated in less extreme environments. For efficiency parameters ɛ< 0.1, BCGs in the most massive, relaxed, and X-ray luminous galaxy clusters might even develop steeply rising density cusps. Finally, we discuss several promising candidates for follow-up investigations, among them the nuclear black hole in the Phoenix cluster. Based on our results, its central black hole might have a mass of the order of 1011 M⊙.

  5. Binary Black Hole Mergers, Gravitational Waves, and LISA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Centrella, Joan; Baker, J.; Boggs, W.; Kelly, B.; McWilliams, S.; van Meter, J.

    2007-12-01

    The final merger of comparable mass binary black holes is expected to be the strongest source of gravitational waves for LISA. Since these mergers take place in regions of extreme gravity, we need to solve Einstein's equations of general relativity on a computer in order to calculate these waveforms. For more than 30 years, scientists have tried to compute black hole mergers using the methods of numerical relativity. The resulting computer codes have been plagued by instabilities, causing them to crash well before the black holes in the binary could complete even a single orbit. Within the past few years, however, this situation has changed dramatically, with a series of remarkable breakthroughs. We will present the results of new simulations of black hole mergers with unequal masses and spins, focusing on the gravitational waves emitted and the accompanying astrophysical "kicks.” The magnitude of these kicks has bearing on the production and growth of supermassive blackholes during the epoch of structure formation, and on the retention of black holes in stellar clusters. This work was supported by NASA grant 06-BEFS06-19, and the simulations were carried out using Project Columbia at the NASA Advanced Supercomputing Division (Ames Research Center) and at the NASA Center for Computational Sciences (Goddard Space Flight Center).

  6. Flip-flopping binary black holes.

    PubMed

    Lousto, Carlos O; Healy, James

    2015-04-10

    We study binary spinning black holes to display the long term individual spin dynamics. We perform a full numerical simulation starting at an initial proper separation of d≈25M between equal mass holes and evolve them down to merger for nearly 48 orbits, 3 precession cycles, and half of a flip-flop cycle. The simulation lasts for t=20 000M and displays a total change in the orientation of the spin of one of the black holes from an initial alignment with the orbital angular momentum to a complete antialignment after half of a flip-flop cycle. We compare this evolution with an integration of the 3.5 post-Newtonian equations of motion and spin evolution to show that this process continuously flip flops the spin during the lifetime of the binary until merger. We also provide lower order analytic expressions for the maximum flip-flop angle and frequency. We discuss the effects this dynamics may have on spin growth in accreting binaries and on the observational consequences for galactic and supermassive binary black holes.

  7. Flip-flopping binary black holes.

    PubMed

    Lousto, Carlos O; Healy, James

    2015-04-10

    We study binary spinning black holes to display the long term individual spin dynamics. We perform a full numerical simulation starting at an initial proper separation of d≈25M between equal mass holes and evolve them down to merger for nearly 48 orbits, 3 precession cycles, and half of a flip-flop cycle. The simulation lasts for t=20 000M and displays a total change in the orientation of the spin of one of the black holes from an initial alignment with the orbital angular momentum to a complete antialignment after half of a flip-flop cycle. We compare this evolution with an integration of the 3.5 post-Newtonian equations of motion and spin evolution to show that this process continuously flip flops the spin during the lifetime of the binary until merger. We also provide lower order analytic expressions for the maximum flip-flop angle and frequency. We discuss the effects this dynamics may have on spin growth in accreting binaries and on the observational consequences for galactic and supermassive binary black holes. PMID:25910104

  8. Chandra Clinches Case for Missing Link Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-09-01

    falling every 600 seconds. "This flickering of the X-ray intensity is similar to the well-studied characteristics of black holes swallowing gas from a nearby star or cloud. Explanations other than a massive black hole for this object are implausible," said Dr. Philip Kaaret of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, lead author on the paper reporting the 10 minute variations. "The brightness of the source requires that the black hole have a mass greater than 500 suns." Possible explanations for the object include the merger of stars to form a hyperstar that collapsed, or growth of a black hole through mergers with other nearby black holes and neutron stars. Observations with the Japan Nobeyama Millimeter Array by Dr. Satoki Matsushita of Harvard-Smithsonian and colleagues have revealed a large expanding superbubble of gas centered on the mid-mass black hole in M82. The energy of several thousand supernovas would be required to produce the expanding superbubble. In the past, our Milky Way galaxy could have produced mid-mass black holes during periods of vigorous star formation. Hundreds of these massive black holes may exist unseen in our galaxy, in addition to the dozen or so known stellar black holes and the supermassive black hole that is safely confined to the galaxy's nucleus. Other scientists involved with the Chandra observations include: Drs. A. H. Prestwich, A. Zezas, and S.S.Murray of Harvard-Smithsonian; C. Canizares of MIT; T. G. Tsuru and K. Koyama of Kyoto University, Japan; H. Awaki of Ehime University, Japan; N. Kawai of RIKEN (The Institute of Chemical & Physical Research) Japan; R. Kawabe of the Nobeyama Radio Observatory, Japan. M82 was observed by Chandra 6 times for approximately 30 hours total. The observations were made with the High Resolution Camera (HRC) and the Advanced CCD Imaging Spectrometer (ACIS). The HRC was built for NASA by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA. The ACIS instrument was built for NASA by the

  9. Resolving flows around black holes: the impact of gas angular momentum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Curtis, Michael; Sijacki, Debora

    2016-11-01

    Cosmological simulations almost invariably estimate the accretion of gas on to supermassive black holes using a Bondi-Hoyle-like prescription. Doing so ignores the effects of the angular momentum of the gas, which may prevent or significantly delay accreting material falling directly on to the black hole. We outline a black hole accretion rate prescription using a modified Bondi-Hoyle formulation that takes into account the angular momentum of the surrounding gas. Meaningful implementation of this modified Bondi-Hoyle formulation is only possible when the inner vorticity distribution is well resolved, which we achieve through the use of a super-Lagrangian refinement technique around black holes within our simulations. We then investigate the effects on black hole growth by performing simulations of isolated as well as merging disc galaxies using the moving-mesh code AREPO. We find that the gas angular momentum barrier can play an important role in limiting the growth of black holes, leading also to a several Gyr delay between the starburst and the quasar phase in major merger remnants. We stress, however, that the magnitude of this effect is highly sensitive to the thermodynamical state of the accreting gas and to the nature of the black hole feedback present.

  10. Resolving flows around black holes: the impact of gas angular momentum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Curtis, Michael; Sijacki, Debora

    2016-08-01

    Cosmological simulations almost invariably estimate the accretion of gas onto supermassive black holes using a Bondi-Hoyle-like prescription. Doing so ignores the effects of the angular momentum of the gas, which may prevent or significantly delay accreting material falling directly onto the black hole. We outline a black hole accretion rate prescription using a modified Bondi-Hoyle formulation that takes into account the angular momentum of the surrounding gas. Meaningful implementation of this modified Bondi-Hoyle formulation is only possible when the inner vorticity distribution is well resolved, which we achieve through the use of a super-Lagrangian refinement technique around black holes within our simulations. We then investigate the effects on black hole growth by performing simulations of isolated as well as merging disc galaxies using the moving-mesh code AREPO. We find that the gas angular momentum barrier can play an important role in limiting the growth of black holes, leading also to a several Gyr delay between the starburst and the quasar phase in major merger remnants. We stress, however, that the magnitude of this effect is highly sensitive to the thermodynamical state of the accreting gas and to the nature of the black hole feedback present.

  11. Winds of Change: How Black Holes May Shape Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-03-01

    New observations from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory provide evidence for powerful winds blowing away from the vicinity of a supermassive black hole in a nearby galaxy. This discovery indicates that "average" supermassive black holes may play an important role in the evolution of the galaxies in which they reside. For years, astronomers have known that a supermassive black hole grows in parallel with its host galaxy. And, it has long been suspected that material blown away from a black hole - as opposed to the fraction of material that falls into it -- alters the evolution of its host galaxy. A key question is whether such "black hole blowback" typically delivers enough power to have a significant impact. Powerful relativistic jets shot away from the biggest supermassive black holes in large, central galaxies in clusters like Perseus are seen to shape their host galaxies, but these are rare. What about less powerful, less focused galaxy-scale winds that should be much more common? "We're more interested here in seeing what an "average"-sized supermassive black hole can do to its galaxy, not the few, really big ones in the biggest galaxies," said Dan Evans of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who presented these results at the High Energy Astrophysics Division of the American Astronomical Society meeting in Kona, Hawaii. Evans and his colleagues used Chandra for five days to observe NGC 1068, one of the nearest and brightest galaxies containing a rapidly growing supermassive black hole. This black hole is only about twice as massive as the one in the center of our Galaxy, which is considered to be a rather ordinary size. The X-ray images and spectra obtained using Chandra's High Energy Transmission Grating Spectrometer (HETGS) showed that a strong wind is being driven away from the center of NGC 1068 at a rate of about a million miles per hour. This wind is likely generated as surrounding gas is accelerated and heated as it swirls toward the black hole. A

  12. Black Holes Are The Rhythm at The Heart of Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2008-11-01

    The powerful black holes at the center of massive galaxies and galaxy clusters act as hearts to the systems, pumping energy out at regular intervals to regulate the growth of the black holes themselves, as well as star formation, according to new data from NASA's Chandra X-Ray Observatory. People Who Read This Also Read... Milky Way’s Giant Black Hole Awoke from Slumber 300 Years Ago A New Way To Weigh Giant Black Holes Discovery of Most Recent Supernova in Our Galaxy NASA Unveils Cosmic Images Book in Braille for Blind Readers Scientists from the University of Michigan, the Max-Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in Germany, the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and Jacobs University in Germany contributed to the results. The gravitational pull of black holes is so strong that not even light can escape from them. Supermassive black holes with masses of more than a billion suns have been detected at the center of large galaxies. The material falling on the black holes causes sporadic or isolated bursts of energy, by which black holes are capable of influencing the fate of their host galaxies. The insight gained by this new research shows that black holes can pump energy in a gentler and rhythmic fashion, rather then violently. The scientists observed and simulated how the black hole at the center of elliptical galaxy M84 dependably sends bubbles of hot plasma into space, heating up interstellar space. This heat is believed to slow both the formation of new stars and the growth of the black hole itself, helping the galaxy remain stable. Interstellar gases only coalesce into new stars when the gas is cool enough. The heating is more efficient at the sites where it is most needed, the scientists say. Alexis Finoguenov, of UMBC and the Max-Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in Germany, compares the central black hole to a heart muscle. "Just like our hearts periodically pump our

  13. The effects of AGN feedback and SPH formulation on black hole growth in galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, MaoSheng; Di Matteo, Tiziana; Feng, Yu

    2016-05-01

    We perform simulations of isolated galaxies and major mergers to investigate the effects on black hole (BH) growth due to variations in active galactic nuclei (AGN) feedback models and different smooth particle hydrodynamic (SPH) solvers. In particular we examine density-SPH versus newer pressure-SPH formulation and their significance relative to minor changes in subgrid AGN feedback prescriptions. The aim is to use these idealized simulations to understand the impact of these effects for large cosmological volume simulations where these models are often adopted. In both isolated galaxies and galaxy mergers, we find that star formation histories are largely insensitive to the choice of SPH schemes whilst BH accretion rate can change. This can result in a factor of 2-3 difference in final BH mass for the two hydrodynamic formulations. However, the differences are much smaller than those obtained even with small changes in the subgrid AGN feedback prescription. In particular, depending on the size of the region and the manner in which the AGN energy is deposited, the star formation rate is suppressed by a factor of 2 in isolated galaxies and the star burst completely quenched during the coalescence of two galaxies. The final BH mass differs by over an order of magnitude by changes in AGN feedback model. Our results indicated that any change in the hydrodynamic formulation is likely subdominant to the effects of changing subgrid physics around the BH, although thermodynamic state and morphology of the gas remnant are also sensitive to the change in hydrodynamic solver.

  14. THE ORIGIN OF DUST IN EARLY-TYPE GALAXIES AND IMPLICATIONS FOR ACCRETION ONTO SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Martini, Paul; Dicken, Daniel; Storchi-Bergmann, Thaisa

    2013-04-01

    We have conducted an archival Spitzer study of 38 early-type galaxies in order to determine the origin of the dust in approximately half of this population. Our sample galaxies generally have good wavelength coverage from 3.6 {mu}m to 160 {mu}m, as well as visible-wavelength Hubble Space Telescope (HST) images. We use the Spitzer data to estimate dust masses, or establish upper limits, and find that all of the early-type galaxies with dust lanes in the HST data are detected in all of the Spitzer bands and have dust masses of {approx}10{sup 5}-10{sup 6.5} M{sub Sun }, while galaxies without dust lanes are not detected at 70 {mu}m and 160 {mu}m and typically have <10{sup 5} M{sub Sun} of dust. The apparently dust-free galaxies do have 24 {mu}m emission that scales with the shorter-wavelength flux, yet substantially exceeds the expectations of photospheric emission by approximately a factor of three. We conclude this emission is dominated by hot, circumstellar dust around evolved stars that does not survive to form a substantial interstellar component. The order-of-magnitude variations in dust masses between galaxies with similar stellar populations rule out a substantial contribution from continual, internal production in spite of the clear evidence for circumstellar dust. We demonstrate that the interstellar dust is not due to purely external accretion, unless the product of the merger rate of dusty satellites and the dust lifetime is at least an order of magnitude higher than expected. We propose that dust in early-type galaxies is seeded by external accretion, yet the accreted dust is maintained by continued growth in externally accreted cold gas beyond the nominal lifetime of individual grains. The several Gyr depletion time of the cold gas is long enough to reconcile the fraction of dusty early-type galaxies with the merger rate of gas-rich satellites. As the majority of dusty early-type galaxies are also low-luminosity active galactic nuclei and likely fueled

  15. Revealing a hard X-ray spectral component that reverberates within one light hour of the central supermassive black hole in Ark 564

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giustini, M.; Turner, T. J.; Reeves, J. N.; Miller, L.; Legg, E.; Kraemer, S. B.; George, I. M.

    2015-05-01

    "flaring" light by gas located at 10-100 rg from the central supermassive black hole that is so hot that it can Compton-upscatter the flaring intrinsic continuum emission.

  16. Local Luminous Infrared Galaxies. III. Co-evolution of Black Hole Growth and Star Formation Activity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alonso-Herrero, Almudena; Pereira-Santaella, Miguel; Rieke, George H.; Diamond-Stanic, Aleksandar M.; Wang, Yiping; Hernán-Caballero, Antonio; Rigopoulou, Dimitra

    2013-03-01

    Local luminous infrared (IR) galaxies (LIRGs) have both high star formation rates (SFR) and a high AGN (Seyfert and AGN/starburst composite) incidence. Therefore, they are ideal candidates to explore the co-evolution of black hole (BH) growth and star formation (SF) activity, not necessarily associated with major mergers. Here, we use Spitzer/IRS spectroscopy of a complete volume-limited sample of local LIRGs (distances of <78 Mpc). We estimate typical BH masses of 3 × 107 M ⊙ using [Ne III] 15.56 μm and optical [O III] λ5007 gas velocity dispersions and literature stellar velocity dispersions. We find that in a large fraction of local LIRGs, the current SFR is taking place not only in the inner nuclear ~1.5 kpc region, as estimated from the nuclear 11.3 μm PAH luminosities, but also in the host galaxy. We next use the ratios between the SFRs and BH accretion rates (BHAR) to study whether the SF activity and BH growth are contemporaneous in local LIRGs. On average, local LIRGs have SFR to BHAR ratios higher than those of optically selected Seyferts of similar active galactic nucleus (AGN) luminosities. However, the majority of the IR-bright galaxies in the revised-Shapley-Ames Seyfert sample behave like local LIRGs. Moreover, the AGN incidence tends to be higher in local LIRGs with the lowest SFRs. All of this suggests that in local LIRGs there is a distinct IR-bright star-forming phase taking place prior to the bulk of the current BH growth (i.e., AGN phase). The latter is reflected first as a composite and then as a Seyfert, and later as a non-LIRG optically identified Seyfert nucleus with moderate SF in its host galaxy. This work is based on observations made with the Spitzer Space Telescope, which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology under NASA contract 1407.

  17. LOCAL LUMINOUS INFRARED GALAXIES. III. CO-EVOLUTION OF BLACK HOLE GROWTH AND STAR FORMATION ACTIVITY?

    SciTech Connect

    Alonso-Herrero, Almudena; Hernan-Caballero, Antonio; Pereira-Santaella, Miguel; Rieke, George H.; Diamond-Stanic, Aleksandar M.; Wang Yiping; Rigopoulou, Dimitra

    2013-03-10

    Local luminous infrared (IR) galaxies (LIRGs) have both high star formation rates (SFR) and a high AGN (Seyfert and AGN/starburst composite) incidence. Therefore, they are ideal candidates to explore the co-evolution of black hole (BH) growth and star formation (SF) activity, not necessarily associated with major mergers. Here, we use Spitzer/IRS spectroscopy of a complete volume-limited sample of local LIRGs (distances of <78 Mpc). We estimate typical BH masses of 3 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 7} M{sub Sun} using [Ne III] 15.56 {mu}m and optical [O III] {lambda}5007 gas velocity dispersions and literature stellar velocity dispersions. We find that in a large fraction of local LIRGs, the current SFR is taking place not only in the inner nuclear {approx}1.5 kpc region, as estimated from the nuclear 11.3 {mu}m PAH luminosities, but also in the host galaxy. We next use the ratios between the SFRs and BH accretion rates (BHAR) to study whether the SF activity and BH growth are contemporaneous in local LIRGs. On average, local LIRGs have SFR to BHAR ratios higher than those of optically selected Seyferts of similar active galactic nucleus (AGN) luminosities. However, the majority of the IR-bright galaxies in the revised-Shapley-Ames Seyfert sample behave like local LIRGs. Moreover, the AGN incidence tends to be higher in local LIRGs with the lowest SFRs. All of this suggests that in local LIRGs there is a distinct IR-bright star-forming phase taking place prior to the bulk of the current BH growth (i.e., AGN phase). The latter is reflected first as a composite and then as a Seyfert, and later as a non-LIRG optically identified Seyfert nucleus with moderate SF in its host galaxy.

  18. Galaxies of all Shapes Host Black Holes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    This artist's concept illustrates the two types of spiral galaxies that populate our universe: those with plump middles, or central bulges (upper left), and those lacking the bulge (foreground).

    New observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope provide strong evidence that the slender, bulgeless galaxies can, like their chubbier counterparts, harbor supermassive black holes at their cores. Previously, astronomers thought that a galaxy without a bulge could not have a supermassive black hole. In this illustration, jets shooting away from the black holes are depicted as thin streams.

    The findings are reshaping theories of galaxy formation, suggesting that a galaxy's 'waistline' does not determine whether it will be home to a big black hole.

  19. Dual jets from binary black holes.

    PubMed

    Palenzuela, Carlos; Lehner, Luis; Liebling, Steven L

    2010-08-20

    The coalescence of supermassive black holes--a natural outcome when galaxies merge--should produce gravitational waves and would likely be associated with energetic electromagnetic events. We have studied the coalescence of such binary black holes within an external magnetic field produced by the expected circumbinary disk surrounding them. Solving the Einstein equations to describe black holes interacting with surrounding plasma, we present numerical evidence for possible jets driven by these systems. Extending the process described by Blandford and Znajek for a single, spinning black hole, the picture that emerges suggests that the electromagnetic field extracts energy from the orbiting black holes, which ultimately merge and settle into the standard Blandford-Znajek scenario. Emissions along these jets could potentially be observable at large distances.

  20. MILLIMETER RADIO CONTINUUM EMISSIONS AS THE ACTIVITY OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN NEARBY EARLY-TYPE GALAXIES AND LOW-LUMINOSITY ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI

    SciTech Connect

    Doi, Akihiro; Nakanishi, Kouichiro; Nagai, Hiroshi; Kohno, Kotaro; Kameno, Seiji

    2011-11-15

    We conducted millimeter continuum observations for samples of nearby early-type galaxies (21 sources) and nearby low-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGNs; 16 sources) at 100 GHz ({lambda}3 mm) using the Nobeyama Millimeter Array (NMA). In addition, we performed quasi-simultaneous observations at 150 GHz ({lambda}2 mm) and 100 GHz for five LLAGNs. Compact nuclear emissions showing flat or inverted spectra at centimeter-to-millimeter wavelengths were found in many LLAGNs and several early-type galaxies. Moreover, significant flux variability was detected in three LLAGNs. These radio properties are similar to Sgr A*. The observed radio luminosities are consistent with the fundamental plane of black hole activity that was suggested on the basis of samples with black hole masses ranging from 10 to 10{sup 10} M{sub Sun }. This implies nuclear jets powered by radiatively inefficient accretion flows onto black holes.

  1. Surfing a Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2002-10-01

    Star Orbiting Massive Milky Way Centre Approaches to within 17 Light-Hours [1] Summary An international team of astronomers [2], lead by researchers at the Max-Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE) , has directly observed an otherwise normal star orbiting the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way Galaxy. Ten years of painstaking measurements have been crowned by a series of unique images obtained by the Adaptive Optics (AO) NAOS-CONICA (NACO) instrument [3] on the 8.2-m VLT YEPUN telescope at the ESO Paranal Observatory. It turns out that earlier this year the star approached the central Black Hole to within 17 light-hours - only three times the distance between the Sun and planet Pluto - while travelling at no less than 5000 km/sec . Previous measurements of the velocities of stars near the center of the Milky Way and variable X-ray emission from this area have provided the strongest evidence so far of the existence of a central Black Hole in our home galaxy and, implicitly, that the dark mass concentrations seen in many nuclei of other galaxies probably are also supermassive black holes. However, it has not yet been possible to exclude several alternative configurations. In a break-through paper appearing in the research journal Nature on October 17th, 2002, the present team reports their exciting results, including high-resolution images that allow tracing two-thirds of the orbit of a star designated "S2" . It is currently the closest observable star to the compact radio source and massive black hole candidate "SgrA*" ("Sagittarius A") at the very center of the Milky Way. The orbital period is just over 15 years. The new measurements exclude with high confidence that the central dark mass consists of a cluster of unusual stars or elementary particles, and leave little doubt of the presence of a supermassive black hole at the centre of the galaxy in which we live . PR Photo 23a/02 : NACO image of the central region of the Milky Way

  2. The First Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abel, T.

    star. Within this wide range of possible initial masses the death of these star will lead very different remnants (Heger and Woosley 2001). In the case of stars with masses larger than 260 solar mass no metals may be released in black holes are the natural outcome. This may be an interesting possibility to form intermediate mass black holes which are attractive seeds to be nurtured to the super-massive black holes observed in the centers of nearby galaxies. However, no metals would be released and it would prove difficult to understand the transition to the formation of low mass metal enriched population II stars. Stars with masses below 140 solar masses would enrich the intergalactic medium as well as form massive black holes. The coincidence of the Kelvin Helmholtz time with our computed accretion times at about 120 solar masses may argue in favor of such smaller masses. These first black holes may well leave the halos in which they formed for even rather modest kick velocities >~ 10 km/s. Nevertheless, up to about one hundred thousand of these first black holes may remain in the Milky Way. The realization that structure formation began within one hundred million years after big bang makes it difficult to study observationally these first crucial steps. Future observatories have hence to focus on larger collecting areas and wavelengths for which the universe is transparent up to redshifts of 30. XEUS offers the chance to open a new window to these so far dark ages. The limiting masses quoted here rely on stellar models of primordial stars that do not include rotation, magnetic fields or mass loss and hence are somewhat uncertain.

  3. Black Hole Blows Big Bubble

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-07-01

    astronomers understand the similarity between small black holes formed from exploded stars and the supermassive black holes at the centres of galaxies. Very powerful jets have been seen from supermassive black holes, but are thought to be less frequent in the smaller microquasar variety. The new discovery suggests that many of them may simply have gone unnoticed so far. The gas-blowing black hole is located 12 million light-years away, in the outskirts of the spiral galaxy NGC 7793 (eso0914b). From the size and expansion velocity of the bubble the astronomers have found that the jet activity must have been ongoing for at least 200 000 years. Notes [1] Astronomers do not have yet any means of measuring the size of the black hole itself. The smallest stellar black hole discovered so far has a radius of about 15 km. An average stellar black hole of about 10 solar masses has a radius of about 30 km, while a "big" stellar black hole may have a radius of up to 300 km. This is still much smaller than the jets, which extend out to several hundreds light years on each side of the black hole, or about several thousand million million km! More information This result appears in a paper published in this week's issue of the journal Nature (A 300 parsec long jet-inflated bubble around a powerful microquasar in the galaxy NGC 7793, by Manfred W. Pakull, Roberto Soria and Christian Motch). ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world's most productive astronomical observatory. It is supported by 14 countries: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising

  4. BLACK HOLE FORAGING: FEEDBACK DRIVES FEEDING

    SciTech Connect

    Dehnen, Walter; King, Andrew E-mail: ark@astro.le.ac.uk

    2013-11-10

    We suggest a new picture of supermassive black hole (SMBH) growth in galaxy centers. Momentum-driven feedback from an accreting hole gives significant orbital energy, but little angular momentum to the surrounding gas. Once central accretion drops, the feedback weakens and swept-up gas falls back toward the SMBH on near-parabolic orbits. These intersect near the black hole with partially opposed specific angular momenta, causing further infall and ultimately the formation of a small-scale accretion disk. The feeding rates into the disk typically exceed Eddington by factors of a few, growing the hole on the Salpeter timescale and stimulating further feedback. Natural consequences of this picture include (1) the formation and maintenance of a roughly toroidal distribution of obscuring matter near the hole; (2) random orientations of successive accretion disk episodes; (3) the possibility of rapid SMBH growth; (4) tidal disruption of stars and close binaries formed from infalling gas, resulting in visible flares and ejection of hypervelocity stars; (5) super-solar abundances of the matter accreting on to the SMBH; and (6) a lower central dark-matter density, and hence annihilation signal, than adiabatic SMBH growth implies. We also suggest a simpl