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Sample records for supermassive black-hole growth

  1. Impact of supermassive black hole growth on star formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrison, C. M.

    2017-07-01

    Supermassive black holes are found at the centres of massive galaxies. During the growth of these black holes they light up to become visible as active galactic nuclei (AGNs) and release extraordinary amounts of energy across the electromagnetic spectrum. This energy is widely believed to regulate the rate of star formation in the black holes' host galaxies via so-called AGN feedback. However, the details of how and when this occurs remain uncertain from both an observational and theoretical perspective. I review some of the theoretical motivation and observational results and discuss possible observational signatures of the impact of supermassive black hole growth on star formation.

  2. Growth of Supermassive Black Holes, Galaxy Mergers and Supermassive Binary Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komossa, S.; Baker, J. G.; Liu, F. K.

    The study of galaxy mergers and supermassive binary black holes (SMBBHs) is central to our understanding of the galaxy and black hole assembly and (co-)evolution at the epoch of structure formation and throughout cosmic history. Galaxy mergers are the sites of major accretion episodes, they power quasars, grow supermassive black holes (SMBHs), and drive SMBH-host scaling relations. The coalescing SMBBHs at their centers are the loudest sources of gravitational waves (GWs) in the Universe, and the subsequent GW recoil has a variety of potential astrophysical implications which are still under exploration. Future GW astronomy will open a completely new window on structure formation and galaxy mergers, including the direct detection of coalescing SMBBHs, high-precision measurements of their masses and spins, and constraints on BH formation and evolution in the high-redshift Universe.

  3. The Compton-thick Growth of Supermassive Black Holes constrained

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buchner, Johannes; Georgakakis, Antonis; Nandra, Kirpal; Brightman, Murray; Menzel, Marie-Luise; Liu, Zhu; Hsu, Li-Ting; Salvato, Mara; Rangel, Cyprian; Aird, James

    2017-08-01

    A heavily obscured growth phase of supermassive black holes (SMBH) is thought to be important in the co-evolution with galaxies. X-rays provide a clean and efficient selection of unobscured and obscured AGN. Recent work with deeper observations and improved analysis methodology allowed us to extend constraints to Compton-thick number densities. We present the first luminosity function of Compton-thick AGN at z=0.5-4 and constrain the overall mass density locked into black holes over cosmic time, a fundamental constraint for cosmological simulations. Recent studies including ours find that the obscuration is redshift and luminosity-dependent in a complex way, which rules out entire sets of obscurer models. A new paradigm, the radiation-lifted torus model, is proposed, in which the obscurer is Eddington-rate dependent and accretion creates and displaces torus clouds. We place observational limits on the behaviour of this mechanism.

  4. Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loeb, Abraham

    2007-04-01

    Recent data indicates that almost all galaxies possess a supermassive black hole at their center. When gas accretes onto the black hole it heats-up and shines, resulting in the appearance of a bright quasar. The earliest quasars are found to exist only a billion years after the big-bang. I will describe recent observations of both the nearest and the most distant supermassive black holes in the universe. The formation and evolution of the black hole population can be described in the context of popular models for galaxy formation. I will describe the key questions that drive current research on supermassive black holes and present theoretical work on the radiative and hydrodynamic effects that quasars have on their cosmic habitat. Within the coming decade it would be possible to test general relativity by monitoring over time, and possibly even imaging, the polarized emission from hot spots around the black hole in the center of our Galaxy (SgrA*).

  5. The Formation and Growth of the Earliest Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aird, James; Comastri, Andrea; Topical Panel 2. 1

    2015-09-01

    Understanding how supermassive black holes (BHs) form and grow in the very early (z>6) Universe, when the first stars and galaxies were forming, is one of the major science aims of the Athena mission. The physical processes responsible for the initial formation of these BHs and their early growth via accretion - when they are seen as Active Galactic Nuclei (AGNs) - remain unclear. Large-scale optical/near-infrared imaging surveys have identified a few tens of luminous AGNs at z>6, powered by extremely massive BHs, and place vital constraints on the range of possible formation and growth mechanisms. To make further progress, however, we must identify lower luminosity and obscured AGNs at z>6, which represent the bulk of early BH growth. I will discuss recent measurements that trace the evolution of AGN population out to the highest possible redshifts (z~5-6) using the latest X-ray surveys with Chandra and XMM-Newton. However, Athena will provide the superb sensitivity over a wide field-of-view that is required to identify the earliest (z>6) growing BHs, trace their evolution within the early galaxy population, and determine the physical mechanisms that drive their formation and growth. Achieving these aims represents a major challenge that will push the capabilities of both Athena and supporting ground- and space-based observatories. I will present the prospects for a large Athena survey programme and discuss both the technical and scientific challenges that must be addressed in preparation for the Athena mission.

  6. The formation and growth of the earliest supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cappelluti, Nico; Comastri, Andrea; Aird, James

    A crucial challenge in astrophysics over the coming decades will be to understand the origins of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) that lie at the centres of most, if not all, galaxies. The processes responsible for the initial formation of these SMBHs and their early growth via accretion - when they are seen as Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN) - remain unknown. To address this challenge, we must identify low luminosity and obscured z>6 AGNs, which represent the bulk of early SMBH growth. Sensitive X-ray observations are a unique signpost of accretion activity, uncontaminated by star formation processes, which prevent reliable AGN identification at other wavelengths (e.g. optical, infrared). The Athena+ Wide Field Imager will enable X-ray surveys to be carried out two orders of magnitude faster than with Chandra or XMM-Newton, opening a new discovery space and identifying over 400 z>6 AGN, including obscured sources. Athena+ will also play a fundamental role to enhance the scientific return of future multiwavelength facilities that will probe the physical conditions within the host galaxies of early SMBHs, which is vital for understanding how SMBHs form, what fuels their subsequent growth, and to assess their impact on the early Universe. Follow-up of samples of z>6 galaxies with the Athena+ X-ray Integral Field Unit could also reveal the presence of highly obscured AGNs, thanks to the detection of strong iron lines. Thus, Athena+ will enable the first quantitative measurements of the extent and distribution of SMBH accretion in the early Universe.

  7. 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.

  8. Weighing supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rafiee, Alireza

    We calculate the black hole masses for a sample of 27728 quasars selected from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release 3 (DR3). To ensure a high signal-to-noise ratio, we reconstruct quasar spectra for this large sample of quasars using the eigenspectra method (Yip et al., 2004). This method reduces the uncertainty of the measurements for even noisy original spectra, making almost all the SDSS quasar spectra usable for our study. A few applications for black hole mass estimates are presented here. Wang et al. (2006) estimated an average radiative efficiency of 30%-35% for quasars at moderate redshift, which implies that most supermassive black holes are rotating very rapidly. Using our black hole mass estimates, we have found that their method is not independent of quasar lifetimes and thus that quasars do not necessarily have such high efficiencies. As a second application, we have investigated a claim by Steinhardt and Elvis (2009) that there exists a sub-Eddington boundary in the quasar mass-luminosity plane using the Shen et al. (2008) mass estimates. We re-calibrate the mass-scaling relations following Wang et al. (2009) with the most up-to-date reverberation estimates of black hole masses. We compare results from the original data sets with the new re-calibrated estimates of the mass-luminosity plane. We conclude that the presence of the sub-Eddington boundary in the original data of Shen et al. (2008) is likely due to biases in the mass-scaling relation and not to any physical process.

  9. 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].

  10. 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.

  11. The first supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Aaron; Bromm, Volker; Loeb, Abraham

    2017-01-01

    We briefly review the historical development of the ideas regarding the first supermassive black hole seeds, the physics of their formation and radiative feedback, recent theoretical and observational progress, and our outlook for the future.

  12. 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

    2005-08-04

    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.

  13. 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.

  14. Chaotic Accretion and Merging Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nixon, Christopher James

    2012-09-01

    The main driver of the work in this thesis is the idea of chaotic accretion in galaxy centres. Most research in this area focuses on orderly or coherent accretion where supermassive black holes or supermassive black hole binaries are fed with gas always possessing the same sense of angular momentum. If instead gas flows in galaxies are chaotic, feeding occurs through randomly oriented depositions of gas. Previous works show that this chaotic mode of feeding can explain some astrophysical phenomena, such as the lack of correlation between host galaxy structure and the direction of jets. It has also been shown that by keeping the black hole spin low this feeding mechanism can grow supermassive black holes from stellar mass seeds. In this thesis I show that it also alleviates the "final parsec problem" by facilitating the merger of two supermassive black holes, and the growth of supermassive black holes through rapid accretion. I also develop the intriguing possibility of breaking a warped disc into two or more distinct planes.

  15. Surprise: Dwarf Galaxy Harbors Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2011-01-01

    The surprising discovery of a supermassive black hole in a small nearby galaxy has given astronomers a tantalizing look at how black holes and galaxies may have grown in the early history of the Universe. Finding a black hole a million times more massive than the Sun in a star-forming dwarf galaxy is a strong indication that supermassive black holes formed before the buildup of galaxies, the astronomers said. The galaxy, called Henize 2-10, 30 million light-years from Earth, has been studied for years, and is forming stars very rapidly. Irregularly shaped and about 3,000 light-years across (compared to 100,000 for our own Milky Way), it resembles what scientists think were some of the first galaxies to form in the early Universe. "This galaxy gives us important clues about a very early phase of galaxy evolution that has not been observed before," said Amy Reines, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Virginia. Supermassive black holes lie at the cores of all "full-sized" galaxies. In the nearby Universe, there is a direct relationship -- a constant ratio -- between the masses of the black holes and that of the central "bulges" of the galaxies, leading them to conclude that the black holes and bulges affected each others' growth. Two years ago, an international team of astronomers found that black holes in young galaxies in the early Universe were more massive than this ratio would indicate. This, they said, was strong evidence that black holes developed before their surrounding galaxies. "Now, we have found a dwarf galaxy with no bulge at all, yet it has a supermassive black hole. This greatly strengthens the case for the black holes developing first, before the galaxy's bulge is formed," Reines said. Reines, along with Gregory Sivakoff and Kelsey Johnson of the University of Virginia and the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), and Crystal Brogan of the NRAO, observed Henize 2-10 with the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array radio telescope and

  16. Surprise: Dwarf Galaxy Harbors Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2011-01-01

    The surprising discovery of a supermassive black hole in a small nearby galaxy has given astronomers a tantalizing look at how black holes and galaxies may have grown in the early history of the Universe. Finding a black hole a million times more massive than the Sun in a star-forming dwarf galaxy is a strong indication that supermassive black holes formed before the buildup of galaxies, the astronomers said. The galaxy, called Henize 2-10, 30 million light-years from Earth, has been studied for years, and is forming stars very rapidly. Irregularly shaped and about 3,000 light-years across (compared to 100,000 for our own Milky Way), it resembles what scientists think were some of the first galaxies to form in the early Universe. "This galaxy gives us important clues about a very early phase of galaxy evolution that has not been observed before," said Amy Reines, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Virginia. Supermassive black holes lie at the cores of all "full-sized" galaxies. In the nearby Universe, there is a direct relationship -- a constant ratio -- between the masses of the black holes and that of the central "bulges" of the galaxies, leading them to conclude that the black holes and bulges affected each others' growth. Two years ago, an international team of astronomers found that black holes in young galaxies in the early Universe were more massive than this ratio would indicate. This, they said, was strong evidence that black holes developed before their surrounding galaxies. "Now, we have found a dwarf galaxy with no bulge at all, yet it has a supermassive black hole. This greatly strengthens the case for the black holes developing first, before the galaxy's bulge is formed," Reines said. Reines, along with Gregory Sivakoff and Kelsey Johnson of the University of Virginia and the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), and Crystal Brogan of the NRAO, observed Henize 2-10 with the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array radio telescope and

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Supermassive Black Hole Binaries: The Search Continues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanović, Tamara

    Gravitationally bound supermassive black hole binaries (SBHBs) are thought to be a natural product of galactic mergers and growth of the large scale structure in the universe. They however remain observationally elusive, thus raising a question about characteristic observational signatures associated with these systems. In this conference proceeding I discuss current theoretical understanding and latest advances and prospects in observational searches for SBHBs.

  1. Close supermassive binary black holes.

    PubMed

    Gaskell, C Martin

    2010-01-07

    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.

  2. Obscured Supermassive Black Hole Growth - Connections to Host Galaxies and Evolutionary Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DiPompeo, Michael A.; Hickox, Ryan C.; Myers, Adam D.

    2017-08-01

    A large fraction of the supermassive black hole growth in the Universe is hidden from view behind thick columns of dust. The most heavily obscured quasars can be challenging to detect even with current high energy X-ray observatories such as NuSTAR - however with infrared observations that can detect the hot nuclear dust in even the most enshrouded systems, we are now beginning to characterize large populations of these hidden monsters.With roughly half-a-million quasars selected with WISE, we have found via clustering and CMB lensing cross-correlation measurements that obscured quasars reside in dark matter halos 0.5 dex more massive than unobscured quasars. This implies that obscuration is directly linked to host galaxy properties, and not simply the dust geometry around the quasar. Using cross-correlations we accurately characterize the redshift distribution of the obscured quasar population, confirming that it peaks at z = 1, and using long-wavelength bands find that it has a similar bolometric luminosity distribution as unobscured quasars as well. Finally, using a simple model based on empirical relationships between halo, stellar, and black hole masses, we show that an evolutionary sequence from obscured to unobscured quasar, combined with a flux limit, can predict the observed halo mass differences.Studies of the most obscured quasars provide valuable insights on the rapid growth of the most massive black holes in the Universe, and motivates future work with the next generation high energy observatories such as eROSITA, Athena, and Lynx.

  3. 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.

  4. Formation and Evolution of Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Combes, F.

    The correlation between the mass of supermassive black holes in galaxy nuclei and the mass of the galaxy spheroids or bulges (or more precisely their central velocity dispersion), suggests a common formation scenario for galaxies and their central black holes. The growth of bulges and black holes can commonly proceed through external gas accretion or hierarchical mergers, and are both related to starbursts. Internal dynamical processes control and regulate the rate of mass accretion. Self-regulation and feedback are key to the correlation. It is possible that the growth of one component, either BH or bulge, takes over, breaking the correlation, as in Narrow Line Seyfert 1 objects. The formation of supermassive black holes can begin early in the Universe, from the collapse of Population III stars, and then through gas accretion. The active black holes can then play a significant role in the re-ionization of the Universe. The nuclear activity is now frequently invoked as a feedback to star formation in galaxies, and even more spectacularly in cooling flows. The growth of SMBH is certainly self-regulated there. SMBHs perturb their local environment, and the mergers of binary SMBHs help to heat and destroy central stellar cusps. The interpretation of the X-ray background yields important constraints on the history of AGN activity and obscuration, and the census of AGN at low and at high redshifts reveals the downsizing effect, already observed for star formation. History appears quite different for bright QSO and low-luminosity AGN: the first grow rapidly at high z, and their number density decreases then sharply, while the density of low-luminosity objects peaks more recently, and then decreases smoothly.

  5. The Smallest Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greene, Jenny

    2012-03-01

    I discuss our ongoing efforts to search for the smallest supermassive black holes (BHs) with masses of 10^4-10^6 Msun. The number density and location of these enigmatic sources provide some of our only observational constraints on the first primordial seed BHs. Merging BHs in this mass range are expected to be strong gravitational wave sources. Finally, since these BHs live in very different environments from their more massive cousins, they allow us to study the interactions between BHs and galaxies in a new way. Unfortunately, low-mass BHs are hard to find. I will discuss the known BHs in this mass regime and the path forward to a definitive understanding of the population.

  6. SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE GROWTH IN STARBURST GALAXIES OVER COSMIC TIME: CONSTRAINTS FROM THE DEEPEST CHANDRA FIELDS

    SciTech Connect

    Rafferty, D. A.; Brandt, W. N.; Xue, Y. Q.; Luo, B.; Alexander, D. M.; Lehmer, B. D.; Bauer, F. E.; Papovich, C.

    2011-11-20

    We present an analysis of deep multiwavelength data for z Almost-Equal-To 0.3-3 starburst galaxies selected by their 70 {mu}m emission in the Extended-Chandra Deep Field-South and Extended Groth Strip. We identify active galactic nuclei (AGNs) in these infrared sources through their X-ray emission and quantify the fraction that host an AGN. We find that the fraction depends strongly on both the mid-infrared color and rest-frame mid-infrared luminosity of the source, rising to {approx}50%-70% at the warmest colors (F{sub 24{mu}m}/F{sub 70{mu}m} {approx}< 0.2) and highest mid-infrared luminosities (corresponding to ultraluminous infrared galaxies), similar to the trends found locally. Additionally, we find that the AGN fraction depends strongly on the star formation rate (SFR) of the host galaxy (inferred from the observed-frame 70 {mu}m luminosity after subtracting the estimated AGN contribution), particularly for more luminous AGNs (L{sub 0.5{sub -8.0keV}} {approx}> 10{sup 43} erg s{sup -1}). At the highest SFRs ({approx}1000 M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}), the fraction of galaxies with an X-ray detected AGN rises to Almost-Equal-To 30%, roughly consistent with that found in high-redshift submillimeter galaxies. Assuming that the AGN fraction is driven by the SFR (rather than stellar mass or redshift, for which our sample is largely degenerate), this result implies that the duty cycle of luminous AGN activity increases with the SFR of the host galaxy: specifically, we find that luminous X-ray detected AGNs are at least {approx}5-10 times more common in systems with high SFRs ({approx}> 300 M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}) than in systems with lower SFRs ({approx}< 30 M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}). Lastly, we investigate the ratio between the supermassive black hole accretion rate (inferred from the AGN X-ray luminosity) and the bulge growth rate of the host galaxy (approximated as the SFR) and find that, for sources with detected AGNs and star formation (and neglecting systems with low

  7. Quenching of Supermassive Black Hole Growth around the Apparent Maximum Mass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ichikawa, Kohei; Inayoshi, Kohei

    2017-05-01

    Recent quasar surveys have revealed that supermassive black holes (SMBHs) rarely exceed a mass of M BH ˜ a few × 1010 {M}⊙ during the entire cosmic history. It has been argued that quenching of the BH growth is caused by a transition of a nuclear accretion disk into an advection-dominated accretion flow, with which strong outflows and/or jets are likely to be associated. We investigate the relationship between the maximum mass of SMBHs and the radio-loudness of quasars with a well-defined sample of ˜105 quasars at a redshift range of 0 < z < 2, obtained from the Sloan Digital Sky Surveys DR7 catalog. We find that the number fraction of the radio-loud (RL) quasars increases above a threshold of M BH ≃ 2 × 109 {M}⊙ , independent of their redshifts. Moreover, the number fraction of RL quasars with lower Eddington ratios (out of all RL quasars), indicating lower accretion rates, increases above the critical BH mass. These observational trends can be natural consequences of the proposed scenario of suppressing BH growth around the apparent maximum mass of ˜1010 {M}⊙ . The ongoing VLA Sky Survey in radio will allow us to estimate of the exact number fraction of RL quasars more precisely, which gives further insight into the quenching processes for BH growth.

  8. 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.

  9. Model for common growth of supermassive black holes, bulges and globular star clusters: Ripping off Jeans clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nieuwenhuizen, Theo M.

    2012-02-01

    It is assumed that a galaxy starts as a dark halo of a few million Jeans clusters (JCs), each of which consists of nearly a trillion micro brown dwarfs, MACHOs of Earth mass. JCs in the galaxy center heat up their MACHOs by tidal forces, which makes them expand, so that coagulation and star formation occurs. Being continuously fed by matter from bypassing JCs, the central star(s) may transform into a super massive black hole. It has a fast t3 growth during the first mega years, and a slow t1/3 growth at giga years. JCs disrupted by a close encounter with this black hole can provide matter for the bulge. Those that survive can be so agitated that they form stars inside them and become globular star clusters. Thus black holes mostly arise together with galactic bulges in their own environment and are about as old as the oldest globular clusters. The age 13.2 Gy of the star HE 1523-0901 puts forward that the Galactic halo was fully assembled at that moment. The star formation rate has a maximum at black hole mass ~4·107Modot and bulge mass ~5·1010Modot. In case of merging supermassive black holes the JCs passing near the galactic center provide ideal assistance to overcome the last parsec.

  10. Gravitational Waves From Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    di Girolamo, Tristano

    2016-10-01

    In this talk, I will present the first direct detections of gravitational waves from binary stellar-mass black hole mergers during the first observing run of the two detectors of the Advanced Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory, which opened the field of gravitational-wave astronomy, and then discuss prospects for observing gravitational waves from supermassive black holes with future detectors.

  11. Making Supermassive Black Holes Spin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-12-01

    Where does the angular momentum come from that causes supermassive black holes (SMBHs) to spin on their axes and launch powerful jets? A new study of nearby SMBHs may help to answer this question.High-mass SMBHs are thought to form when two galaxies collide and the SMBHs at their centers merge. [NASA/Hubble Heritage Team (STScI)]High- vs. Low-Mass MonstersObservational evidence suggests a dichotomy between low-mass SMBHs (those with 106-7 M) and high-mass ones (those with 108-10 M). High-mass SMBHs are thought to form via the merger of two smaller black holes, and the final black hole is likely spun up by the rotational dynamics of the merger. But what spins up low-mass SMBHs, which are thought to build up very gradually via accretion?A team of scientists led by Jing Wang (National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences) have attempted to address this puzzle by examining the properties of the galaxies hosting low-mass SMBHs.A Sample of Neighboring SMBHsWang and collaborators began by constructing a sample of radio-selected nearby Seyfert 2 galaxies: those galaxies in which the stellar population and morphology of the host galaxy are visible to us, instead of being overwhelmed by continuum emission from the galaxys active nucleus.An example of a galaxy with a concentrated, classical bulge (M87; top) and a one with a disk-like pseudo bulge (Triangulum Galaxy; bottom). The authors find that for galaxies hosting low-mass SMBHs, those with more disk-like bulges appear to have more powerful radio jets. [Top: NASA/Hubble Heritage Team (STScI), Bottom: Hewholooks]From this sample, the authors then selected 31 galaxies that have low-mass SMBHs at their centers, as measured using the surrounding stellar dynamics. Wang and collaborators cataloged radio information revealing properties of the powerful jets launched by the SMBHs, and they analyzed the host galaxies properties by modeling their brightness profiles.Spin-Up From Accreting GasBy examining this

  12. Evolution of Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Filloux, Charline; de Freitas Pacheco, J. A.; Durier, Fabrice; Silk, Joseph

    2010-05-01

    Cosmological simulations describing both the evolution of supermassive black holes and their host galaxies were performed by using the tree PM-SPH code GADGET-2 (Springel 2005). Physical mechanisms affecting the dynamics and the physical conditions of the gas (ionization and cooling processes, local heating by stars, injection of mechanical energy by supernovae, chemical enrichment) were introduced in the present version of the code (Filloux 2009). Black holes in a state of accretion (AGNs) also inject mechanical energy in the surrounding medium, contributing for quenching the star formation activity. In all simulations a ΛCDM cosmology was adopted (h = 0.7, ΩΛ=0.7, Ωm=0.3, Ωb=0.046 and σ8=0.9). Simulations were performed in a volume with a side of 50h-1 Mpc, starting at z = 50 and through the present time (z = 0). For low and intermediate resolution runs, the initial gas mass particles are respectively 5.35× 108 M⊙ and 3.09×108 M⊙. Black holes (BHs) are represented by collisionless particles and seeds of 100 M⊙ were introduced in density peaks at z = 15, growing either by accretion or coalescence. The accretion rate from the “disk mode” is based on a turbulent viscous thin disk model whereas in the “spherical mode” the rate is given by the Bondi-Hoyle formula. When accreting matter, jets, modeled by conical regions perpendicular to the disk plane, inject kinetic energy into the surrounding medium. Two models were tested: in the first, the injected energy rate is about 10% of the gravitational energy rate released in the accretion process while in the second, the injected energy rate is based on the Blandford & Znajek (1977) mechanism. All simulations give, at z = 0, similar black hole mass function but they overestimate slightly the BH density for masses above ~ 108 M⊙. The resulting BH density in this mass range is affected by feedback processes since they control the amount of gas available for accretion. The present simulations are not

  13. The growth of typical star-forming galaxies and their supermassive 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

    2017-01-01

    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 High Redshift Emission Line Survey and use the wealth of multiwavelength data in the Cosmic Evolution Survey 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 0.001-0.01 M⊙ 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 per cent 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 SFR 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 Gyr. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Black Hole Mass Estimates and Rapid Growth of Supermassive Black Holes in Luminous z ~ 3.5 Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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 × 109 M ⊙ <~ M BH <~ 1.37 × 1010 M ⊙, with a median of ~5.14 × 109 M ⊙ 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 104 M ⊙, 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Offset Active Galactic Nuclei as Tracers of Galaxy Mergers and Supermassive Black Hole Growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Comerford, Julia M.; Greene, Jenny E.

    2014-07-01

    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-1 < |Δv| < 410 km s-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 bol) [erg s-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.

  18. 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.

  19. Connecting galaxy and supermassive black hole growth during the last 8 billion years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juneau, Stephanie

    It has become increasingly clear that a complete picture of galaxy evolution requires a better understanding of the role of Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN). In particular, they could be responsible for regulating star formation and galaxy growth via feedback processes. There are also competing views about the main modes of stellar growth and supermassive black hole growth in galaxies that need to be resolved. With high infrared luminosities (thus star formation rates) and a frequent occurrence of AGN, galaxies selected in the far-infrared wavebands form an ideal sample to search for a connection between AGN and star formation. The first part of this thesis contains a detailed analysis of the molecular gas properties of nearby infrared luminous and ultraluminous infrared galaxies (LIRGs and ULIRGs). We find that the enhanced molecular gas density in the most IR-luminous systems can be explained by major galaxy mergers, and that AGN are more likely to reside in higher-density systems. While the frequent concurrence of AGN and galaxy mergers in ULIRGs was already established, this work provides a coherent framework that explains trends observed with five molecular gas tracers with a broad range of critical densities, and a comparison with simulations that reproduce observed molecular line ratios without invoking AGN-induced chemistry. The second part of the thesis presents an analysis of the AGN content of intermediate redshift galaxies (0.3 < z < 1). However, identifying complete AGN samples at these redshift is challenging because it is difficult to find X-ray weak or absorbed AGN. To alleviate this problem, we developed the Mass-Excitation (MEx) diagram, which is applicable out to redshift of ˜ 1 with existing optical spectra. It improves the overall AGN census by detecting AGN that are missed in even the most sensitive X-ray surveys. The new diagnostic was used to study the concurrence of star formation and AGN in 70 micron-selected galaxies from the Far

  20. The Environmental Impact of Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loeb, A.

    The supermassive black holes observed at the centers of almost all present-day galaxies had a profound impact on their environment. I highlight the principle of self-regulation, by which supermassive black holes grow until they release sufficient energy to unbind the gas that feeds them from their host galaxy. This principle explains several observed facts, including the correlation between the mass of a central black hole and the depth of the gravitational potential well of its host galaxy, and the abundance and clustering properties of bright quasars in the redshift interval of z~ 2-6. At lower redshifts, quasars might have limited the maximum mass of galaxies through the suppression of cooling flows in X-ray clusters. The seeds of supermassive black holes were likely planted in dwarf galaxies at redshifts z> 10, through the collapse of massive or supermassive stars. The minimum seed mass can be identified observationally through the detection of gravitational waves from black hole binaries by Advanced LIGO or LISA. Aside from shaping their host galaxies, quasar outflows filled the intergalactic medium with magnetic fields and heavy elements. Beyond the reach of these outflows, the brightest quasars at z>6 have ionized exceedingly large volumes of gas (tens of comoving Mpc) prior to global reionization, and must have suppressed the faint end of the galaxy luminosity function in these volumes before the same occurred through the rest of the universe.

  1. Aspects of Supermassive Black Hole Growth in Nearby Active Galactic Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lena, Davide

    Super-massive black holes (SBHs) have long been identified as the engines of active galactic nuclei (AGNs) and are now considered to play a key role in galaxy evolution. In this dissertation I present results from two observational studies conducted on nearby AGNs with the aim of furthering our understanding of SBH growth and their interplay with the host galaxies. The first study is an observational search for SBHs spatially offset from the center of their host galaxies. Such offsets can be considered signatures of gravitational recoil following the coalescence of an SBH binary system (formed in the aftermath of a galaxy merger) due to emission of gravitational waves. The study is based on a photometric analysis of fourteen nearby elliptical galaxies observed with the Hubble Space Telescope. I find that parsec-scale offsets are common. However, while these are individually consistent with residual gravitational recoil oscillations, there is a high probability that larger offsets than those actually observed should have been found in the sample as a whole. There are a number of possible explanations for this result: the galaxy merger rate may be lower than current estimates; SBH-binaries may reach the merger stage with a configuration which minimizes recoil velocities; or the SBH oscillations are more quickly damped than predicted. In the second study I use integral field spectroscopy obtained with the Gemini South telescope to investigate the kinematics of the circum-nuclear ionized gas in two active galaxies: NGC 1386, a Seyfert 2, and NGC 1365, a Seyfert 1. The goal of the study is to investigate outflows in low-luminosity AGNs, and the mechanisms channeling gas (the SBH fuel) from the inner kiloparsec down to a few tens of parsecs from the SBH. I find that the dominant kinematic components can be explained as a combination of rotation in the large-scale galactic disk and compact outflows along the axis of the AGN "radiation cone". However, in the case of NGC

  2. 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.

  3. CO-DARK Star Formation and Black Hole Activity in 3C 368 at Z = 1.131: Coeval Growth of Stellar and Supermassive Black Hole Masses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lamarche, C.; Stacey, G.; Brisbin, D.; Ferkinhoff, C.; Hailey-Dunsheath, S.; Nikola, T.; Riechers, D.; Sharon, C. E.; Spoon, H.; Vishwas, A.

    2017-02-01

    We present the detection of four far-infrared fine-structure oxygen lines, as well as strong upper limits for the CO(2–1) and [N ii] 205 μm lines, in 3C 368, a well-studied radio-loud galaxy at z = 1.131. These new oxygen lines, taken in conjunction with previously observed neon and carbon fine-structure lines, suggest a powerful active galactic nucleus (AGN), accompanied by vigorous and extended star formation. A starburst dominated by O8 stars, with an age of ∼6.5 Myr, provides a good fit to the fine-structure line data. This estimated age of the starburst makes it nearly concurrent with the latest episode of AGN activity, suggesting a link between the growth of the supermassive black hole and stellar population in this source. We do not detect the CO(2–1) line, down to a level twelve times lower than the expected value for star-forming galaxies. This lack of CO line emission is consistent with recent star formation activity if the star-forming molecular gas has low metallicity, is highly fractionated (such that CO is photodissociated throughout much of the clouds), or is chemically very young (such that CO has not yet had time to form). It is also possible, although we argue it is unlikely, that the ensemble of fine-structure lines is emitted from the region heated by the AGN.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  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

    2016-06-09

    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. 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.

  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. Supermassive black holes in galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kormendy, John; Gebhardt, Karl

    2001-10-01

    We review the motivation and search for supermassive black holes (BHs) in galaxies. Energetic nuclear activity provides indirect but compelling evidence for BH engines. Ground-based dynamical searches for central dark objects are reviewed in Kormendy & Richstone (1995, ARA&A, 33, 581). Here we provide an update of results from the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). This has greatly accelerated the detection rate. As of 2001 March, dynamical BH detections are available for at least 37 galaxies. The demographics of these objects lead to the following conclusions: (1) BH mass correlates with the luminosity of the bulge component of the host galaxy, albeit with considerable scatter. The median BH mass fraction is 0.13% of the mass of the bulge. (2) BH mass correlates with the mean velocity dispersion of the bulge inside its effective radius, i.e., with how strongly the bulge stars are gravitationally bound to each other. For the best mass determinations, the scatter is consistent with the measurement errors. (3) BH mass correlates with the luminosity of the high-density central component in disk galaxies independent of whether this is a real bulge (a mini-elliptical, believed to form via a merger-induced dissipative collapse and starburst) or a ``pseudobulge'' (believed to form by inward transport of disk material). (4) BH mass does not correlate with the luminosity of galaxy disks. If pure disks contain BHs (and active nuclei imply that some do), then their masses are much smaller than 0.13% of the mass of the disk. We conclude that present observations show no dependence of BH mass on the details of whether BH feeding happens rapidly during a collapse or slowly via secular evolution of the disk. The above results increasingly support the hypothesis that the major events that form a bulge or elliptical galaxy and the main growth phases of its BH-when it shone like a quasar-were the same events. .

  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. Accretion flows onto supermassive black holes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begelman, Mitchell C.

    1988-01-01

    The radiative and hydrodynamic properties of an angular momentum-dominated accretion flow onto a supermassive black hole depend largely on the ratio of the accretion rate to the Eddington accretion rate. High values of this ratio favor optically thick flows which produce largely thermal radiation, while optically thin 'two-temperature' flows may be present in systems with small values of this ratio. Observations of some AGN suggest that thermal and nonthermal sources of radiation may be of comparable importance in the 'central engine'. Consideration is given to the possibilities for coexistence of different modes of accretion in a single flow. One intriguing possibility is that runaway pair production may cause an optically thick 'accretion annulus' to form at the center of a two-temperature inflow.

  18. Supermassive black holes in local galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bender, Ralf; Saglia, Roberto P.

    2007-01-01

    Over the past decade we have learned that probably all ellipticals and bulges of galaxies contain central supermassive black holes (SMBH). SMBH masses correlate well with the luminosities, and in turn the stellar masses of the bulges harboring them, with about 0.15% of the bulge mass being found in the SMBH. Pure disk galaxies, on the other hand, do not, in general, seem to contain SMBHs. Here we review the best cases for SMBH detection in galaxies, discuss methods and associated uncertainties, summarize correlations between SMBH masses and host galaxy properties, and finally address possible future developments. To cite this article: R. Bender, R.P. Saglia, C. R. Physique 8 (2007).

  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_⊙) and many hundreds of supermassive BHs ( M_BH=(10^6-1010) M_⊙) 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. Binary pairs of supermassive black holes - Formation in merging galaxies

    SciTech Connect

    Valtaoja, L.; Valtonen, M.J.; Byrd, G.G.; Alabama Univ., Tuscaloosa )

    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. 39 refs.

  2. 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.

    2017-01-01

    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 kiloparsec 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 gigayear 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 circularized in the disc mid-plane. 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.

  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. MAGNETICALLY LEVITATING ACCRETION DISKS AROUND SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Gaburov, Evghenii; Johansen, Anders; Levin, Yuri

    2012-10-20

    In this paper, we report on the formation of magnetically levitating accretion disks around supermassive black holes (SMBHs). The structure of these disks is calculated by numerically modeling tidal disruption of magnetized interstellar gas clouds. We find that the resulting disks are entirely supported by the pressure of the magnetic fields against the component of gravitational force directed perpendicular to the disks. The magnetic field shows ordered large-scale geometry that remains stable for the duration of our numerical experiments extending over 10% of the disk lifetime. Strong magnetic pressure allows high accretion rate and inhibits disk fragmentation. This in combination with the repeated feeding of magnetized molecular clouds to an SMBH yields a possible solution to the long-standing puzzle of black hole growth in the centers of galaxies.

  5. 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

  6. Supermassive Black Hole Through a Magnifying Glass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2015-12-01

    What happens when light from a distant quasar powered by a supermassive black hole is bent not only by a foreground galaxy, but also by individual stars within that galaxys nucleus? The neighborhood of the central black hole can be magnified, and we get a close look at the inner regions of its accretion disk!What is Microlensing?Our view of Q2237+0305 is heavily affected by a process called gravitational lensing. As evidenced by the four copies of the quasar in the image above, Q2237+0305 undergoes macrolensing, wherein the gravity of a massive foreground galaxy pulls on the light of a background object, distorting the image into arcs or multiple copies.But Q2237+0305 also undergoes an effect called microlensing. Due to the fortuitous alignment of Q2237+0305 with the nucleus of the foreground galaxy lensing it, stars within the foreground galaxy pass in front of the quasar images. As a star passes, its own gravitational pull also affects the light of the image, causing the image to brighten and/or magnify.How can we tell the difference between intrinsic brightening of Q2237+0305 and brightening due to microlensing? Brightening that occurs in all four images of the quasar is intrinsic. But if the brightening occurs in only one image, it must be caused by microlensing of that image. The timescale of this effect, which depends on how quickly the foreground galaxy moves relative to the background quasar, is on the order of a few hundred days for Q2237+0305.Resolving StructureThe light curve of a microlensed image can reveal information about the structure of the distant object. For this reason, a team of scientists led by Evencio Mediavilla (Institute of Astrophysics of the Canaries, University of La Laguna) has studied the light curves of three independent microlensing events of Q2237+0305 images.Average light curve of the three microlensing events near the peak brightness. The double-peaked structure may be due to light from the innermost region of the quasars

  7. How Supermassive Black Hole Feedback Might Work

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donahue, Megan

    2017-01-01

    How black holes regulate their own growth and the growth of their host galaxy is an unsolved problem in galaxy evolution. The problem is particularly acute in the centers of clusters of galaxies, where the largest and most massive galaxies in the universe are found. That is, coincidentally, also where the interaction between the black hole and the surrounding gas is the easiest to study because the gas is sufficiently hot and dense to emit X-rays. The massive central galaxies of clusters of galaxies (BCGs) exhibit striking patterns in their relationships between star formation, radio AGN activity, and the thermodynamic state of the hot, X-ray emitting intracluster gas (ICM) surrounding the galaxies. The AGN jets excavate giant, kpc-scale cavities in the hot gas, in principle, supplying enough heat to the ICM to replace energy lost to radiative cooling. Simulations suggest (by elimination) that AGN feedback must be required to explain the luminosity and colors of these galaxies, but cosmological simulations still struggle with modeling how AGN feedback works in detail. In clusters of galaxies with active AGN and star-forming BCGs, the AGN somehow regulates the gaseous atmosphere to be marginally critical, with a ratio of the cooling time to the free fall time of ~ 5-20. This behavior is also seen in elliptical galaxies, where the feedback is mostly coming from stars. I will discuss the observations that motivated this model. The precipitation model in BCGs is a class of models known as "preventative" feedback, regulated by jets in BCGs. Further, the complex behaviour seen in recent idealized simulations seem to follow emergent patterns predicted by this model, while reproducing the scatter and the time scales inferred from the observations. The link between the thermal instabilities and the depth of the gravitational potential may explain scaling laws such as the black hole mass-velocity dispersion relation, the galaxy mass-metallicity relation and the baryonic

  8. A Nearly Naked Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Condon, J. J.; Darling, Jeremy; Kovalev, Y. Y.; Petrov, L.

    2017-01-01

    During a systematic search for supermassive black holes (SMBHs) not in galactic nuclei, we identified the compact, symmetric radio source B3 1715+425 with an emission-line galaxy offset ≈ 8.5 {kpc} from the nucleus of the brightest cluster galaxy (BCG) in the redshift z = 0.1754 cluster ZwCl 8193. B3 1715+425 is too bright (brightness temperature {T}{{b}}∼ 3× {10}10 {{K}} at observing frequency ν =7.6 {GHz}) and too luminous (1.4 GHz luminosity {L}1.4{GHz}∼ {10}25 {{W}} {{Hz}}-1) to be powered by anything but an SMBH, but its host galaxy is much smaller (∼ 0.9 {kpc}× 0.6 {kpc} full width between half-maximum points) and optically fainter (R-band absolute magnitude {M}{{r}}≈ -18.2) than any other radio galaxy. Its high radial velocity {v}{{r}}≈ 1860 {km} {{{s}}}-1 relative to the BCG, continuous ionized wake extending back to the BCG nucleus, and surrounding debris indicate that the radio galaxy was tidally shredded passing through the BCG core, leaving a nearly naked SMBH fleeing from the BCG with space velocity v≳ 2000 {km} {{{s}}}-1. The radio galaxy has mass M≲ 6× {10}9 {M}ȯ and infrared luminosity {L}{IR}∼ 3× {10}11 {L}ȯ close to its dust Eddington limit, so it is vulnerable to further mass loss from radiative feedback.

  9. MIGRATION TRAPS IN DISKS AROUND SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

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

    2016-03-10

    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 20–300R{sub g}, where R{sub g} = 2GM/c{sup 2} 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. Blossoms From Supermassive Black Hole Seeds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Habouzit, Melanie

    2017-07-01

    Massive black holes (BHs) inhabit local galaxies, including the Milky Way and some dwarf galaxies. BH formation, occurring at early cosmic times, must account for the properties of BHs in today's galaxies, notably why some galaxies host a BH, and others do not. We investigate the formation, distribution and growth of BH seeds by using the adaptive mesh refinement code Ramses. We develop an implementation of BH formation in dense, low-metallicity environments, as advocated by models invoking the collapse of the first generation of stars, or of dense nuclear star clusters. The seed masses are computed one-by-one on-the-fly, based on the star formation rate and the stellar initial mass function. This self-consistent method to seed BHs allows us to study the distribution of BHs in a cosmological context and their evolution over cosmic time. We find that all high-mass galaxies tend to a host a BH, whereas low-mass counterparts have a lower probability of hosting a BH. After the end of the epoch of BH formation, this probability is modulated by the growth of the galaxy. The simulated BHs connect to low-redshift observational samples, and span a similar range in accretion properties as Lyman-Break Analogs. The growth of BHs in low-mass galaxies is stunted by strong supernova feedback. The properties of BHs in dwarf galaxies thus remain a testbed for BH formation. Simulations with strong supernova feedback, which is able to quench BH accretion in shallow potential wells, produce galaxies and BHs in better agreement with observational constraints.

  13. ALMA Explores How Supermassive Black Holes Talk to Their Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2017-03-01

    We believe that supermassive black holes evolve in tandem with their host galaxies but how do the two communicate? Observations from the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) have revealed new clues about how a monster black hole talks to its galaxy.A Hubble image of the central galaxy in the Phoenix cluster. [Adapted from Russell et al. 2017]Observing FeedbackActive galactic nuclei (AGN), the highly luminous centers of some galaxies, are thought to radiate due to active accretion onto the supermassive black hole at their center.Its long been suspected that the radiation and outflowing material which often takes the form of enormous bipolar radio jets emitted into the surroundings influence the AGNs host galaxy, affecting star formation rates and the evolution of the galaxy. This AGN feedback has been alternately suggested to trigger star formation, quench it, and truncate the growth of massive galaxies.The details of this feedback process, however, have yet to be thoroughly understood in part because its difficult to obtain detailed observations of how AGN outflows interact with the galactic gas surrounding them. Now, a team of scientists led by Helen Russell (Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge, UK) has published the results of a new, high-resolution look at the gas in a massive galaxy in the center of the Phoenix cluster.Many Uses for FuelThe Phoenix cluster, a nearby (z = 0.596) group of star-forming galaxies, is the most luminous X-ray cluster known. The central galaxy in the cluster is especially active: it hosts a starburst of 500800 solar masses per year, the largest starburst found in any galaxy below a redshift of z= 1.The star formation in this galaxy is sustained by an enormous reservoir of cold molecular gas roughly 20 billion solar masses worth. This reservoir also powers the galaxys central black hole, fueling powerful radio jets that extend into the hot atmosphere of the galaxy and blow a giant bubble into the hot gas at each pole

  14. The early growth of the first black holes

    SciTech Connect

    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 at 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.

  15. The early growth of the first black holes

    DOE PAGES

    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

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Coevolution of Supermassive Black Holes and Their Host Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hiner, Kyle Devon

    The role of black holes in galaxy evolution has come under intense scrutiny since it was discovered that every galaxy in the local universe contains a supermassive black hole (SMBH) at its nucleus. The existence of scaling relations between the SMBH and its host galaxy show that their presence is not coincidental, but rather that SMBHs and their hosts have a shared evolution. The nature of this coevolution is still debated with some proposing it to be a natural result of hierarchical merging models, while others invoke SMBH feedback mechanisms that couple BH growth with that of the host galaxy. In this dissertation, I examine different regimes of SMBH activity and host galaxy properties. I investigate a sample of post-starburst galaxies to gain insight into the morphological and spectrophotometric evolution of galaxies through galaxy interactions and mergers. I plot detailed comparisons of the galaxy kinematics as measured from different stellar populations. I also investigate post-starburst galaxies that simultaneously host an AGN. I develop a technique to study the properties of both the host galaxy and the SMBH in these objects, directly investigating the scaling relation between the two. I describe analysis performed on red quasars in another study that directly probes the scaling relations in the non-local universe. Lastly, I conduct SED fitting of quasars to illuminate the differences between two major spectral types, and investigate host galaxy properties including star formation. All of these projects focus on the relationship between the SMBH and host galaxy. I show that a range of galaxy interactions can lead to black hole growth and are part of galaxy evolution over cosmic time.

  19. Supermassive black holes formed by direct collapse of inflationary perturbations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakama, Tomohiro; Suyama, Teruaki; Yokoyama, Jun'ichi

    2016-11-01

    We propose a mechanism of producing a new type of primordial perturbations that collapse to primordial black holes, whose mass can be as large as necessary for them to grow to the supermassive black holes observed at high redshifts, without contradicting Cosmic Background Explorer/Far Infrared Absolute Spectrophotometer (COBE/FIRAS) upper limits on cosmic microwave background (CMB) spectral distortions. In our model, the observable Universe consists of two kinds of many small patches which experienced different expansion histories during inflation. Primordial perturbations large enough to form primordial black holes are realized on patches that experienced more Hubble expansion than the others. By making these patches the minor component, the rarity of supermassive black holes can be explained. On the other hand, most regions of the Universe experienced the standard history and, hence, only have standard almost-scale-invariant adiabatic perturbations confirmed by observations of CMB or large-scale structures of the Universe. Thus, our mechanism can evade the constraint from the nondetection of the CMB distortion set by the COBE/FIRAS measurement. Our model predicts the existence of supermassive black holes even at redshifts much higher than those observed. Hence, our model can be tested by future observations peeking into the higher-redshift Universe.

  20. The close environments of supermassive black holes with Athena

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kara, Erin

    X-ray observations of Active Galactic Nuclei reveal the innermost regions within a few tens of gravitational radii from the central supermassive black hole. Athena, with its large effective area, excellent energy resolution, and L2 orbit, will make fundamental and unique contributions to our understanding of the physics of accretion in AGN. Athena will allow us to map the disc-corona geometry, through unprecedented measurements of X-ray reverberation lags. This is crucial in understanding how energy is extracted from the black hole and what the relationship of the corona is to winds and jets. We will be able to make the most robust measurements of black hole spin in the nearby universe and beyond, which is central to understanding the accretion history of supermassive black holes. The increased effective area and fine energy resolution will enable various spectral components to be deconvolved, separating out the broad features from the innermost disc, and the narrow emission lines components from more distant matter. These clear measurements of distant material, and the inflowing/outflowing gas will provide a link between the close environment of the supermassive black hole and its host galaxy.

  1. Prospects for Measuring Supermassive Black Hole Masses with TMT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-07-01

    The next generation of giant-segmented mirror telescopes 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 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 ˜10^4 M⊙ to the most massive black holes known today of >10^10 M⊙. I will present simulations across a spectrum of black hole masses and galaxy types to show the ability of IRIS and TMT to quantitatively explore the demographics of black holes in the universe. I will discuss how these observations will enable our study of the origin of the MBH - galaxy velocity dispersion and MBH - galaxy luminosity relationships, and the evolution of black holes through cosmic time.

  2. On the Supermassive Black Hole-Galaxy Coevolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hegde, Sahil; Zhang, Shawn; Rodriguez, Aldo; Primack, Joel R.

    2017-01-01

    In recent years, a major focus of astronomy has been the study of the effects of supermassive black holes (SMBH) on their host galaxies. Recent results have found strong correlations between SMBH mass and host galaxy properties, most notably in the bulge velocity dispersion and galaxy stellar mass. We utilize these relations along with a novel convolution method to construct number density models of different galaxy properties. Using these models, we compare two fundamental methods for constructing a black hole mass function (BHMF) with the M⊙-σ and M⊙-M* relations. With these methods, we estimate the redshift evolution of the BHMF and, based on that, compare mass growth histories of central black holes and their host galaxies. Additionally, we utilize a data compilation of over 500 galaxies with individual measurements of galaxy properties (BH mass, stellar velocity dispersion, stellar mass, etc.) and classify galaxies by their morphologies in order to shed light on the controversial Shankar et al. (2016) argument that observations are biased in favor of massive SMBHs. We find that such a bias has little impact on the SMBH-galaxy relations.We conclude that the galaxy sample is a fair representation of the local universe and argue that our BH number density and scaling relations can be employed in the future to constrain relevant mechanisms for galaxy formation. We emphasize that this is the most comprehensive and accurate study of SMBH-galaxy coevolution as of now. Most of this work was carried out by high school students working under the auspices of the Science Internship Program at UC Santa Cruz.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. Tests of Gravity Theories Using Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakstein, Jeremy; Jain, Bhuvnesh; Heyl, Jeremy S.; Hui, Lam

    2017-07-01

    Scalar-tensor theories of gravity generally violate the strong equivalence principle, namely that compact objects have a suppressed coupling to the scalar force, which causes them to fall slower. A black hole is the extreme example where such a coupling vanishes, i.e., black holes have no scalar hair. We explore observational scenarios for detecting strong equivalence principle violation, focusing on galileon gravity as an example. For galaxies infalling toward galaxy clusters, the supermassive black hole can be offset from the galaxy center away from the direction of the cluster. Well-resolved images of galaxies around nearby clusters can therefore be used to identify the displaced black hole via the star cluster bound to it. We show that this signal is accessible with imaging surveys, both ongoing ones such as the Dark Energy Survey and future ground- and space-based surveys. Already, the observation of the central black hole in M 87 places new constraints on the galileon parameters, which we present here. { O }(1) matter couplings are disfavored for a large region of the parameter space. We also find a novel phenomenon whereby the black hole can escape the galaxy completely in less than one billion years.

  6. The supermassive black hole of FornaxA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nowak, N.; Saglia, R. P.; Thomas, J.; Bender, R.; Davies, R. I.; Gebhardt, K.

    2008-12-01

    The radio galaxy FornaxA (NGC 1316) is a prominent merger remnant in the outskirts of the Fornax cluster. Its giant radio lobes suggest the presence of a powerful active galactic nuclei (AGN) and thus a central supermassive black hole (SMBH). FornaxA now seems to be in a transition state between active black hole growth and quiescence, as indicated by the strongly declined activity of the nucleus. Studying objects in this evolutionary phase is particularly important in order to understand the link between bulge formation and black hole growth, which is manifested in the M•-σ relation between black hole mass and bulge velocity dispersion. So far, a measurement of the SMBH mass has not been possible in FornaxA, as it is enshrouded in dust which makes optical measurements impossible. We present high-resolution adaptive optics assisted integral-field data of FornaxA, taken with SINFONI at the Very Large Telescope in the K band, where the influence of dust is negligible. The achieved spatial resolution is 0.085 arcsec, which is about a fifth of the diameter of the expected sphere of influence of the black hole. The stellar kinematics was measured using the region around the CO bandheads at 2.3 μm. FornaxA does not rotate inside the inner ~3 arcsec. The velocity dispersion increases towards the centre. The weak AGN emission affects the stellar kinematics in the inner ~0.06 arcsec only. Beyond this radius, the stellar kinematics appears relaxed in the central regions. We use axisymmetric orbit models to determine the mass of the SMBH in the centre of FornaxA. The three-dimensional nature of our data provides the possibility to directly test the consistency of the data with axisymmetry by modelling each of the four quadrants separately. According to our dynamical models, consistent SMBH masses M• and dynamical Ks-band mass-to-light ratios Υ are obtained for all quadrants, with = 1.3 × 108Msolar [rms(M•) = 0.4 × 108Msolar] and <Υ> = 0.68 [rms(Υ) = 0

  7. 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

  8. Black hole growth and AGN feedback under clumpy accretion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeGraf, C.; Dekel, A.; Gabor, J.; Bournaud, F.

    2017-04-01

    High-resolution simulations of supermassive black holes in isolated galaxies have suggested the importance of short (∼10 Myr) episodes of rapid accretion caused by interactions between the black hole and massive dense clouds within the host. Accretion of such clouds could potentially provide the dominant source for black hole growth in high-z galaxies, but it remains unresolved in cosmological simulations. Using a stochastic subgrid model calibrated by high-resolution isolated galaxy simulations, we investigate the impact that variability in black hole accretion rates has on black hole growth and the evolution of the host galaxy. We find this clumpy accretion to more efficiently fuel high-redshift black hole growth. This increased mass allows for more rapid accretion even in the absence of high-density clumps, compounding the effect and resulting in substantially faster overall black hole growth. This increased growth allows the black hole to efficiently evacuate gas from the central region of the galaxy, driving strong winds up to ∼2500 km s-1, producing outflows ∼10 × stronger than the smooth accretion case, suppressing the inflow of gas on to the host galaxy, and suppressing the star formation within the galaxy by as much as a factor of 2. This suggests that the proper incorporation of variability is a key factor in the co-evolution between black holes and their hosts.

  9. Formation of discs around super-massive black hole binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goicovic, Felipe G.; Cuadra, Jorge; Sesana, Alberto

    2016-02-01

    We model numerically the evolution of 104 M ⊙ turbulent molecular clouds in near-radial infall onto 106 M ⊙, equal-mass supermassive black hole binaries, using a modified version of the SPH code gadget-3. We investigate the different gas structures formed depending on the relative inclination between the binary and the cloud orbits. Our first results indicate that an aligned orbit produces mini-discs around each black hole, almost aligned with the binary; a perpendicular orbit produces misaligned mini-discs; and a counter-aligned orbit produces a circumbinary, counter-rotating ring.

  10. Supermassive Black Holes: Work Horses of the Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNamara, Brian

    The hot atmospheres of galaxies and clusters of galaxies arerepositories for the energy output from accreting, supermassive black holes located in the nuclei of galaxies. X-ray observations show that star formation fueled by gas condensing out of hot atmospheres is strongly suppressed by feedback from active galactic nuclei (AGN). This mechanism may solve several outstanding problems in astrophysics, including the numbers of luminous galaxies and their colors, and the excess number of hot baryons in the Universe. New data will be presented showing that some AGN may be powered by rapidly-spinning, ultra-massive black holes.

  11. 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

  12. Improved Constraints to the Local Supermassive Black Hole Occupation Fraction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Jianfeng; Gallo, Elena; Miller, Brendan P.

    2017-01-01

    The occupation fraction of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in local dwarf galaxies is thought to be related to the formation mechanism of the first black holes in the early Universe. Light black hole seeds, such as Pop III star remnants, are likely to result in a significantly higher occupation fraction compared to heavy seeds (~104 solar mass) arising from the global collapse of massive gas clouds. Chandra observations of nearby dwarf galaxies can push the detection threshold for SMBH activity down to the lowest observable Eddington ratios. This, folded with analytical prescriptions for the intrinsic occupation fraction across the mass spectrum, yields an observational constraints to the SMBH occupation fraction in the dwarf galaxy regime. Building on previous work by Miller et al. (2015), here we analyze a sample of ~240 early-type galaxies (D < 30 Mpc) with archival Chandra coverage, and report on our improved constraints to the local SMBH occupation fraction.

  13. A candidate sub-parsec supermassive binary black hole system.

    PubMed

    Boroson, Todd A; Lauer, Tod R

    2009-03-05

    The role of mergers in producing galaxies, together with the finding that most large galaxies harbour black holes in their nuclei, implies that binary supermassive black hole systems should be common. Here we report that the quasar SDSS J153636.22+044127.0 is a plausible example of such a system. This quasar shows two broad-line emission systems, separated in velocity by 3,500 km s(-1). A third system of unresolved absorption lines has an intermediate velocity. These characteristics are unique among known quasars. We interpret this object as a binary system of two black holes, having masses of 10(7.3) and 10(8.9) solar masses separated by approximately 0.1 parsec with an orbital period of approximately 100 years.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-06-05

    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.

  15. 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.

  16. The Galactic Tango: The Elegant Dance of Galaxies and their Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sherman, Sydney; Li, Yuexing; Zhu, Qirong

    2015-01-01

    For well over a decade, it has been known that a supermassive black hole resides in the center of almost every galaxy, and that these black holes strongly correlate with the stellar velocity dispersion (the MBH-σ correlation) and stellar mass (the MBH-Mhost correlation) of their hosts. The origins of these correlations, however, have yet to be determined. To explore the interplay between black holes and galaxies, we have utilized a sample of nearby spiral and elliptical galaxies as well as a sample of AGN in the redshift range z = 0-3. By examining galaxy properties such as mass, kinematics, and growth history, we have determined that these two correlations have distinct origins: the MBH-σ relation may be the result of virial equilibrium, whereas the MBH-Mhost relation may be the result of self-regulated black hole growth and star formation in galaxies. These results confirm the predictions of our previous theoretical model.

  17. Physical Processes in the Vicinity of a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Do, Tuan

    2010-08-01

    The Galactic center offers us an opportunity to study the environment around a supermassive black hole at a level of detail not possible in other galactic nuclei. This potential has been greatly expanded by the implementation of laser guide star adaptive optics and integral field spectroscopy on large ground-based telescopes. This thesis takes advantage of these technologies to address the nature of the variable near-infrared emission from the black hole as well as test theories of the equilibrium configuration of a star cluster with a supermassive black hole at its center. First, we present the results of near-infrared (2 and 3 micron) monitoring of Sgr A*-IR with 1 min time sampling. Sgr A*-IR was observed continuously for up to three hours on each of seven nights, between 2005 July and 2007 August. Sgr A*-IR is detectable at all times and is continuously variable, with a median observed 2 micron flux density of 0.192 mJy, corresponding to 16.3 magnitude at K^'. These observations allow us to investigate Nyquist sampled periods ranging from about 2 minutes to an hour. Using Monte Carlo simulations, we find that the variability of Sgr A* in this data set is consistent with models based on correlated noise with power spectra having frequency dependent power law slopes between 2.0 to 3.0, consistent with those reported for AGN light curves. Of particular interest are periods of ˜ 20 min, corresponding to a quasi-periodic signal claimed based upon previous near-infrared observations and interpreted as the orbit of a `hot spot' at or near the last stable orbit of a spinning black hole. We find no significant periodicity at any time scale probed in these new observations for periodic signals. This study is sensitive to periodic signals with amplitudes greater than 20% of the maximum amplitude of the underlying red noise component for light curves with duration greater than ˜ 2 hours at a 98% confidence limit. Second, we report on the structure of the nuclear star

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

    2017-01-01

    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 qualitatively 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 circularization outside the black hole's horizon. Less massive quasi-stars could form but last for only ≲104 yr 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. EXAMINING SUBGRID MODELS OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN COSMOLOGICAL SIMULATION

    SciTech Connect

    Sutter, P. M.; Ricker, P. M. E-mail: pmricker@illinois.ed

    2010-11-10

    Although supermassive black holes (SMBHs) play an important role in galaxy and cluster evolution, at present they can only be included in large-scale cosmological simulation via subgrid techniques. However, these subgrid models have not been studied in a systematic fashion. Using a newly developed fast, parallel spherical overdensity halo finder built into the simulation code FLASH, we perform a suite of dark matter-only cosmological simulations to study the effects of subgrid model choice on relations between SMBH mass and dark matter halo mass and velocity dispersion. We examine three aspects of SMBH subgrid models: the choice of initial black hole seed mass, the test for merging two black holes, and the frequency of applying the subgrid model. We also examine the role that merging can play in determining the relations, ignoring the complicating effects of SMBH-driven accretion and feedback. We find that the choice of subgrid model can dramatically affect the black hole merger rate, the cosmic SMBH mass density, and the low-redshift relations to halo properties. We also find that it is possible to reproduce observations of the low-redshift relations without accretion and feedback, depending on the choice of subgrid model.

  3. THE SPIN OF THE SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE IN NGC 3783

    SciTech Connect

    Brenneman, L. W.; Reynolds, C. S.; Trippe, M.; Mushotzky, R. F.; Nowak, M. A.; Reis, R. C.; Fabian, A. C.; Iwasawa, K.; Lee, J. C.; Miller, J. M.; Volonteri, M.; Nandra, K.

    2011-08-01

    The Suzaku AGN Spin Survey is designed to determine the supermassive black hole spin in six nearby active galactic nuclei (AGNs) via deep Suzaku stares, thereby giving us our first glimpse of the local black hole spin distribution. Here, we present an analysis of the first target to be studied under the auspices of this Key Project, the Seyfert galaxy NGC 3783. Despite complexity in the spectrum arising from a multi-component warm absorber, we detect and study relativistic reflection from the inner accretion disk. Assuming that the X-ray reflection is from the surface of a flat disk around a Kerr black hole, and that no X-ray reflection occurs within the general relativistic radius of marginal stability, we determine a lower limit on the black hole spin of a {>=} 0.88 (99% confidence). We examine the robustness of this result to the assumption of the analysis and present a brief discussion of spin-related selection biases that might affect flux-limited samples of AGNs.

  4. 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.

  5. Alignment of Supermassive Black Hole Binary Orbits and Spins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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 ~1 pc to ~10-3-10-2 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 ~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 ~(m 1/m 2)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.

  6. 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.

  7. Physics of Coevolution of Galaxies and Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cen, Renyue

    2012-08-01

    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. Ram-pressure feeding of supermassive black holes.

    PubMed

    Poggianti, Bianca M; Jaffé, Yara L; Moretti, Alessia; Gullieuszik, Marco; Radovich, Mario; Tonnesen, Stephanie; Fritz, Jacopo; Bettoni, Daniela; Vulcani, Benedetta; Fasano, Giovanni; Bellhouse, Callum; Hau, George; Omizzolo, Alessandro

    2017-08-16

    When a supermassive black hole at the centre of a galaxy accretes matter, it gives rise to a highly energetic phenomenon: an active galactic nucleus. Numerous physical processes have been proposed to account for the funnelling of gas towards the galactic centre to feed the black hole. There are also several physical processes that can remove gas from a galaxy, one of which is ram-pressure stripping by the hot gas that fills the space between galaxies in galaxy clusters. Here we report that six out of a sample of seven 'jellyfish' galaxies-galaxies with long 'tentacles' of material that extend for dozens of kiloparsecs beyond the galactic disks-host an active nucleus, and two of them also have galactic-scale ionization cones. The high incidence of nuclear activity among heavily stripped jellyfish galaxies may be due to ram pressure causing gas to flow towards the centre and triggering the activity, or to an enhancement of the stripping caused by energy injection from the active nucleus, or both. Our analysis of the galactic position and velocity relative to the cluster strongly supports the first hypothesis, and puts forward ram pressure as another possible mechanism for feeding the central supermassive black hole with gas.

  9. Measuring the Innermost Stable Circular Orbits of Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chartas, G.; Krawczynski, H.; Zalesky, L.; Kochanek, C. S.; Dai, X.; Morgan, C. W.; Mosquera, A.

    2017-03-01

    We present a promising new technique, the g-distribution method, for measuring the inclination angle (i), the innermost stable circular orbit (ISCO), and the spin of a supermassive black hole. The g-distribution method uses measurements of the energy shifts in the relativistic iron line emitted by the accretion disk of a supermassive black hole due to microlensing by stars in a foreground galaxy relative to the g-distribution shifts predicted from microlensing caustic calculations. We apply the method to the gravitationally lensed quasars RX J1131–1231 (z s = 0.658, z l = 0.295), QJ 0158–4325 (z s = 1.294, z l = 0.317), and SDSS 1004+4112 (z s = 1.734, z l = 0.68). For RX J1131‑1231, our initial results indicate that r ISCO ≲ 8.5 gravitational radii (r g) and i ≳ 55° (99% confidence level). We detect two shifted Fe lines in several observations, as predicted in our numerical simulations of caustic crossings. The current ΔE distribution of RX J1131–1231 is sparsely sampled, but further X-ray monitoring of RX J1131–1231 and other lensed quasars will provide improved constraints on the inclination angles, ISCO radii, and spins of the black holes of distant quasars.

  10. Ram-pressure feeding of supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poggianti, Bianca M.; Jaffé, Yara L.; Moretti, Alessia; Gullieuszik, Marco; Radovich, Mario; Tonnesen, Stephanie; Fritz, Jacopo; Bettoni, Daniela; Vulcani, Benedetta; Fasano, Giovanni; Bellhouse, Callum; Hau, George; Omizzolo, Alessandro

    2017-08-01

    When a supermassive black hole at the centre of a galaxy accretes matter, it gives rise to a highly energetic phenomenon: an active galactic nucleus. Numerous physical processes have been proposed to account for the funnelling of gas towards the galactic centre to feed the black hole. There are also several physical processes that can remove gas from a galaxy, one of which is ram-pressure stripping by the hot gas that fills the space between galaxies in galaxy clusters. Here we report that six out of a sample of seven ‘jellyfish’ galaxies—galaxies with long ‘tentacles’ of material that extend for dozens of kiloparsecs beyond the galactic disks—host an active nucleus, and two of them also have galactic-scale ionization cones. The high incidence of nuclear activity among heavily stripped jellyfish galaxies may be due to ram pressure causing gas to flow towards the centre and triggering the activity, or to an enhancement of the stripping caused by energy injection from the active nucleus, or both. Our analysis of the galactic position and velocity relative to the cluster strongly supports the first hypothesis, and puts forward ram pressure as another possible mechanism for feeding the central supermassive black hole with gas.

  11. Supermassive black holes in disc-dominated galaxies outgrow their bulges and co-evolve with their host galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, B. D.; Smethurst, R. J.; Lintott, C.

    2017-09-01

    The deep connection between galaxies and their supermassive black holes is central to modern astrophysics and cosmology. The observed correlation between galaxy and black hole mass is usually attributed to the contribution of major mergers to both. We make use of a sample of galaxies whose disc-dominated morphologies indicate a major-merger-free history and show that such systems are capable of growing supermassive black holes at rates similar to quasars. Comparing black hole masses to conservative upper limits on bulge masses, we show that the black holes in the sample are typically larger than expected if processes creating bulges are also the primary driver of black hole growth. The same relation between black hole and total stellar mass of the galaxy is found for the merger-free sample as well as a sample that has experienced substantial mergers, indicating that major mergers do not play a significant role in controlling the co-evolution of galaxies and black holes. We suggest that more fundamental processes that contribute to galaxy assembly are also responsible for black hole growth.

  12. In Search Of Tiny Giants: Finding Supermassive Black Holes In Low Mass Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanner Berger, Dillon; Satyapal, Shobita; Abel, Nick; Blecha, Laura; Mushotzky, Richard; Reynolds, Christopher

    2017-01-01

    Most, if not all, massive galaxies have a central supermassive black hole (SMBH) with a mass of up to 1 billion times the mass of the Sun. While the properties of SMBHs and their host galaxies have been well-studied in massive galaxies, very few SMBHs have been found in galaxies with low masses and those with small bulges. This is a significant deficiency since the study of this population allows us to gain an understanding of merger-free pathways to black hole growth, and to gain insight into the origin and growth efficiency of SMBH seeds, thought to have formed at high redshift. Most studies aimed at finding SMBHs have been conducted using optical spectroscopic studies, where active SMBHs (active galactic nuclei or AGNs) display distinctive optical emission lines indicative of accreting SMBHs. However, in low mass galaxies, the SMBHs will likely be less massive. As the black hole masses decreases, the Schwartzchild radius of the black hole decreases, and in response, the temperature of the surrounding accretion disk increases. The shape of the ionizing radiation field therefore changes with black hole mass, potentially affecting the optical spectroscopic signatures generally associated with AGNs. In this work, we investigate the effect of black hole mass on the emission line spectrum from AGNs.

  13. Magnetorotatioal Collapse of Supermassive Stars: Black Hole Formation and Jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Lunan; Paschalidis, Vasileios; Ruiz, Milton; Shapiro, Stuart

    2017-01-01

    We perform magnetohydrodynamic simulations in full general relativity of the collapse of radially unstable, uniformly rotating, massive stars to black holes. The stars spin at the mass-shedding limit, account for magnetic fields and obey a Γ = 4/3 EOS. The calculations lift the restriction of axisymmetry imposed in previous simulations. Our simulations model the direct collapse of supermassive stars to supermassive BHs (>=104M⊙) at high cosmological redshifts, which may explain the appearance of supermassive BHs and quasars by z 7. They also crudely model the collapse of massive Pop III stars to massive BHs, which could power some of the long gamma-ray bursts observed by FERMI and SWIFT at z 6-8. We analyze the properties of the electromagnetic and gravitational wave signatures of these events and discuss the detectability of such multimessenger sources.

  14. Imaging Compact Supermassive Binary Black Holes with Very Long Baseline Interferometry

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-01-01

    International Astronomical Union doi:10.1017/S174392130700511X Imaging compact supermassive binary black holes with Very Long Baseline Interferometry G. B. Taylor...University, Stanford, CA 94305 USA email: gbtaylor@unm.edu Abstract.We report on the discovery of a supermassive binary black - hole (SBBH) system in... Black hole physics – gravitational waves – galaxies: active – radio continuum: galaxies 1. Introduction Given that most galaxies harbor supermassive

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. RAPIDLY ACCRETING SUPERGIANT PROTOSTARS: EMBRYOS OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES?

    SciTech Connect

    Hosokawa, Takashi; Yorke, Harold W.; Omukai, Kazuyuki E-mail: hosokwtk@gmail.com

    2012-09-01

    Direct collapse of supermassive stars (SMSs) is a possible pathway for generating supermassive black holes in the early universe. It is expected that an SMS could form via very rapid mass accretion with M-dot{sub *} {approx} 0.1-1 M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1} during the gravitational collapse of an atomic-cooling primordial gas cloud. In this paper, we study how stars would evolve under such extreme rapid mass accretion, focusing on the early evolution until the stellar mass reaches 10{sup 3} M{sub Sun }. To this end, we numerically calculate the detailed interior structure of accreting stars with primordial element abundances. Our results show that for accretion rates higher than 10{sup -2} M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}, stellar evolution is qualitatively different from that expected at lower rates. While accreting at these high rates, the star always has a radius exceeding 100 R{sub Sun }, which increases monotonically with the stellar mass. The mass-radius relation for stellar masses exceeding {approx}100 M{sub Sun} follows the same track with R{sub *}{proportional_to}M {sup 1/2}{sub *} in all cases with accretion rates {approx}> 10{sup -2} M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}; at a stellar mass of 10{sup 3} M{sub Sun }, the radius is {approx_equal} 7000 R{sub Sun} ({approx_equal} 30 AU). With higher accretion rates, the onset of hydrogen burning is shifted toward higher stellar masses. In particular, for accretion rates exceeding M-dot{sub *}{approx}>0.1 M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}, there is no significant hydrogen burning even after 10{sup 3} M{sub Sun} have accreted onto the protostar. Such 'supergiant' protostars have effective temperatures as low as T{sub eff} {approx_equal} 5000 K throughout their evolution and because they hardly emit ionizing photons, they do not create an H II region or significantly heat their immediate surroundings. Thus, radiative feedback is unable to hinder the growth of rapidly accreting stars to masses in excess of 10{sup 3} M{sub Sun} as long as material is

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. Tidal disruption events from supermassive black hole binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coughlin, Eric R.; Armitage, Philip J.; Nixon, Chris; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    2017-03-01

    We investigate the pre-disruption gravitational dynamics and post-disruption hydrodynamics of the tidal disruption of stars by supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries. We focus on binaries with relatively low mass primaries (106 M⊙), moderate mass ratios, and separations with reasonably long gravitational wave inspiral times (tens of Myr). First, we generate a large ensemble (between 1 and 10 million) of restricted three-body integrations to quantify the statistical properties of tidal disruptions by circular SMBH binaries of initially unbound stars. Compared to the reference case of a disruption by a single SMBH, the binary potential induces a significant variance into the specific energy and angular momentum of the star at the point of disruption. Second, we use Newtonian numerical hydrodynamics to study the detailed evolution of the fallback debris from 120 disruptions randomly selected from the three-body ensemble (excluding only the most deeply penetrating encounters). We find that the overall morphology of the debris is greatly altered by the presence of the second black hole, and the accretion rate histories display a wide range of behaviours, including order of magnitude dips and excesses relative to control simulations that include only one black hole. Complex evolution typically persists for many orbital periods of the binary. We find evidence for power in the accretion curves on time-scales related to the binary orbital period, though there is no exact periodicity. We discuss our results in the context of future wide-field surveys, and comment on the prospects of identifying and characterizing the subset of events occurring in nuclei with binary SMBHs.

  3. 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.

  4. Constraints on the Process that Regulates the Growth of Supermassive Black Holes Based on the Intrinsic Scatter in the Mbh-σsph Relation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wyithe, J. Stuart B.; Loeb, Abraham

    2005-12-01

    We show that the observed scatter in the relations between the mass of supermassive black holes (SMBHs), Mbh, and the velocity dispersion σsph or mass Msph of their host spheroid places interesting constraints on the process that regulates SMBH growth in galaxies. When combined with the observed properties of early-type SDSS galaxies, the observed intrinsic scatters imply that SMBH growth is regulated by the spheroid velocity dispersion rather than its mass. The Mbh-Msph relation is therefore a by-product of a more fundamental Mbh-σsph relation. We construct a theoretical model for the scatter among baryon-modified dark matter halo profiles, out of which we generate a population of spheroid hosts and show that these naturally lead to a relation between effective radius and velocity dispersion of the form Rsph~6 kpc(σsph/200 km s-1)1.5 with a scatter of ~0.2 dex, in agreement with the corresponding projection of the fundamental plane for early-type galaxies in the SDSS. At the redshift of formation, our model predicts the minimum scatter that SMBHs can have at fixed velocity dispersion or spheroid mass under different formation scenarios. We also estimate the additional scatter that is introduced into these relations through collisionless mergers of purely stellar spheroids at z<1. We find that the observed scatter in the Mbh-σsph and Mbh-Msph relations precludes the properties of dark matter halos from being the governing factor in SMBH growth. The apparent relation between halo and SMBH mass is merely a reflection of the fact that massive halos tend to host massive stellar spheroids (albeit with a large scatter owing to the variance in formation histories). Finally, we show that SMBH growth governed by the properties of the host spheroid can lead to the observed values of scatter in the Mbh-σsph and Mbh-Msph relations, in cases where the SMBH growth is limited by momentum or energy feedback over the dynamical time of the host spheroid.

  5. Constraining Supermassive Black Hole Binary Dynamics Using Pulsar Timing Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ellis, Justin

    2015-08-01

    Pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) offer a unique opportunity to detect low frequency gravitational waves (GWs) in the near future. In this frequency band, the expected source of GWs are Supermassive Black Hole Binaries (SMBHBs) and they will most likely form in an ensemble creating a stochastic GW background with the possibility of a few nearby/massive sources that will be individually resolvable. In this talk we present upper limits on the strength of the isotropic stochastic background of gravitational waves using the new 9-year North American NanoHertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav) data release. Using several published models for merger rate of SMBHBs we place meaningful constraints on the transition frequency at which environmental factors such as stellar hardening and circumbinary interactions become comparable to the energy loss due to GW emission.

  6. Self-regulated growth of supermassive black holes by a dual jet-heating active galactic nucleus feedback mechanism: methods, tests and implications for cosmological simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubois, Yohan; Devriendt, Julien; Slyz, Adrianne; Teyssier, Romain

    2012-03-01

    We develop a subgrid model for the growth of supermassive black holes (BHs) and their associated active galactic nucleus (AGN) feedback in hydrodynamical cosmological simulations. This model transposes previous attempts to describe BH accretion and AGN feedback with the smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) technique to the adaptive mesh refinement framework. It also furthers their development by implementing a new jet-like outflow treatment of the AGN feedback which we combine with the heating mode traditionally used in the SPH approach. Thus, our approach allows one to test the robustness of the conclusions derived from simulating the impact of self-regulated AGN feedback on galaxy formation vis-à-vis the numerical method. Assuming that BHs are created in the early stages of galaxy formation, they grow by mergers and accretion of gas at a Eddington-limited Bondi accretion rate. However this growth is regulated by AGN feedback which we model using two different modes: a quasar-heating mode when accretion rates on to the BHs are comparable to the Eddington rate, and a radio-jet mode at lower accretion rates which not only deposits energy, but also deposits mass and momentum on the grid. In other words, our feedback model deposits energy as a succession of thermal bursts and jet outflows depending on the properties of the gas surrounding the BHs. We assess the plausibility of such a model by comparing our results to observational measurements of the co-evolution of BHs and their host galaxy properties, and check their robustness with respect to numerical resolution. We show that AGN feedback must be a crucial physical ingredient for the formation of massive galaxies as it appears to be able to efficiently prevent the accumulation of and/or expel cold gas out of haloes/galaxies and significantly suppress star formation. Our model predicts that the relationship between BHs and their host galaxy mass evolves as a function of redshift, because of the vigorous accretion

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Cosmological evolution of supermassive black holes and AGN: a synthesis model for accretion and feedback .

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merloni, A.

    The growth of supermassive black holes (SMBH) through accretion is accompanied by the release of enormous amounts of energy which can either be radiated away, as happens in quasars, advected into the black hole, or disposed of in kinetic form through powerful jets, as is observed, for example, in radio galaxies. Here, I will present new constraints on the evolution of the SMBH mass function and Eddington ratio distribution, obtained from a study of AGN luminosity functions aimed at accounting for both radiative and kinetic energy output of AGN in a systematic way. First, I discuss how a refined Soltan argument leads to joint constraints on the mass-weighted average spin of SMBH and of the total mass density of high redshift (z˜ 5) and ``wandering'' black holes. Then, I will show how to describe the ``downsizing'' trend observed in the AGN population in terms of cosmological evolution of physical quantities (black hole mass, accretion rate, radiative and kinetic energy output). Finally, the redshift evolution of the AGN kinetic feedback will be briefly discussed and compared with the radiative output of the evolving SMBH population, thus providing a robust physical framework for phenomenological models of AGN feedback within structure formation.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Constraining supermassive black hole evolution through the continuity equation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tucci, Marco; Volonteri, Marta

    2017-03-01

    The population of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) is split between those that are quiescent, such as those seen in local galaxies including the Milky Way, and those that are active, resulting in quasars and active galactic nuclei (AGN). Outside our neighborhood, all the information we have on SMBHs is derived from quasars and AGN, giving us a partial view. We study the evolution of the SMBH population, total and active, by the continuity equation, backwards in time from z = 0 to z = 4. Type-1 and type-2 AGN are differentiated in our model on the basis of their respective Eddington ratio distributions, chosen on the basis of observational estimates. The duty cycle is obtained by matching the luminosity function of quasars, and the average radiative efficiency is the only free parameter in the model. For higher radiative efficiencies (≳ 0.07), a large fraction of the SMBH population, most of them quiescent, must already be in place by z = 4. For lower radiative efficiencies ( 0.05), the duty cycle increases with the redshift and the SMBH population evolves dramatically from z = 4 onwards. The mass function of active SMBHs does not depend on the choice of the radiative efficiency or of the local SMBH mass function, but it is mainly determined by the quasar luminosity function once the Eddington ratio distribution is fixed. Only direct measurement of the total black-hole mass function at redshifts z ≳ 2 could break these degeneracies, offering important constraints on the average radiative efficiency. Focusing on type-1 AGN, for which observational estimates of the mass function and Eddington ratio distribution exist at various redshifts, models with lower radiative efficiencies better reproduce the high-mass end of the mass function at high z, but tend to over-predict it at low z, and vice-versa for models with higher radiative efficiencies.

  15. 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.

  16. Recoiling Supermassive Black Holes: a search in the Nearby Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lena, Davide; Robinson, Andrew; Marconi, Alessandro; Axon, David; Capetti, Alessandro; Merritt, David; Batcheldor, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    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 HST archival images of 14 nearby core ellipticals, finding evidence for small (<=10 pc) displacements between the AGN (locating 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. 2010. In individual objects, these displacements can be attributed to residual gravitational recoil oscillations following a major or minor merger within the last few Gyr. 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 kpc-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.

  17. Recoiling Supermassive Black Holes: A Search in the Nearby Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-11-01

    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 (lsim 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.

  18. Effects of supermassive binary black holes on gravitational lenses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Nan; Mao, Shude; Gao, Liang; Loeb, Abraham; di Stefano, R.

    2012-01-01

    Recent observations indicate that many, if not all, galaxies host massive central black holes (BHs). In this paper, we explore the influence of supermassive binary black holes (SMBBHs) on their actions as gravitational lenses. When lenses are modelled as singular isothermal ellipsoids, binary BHs change the critical curves and caustics differently as a function of distance. Each BH can in principle create at least one additional image, which, if observed, provides evidence of BHs. By studying how SMBBHs affect the cumulative distribution of magnification for images created by BHs, we find that the cross-section for at least one such additional image to have a magnification larger than 10-5 is comparable to the cross-section for producing multiple images in singular isothermal lenses. Such additional images may be detectable with high-resolution and large dynamic range maps of multiply imaged systems from future facilities, such as the Square Kilometre Array. The probability of detecting at least one image (two images) with magnification above 10-3 is ˜0.2fBH (˜0.05fBH) in a multiply imaged lens system, where fBH is the fraction of galaxies housing binary BHs. We also study the effects of SMBBHs on the core images when galaxies have shallower central density profiles (modelled as non-singular isothermal ellipsoids). We find that the cross-section of the usually faint core images is further suppressed by SMBBHs. Thus, their presence should also be taken into account when one constrains the core radius from the lack of central images in gravitational lenses.

  19. Black Hole Universe Model for Explaining GRBs, X-Ray Flares, and Quasars as Emissions of Dynamic Star-like, Massive, and Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Tianxi

    2014-01-01

    Slightly modifying the standard big bang theory, the author has recently 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, cosmic microwave background radiation, and acceleration 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 study investigates the emissions of dynamic black holes according to the black hole universe model and provides a self-consistent explanation for the observations of gamma ray bursts (GRBs), X-ray flares, and quasars as emissions of dynamic star-like, massive, and supermassive black holes. It is shown that a black hole, when it accretes its ambient matter or merges with other black holes, becomes dynamic. Since the event horizon of a dynamic black hole is broken, the inside hot (or high-frequency) blackbody radiation leaks out. The leakage of the inside hot blackbody radiation leads to a GRB if it is a star-like black hole, an X-ray flare if it is a massive black hole like the one at the center of the Milky Way, or a quasar if it is a supermassive black hole like an active galactic nucleus (AGN). The energy spectra and amount of emissions produced by the dynamic star-like, massive, and supermassive black holes can be consistent with the measurements of GRBs, X-ray flares, and quasars.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. The evolution of stars paired with supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tutukov, A. V.; Fedorova, A. V.

    2017-08-01

    A star located in the close vicinity of a supermassive black hole (SMBH) in a galactic nucleus or a globular-cluster core could form a close binary with the SMBH, with the star possibly filling its Roche lobe. The evolution of such binary systems is studied assuming that the SMBH mainly accretes matter from the companion star and that the presence of gas in the vicinity of the SMBH does not appreciably influence variations in the star's orbit. The evolution of the star-SMBH system is mainly determined by the same processes as those determining the evolution of ordinary binaries. The main differences are that the star is subject to an incident flux of hard radiation arising during the accretion of matter by the SMBH, and, in detached systems, the SMBH captures virtually all the wind emitted by its stellar companion, which appreciably influences the evolution of the major axis of the orbit. Moreover, the exchange between the orbital angular momentum and the angular momentum of the overflowing matter may not be entirely standard in such systems. The computations assume that there will be no such exchange of angular momentum if the characteristic timescale for mass transfer is shorter than the thermal time scale of the star. The absorption of external radiation in the stellar envelope was computed using the same formalism applied when computing the opacity of the stellar matter. The numerical simulations show that, with the adopted assumptions, three types of evolution are possible for such a binary system, depending on the masses and the initial separation of the SMBH and star. Type I evolution leads to the complete destruction of the star. Only this type of evolution is realized for low-mass main-sequence (MS) stars, even those with large initial separations from their SMBHs. Massive MS stars will also be destroyed if the initial separation is sufficiently small. However, two other types of evolution are possible for massive stars, with a determining role in the time

  3. 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.

  4. Galaxy rotation and supermassive black hole binary evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mirza, M. A.; Tahir, A.; Khan, F. M.; Holley-Bockelmann, H.; Baig, A. M.; Berczik, P.; Chishtie, F.

    2017-09-01

    Supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries residing at the core of merging galaxies are recently found to be strongly affected by the rotation of their host galaxies. The highly eccentric orbits that form when the host is counterrotating emit strong bursts of gravitational waves that propel rapid SMBH binary coalescence. Most prior work, however, focused on planar orbits and a uniform rotation profile, an unlikely interaction configuration. However, the coupling between rotation and SMBH binary evolution appears to be such a strong dynamical process that it warrants further investigation. This study uses direct N-body simulations to isolate the effect of galaxy rotation in more realistic interactions. In particular, we systematically vary the SMBH orbital plane with respect to the galaxy rotation axis, the radial extent of the rotating component, and the initial eccentricity of the SMBH binary orbit. We find that the initial orbital plane orientation and eccentricity alone can change the inspiral time by an order of magnitude. Because SMBH binary inspiral and merger is such a loud gravitational wave source, these studies are critical for the future gravitational wave detector, Laser Interferometer Space Antenna, an ESA/NASA mission currently set to launch by 2034.

  5. The interaction between supermassive black holes and globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spera, Mario; Arca-Sedda, Manuel; Capuzzo-Dolcetta, Roberto

    2016-02-01

    Almost all galaxies along the Hubble sequence host a compact massive object (CMO) in their center. The CMO can be either a supermassive black hole (SMBH) or a very dense stellar cluster, also known as nuclear star cluster (NSC). Generally, heavier galaxies (mass >~ 1011 M⊙) host a central SMBH while lighter show a central NSC. Intermediate mass hosts, instead, contain both a NSC and a SMBH. One possible formation mechanisms of a NSC relies on the dry-merger (migratory) scenario, in which globular clusters (GCs) decay toward the center of the host galaxy and merge. In this framework, the absence of NSCs in high-mass galaxies can be imputed to destruction of the infalling GCs by the intense tidal field of the central SMBH. In this work, we report preliminary results of N-body simulations performed using our high-resolution, direct, code HiGPUs, to investigate the effects of a central SMBH on a single GC orbiting around it. By varying either the mass of the SMBH and the mass of the host galaxy, we derived an upper limit to the mass of the central SMBH, and thus to the mass of the host, above which the formation of a NSC is suppressed.

  6. Accretion and Feedback from Supermassive Black Holes in Galaxy Clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, Yu; Bogdanovic, Tamara; Park, KwangHo

    2017-01-01

    A significant fraction of galaxy clusters, namely the cool-core clusters, exhibit a dip in their central temperature profiles, with radiative cooling times much shorter than the Hubble time. Unchecked, radiative cooling of this magnitude is expected to cause the accumulation of cold gas at the cluster center that leads to star formation rates 100-1000 times higher than those inferred by observations. This discrepancy suggests the existence of active heating mechanisms that counteract the overcooling in cluster centers. The dominant mechanism has now been widely recognized as the mechanical feedback from the radio-loud active galactic nuclei. However, recent observations find substantial amounts of cold gas in a number of cool-core clusters, as well as evidence that some clusters host quasars in their central dominant galaxies, raising concerns about the significance of radiative feedback in such systems. Motivated by these findings we use 3D radiation hydrodynamic simulations to explore the joint role of the radio- and quasar-mode feedback in the accretion and feedback cycle of supermassive black holes in cool-core clusters.

  7. Supermassive Black Hole Masses and Global Properties of Disk Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castillo, Y. S.; Funes, J. G.; Díaz, R. J.

    2006-06-01

    Different scaling laws are known for the mass of supermassive black holes (M_{BH}): M_{BH}-σ M_{BH}-M_{Bulge}; M_{BH}-M_{DM}. We have reviewed these correlations for 17 disk galaxies and tried to find any correlation between M_{BH} and other disk properties (HI and H_2 masses, far infrared luminosity, star formation rate, etc.). The sample was taken from Marconi and Hunt (2003). For these galaxies we have done a search in the literature for the following properties: A) in the nucleus: star formation rates, and luminosities in Hα ; B) in the bulge: luminosity in B-band; C) in the disk: HI and H_2 total masses, total luminosities in X-ray, B band and far infrared, and total star formation rate. In this work we present the compiled data from the literature and the plots of M_{BH} against galaxy HI total mass, M_{BH} against galaxy H_2 total mass, and M_{BH} against disk blue luminosity. We did not find any evident correlation between the M_{BH} and the properties of the disk.

  8. Gravitational waves from binary supermassive black holes in galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merritt, David

    2017-01-01

    Pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) will eventually detect the gravitational wave (GW) background produced by a cosmological population of binary supermassive black hole (SBHs). In this talk, I review the ways in which the formation and evolution of the binary population determine the amplitude and form of the GW spectrum. A major source of systematic uncertainty is the mass function of SBHs; in the past, SBH masses have often been overestimated, and the number of SBHs with trustworthy mass estimates is still very small. The presence of gas and stars around the binaries accelerates the evolution at large separations, reducing the amplitude of the GW spectrum at low frequencies. I will highlight two recent developments in our theoretical understanding of binary evolution. (1) Slight departures from axi-symmetry in a galaxy imply a sustained supply of stars to the very center, thus overcoming the “final-parsec problem”. (2) In the generic case of a rotating nucleus, the plane of the binary’s orbit evolves predictably toward alignment with the symmetry plane of the nucleus; the binary’s eccentricity also evolves in tandem with the orientation, sometimes reaching values close to one. These processes should leave distinct imprints on the stochastic GW spectrum, and have important implications for the likelihood of GW detection in the near future.

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

    PubMed

    Heckman, Timothy M; Kauffmann, Guinevere

    2011-07-08

    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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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

    2016-11-01

    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.

  16. Extreme Environments: From supermassive black holes to supernovae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krauss, Felicia

    2016-06-01

    -when-brighter' trend often found in the X-ray spectra of flaring blazars. I further find that the Compton dominance (which is redshift independent) agrees well with the blazar sequence. I find that the Fermi's blazar divide, which seems to indicate a lack of sources peaking between 10^14 Hz and 10^16 Hz is likely due to absorption/extinction in this energy band, and is not source-intrinsic. I study the thermal excess found in the optical/UV spectra of blazars, often called the "Big Blue Bump"(BBB). The temperature of the BBB in BL Lac objects is usually 6000 K, which suggest that the BBB is emission from the host galaxy, which is not completely outshone by the non-thermal continuum. In quasars the temperatures of the BBB lie between 10000 K and 40000 K, much lower than the expected 76000 K for an accretion disk temperature of a supermassive black hole with a mass of 10^9 solar masses. It is possible that this is due to reprocessing of the emission by clouds near the broad line region. It is interesting to note however, that the BBB of the 22 sources can be better described by a single temperature black body than a multi-temperature black body. For an accretion disk we would expect a very large range in temperatures, possibly further broadened by gravity and the velocity of disk. Another possible explanation is free-free emission in a hot corona surrounding the black hole, though a more detailed investigation is necessary to draw firm conclusions about the BBB in blazars. I have studied the fundamental plane of black holes as a tool for estimating the black hole mass. The fundamental plane of black holes finds one plane in a black hole mass, X-ray luminosity, and radio luminosity three-dimensional space. Separate works in the literature find various parameters for this plane, depending on the source population used for determining the parameters. I have tested most of the recent works and used the X-ray and radio luminosity from the SEDs to estimate the black hole mass. This estimate

  17. Modified evolution of stellar binaries from supermassive black hole binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Bin; Wang, Yi-Han; Yuan, Ye-Fei

    2017-04-01

    The evolution of main-sequence binaries resided in the galactic centre is influenced a lot by the central supermassive black hole (SMBH). Due to this perturbation, the stars in a dense environment are likely to experience mergers or collisions through secular or non-secular interactions. In this work, we study the dynamics of the stellar binaries at galactic centre, perturbed by another distant SMBH. Geometrically, such a four-body system is supposed to be decomposed into the inner triple (SMBH-star-star) and the outer triple (SMBH-stellar binary-SMBH). We survey the parameter space and determine the criteria analytically for the stellar mergers and the tidal disruption events (TDEs). For a relative distant and equal masses SMBH binary, the stars have more opportunities to merge as a result from the Lidov-Kozai (LK) oscillations in the inner triple. With a sample of tight stellar binaries, our numerical experiments reveal that a significant fraction of the binaries, ˜70 per cent, experience merger eventually. Whereas the majority of the stellar TDEs are likely to occur at a close periapses to the SMBH, induced by the outer Kozai effect. The tidal disruptions are found numerically as many as ˜10 per cent for a close SMBH binary that is enhanced significantly than the one without the external SMBH. These effects require the outer perturber to have an inclined orbit (≥40°) relatively to the inner orbital plane and may lead to a burst of the extremely astronomical events associated with the detection of the SMBH binary.

  18. Supermassive Black Hole Activity Within Local Early-type Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Brendan P.; Gallo, E.; Treu, T.

    2011-01-01

    We report preliminary results from an ongoing Chandra survey of 100 field early-type galaxies. This project investigates the influence of environment upon supermassive black hole (SMBH) accretion within formally inactive galaxies. The volume-limited sample has been selected to be well-matched to the recently conducted AMUSE-Virgo survey, which studied SMBHs within cluster early-type galaxies. That work resulted in the detection of nuclear X-ray sources in 32/100 objects, establishing a firm lower limit of 24-34% to the SMBH occupation fraction of normal galaxies, and found the average Eddington-scaled X-ray luminosity to be a decreasing function of SMBH mass, evidence for accretion "downsizing" (Gallo et al. 2008, 2010). Galaxies in more isolated environments have distinct properties that might influence the rate of SMBH fueling. Relative to cluster sources, field early-type galaxies have a lower probability of mergers; they also likely retain a larger fraction of hot gas (due to reduced ram-pressure stripping) and apparently contain more cold gas and tend to have younger stellar populations. The X-ray detection fraction of the field early-type galaxies is found to be comparable to that of the AMUSE-Virgo survey. We correlate the average Eddington-scaled X-ray luminosity with SMBH mass for the observed objects and compare the relation to that found for cluster galaxies. We also calculate the rate of off-nuclear X-ray sources and discuss implications for X-ray binary populations within field early-type galaxies.

  19. Evolution of Binary Supermassive Black Holes in Rotating Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasskazov, Alexander; Merritt, David

    2017-03-01

    The interaction of a binary supermassive black hole with stars in a galactic nucleus can result in changes to all the elements of the binary’s orbit, including the angles that define its orientation. If the nucleus is rotating, the orientation changes can be large, causing large changes in the binary’s orbital eccentricity as well. We present a general treatment of this problem based on the Fokker–Planck equation for f, defined as the probability distribution for the binary’s orbital elements. First- and second-order diffusion coefficients are derived for the orbital elements of the binary using numerical scattering experiments, and analytic approximations are presented for some of these coefficients. Solutions of the Fokker–Planck equation are then derived under various assumptions about the initial rotational state of the nucleus and the binary hardening rate. We find that the evolution of the orbital elements can become qualitatively different when we introduce nuclear rotation: (1) the orientation of the binary’s orbit evolves toward alignment with the plane of rotation of the nucleus and (2) binary orbital eccentricity decreases for aligned binaries and increases for counteraligned ones. We find that the diffusive (random-walk) component of a binary’s evolution is small in nuclei with non-negligible rotation, and we derive the time-evolution equations for the semimajor axis, eccentricity, and inclination in that approximation. The aforementioned effects could influence gravitational wave production as well as the relative orientation of host galaxies and radio jets.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Evolution of Supermassive Black Hole Binaries in Merging Galaxies and Evidence for Potential Sub-parsec Binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrows, Robert Scott; Galaxy Evolution Survey, Arkansas; Lacy, C. H. S.; Kennefick, D.; Kennefick, J.; Seigar, M.

    2010-01-01

    As a result of galactic mergers, a significant number of supermassive black holes are expected to be in binary systems and at various stages in their orbital evolution. During galactic mergers, matter in the form of gas and stars is available for the black holes to accrete, providing fuel for black hole growth and a potential mechanism for the onset of a quasar phase. To better understand how supermassive black holes and their active phases evolve over time, the Arkansas Galaxy Evolution Survey (AGES) team is studying binary black hole systems at a range of separations, r. We have examined the scarce number of binary systems (10,000 > r > 1,000 pc) to infer information about their individual masses, the amount of gas and dust in the nuclear regions, the accretion rates of the individual nuclei, and the estimated timescale for dynamical friction to reduce the black holes’ separation to parsec scales. We have compared these results to those from theoretical calculations. Furthermore, we have visually examined the spectra of SDSS quasars for "unusual” double-peaked emitters looking for evidence of binary orbital motion at separations of < 1 pc. If found, such close binaries will have measurable orbital periods and will provide important information about the environments of quasars in the final stages of a merger. In addition, they will be excellent sources for gravitational wave emission for future space-based detectors such as LISA.

  3. Constraining the cosmic evolution of supermassive black holes with statistical quasar samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shen, Yue

    One of the fundamental questions in cosmology is how galaxies with different physical properties form and evolve across cosmic time. Supermassive black holes (SMBHs), believed to reside in the center of almost every massive galaxy, not only tell part of the story of galaxy formation, but may also influence the formation and evolution of the galaxy during their coevolution, as inferred from several correlations between the black hole mass and bulge properties observed in the local universe. Facilitated by modern dedicated surveys in different wavelength bands, the study of SMBHs has now entered an era of statistical investigations. In this thesis I study the statistical properties of optically-selected quasars, the luminous counterparts of SMBHs, across a wide redshift range (0.5 [Special characters omitted.] z [Special characters omitted.] 5), using large spectroscopic samples from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). The first two chapters deal with the spatial clustering properties of quasars, with focuses on the high redshift (z [Special characters omitted.] 3) population (chapter 1), and on the dependence of clustering on physical properties of quasars such as luminosity, color, etc. (chapter 2). These clustering analyses, which become available only very recently, provide valuable information about the occupations of quasars within dark matter halos, and have important implications for the growth and evolution of SMBHs within the standard hierarchical structure formation paradigm. The third chapter presents black hole mass estimates and Eddington ratios of quasars measured from their optical spectra, based on the virial black hole mass estimators. Some comparisons between different virial estimators and potential biases are also discussed in chapter 3. In the final chapter, I present a simple, observationally motivated framework for the cosmic growth and evolution of SMBHs. Adopting the merger hypothesis of quasar triggering mechanism and halo merger rate from

  4. The Supermassive Black Hole Mass Function in Spiral Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kennefick, Julia D.; Berrier, J. C.; Kennefick, D.; Davis, B. L.; Seigar, M.; Shields, D.; Barrows, R. S.; Lacy, C. H.; Hughes, J. A.; Galaxy Evolution Survey, Arkansas

    2013-01-01

    The AGES group is exploring a number of techniques to study the relationship between central SMBH black hole mass and spiral arm morphology in disk galaxies. We have developed a new technique which permits us to reliably and accurately measure pitch angle based upon a 2DFFT algorithm. We have then compared pitch angles to directly measured black hole masses in local galaxies and demonstrated a strong correlation between them. Using the relation thus established we have developed a pitch angle distribution function of a statistically complete volume limited sample of nearby galaxies and developed a central black hole mass function for nearby spiral galaxies.

  5. RELATION BETWEEN GLOBULAR CLUSTERS AND SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN ELLIPTICALS AS A MANIFESTATION OF THE BLACK HOLE FUNDAMENTAL PLANE

    SciTech Connect

    Snyder, Gregory F.; Hernquist, Lars; Hopkins, Philip F.

    2011-02-10

    We analyze the relation between the mass of the central supermassive black hole (M{sub BH}) and the number of globular clusters (N{sub GC}) in elliptical galaxies and bulges as a ramification of the black hole fundamental plane, the theoretically predicted and observed multi-variable correlation between M{sub BH} and bulge binding energy. Although the tightness of the M{sub BH}-N{sub GC} correlation suggests an unlikely causal link between supermassive black holes and globular clusters (GCs), such a correspondence can exhibit small scatter even if the physical relationship is indirect. We show that the relatively small scatter of the M{sub BH}-N{sub GC} relation owes to the mutual residual correlation of M{sub BH} and N{sub GC} with stellar mass when the velocity dispersion is held fixed. Thus, present observations lend evidence for feedback-regulated models in which the bulge binding energy is most important; they do not necessarily imply any 'special' connection between GCs and M{sub BH}. This raises the question of why N{sub GC} traces the formation of ellipticals and bulges sufficiently well to be correlated with binding energy.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. A Good Hard Look at Growing Supermassive Black Holes in the Distant Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, W. Niel; Chandra Deep Fields Team

    2017-01-01

    Sensitive cosmic X-ray surveys with the Chandra, XMM-Newton, and now NuSTAR observatories have revolutionized our ability to find and study distant active galactic nuclei (AGNs), the main sites of supermassive black hole growth in the Universe. I will describe some of the resulting discoveries about the demographics, physics, and ecology of distant AGNs with an emphasis on the deepest Chandra surveys, the Chandra Deep Fields. Some specific topics covered will include (1) robust X-ray spectral and variability characterization of the AGNs producing most of cosmic accretion power; (2) the demographics of AGNs in the first galaxies as revealed by direct detection and stacking; (3) AGN/galaxy interactions as investigated via the host properties of X-ray AGNs; and (4) the cosmic balance of power between supermassive black holes and stars. I will also briefly describe other remarkable discoveries coming from the deepest X-ray surveys; e.g., measurements of the evolving X-ray binary populations of normal and starburst galaxies. I will end by discussing some key outstanding questions and new observations and missions aiming to answer them.

  9. Early formation of (super)massive black holes and gravitational waves from their coalescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolgov, A. D.

    2017-04-01

    Astronomical observations of last few years have presented a surprising evidence that the Universe at redshift of order 10 is densely populated by supermassive black holes (quasars), supernovae, and contains very large amount of dust. All these data are in conflict with the canonical theory of quasar and supernova formation. A model is discussed which in a simple and natural way solves all these problem. In addition it explains an existence of supermassive black holes in each large galaxy and even in small ones. An inverted picture of galaxy formation is suggested when primordial black holes serve as seeds of galaxy formation. Simultaneously the origin and properties of black hole binaries, sources of gravitational waves registered by LIGO are explained. As a by-product the model may lead to abundant cosmological antimatter even in the Galaxy.

  10. 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

  11. Testing scenarios of primordial black holes being the seeds of supermassive black holes by ultracompact minihalos and CMB μ distortions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohri, Kazunori; Nakama, Tomohiro; Suyama, Teruaki

    2014-10-01

    Supermassive black holes and intermediate mass black holes are believed to exist in the Universe. There is no established astrophysical explanation for their origin, and considerations have been made in the literature that those massive black holes (MBHs) may be primordial black holes (PBHs), black holes which are formed in the early universe (well before the matter-radiation equality) due to the direct collapse of primordial overdensities. This paper aims at discussing the possibility of excluding the PBH scenario as the origin of the MBHs. We first revisit the constraints on PBHs obtained from the cosmic microwave background (CMB) distortion that the seed density perturbation causes. By adopting a recent computation of the CMB distortion sourced by the seed density perturbation and the stronger constraint on the CMB distortion set by the COBE/FIRAS experiment used in the literature, we find that PBHs in the mass range 6×104 M⊙-5×1013 M⊙ are excluded. Since PBHs lighter than 6×104 M⊙ are not excluded from the nonobservation of the CMB distortion, we propose a new method which can potentially exclude smaller PBHs as well. Based on the observation that large density perturbations required to create PBHs also result in the copious production of ultracompact minihalos (UCMHs), compact dark matter halos formed at around the recombination, we show that weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPs) as dark matter annihilate efficiently inside UCMHs to yield cosmic rays far exceeding the observed flux. Our bound gives severe restriction on the compatibility between the particle physics models for WIMPs and the PBH scenario as the explanation of MBHs.

  12. Probing the spacetime around supermassive black holes with ejected plasma blobs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christian, Pierre; Loeb, Abraham

    2015-05-01

    Millimeter-wavelength very-long-baseline-interferometry observations of the supermassive black holes in Sgr A* and M87 by the Event Horizon Telescope could potentially trace the dynamics of ejected plasma blobs in real time. We demonstrate that the trajectory and tidal stretching of these blobs can be used to test general relativity and set new constraints on the mass and spin of these black holes.

  13. 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

  14. Black holes.

    PubMed

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

    2001-09-11

    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.

  15. Supermassive black hole seeds: updates on the “quasi-star model”

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rossi, Elena Maria

    2017-05-01

    LISA will allow us to see the infancy of the universe and gather unique constraints on an outstanding mystery: the formation of supermassive black holes. Here, I review a particular scenario, where black hole seeds are formed from direct collapse of gas at the centre of (proto)-galaxies. I will show that very massive (> 105 M ⊙) black hole seeds are possible but before confidently claim so the impact of physical ingredients, like internal rotation and super Eddington accretion, need to be fully understood.

  16. Particle acceleration and curvature TeV emission by rotating, supermassive black holes

    PubMed

    Levinson

    2000-07-31

    It is shown that particles accelerating near the event horizon of a spinning supermassive black hole that is threaded by externally supported magnetic field lines suffer severe curvature losses that limit the maximum energy they can attain to values well below that imposed by the maximum voltage drop induced by the black hole dynamo. It is further shown that the dominant fraction of the rotational energy extracted from the black hole is radiated in the TeV band. The implications for vacuum breakdown and the observational consequences are discussed.

  17. Black Holes Lead Galaxy Growth, New Research Shows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-01-01

    Astronomers may have solved a cosmic chicken-and-egg problem -- the question of which formed first in the early Universe -- galaxies or the supermassive black holes seen at their cores. "It looks like the black holes came first. The evidence is piling up," said Chris Carilli, of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). Carilli outlined the conclusions from recent research done by an international team studying conditions in the first billion years of the Universe's history in a lecture presented to the American Astronomical Society's meeting in Long Beach, California. Gas in Distant Galaxy VLA image (right) of gas in young galaxy seen as it was when the Universe was only 870 million years old. CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF, SDSS Full-size JPEG, 323 KB PDF file, 180 KB Galaxy image, no annotation, JPEG 21 KB Earlier studies of galaxies and their central black holes in the nearby Universe revealed an intriguing linkage between the masses of the black holes and of the central "bulges" of stars and gas in the galaxies. The ratio of the black hole and the bulge mass is nearly the same for a wide range of galactic sizes and ages. For central black holes from a few million to many billions of times the mass of our Sun, the black hole's mass is about one one-thousandth of the mass of the surrounding galactic bulge. "This constant ratio indicates that the black hole and the bulge affect each others' growth in some sort of interactive relationship," said Dominik Riechers, of Caltech. "The big question has been whether one grows before the other or if they grow together, maintaining their mass ratio throughout the entire process." In the past few years, scientists have used the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array radio telescope and the Plateau de Bure Interferometer in France to peer far back in the 13.7 billion-year history of the Universe, to the dawn of the first galaxies. "We finally have been able to measure black-hole and bulge masses in several galaxies seen

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Eötvös experiments with supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asvathaman, Asha; Heyl, Jeremy S.; Hui, Lam

    2017-03-01

    By examining the locations of central black holes in two elliptical galaxies, M32 and M87, we derive constraints on the violation of the strong equivalence principle for purely gravitational objects, i.e. black holes, of less than about two-thirds, ηN < 0.68 from the gravitational interaction of M87 with its neighbours in the Virgo cluster. Although M32 appears to be a good candidate for this technique, the high concentration of stars near its centre substantially weakens the constraints. On the other hand, if a central black hole is found in NGC 205 or one of the other satellite ellipticals of M31, substantially better constraints could be obtained. In all cases, the constraints could improve dramatically with better astrometry.

  1. Large Hubble Survey Confirms Link between Mergers and Supermassive Black Holes with Relativistic Jets

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-28

    Tidal disruption event Every galaxy has a black hole at its center. Usually they are quiet, without gas accretions, like the one in our Milky Way. But if a star creeps too close to the black hole, the gravitational tides can rip away the star’s gaseous matter. Like water spinning around a drain, the gas swirls into a disk around the black hole at such speeds that it heats to millions of degrees. As an inner ring of gas spins into the black hole, gas particles shoot outward from the black hole’s polar regions. Like bullets shot from a rifle, they zoom through the jets at velocities close to the speed of light. Astronomers using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope observed correlations between supermassive black holes and an event similar to tidal disruption, pictured above in the Centaurus A galaxy. Certain galaxies have shining centers, illuminated by heated gas circling around a supermassive black hole. Matter escapes where it can, forming two jets of plasma moving near the speed of light. To learn more about the relationship between galaxies and the black holes at their cores, go to NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope: www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/hubble/main/ -------------------------------- Original caption: A team of astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope found an unambiguous link between the presence of supermassive black holes that power high-speed, radio-signal-emitting jets and the merger history of their host galaxies. Almost all galaxies with the jets were found to be merging with another galaxy, or to have done so recently. Credit: NASA/ESA/STScI NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  2. Supermassive Black Holes in Galactic Nuclei: Past, Present and Future Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferrarese, Laura; Ford, Holland

    2005-02-01

    This review discusses the current status of supermassive black hole research, as seen from a purely observational standpoint. Since the early ‘90s, rapid technological advances, most notably the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope, the commissioning of the VLBA and improvements in near-infrared speckle imaging techniques, have not only given us incontrovertible proof of the existence of supermassive black holes, but have unveiled fundamental connections between the mass of the central singularity and the global properties of the host galaxy. It is thanks to these observations that we are now, for the first time, in a position to understand the origin, evolution and cosmic relevance of these fascinating objects.

  3. Hi Observations of the Supermassive Binary Black Hole System in 0402+379

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-05-20

    2003a detail- ing observational evidence for supermassive black hole bina- ries). Some source properties like X -shaped radio galaxies and double–double...discovered by the Chandra X - ray observatory, was found to have a pair of active supermassive black holes at its center (Komossa et al. 2003b), separated by a...are found toward the southern jet of the source , one redshifted by 370 ± 10 km s−1 and the other blueshifted by 700 ± 10 km s−1 with respect to the

  4. High-energy signatures of binary systems of supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Romero, G. E.; Vila, G. S.; Pérez, D.

    2016-04-01

    Context. Binary systems of supermassive black holes are expected to be strong sources of long gravitational waves prior to merging. These systems are good candidates to be observed with forthcoming space-borne detectors. Only a few of these systems, however, have been firmly identified to date. Aims: We aim at providing a criterion for the identification of some supermassive black hole binaries based on the characteristics of the high-energy emission of a putative relativistic jet launched from the most massive of the two black holes. Methods: We study supermassive black hole binaries where the less massive black hole has carved an annular gap in the circumbinary disk, but nevertheless there is a steady mass flow across its orbit. Such a perturbed disk is hotter and more luminous than a standard thin disk in some regions. Assuming that the jet contains relativistic electrons, we calculate its broadband spectral energy distribution focusing on the inverse Compton up-scattering of the disk photons. We also compute the opacity to the gamma rays produced in the jet by photon annihilation with the disk radiation and take into account the effects of the anisotropy of the target photon field as seen from the jet. Results: We find that the excess of low-energy photons radiated by the perturbed disk causes an increment in the external Compton emission from the jet in the X-ray band, and a deep absorption feature at energies of tens of TeVs for some sets of parameters. According to our results, observations with Cherenkov telescopes might help in the identification of supermassive black hole binaries, especially those black hole binaries that host primaries from tens to hundreds of million of solar masses.

  5. Co-Evolution of Supermassive Black Hole and Host Galaxy From z ~ 1 TO z = 0

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiuchi, Gaku; Ohta, Kouji; Akiyama, Masayuki

    2009-05-01

    Stellar masses of bulges in hosts of active galactic nuclei (AGNs) and black hole masses in the AGNs are derived at z = 0.5-1.15 to study evolution of the black hole-to-bulge mass relation. In order to derive bulge stellar masses, we use a sample of type-2 AGNs to avoid the bright nuclear light. 34 type-2 AGNs are selected from the spectroscopically identified X-ray sources in the Chandra Deep Field South. We use optical images from the Hubble Space Telescope, and near- and mid-infrared photometry from the Very Large Telescope and the Spitzer Space Telescope. The bulge components are derived by fitting the two-dimensional surface brightness model consisting of a bulge and a disk component to the optical images. We derive stellar masses (M bulge) and star formation rates (SFRs) of the bulge components by spectral energy distribution fitting. The derived M bulge ranges over 109-1011 M sun, and the estimated SFR is 0.01-100 M sun yr-1. Masses of supermassive black holes (SMBHs; M •) and black hole accretion rates (BHARs) are estimated with the absorption-corrected X-ray luminosities in the 2-10 keV band under an assumption of the constant Eddington ratio of 0.1 and the constant energy conversion factor of 0.1. Resulting black hole masses and BHARs range over 105.5-108 M sun and 0.001-1 M sun yr-1, respectively. For luminous AGNs, the estimated M •/M bulge ratio is ~4 × 10-4 in the median, which is lower than that for local galaxies and for type-2 AGNs at z ~ 0.2. However, these differences are within uncertainty and are not significant. This can imply that SMBHs and their host galaxies are evolving almost holding the constant M •/M bulge ratio from z ~ 1.0 to 0 in a cosmological timescale. Meanwhile, the estimated BHAR/SFR ratio is about 60 times larger than the M •/M bulge ratio in the median value. This indicates that growths of SMBHs and their host bulges do not proceed simultaneously in a shorter timescale such as an AGN phase.

  6. 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

  7. Exponentially growing bubbles around early supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilli, R.; Calura, F.; D'Ercole, A.; Norman, C.

    2017-07-01

    We address the as yet unexplored issue of outflows induced by exponentially growing power sources, focusing on early supermassive black holes (BHs). We assumed that these objects grow to 109M⊙ by z = 6 by Eddington-limited accretion and convert 5% of their bolometric output into a wind. We first considered the case of energy-driven and momentum-driven outflows expanding in a region where the gas and total mass densities are uniform and equal to the average values in the Universe at z> 6. We derived analytic solutions for the evolution of the outflow: for an exponentially growing power with e-folding time tSal, we find that the late time expansion of the outflow radius is also exponential, with e-folding time of 5tSal and 4tSal in the energy-driven and momentum-driven limit, respectively. We then considered energy-driven outflows produced by quasi-stellar objects (QSOs) at the centre of early dark matter halos of different masses and powered by BHs growing from different seeds. We followed the evolution of the source power and of the gas and dark matter density profiles in the halos from the beginning of the accretion until z = 6. The final bubble radius and velocity do not depend on the seed BH mass, but are instead smaller for larger halo masses. At z = 6, bubble radii in the range 50-180 kpc and velocities in the range 400-1000 km s-1 are expected for QSOs hosted by halos in the mass range 3 × 1011-1013M⊙. These radius and velocity scales compare well with those measured for the outflowing gas in the z = 6.4 QSO SDSS J1148+5251. By the time the QSO is observed, we found that the total thermal energy injected within the bubble in the case of an energy-driven outflow is Eth 5 × 1060 erg. This is in excellent agreement with the value of Eth = (6.2 ± 1.7) × 1060 erg measured through the detection of the thermal Sunyaev-Zeldovich effect around a large population of luminous QSOs at lower redshifts. This suggests that QSO outflows are closer to the energy

  8. Turbulent gas accretion between supermassive black-holes and star-forming rings in the circumnuclear disk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chamani, Wara; Dörschner, Stephanie; Schleicher, Dominik R. G.

    2017-06-01

    While supermassive black-holes are known to co-evolve with their host galaxy, the precise nature and origin of this co-evolution is not clear. In this paper we explore the possible connection between star formation and black-hole growth in the circumnuclear disk (CND) to probe this connection in the vicinity close to the black-hole. We adopt here a circumnuclear disk model developed by previous works and explore both the dependence on the star formation recipe as well as the role of the gravitational field, which can be dominated by the central black-hole, the CND itself or the host galaxy. A specific emphasis is put on the turbulence regulated star formation model to explore the impact of a realistic star formation recipe. It is shown that this model helps to introduce realistic fluctuations in the black-hole and star formation rate, without overestimating them. Consistent with previous works, we show that the final black-hole masses are rather insensitive to the masses of the initial seeds, even for seed masses of up to 106M⊙. In addition, we apply our model to the formation of high-redshift quasars, as well as to the nearby system NGC 6951, where a tentative comparison is made in spite of the presence of a bar in the galaxy. We show that our model can reproduce the high black-hole masses of the high-redshift quasars within a sufficiently short time, provided a high mass supply rate from the host galaxy. In addition, it reproduces several of the properties observed in NGC 6951. With respect to the latter system, our analysis suggests that supernovae (SN) feedback may be important in creating the observed fluctuations in the star formation history as a result of negative feedback effects.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Observational evidence for a connection between supermassive black holes and dark matter haloes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baes, Maarten; Buyle, Pieter; Hau, George K. T.; Dejonghe, Herwig

    2003-06-01

    We present new velocity dispersion measurements of a sample of 12 spiral galaxies for which extended rotation curves are available. These data are used to refine a recently discovered correlation between the circular velocity and the central velocity dispersion of spiral galaxies. We find a slightly steeper slope for our larger sample, confirm the negligible intrinsic scatter on this correlation and find a striking agreement with the corresponding relation for elliptical galaxies. We combine this correlation with the well-known MBH-σ relation to obtain a tight correlation between the circular velocities of galaxies and the masses of the supermassive black holes they host. This correlation is the observational evidence for an intimate link between dark matter haloes and supermassive black holes. Apart from being an important ingredient for theoretical models of galaxy formation and evolution, the relation between MBH and circular velocity can serve as a practical tool to estimate black hole masses in spiral galaxies.

  12. 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.

  13. THE FORMATION OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES FROM LOW-MASS POP III SEEDS

    SciTech Connect

    Whalen, Daniel J.; Fryer, Chris L.

    2012-09-01

    The existence of 10{sup 9} M{sub Sun} black holes (BHs) in massive galaxies by z {approx} 7 is one of the great unsolved mysteries in cosmological structure formation. One theory argues that they originate from the BHs of Pop III stars at z {approx} 20 and then accrete at the Eddington limit down to the epoch of reionization, which requires that they have constant access to rich supplies of fuel. Because early numerical simulations suggested that Pop III stars were {approx}>100 M{sub Sun }, the supermassive black hole (SMBH) seeds considered up to now were 100-300 M{sub Sun }. However, there is a growing numerical and observational consensus that some Pop III stars were tens of solar masses, not hundreds, and that 20-40 M{sub Sun} BHs may have been much more plentiful at high redshift. However, we find that natal kicks imparted to 20-40 M{sub Sun} Pop III BHs during formation eject them from their halos and hence their fuel supply, precluding them from Eddington-limit growth. Consequently, SMBHs are far less likely to form from low-mass Pop III stars than from very massive ones.

  14. Evolution of binary supermassive black holes via chain regularization.

    PubMed

    Szell, Andras; Merritt, David; Mikkola, Seppo

    2005-06-01

    A chain regularization method is combined with special purpose computer hardware to study the evolution of massive black hole binaries at the centers of galaxies. Preliminary results with up to N = 0.26 x 10(6) particles are presented. The decay rate of the binary is shown to decrease with increasing N, as expected on the basis of theoretical arguments. The eccentricity of the binary remains small.

  15. 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.

  16. Accretion Onto Supermassive Black Holes: Observational Signals from 3-Dimensional Disk Models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bromley, Benjamin C.; Miller, Warner A.

    2003-01-01

    Our project was to model accretion flows onto supermassive black holes which reside in the centers of many galaxies. In this report we summarize the results which we obtained with the support of our NASA ATP grant. The scientific results associated with the grant are given in approximately chronological order. We also provide a list of references which acknowledge funding from this grant.

  17. Accretion Onto Supermassive Black Holes: Observational Signals from 3-Dimensional Disk Models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bromley, Benjamin C.; Miller, Warner A.

    2003-01-01

    Our project was to model accretion flows onto supermassive black holes which reside in the centers of many galaxies. In this report we summarize the results which we obtained with the support of our NASA ATP grant. The scientific results associated with the grant are given in approximately chronological order. We also provide a list of references which acknowledge funding from this grant.

  18. Prospects for Measuring Supermassive Black Hole Masses with Future Extremely Large Telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Do, Tuan; Wright, S. A.; Barton, E. J.; Barth, A. J.; Simard, L.; Larkin, J. E.; Moore, A.

    2013-01-01

    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. 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 of a range of possible targets spanning intermediate mass black holes of ~10^4 M⊙ to the most massive black holes known today of >10^10 M⊙. We find that future integral-field spectrographs 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 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 different spectral resolutions and plate scales. We find that a spectral resolution of ~8000 will be necessary to measure the masses of IMBHs. We find by using the SDSS DR7 catalog of galaxies that over 4000 massive black holes will be observable at distances between 0.005 < z < 0.3 with the estimated sensitivity and angular resolution of TMT. These observations will provide the most accurate dynamical mass measurements of black holes to enable the study of their demography, address the origin of the M_bh-σ and M_bh - L relationships, and the origins and evolution of black holes through cosmic time.

  19. 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.

  20. SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES AND THEIR HOST SPHEROIDS. I. DISASSEMBLING GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Savorgnan, G. A. D.; Graham, A. W.

    2016-01-15

    Several recent studies have performed galaxy decompositions to investigate correlations between the black hole mass and various properties of the host spheroid, but they have not converged on the same conclusions. This is because their models for the same galaxy were often significantly different and not consistent with each other in terms of fitted components. Using 3.6 μm Spitzer imagery, which is a superb tracer of the stellar mass (superior to the K band), we have performed state-of-the-art multicomponent decompositions for 66 galaxies with directly measured black hole masses. Our sample is the largest to date and, unlike previous studies, contains a large number (17) of spiral galaxies with low black hole masses. We paid careful attention to the image mosaicking, sky subtraction, and masking of contaminating sources. After a scrupulous inspection of the galaxy photometry (through isophotal analysis and unsharp masking) and—for the first time—2D kinematics, we were able to account for spheroids; large-scale, intermediate-scale, and nuclear disks; bars; rings; spiral arms; halos; extended or unresolved nuclear sources; and partially depleted cores. For each individual galaxy, we compared our best-fit model with previous studies, explained the discrepancies, and identified the optimal decomposition. Moreover, we have independently performed one-dimensional (1D) and two-dimensional (2D) decompositions and concluded that, at least when modeling large, nearby galaxies, 1D techniques have more advantages than 2D techniques. Finally, we developed a prescription to estimate the uncertainties on the 1D best-fit parameters for the 66 spheroids that takes into account systematic errors, unlike popular 2D codes that only consider statistical errors.

  1. Supermassive Black Holes and Their Host Spheroids. I. Disassembling Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savorgnan, G. A. D.; Graham, A. W.

    2016-01-01

    Several recent studies have performed galaxy decompositions to investigate correlations between the black hole mass and various properties of the host spheroid, but they have not converged on the same conclusions. This is because their models for the same galaxy were often significantly different and not consistent with each other in terms of fitted components. Using 3.6 μm Spitzer imagery, which is a superb tracer of the stellar mass (superior to the K band), we have performed state-of-the-art multicomponent decompositions for 66 galaxies with directly measured black hole masses. Our sample is the largest to date and, unlike previous studies, contains a large number (17) of spiral galaxies with low black hole masses. We paid careful attention to the image mosaicking, sky subtraction, and masking of contaminating sources. After a scrupulous inspection of the galaxy photometry (through isophotal analysis and unsharp masking) and—for the first time—2D kinematics, we were able to account for spheroids large-scale, intermediate-scale, and nuclear disks bars rings spiral arms halos extended or unresolved nuclear sources; and partially depleted cores. For each individual galaxy, we compared our best-fit model with previous studies, explained the discrepancies, and identified the optimal decomposition. Moreover, we have independently performed one-dimensional (1D) and two-dimensional (2D) decompositions and concluded that, at least when modeling large, nearby galaxies, 1D techniques have more advantages than 2D techniques. Finally, we developed a prescription to estimate the uncertainties on the 1D best-fit parameters for the 66 spheroids that takes into account systematic errors, unlike popular 2D codes that only consider statistical errors.

  2. 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.

  3. Gas disks and supermassive black holes in nearby radio galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noel-Storr, Jacob

    2004-12-01

    We present a detailed analysis of a set of medium- resolution spectra, obtained by the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph on board the Hubble Space Telescope, of the emission-line gas present in the nuclei of a complete sample of 21 nearby, early-type galaxies with radio jets. For each galaxy nucleus we present spectroscopic data in the region of hydrogen-alpha and the kinematics derived therefrom. We find in 67% of the nuclei the gas appears to be rotating and, with one exception, the cases where rotation is not seen are either face on or have complex morphologies. We find that in 62% of the nuclei the fit to the central spectrum is improved by inclusion of a broad emission-line component. These broad components have a mean velocity dispersion of 1349 kilometers per second (with a standard deviation of 345 kilometers per second) and are redshifted from the narrow-line components (assuming an origin in hydrogen-alpha) by 486 kilometers per second (with a standard deviation of 443 kilometers per second). We generated model velocity profiles including no black hole, a one hundred million solar mass black hole and a nine hundred million solar mass black hole. We compared the predicted profiles to the observed velocity profiles from the above spectra, finding kinematic signatures compatible with black holes greater than one hundred million solar masses in 53% of the sample. We suspect that hydrodynamic flow of the gas is a significant factor in the nucleus of NGC 2329. We found hints of jet-disk interaction in 24% of the sample nuclei and signs of twists or warps in 19%. Twenty-four percent of the velocity profiles show signs of multiple kinematic components. We suggest that the gas disks in these galaxies are generally not well-settled systems. We characterize the kinematic state of the nuclear gas through three weighted mean parameters, and find that again the disks appear not to be well-settled. We show evidence of a connection between the stellar and gas velocity

  4. 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

    2014-07-03

    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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayasaki, Kimitake; Loeb, Abraham

    2016-10-01

    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.

  9. A Supermassive Black Hole in the Seyfert 1 Galaxy NGC 3783

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Onken, C. A.; Peterson, B. M.

    2004-01-01

    Updated analysis techniques and recalibrated archival monitoring data for the Seyfert 1 galaxy NGC 3783 indicated the presence of a supermassive black hole in this galaxy. Using UV data from the International Ultraviolet Explorer satellite and ground-based optical spectra, we have measured more precise emission line reverberation in response to continuum variations. The stratification of the broad line region (BLR) suggested by our results, combined with estimates of the line velocity widths, is consistent with a gravitationally-dominated BLR and allows us to derive a mass for the central black hole.

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

    PubMed

    Hayasaki, Kimitake; Loeb, Abraham

    2016-10-21

    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.

  11. A simple model for black hole growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schawinski, Kevin; Weigel, Anna K. K.; Caplar, Neven; Wong, Ivy

    2017-01-01

    We present a simple phenomenological model for black hole growth in the z~0 universe. We show that nuclear activity can be described by two separate, mass-independent Eddington Ratio Distribution Functions (ERDFs) operating in blue and red galaxies, respectively. Our forward-modeling approach constrains these two ERDFs by comparing to the observed X-ray and radio luminosity functions. Alternative ERDFs with mass-dependence, such as those expected from AGN-driven mass-quenching of galaxies, are ruled out. We discuss the implications of this model and outline potential applications

  12. Prospects for Measuring Supermassive Black Hole Masses with Future Extremely Large Telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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 ~104 M ⊙ to the most massive black holes known today of >1010 M ⊙. 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 105 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 enable the study of the

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  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. Evidence for black holes.

    PubMed

    Begelman, Mitchell C

    2003-06-20

    Black holes are common objects in the universe. Each galaxy contains large numbers-perhaps millions-of stellar-mass black holes, each the remnant of a massive star. In addition, nearly every galaxy contains a supermassive black hole at its center, with a mass ranging from millions to billions of solar masses. This review discusses the demographics of black holes, the ways in which they interact with their environment, factors that may regulate their formation and growth, and progress toward determining whether these objects really warp spacetime as predicted by the general theory of relativity.

  17. The Role of Nuclear Star Clusters in Enhancing Supermassive Black Hole Feeding Rates During Galaxy Mergers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-04-01

    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 10-3 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. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Gravitational collapse of dark energy field configurations and supermassive black hole formation

    SciTech Connect

    Jhalani, V.; Kharkwal, H.; Singh, A.

    2016-11-15

    Dark energy is the dominant component of the total energy density of our Universe. The primary interaction of dark energy with the rest of the Universe is gravitational. It is therefore important to understand the gravitational dynamics of dark energy. Since dark energy is a low-energy phenomenon from the perspective of particle physics and field theory, a fundamental approach based on fields in curved space should be sufficient to understand the current dynamics of dark energy. Here, we take a field theory approach to dark energy. We discuss the evolution equations for a generic dark energy field in curved space-time and then discuss the gravitational collapse for dark energy field configurations. We describe the 3 + 1 BSSN formalism to study the gravitational collapse of fields for any general potential for the fields and apply this formalism to models of dark energy motivated by particle physics considerations. We solve the resulting equations for the time evolution of field configurations and the dynamics of space-time. Our results show that gravitational collapse of dark energy field configurations occurs and must be considered in any complete picture of our Universe. We also demonstrate the black hole formation as a result of the gravitational collapse of the dark energy field configurations. The black holes produced by the collapse of dark energy fields are in the supermassive black hole category with the masses of these black holes being comparable to the masses of black holes at the centers of galaxies.

  1. 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

    2008-09-04

    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.

  2. On the location of the supermassive black hole in CTA 102

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fromm, Christian M.; Perucho, Manel; Ros, Eduardo; Savolainen, Tuomas; Zensus, J. Anton

    2015-04-01

    Context. Relativistic jets in active galactic nuclei are one of the most powerful phenomena in the Universe. They form in the surroundings of the supermassive black holes as a by-product of accretion onto the central black hole in active galaxies. The flow in the jets propagates at velocities close to the speed of light. The distance between the first part of the jet that is visible in radio images (core) and the black hole is still a matter of debate. Aims: Only very-long-baseline interferometry observations resolve the innermost compact regions of the radio jet. These observations can access the jet base, and by combining data at different wavelenghts, address the physical parameters of the outflow from its emission. Methods: We have performed an accurate analysis of the frequency-dependent shift of the VLBI core location for a multi-wavelength set of images of the blazar CTA 102 including data from 6 cm down to 3 mm. Results: The measure of the position of the central black hole, with mass ~108.93M⊙, in the blazar CTA 102 reveals a distance of ~8 × 104 gravitational radii to the 86 GHz core, in agreement with similar measures obtained for other blazars and distant radio galaxies, and in contrast with recent results for the case of nearby radio galaxies, which show distances between the black hole and the radio core that can be two orders of magnitude smaller.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Anisotropic velocity distributions in M87 - Is a supermassive black hole necessary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duncan, M. J.; Wheeler, J. C.

    1980-01-01

    A collisionless distribution of stars with an anisotropic velocity distribution is considered as a model for the cores of spherical galaxies. The first moment of the corresponding Boltzmann equation is integrated to give the resulting density and velocity dispersion profiles. These distributions plus a central point source of light give a good fit to the data from recent observations of M87 without requiring a supermassive central object. This model requires one less fitting parameter than published models incorporating a central black hole. The same model with no point source of light also provides a good fit to the normal E1 galaxy NGC 3379. The success of this model in describing the cores of both M87 and NGC 3379 suggests that a supermassive black hole is not necessary in either.

  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

    2012-10-05

    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.

  8. 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.

  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. The Coevolution of Galaxies and Supermassive Black Holes: Insights from Surveys of the Contemporary Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heckman, Timothy M.; Best, Philip N.

    2014-08-01

    We summarize what large surveys of the contemporary Universe have taught us about the physics and phenomenology of the processes that link the formation and evolution of galaxies with their central supermassive black holes. We present a picture in which the population of active galactic nuclei (AGNs) can be divided into two distinct populations. The radiative-mode AGNs are associated with black holes (BHs) that produce radiant energy powered by accretion at rates in excess of ˜1% of the Eddington limit. They are primarily associated with less massive BHs growing in high-density pseudobulges at a rate sufficient to produce the total mass budget in these BHs in ˜10 Gyr. The circumnuclear environment contains high-density cold gas and associated star formation. Major mergers are not the primary mechanism for transporting this gas inward; secular processes appear dominant. Stellar feedback is generic in these objects, and strong AGN feedback is seen only in the most powerful AGNs. In jet-mode AGNs the bulk of energetic output takes the form of collimated outflows (jets). These AGNs are associated with the more massive BHs in more massive (classical) bulges and elliptical galaxies. Neither the accretion onto these BHs nor star formation in their host bulge is significant today. These AGNs are probably fueled by the accretion of slowly cooling hot gas that is limited by the feedback/heating provided by AGN radio sources. Surveys of the high-redshift Universe paint a similar picture. Noting that the volume-averaged ratio of star formation to BH growth has remained broadly constant over the past 10 Gyrs, we argue that the processes that linked the cosmic evolution of galaxies and BHs are still at play today.

  11. Supermassive black holes from collapsing dark matter Bose–Einstein condensates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Das Gupta, Patrick; Thareja, Eklavya

    2017-02-01

    The discovery of active galactic nuclei at redshifts ≳ 6 suggests that supermassive black holes (SMBHs) formed early on. Growth of the remnants of population III stars by accretion of matter, both baryonic as well as collisionless dark matter (DM), leading up to formation of SMBHs is a very slow process. Therefore, such models encounter difficulties in explaining quasars detected at z≳ 6 . Furthermore, massive particles making up collisionless DM have not only so far eluded experimental detection but they also do not satisfactorily explain gravitational structures on small scales. In recent years, there has been a surge in research activities concerning cosmological structure formation that involve coherent, ultra-light bosons in a dark fluid-like or fuzzy cold DM state. In this paper, we study collapse of such ultra-light bosonic halo DM that is in a Bose–Einstein condensate (BEC) phase to give rise to SMBHs on dynamical time scales. Time evolution of such self-gravitating BECs is examined using the Gross–Pitaevskii equation in the framework of time-dependent variational method. Comprised of identical dark bosons of mass m, BECs can collapse to form black holes of mass M eff on time scales  ∼108 yrs provided m~{{M}\\text{eff}}≳ 0.64~mPl2 . In particular, ultra-light dark bosons of mass ∼ {{10}-20}~\\text{eV} can lead to SMBHs with mass ≳ {{10}10}~{{M}ȯ} at z≈ 6 . Recently observed radio-galaxies in the ELAIS-N1 deep field with aligned jets can also possibly be explained if vortices of a rotating cluster size BEC collapse to form spinning SMBHs with angular momentum J≲ 3.6~{{n}W}\\frac{G{{M}2}}{c} , where n W and M are the winding number and mass of a vortex, respectively.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. COSMOLOGICAL EVOLUTION OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES. II. EVIDENCE FOR DOWNSIZING OF SPIN EVOLUTION

    SciTech Connect

    Li Yanrong; Wang Jianmin; Ho, Luis C. E-mail: wangjm@mail.ihep.ac.cn

    2012-04-20

    The spin is an important but poorly constrained parameter for describing supermassive black holes (SMBHs). Using the continuity equation of SMBH number density, we explicitly obtain the mass-dependent cosmological evolution of the radiative efficiency for accretion, which serves as a proxy for SMBH spin. Our calculations make use of the SMBH mass function of active and inactive galaxies (derived in the first paper of this series), the bolometric luminosity function of active galactic nuclei (AGNs), corrected for the contribution from Compton-thick sources, and the observed Eddington ratio distribution. We find that the radiative efficiency generally increases with increasing black hole mass at high redshifts (z {approx}> 1), roughly as {eta}{proportional_to}M{sup 0.5}{sub .}, while the trend reverses at lower redshifts, such that the highest efficiencies are attained by the lowest mass black holes. Black holes with M{sub .} {approx}> 10{sup 8.5} M{sub Sun} maintain radiative efficiencies as high as {eta} Almost-Equal-To 0.3-0.4 at high redshifts, near the maximum for rapidly spinning systems, but their efficiencies drop dramatically (by an order of magnitude) by z Almost-Equal-To 0. The pattern for lower mass holes is somewhat more complicated but qualitatively similar. Assuming that the standard accretion disk model applies, we suggest that the accretion history of SMBHs and their accompanying spins evolves in two distinct regimes: an early phase of prolonged accretion, plausibly driven by major mergers, during which the black hole spins up, then switching to a period of random, episodic accretion, governed by minor mergers and internal secular processes, during which the hole spins down. The transition epoch depends on mass, mirroring other evidence for 'cosmic downsizing' in the AGN population; it occurs at z Almost-Equal-To 2 for high-mass black holes and somewhat later, at z Almost-Equal-To 1, for lower mass systems.

  16. Hubble Helps Find Smallest Known Galaxy Containing a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-28

    This is an illustration of a supermassive black hole, weighing as much as 21 million suns, located in the middle of the ultradense galaxy M60-UCD1. The dwarf galaxy is so dense that millions of stars fill the sky as seen by an imaginary visitor. Because no light can escape from the black hole, it appears simply in silhouette against the starry background. The black hole's intense gravitational field warps the light of the background stars to form ring-like images just outside the dark edges of the black hole's event horizon. Combined observations by the Hubble Space Telescope and Gemini North telescope determined the presence of the black hole inside such a small and dense galaxy. More info: Astronomers using data from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and ground observation have found an unlikely object in an improbable place -- a monster black hole lurking inside one of the tiniest galaxies ever known. The black hole is five times the mass of the one at the center of our Milky Way galaxy. It is inside one of the densest galaxies known to date -- the M60-UCD1 dwarf galaxy that crams 140 million stars within a diameter of about 300 light-years, which is only 1/500th of our galaxy’s diameter. If you lived inside this dwarf galaxy, the night sky would dazzle with at least 1 million stars visible to the naked eye. Our nighttime sky as seen from Earth’s surface shows 4,000 stars. The finding implies there are many other compact galaxies in the universe that contain supermassive black holes. The observation also suggests dwarf galaxies may actually be the stripped remnants of larger galaxies that were torn apart during collisions with other galaxies rather than small islands of stars born in isolation. “We don’t know of any other way you could make a black hole so big in an object this small,” said University of Utah astronomer Anil Seth, lead author of an international study of the dwarf galaxy published in Thursday’s issue of the journal Nature. Seth

  17. COSMOLOGICAL EVOLUTION OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES. I. MASS FUNCTION AT 0 < z {approx}< 2

    SciTech Connect

    Li Yanrong; Wang Jianmin; Ho, Luis C. E-mail: wangjm@mail.ihep.ac.cn

    2011-11-20

    We present the mass function of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) over the redshift range z = 0-2, using the latest deep luminosity and mass functions of field galaxies to constrain the masses of their spheroids, which we relate to SMBH mass through the empirical correlation between SMBH and spheroid mass (the M{sub .}-M{sub sph} relation). In addition to luminosity fading of the stellar content of the spheroids, we carefully consider the variation of the bulge-to-total luminosity ratio of the galaxy populations and the M{sub .}/M{sub sph} ratio, which, according to numerous recent studies, evolves rapidly with redshift. The SMBH mass functions derived from the galaxy luminosity and mass functions show very good agreement, both in shape and in normalization. The resultant SMBH mass function and integrated mass density for the local epoch (z Almost-Equal-To 0) match well those derived independently by other studies. Consistent with other evidence for cosmic downsizing, the upper end of the mass function remains roughly constant since z Almost-Equal-To 2, while the space density of lower mass black holes undergoes strong evolution. We carefully assess the impact of various sources of uncertainties on our calculations. A companion paper uses the mass function derived in this work to determine the radiative efficiency of black hole accretion and constraints that can be imposed on the cosmological evolution of black hole spin.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Action growth of charged black holes with a single horizon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cai, Rong-Gen; Sasaki, Misao; Wang, Shao-Jiang

    2017-06-01

    According to the conjecture "complexity equals action," the complexity of a holographic state is equal to the action of a Wheeler-DeWitt (WDW) patch of black holes in anti-de Sitter space. In this paper we calculate the action growth of charged black holes with a single horizon, paying attention to the contribution from a spacelike singularity inside the horizon. We consider two kinds of such charged black holes: one is a charged dilaton black hole, and the other is a Born-Infeld black hole with β2Q2<1 /4 . In both cases, although an electric charge appears in the black hole solutions, the inner horizon is absent; instead a spacelike singularity appears inside the horizon. We find that the action growth of the WDW patch of the charged black hole is finite and satisfies the Lloyd bound. As a check, we also calculate the action growth of a charged black hole with a phantom Maxwell field. In this case, although the contributions from the bulk integral and the spacelike singularity are individually divergent, these two divergences just cancel each other and a finite action growth is obtained. But in this case, the Lloyd bound is violated as expected.

  1. A new way to measure supermassive black hole spin in accretion disc-dominated active galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Done, Chris; Jin, C.; Middleton, M.; Ward, Martin

    2013-09-01

    We show that disc continuum fitting can be used to constrain black hole spin in a subclass of narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLS1) active galactic nuclei as their low mass and high mass accretion rate means that the disc peaks at energies just below the soft X-ray bandpass. We apply the technique to the NLS1 PG1244+026, where the optical/UV/X-ray spectrum is consistent with being dominated by a standard disc component. This gives a best estimate for black hole spin which is low, with a firm upper limit of a* <0.86. This contrasts with the recent X-ray determinations of (close to) maximal black hole spin in other NLS1 based on relativistic smearing of the iron profile. While our data on PG1244+026 do not have sufficient statistics at high energy to give a good measure of black hole spin from the iron line profile, cosmological simulations predict that black holes with similar masses have similar growth histories and so should have similar spins. This suggests that there is a problem either in our understanding of disc spectra, or/and X-ray reflection or/and the evolution of black hole spin.

  2. 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.

  3. Compact object mergers: observations of supermassive binary black holes and stellar tidal disruption events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komossa, S.; Zensus, J. A.

    2016-02-01

    The capture and disruption of stars by supermassive black holes (SMBHs), and the formation and coalescence of binaries, are inevitable consequences of the presence of SMBHs at the cores of galaxies. Pairs of active galactic nuclei (AGN) and binary SMBHs are important stages in the evolution of galaxy mergers, and an intense search for these systems is currently ongoing. In the early and advanced stages of galaxy merging, observations of the triggering of accretion onto one or both BHs inform us about feedback processes and BH growth. Identification of the compact binary SMBHs at parsec and sub-parsec scales provides us with important constraints on the interaction processes that govern the shrinkage of the binary beyond the ``final parsec''. Coalescing binary SMBHs are among the most powerful sources of gravitational waves (GWs) in the universe. Stellar tidal disruption events (TDEs) appear as luminous, transient, accretion flares when part of the stellar material is accreted by the SMBH. About 30 events have been identified by multi-wavelength observations by now, and they will be detected in the thousands in future ground-based or space-based transient surveys. The study of TDEs provides us with a variety of new astrophysical tools and applications, related to fundamental physics or astrophysics. Here, we provide a review of the current status of observations of SMBH pairs and binaries, and TDEs, and discuss astrophysical implications.

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

    DOE PAGES

    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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Growth of Perturbations near a Rapidly Spinning Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gralla, Samuel

    2017-01-01

    Aretakis discovered a horizon instability of extremal black holes, wherein transverse derivatives of axisymmetric perturbations grow polynomially in advanced time on the horizon. Since no physical black hole can be precisely extremal, nor any physical perturbation precisely axisymmetric, the physical implications rest on generalization to nonaxisymmetric perturbations of near-extreme black holes. We analytically study the response of a near-extremal Kerr black hole to generic external scalar, electromagnetic, and gravitational field perturbations. We show that the energy density, electromagnetic field strength, and tidal force experienced by infalling observers exhibit transient growth near the horizon. As the black hole spin is increased, the growth lasts arbitrarily long and occurs arbitrarily near the horizon, reproducing the Aretakis instability in a smooth way. We explain these results in terms of near-horizon geometry and discuss potential astrophysical implications.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Jet-launching structure resolved near the supermassive black hole in M87.

    PubMed

    Doeleman, Sheperd S; Fish, Vincent L; Schenck, David E; Beaudoin, Christopher; Blundell, Ray; Bower, Geoffrey C; Broderick, Avery E; Chamberlin, Richard; Freund, Robert; Friberg, Per; Gurwell, Mark A; Ho, Paul T P; Honma, Mareki; Inoue, Makoto; Krichbaum, Thomas P; Lamb, James; Loeb, Abraham; Lonsdale, Colin; Marrone, Daniel P; Moran, James M; Oyama, Tomoaki; Plambeck, Richard; Primiani, Rurik A; Rogers, Alan E E; Smythe, Daniel L; SooHoo, Jason; Strittmatter, Peter; Tilanus, Remo P J; Titus, Michael; Weintroub, Jonathan; Wright, Melvyn; Young, Ken H; Ziurys, Lucy M

    2012-10-19

    Approximately 10% of active galactic nuclei exhibit relativistic jets, which are powered by the accretion of matter onto supermassive black holes. Although the measured width profiles of such jets on large scales agree with theories of magnetic collimation, the predicted structure on accretion disk scales at the jet launch point has not been detected. We report radio interferometry observations, at a wavelength of 1.3 millimeters, of the elliptical galaxy M87 that spatially resolve the base of the jet in this source. The derived size of 5.5 ± 0.4 Schwarzschild radii is significantly smaller than the innermost edge of a retrograde accretion disk, suggesting that the M87 jet is powered by an accretion disk in a prograde orbit around a spinning black hole.

  11. Rapid formation of supermassive black hole binaries in galaxy mergers with gas.

    PubMed

    Mayer, L; Kazantzidis, S; Madau, P; Colpi, M; Quinn, T; Wadsley, J

    2007-06-29

    Supermassive black holes (SMBHs) are a ubiquitous component of the nuclei of galaxies. It is normally assumed that after the merger of two massive galaxies, a SMBH binary will form, shrink because of 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 because of 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 after 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 1 million years as a result of the gravitational drag from the gas rather than from the stars.

  12. The Supermassive Black Hole Mass - Pitch Angle Relation in Spiral Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kennefick, Daniel; Berrier, J. C.; Kennefick, J. D.; Seigar, M.; Davis, B. L.; Barrows, R. S.; Shields, D.; Lacy, C. H.

    2013-01-01

    We present new and improved evidence for a strong correlation, with low scatter, between supermassive black hole mass and spiral arm pitch angle in disk galaxies. Such a correlation could be a useful tool for developing a SMBH mass function for both local and distant galaxies, because other host galaxy features which correlate with black hole mass either require expensive spectroscopy (as in the M-sigma relation) or work less well for spiral than for other galaxies because of the need to disentangle the bulge component from the disk and bar components (Bulge luminosity or Sersic index). A late-type SMBH mass function derived from pitch angle measurements could complement nicely early-type mass functions derived from these other measurements, especially because the late-type mass function has so far received less attention than the early-type mass function.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Supermassive Black Holes in the Hierarchical Universe: A General Framework and Observational Tests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shen, Yue

    2009-10-01

    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 gsim0.3) 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 bol < 1045 erg s-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 bol gsim 1046 erg s-1) to low-luminosity AGNs (L bol lsim 1045 erg s-1), in good agreement with observations. The model predicts that the vast

  16. 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.

  17. Orbital motion in the radio galaxy 3C 66B: evidence for a supermassive black hole binary.

    PubMed

    Sudou, Hiroshi; Iguchi, Satoru; Murata, Yasuhiro; Taniguchi, Yoshiaki

    2003-05-23

    Supermassive black hole binaries may exist in the centers of active galactic nuclei such as quasars and radio galaxies, and mergers between galaxies may result in the formation of supermassive binaries during the course of galactic evolution. Using the very-long-baseline interferometer, we imaged the radio galaxy 3C 66B at radio frequencies and found that the unresolved radio core of 3C 66B shows well-defined elliptical motions with a period of 1.05 +/- 0.03 years, which provides a direct detection of a supermassive black hole binary.

  18. HOW IMPORTANT IS THE DARK MATTER HALO FOR BLACK HOLE GROWTH?

    SciTech Connect

    Volonteri, Marta; Gueltekin, Kayhan; Natarajan, Priyamvada

    2011-08-20

    In this paper, we examine whether the properties of central black holes in galactic nuclei correlate with their host dark matter halos. We analyze the entire sample of galaxies where black hole mass, velocity dispersion {sigma}, and asymptotic circular velocity V{sub c} have all been measured. We fit M{sub BH}-{sigma} and M{sub BH}-V{sub c} to a power law, and find that in both relationships the scatter and slope are similar. This model-independent analysis suggests that although the black hole masses are not uniquely determined by dark matter halo mass, when considered for the current sample as a whole, the M{sub BH}-V{sub c} correlation may be as strong (or as weak) as M{sub BH}-{sigma}. Although the data are sparse, there appears to be more scatter in the correlation for both {sigma} and V{sub c} at the low-mass end. This is not unexpected given our current understanding of galaxy and black hole assembly. In fact, there are several compelling reasons that account for this: (1) supermassive black hole (SMBH) formation is likely less efficient in low-mass galaxies with large angular momentum content, (2) SMBH growth is less efficient in low-mass disk galaxies that have not experienced major mergers, and (3) dynamical effects, such as gravitational recoil, increase scatter preferentially at the low-mass end. Therefore, the recent observational claim of the absence of central SMBHs in bulgeless, low-mass galaxies, or deviations from the correlations defined by high-mass black holes in large galaxies today is, in fact, predicated by current models of black hole growth. We show how this arises as a direct consequence of the coupling between dark matter halos and central black holes at the earliest epochs.

  19. Watching a supermassive black hole eat -- Sgr A* and cloud G2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fazio, Giovanni; Ashby, Matthew; Becklin, Eric; Carey, Sean; Ghez, Andrea; Hora, Joseph; Huang, Jiasheng; Ingalls, James; Meyer, Leo; Morris, Mark; Smith, Howard; Wang, Zhong; Witzel, Gunther; Willner, Steven

    2013-10-01

    The Galactic center supermassive black hole is a fluctuating source of electromagnetic radiation derived from its accretion flow. For the past decade, the black hole's ingestion has been modest, but in the near future, its accretion rate and luminosity are expected to surge as the cloud G2 swings by and feeds Sgr A* with a helping of fresh gas. We propose to monitor Sgr A* with Spitzer/IRAC at a wavelength of 4.5 microns as the elevated accretion episode proceeds. Near-infrared wavelengths are where the black hole's emission has been best characterized in the past, and IRAC observations will complement planned observations with other observatories at X-ray, radio, and submillimeter wavelengths. The variability of Sgr A* is a random red-noise process, but the limited duration of continuous ground-based observations (<6 hr) has prevented direct measurement of the correlation timescale. This timescale corresponds to a thermal or viscous timescale associated with the inner radius of the accretion disk, and knowing it is critical for the black hole accretion physics. IRAC offers the unique capability to observe in the infrared for 24 hours continuously at each epoch and to observe during the critical winter months when no ground-based observatories will be able to carry out infrared or submm observations. Our plan is to observe at seven epochs spread over a 14-month interval, including initial observations before the G2 periapsis. This will let us follow the initial stages of what is expected to be an extended accretion episode. Although Sgr A* lies in a crowded field, the sensitivity and the known, stable point spread function of IRAC will allow us recover all variability information on time scales longer than about 20 minutes (and perhaps shorter). The IRAC observations will at last reveal the correlation time of the variation and whether it changes during the accretion episode, yielding new information about black hole accretion disk physics.

  20. The Milky Way's Supermassive Black Hole: How Good a Case Is It?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eckart, Andreas; Hüttemann, Andreas; Kiefer, Claus; Britzen, Silke; Zajaček, Michal; Lämmerzahl, Claus; Stöckler, Manfred; Valencia-S, Monica; Karas, Vladimir; García-Marín, Macarena

    2017-05-01

    The compact and, with {˜ }4.3± 0.3× 10^6 M_{\\odot }, very massive object located at the center of the Milky Way is currently the very best candidate for a supermassive black hole (SMBH) in our immediate vicinity. The strongest evidence for this is provided by measurements of stellar orbits, variable X-ray emission, and strongly variable polarized near-infrared emission from the location of the radio source Sagittarius A* (SgrA*) in the middle of the central stellar cluster. Simultaneous near-infrared and X-ray observations of SgrA* have revealed insights into the emission mechanisms responsible for the powerful near-infrared and X-ray flares from within a few tens to one hundred Schwarzschild radii of such a putative SMBH. If SgrA* is indeed a SMBH it will, in projection onto the sky, have the largest event horizon and will certainly be the first and most important target for very long baseline interferometry observations currently being prepared by the event horizon telescope (EHT). These observations in combination with the infrared interferometry experiment GRAVITY at the very large telescope interferometer and other experiments across the electromagnetic spectrum might yield proof for the presence of a black hole at the center of the Milky Way. The large body of evidence continues to discriminate the identification of SgrA* as a SMBH from alternative possibilities. It is, however, unclear when the ever mounting evidence for SgrA* being associated with a SMBH will suffice as a convincing proof. Additional compelling evidence may come from future gravitational wave observatories. This manuscript reviews the observational facts, theoretical grounds and conceptual aspects for the case of SgrA* being a black hole. We treat theory and observations in the framework of the philosophical discussions about "(anti)realism and underdetermination", as this line of arguments allows us to describe the situation in observational astrophysics with respect to supermassive

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. The Effect of Supermassive Black Hole Binary Environments on Time to Detection for the Stochastic Background

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vigeland, Sarah; Siemens, Xavier

    2017-01-01

    Pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) are sensitive to the gravitational wave (GW) stochastic background produced by supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs). Environmental effects such as gas and stars accelerate the evolution of SMBHBs and may deplete the stochastic background at low frequencies. How much this effects the sensitivity of PTAs to the stochastic background depends on the astrophysical mechanism and where the binary's evolution transitions from being driven by environmental effects to driven by GW emission. We will discuss how these issues impact our observing strategy and estimated time-to-detection. National Science Foundation PIRE program.

  4. The Effect of Supermassive Black Hole Binary Environments on Time to Detection for the Stochastic Background

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vigeland, Sarah; Siemens, Xavier

    2017-01-01

    Pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) are sensitive to the gravitational wave (GW) stochastic background produced by supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs). Environmental effects such as gas and stars accelerate the evolution of SMBHBs and may deplete the stochastic background at low frequencies. How much this effects the sensitivity of PTAs to the stochastic background depends on the astrophysical mechanism and where the binary's evolution transitions from being driven by environmental effects to driven by GW emission. We will discuss how these issues impact our observing strategy and estimated time-to-detection.

  5. Constraints on the Dynamical Environments of Supermassive Black-Hole Binaries Using Pulsar-Timing Arrays.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Stephen R; Simon, Joseph; Sampson, Laura

    2017-05-05

    We introduce a technique for gravitational-wave analysis, where Gaussian process regression is used to emulate the strain spectrum of a stochastic background by training on population-synthesis simulations. This leads to direct Bayesian inference on astrophysical parameters. For pulsar timing arrays specifically, we interpolate over the parameter space of supermassive black-hole binary environments, including three-body stellar scattering, and evolving orbital eccentricity. We illustrate our approach on mock data, and assess the prospects for inference with data similar to the NANOGrav 9-yr data release.

  6. 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.

  7. SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE FORMATION VIA GAS ACCRETION IN NUCLEAR STELLAR CLUSTERS

    SciTech Connect

    Davies, Melvyn B.; Coleman Miller, M.; Bellovary, Jillian M.

    2011-10-20

    Black holes exceeding a billion solar masses have been detected at redshifts greater than six. The rapid formation of these objects may suggest a massive early seed or a period of growth faster than Eddington. Here we suggest a new mechanism along these lines. We propose that in the process of hierarchical structure assembly, dense star clusters can be contracted on dynamical timescales due to the nearly free-fall inflow of self-gravitating gas with a mass comparable to or larger than that of the clusters. This process increases the velocity dispersion to the point where the few remaining hard binaries can no longer effectively heat the cluster, and the cluster goes into a period of homologous core collapse. The cluster core can then reach a central density high enough for fast mergers of stellar-mass black holes and hence the rapid production of a black hole seed that could be 10{sup 5} M{sub sun} or larger.

  8. 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.

  9. The Millennium Galaxy Catalogue: the Mbh-Lspheroid derived supermassive black hole mass function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vika, Marina; Driver, Simon P.; Graham, Alister W.; Liske, Jochen

    2009-12-01

    Supermassive black hole (SMBH) mass estimates are derived for 1743 galaxies from the Millennium Galaxy Catalogue (MGC) using the recently revised empirical relation between SMBH mass and the luminosity of the host spheroid. The MGC spheroid luminosities are based on R1/n bulge plus exponential-disc decompositions. The majority of black hole masses reside between 106Msolar and an upper limit of 2 × 109Msolar. Using previously determined space-density weights, we derive the SMBH mass function which we fit with a Schechter-like function. Integrating the black hole mass function over 106 < Mbh/Msolar < 1010 gives an SMBH mass density of (3.8 +/- 0.6) × 105h370Msolar Mpc-3 for early-type galaxies and (0.96 +/- 0.2) × 105h370Msolar Mpc-3 for late-type galaxies. The errors are estimated from Monte Carlo simulations which include the uncertainties in the Mbh-L relation, the luminosity of the host spheroid and the intrinsic scatter of the Mbh-L relation. Assuming SMBHs form via baryonic accretion, we find that (0.008 +/- 0.002)h370 per cent of the Universe's baryons are currently locked up in SMBHs. This result is consistent with our previous estimate based on the Mbh-n (Sérsic index) relation.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. On the Hydrodynamic Interplay Between a Young Nuclear Starburst and a Central Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hueyotl-Zahuantitla, Filiberto; Tenorio-Tagle, Guillermo; Wünsch, Richard; Silich, Sergiy; Palouš, Jan

    2010-06-01

    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.

  14. Further Evidence for a Supermassive Black Hole Mass-Pitch Angle Relation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    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 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 ⊙) = (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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Disk Assembly and the M BH-σ e Relation of Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Debattista, Victor P.; Kazantzidis, Stelios; van den Bosch, Frank C.

    2013-03-01

    Recent Hubble Space Telescope observations have revealed that a majority of active galactic nuclei (AGNs) at z ~ 1-3 are resident in isolated disk galaxies, contrary to the usual expectation that AGNs are triggered by mergers. Here we develop a new test of the cosmic evolution of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in disk galaxies by considering the local population of SMBHs. We show that substantial SMBH growth in spiral galaxies is required as disks assemble. SMBHs exhibit a tight relation between their mass and the velocity dispersion of the spheroid within which they reside, the M •-σ e relation. In disk galaxies the bulge is the spheroid of interest. We explore the evolution of the M •-σ e relation when bulges form together with SMBHs on the M •-σ e relation and then slowly re-form a disk around them. The formation of the disk compresses the bulge, raising its σ e . We present evidence for such compression in the form of larger velocity dispersion of classical bulges compared with elliptical galaxies at the same mass. This compression leads to an offset in the M •-σ e relation if it is not accompanied by an increased M •. We quantify the expected offset based on photometric data and show that, on average, SMBHs must grow by ~50%-65% just to remain on the M •-σ e relation. We find no significant offset in the M •-σ e relations of classical bulges and of ellipticals, implying that SMBHs have been growing along with disks. Our simulations demonstrate that SMBH growth is necessary for the local population of disk galaxies to have remained on the M •-σ e relation.

  18. Magnetorotational collapse of supermassive stars: Black hole formation, gravitational waves, and jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Lunan; Paschalidis, Vasileios; Ruiz, Milton; Shapiro, Stuart L.

    2017-08-01

    We perform magnetohydrodynamic simulations in full general relativity of uniformly rotating stars that are marginally unstable to collapse. These simulations model the direct collapse of supermassive stars (SMSs) to seed black holes that can grow to become the supermassive black holes at the centers of quasars and active galactic nuclei. They also crudely model the collapse of massive Population III stars to black holes, which could power a fraction of distant, long gamma-ray bursts. The initial stellar models we adopt are Γ =4 /3 polytropes initially with a dynamically unimportant dipole magnetic field. We treat initial magnetic-field configurations either confined to the stellar interior or extending out from the stellar interior into the exterior. We find that the black hole formed following collapse has mass MBH≃0.9 M (where M is the mass of the initial star) and dimensionless spin parameter aBH/MBH≃0.7 . A massive, hot, magnetized torus surrounds the remnant black hole. At Δ t ˜400 - 550 M ≈2000 -2700 (M /106 M⊙)s following the gravitational wave peak amplitude, an incipient jet is launched. The disk lifetime is Δ t ˜105(M /106 M⊙)s , and the outgoing Poynting luminosity is LEM˜1 051 -52 ergs /s . If≳1 %-10 % of this power is converted into gamma rays, Swift and Fermi could potentially detect these events out to large redshifts z ˜20 . Thus, SMSs could be sources of ultra-long gamma-ray bursts (ULGRBs), and massive Population III stars could be the progenitors that power a fraction of the long GRBs observed at redshift z ˜5 - 8 . Gravitational waves are copiously emitted during the collapse and peak at ˜15 (106 M⊙/M ) mHz [˜0.15 (104 M⊙/M ) Hz ], i.e., in the LISA (DECIGO/BBO) band; optimally oriented SMSs could be detectable by LISA (DECIGO/BBO) at z ≲3 (z ≲11 ). Hence, 1 04 M⊙ SMSs collapsing at z ˜10 are promising multimessenger sources of coincident gravitational and electromagnetic waves.

  19. Bulgeless Galaxies Hosting 107 M⊙ AGN in Galaxy Zoo: The Growth of Black Holes via Secular Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, Brooke; Lintott, C. J.; Schawinski, K.; Moran, E. C.; Han, A.; Kaviraj, S.; Masters, K. L.; Urry, C. M.; Willett, K.; Bamford, S. P.; Nichol, R.

    2013-01-01

    The growth of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) appears to proceed via multiple pathways including mergers and secular processes, but these are difficult to disentangle for most galaxies given their complex evolutionary histories. In order to understand the effects of secular galaxy evolution on black hole growth, we require a sample of active galactic nuclei (AGN) in galaxies with a calm formation history free of significant mergers, a population that heretofore has been difficult to locate. Here we present a sample of 13 AGN in massive galaxies lacking the classical bulges believed inevitably to result from mergers; they also either lack or have extremely small pseudobulges, meaning they have had very calm accretion histories. This is the largest sample to date of massive, bulgeless AGN host galaxies selected without any direct restriction on the SMBH mass. The broad-line objects in the sample have black hole masses of 106-7 M⊙ Eddington arguments imply similar masses for the rest of the sample, meaning these black holes have grown substantially in the absence of mergers or other bulge-building processes such as violent disk instabilities. The black hole masses are systematically higher than expected from established bulge-black hole relations. However, these systems may be consistent with the correlation between black hole mass and total stellar mass. We discuss these results in the context of other studies and consider the implication that the details of stellar galaxy evolution and dynamics may not be fundamental to the co-evolution of galaxies and black holes.

  20. Supermassive Black Holes in Bulgeless and Dwarf Galaxies: A Multi-Wavelength Investigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Secrest, Nathan J.

    Supermassive black holes (SMBHs) are now understood to reside at the centers of nearly all major galaxies in the Universe. From studies of high-redshift quasars, we understand that SMBHs formed very early in the Universe's history, and well-studied correlations between other properties of galaxies, such as their morphologies, star formation rate, and merger history, with their central SMBH shows that SMBHs played a key role in the evolution of galaxies. The fact that the post-Big Bang Universe was extremely uniform and homogeneous presents a major mystery: How did SMBHs millions to billions of times as massive as the Sun form in such a short time? Given the theoretical limit at which a black hole can accrete material, it is not plausible that SMBHs could have formed through the conventional route: the end stage of the lifecycle of a massive star. Rather, there are two major theories for the formation of SMBHs, each with its own prediction for the black hole mass distribution and occupation fraction in the local Universe. Understanding this mass distribution and occupation fraction is therefore imperative to understanding the formation of SMBHs, the quasars that reveal their presence in the early Universe, and ultimately the evolution of galaxies to the present day. While large SMBHs in major, bulge-dominated galaxies are relatively easy to detect and characterize, this population of SMBHs is understood to have been built up largely through black hole merger events that erase any information about the progenitor black holes' masses. We must therefore search for SMBHs in late-type, bulgeless, and dwarf galaxies, which are much more likely to have had a relatively quiet, merger-free history, in order to glimpse the properties of the `seed' black holes that led to the buildup of SMBHs during the earliest epoch of the Universe. In this thesis, I will discuss my contributions to the understanding of this question, as well as what questions remain to be answered and the

  1. Supermassive Black Holes and their Host Spheroids III. The Mbh-nsph Correlation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savorgnan, Giulia A. D.

    2016-04-01

    The Sérsic {R}1/n model is the best approximation known to date for describing the light distribution of stellar spheroidal and disk components, with the Sérsic index n providing a direct measure of the central radial concentration of stars. The Sérsic index of a galaxy’s spheroidal component, nsph, has been shown to tightly correlate with the mass of the central supermassive black hole, MBH. The {M}{BH}{--}{n}{sph} correlation is also expected from other two well known scaling relations involving the spheroid luminosity, Lsph: the {L}{sph}{--}{n}{sph} and the {M}{BH}{--}{L}{sph}. Obtaining an accurate estimate of the spheroid Sérsic index requires a careful modeling of a galaxy’s light distribution and some studies have failed to recover a statistically significant {M}{BH}{--}{n}{sph} correlation. With the aim of re-investigating the {M}{BH}{--}{n}{sph} and other black hole mass scaling relations, we performed a detailed (i.e., bulge, disks, bars, spiral arms, rings, halo, nucleus, etc.) decomposition of 66 galaxies, with directly measured black hole masses, that had been imaged at 3.6 μm with Spitzer. In this paper, the third of this series, we present an analysis of the {L}{sph}{--}{n}{sph} and {M}{BH}{--}{n}{sph} diagrams. While early-type (elliptical+lenticular) and late-type (spiral) galaxies split into two separate relations in the {L}{sph}{--}{n}{sph} and {M}{BH}{--}{L}{sph} diagrams, they reunite into a single {M}{BH}\\propto {n}{sph}3.39+/- 0.15 sequence with relatively small intrinsic scatter (ε ≃ 0.25 {dex}). The black hole mass appears to be closely related to the spheroid central concentration of stars, which mirrors the inner gradient of the spheroid gravitational potential.

  2. The Tidal Disruption of Giant Stars and their Contribution to the Flaring Supermassive Black Hole Population

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    MacLeod, Morgan; Guillochon, James; Ramirez-Ruiz, Enrico

    2012-10-01

    Sun-like stars are thought to be regularly disrupted by supermassive black holes (SMBHs) within galactic nuclei. Yet, as stars evolve off the main sequence their vulnerability to tidal disruption increases drastically as they develop a bifurcated structure consisting of a dense core and a tenuous envelope. Here we present the first hydrodynamic simulations of the tidal disruption of giant stars and show that the core has a substantial influence on the star's ability to survive the encounter. Stars with more massive cores retain large fractions of their envelope mass, even in deep encounters. Accretion flares resulting from the disruption of giant stars should last for tens to hundreds of years. Their characteristic signature in transient searches would not be the t -5/3 decay typically associated with tidal disruption events, but a correlated rise over many orders of magnitude in brightness on timescales of months to years. We calculate the relative disruption rates of stars of varying evolutionary stages in typical galactic centers, then use our results to produce Monte Carlo realizations of the expected flaring event populations. We find that the demographics of tidal disruption flares are strongly dependent on both stellar and black hole mass, especially near the limiting SMBH mass scale of ~108 M ⊙. At this black hole mass, we predict a sharp transition in the SMBH flaring diet beyond which all observable disruptions arise from evolved stars, accompanied by a dramatic cutoff in the overall tidal disruption flaring rate. Black holes less massive than this limiting mass scale will show observable flares from both main-sequence and evolved stars, with giants contributing up to 10% of the event rate. The relative fractions of stars disrupted at different evolutionary states can constrain the properties and distributions of stars in galactic nuclei other than our own.

  3. THE TIDAL DISRUPTION OF GIANT STARS AND THEIR CONTRIBUTION TO THE FLARING SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE POPULATION

    SciTech Connect

    MacLeod, Morgan; Guillochon, James; Ramirez-Ruiz, Enrico E-mail: jfg@ucolick.org

    2012-10-01

    Sun-like stars are thought to be regularly disrupted by supermassive black holes (SMBHs) within galactic nuclei. Yet, as stars evolve off the main sequence their vulnerability to tidal disruption increases drastically as they develop a bifurcated structure consisting of a dense core and a tenuous envelope. Here we present the first hydrodynamic simulations of the tidal disruption of giant stars and show that the core has a substantial influence on the star's ability to survive the encounter. Stars with more massive cores retain large fractions of their envelope mass, even in deep encounters. Accretion flares resulting from the disruption of giant stars should last for tens to hundreds of years. Their characteristic signature in transient searches would not be the t {sup -5/3} decay typically associated with tidal disruption events, but a correlated rise over many orders of magnitude in brightness on timescales of months to years. We calculate the relative disruption rates of stars of varying evolutionary stages in typical galactic centers, then use our results to produce Monte Carlo realizations of the expected flaring event populations. We find that the demographics of tidal disruption flares are strongly dependent on both stellar and black hole mass, especially near the limiting SMBH mass scale of {approx}10{sup 8} M{sub Sun }. At this black hole mass, we predict a sharp transition in the SMBH flaring diet beyond which all observable disruptions arise from evolved stars, accompanied by a dramatic cutoff in the overall tidal disruption flaring rate. Black holes less massive than this limiting mass scale will show observable flares from both main-sequence and evolved stars, with giants contributing up to 10% of the event rate. The relative fractions of stars disrupted at different evolutionary states can constrain the properties and distributions of stars in galactic nuclei other than our own.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. INTERRUPTION OF TIDAL-DISRUPTION FLARES BY SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE BINARIES

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, F. K.; Li, S.; Chen Xian E-mail: lis@bac.pku.edu.c

    2009-11-20

    Supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) are products of galaxy mergers, and are important in testing LAMBDA cold dark matter cosmology and locating gravitational-wave-radiation sources. A unique electromagnetic signature of SMBHBs in galactic nuclei is essential in identifying the binaries in observations from the IR band through optical to X-ray. Recently, the flares in optical, UV, and X-ray caused by supermassive black holes (SMBHs) tidally disrupting nearby stars have been successfully used to observationally probe single SMBHs in normal galaxies. In this Letter, we investigate the accretion of the gaseous debris of a tidally disrupted star by a SMBHB. Using both stability analysis of three-body systems and numerical scattering experiments, we show that the accretion of stellar debris gas, which initially decays with time propor tot {sup -5/3}, would stop at a time T{sub tr} approx = etaT{sub b}. Here, eta approx 0.25 and T{sub b} is the orbital period of the SMBHB. After a period of interruption, the accretion recurs discretely at time T{sub r} approx = xi{sub b}, where xi approx 1. Both eta and xi sensitively depend on the orbital parameters of the tidally disrupted star at the tidal radius and the orbit eccentricity of SMBHB. The interrupted accretion of the stellar debris gas gives rise to an interrupted tidal flare, which could be used to identify SMBHBs in non-active galaxies in the upcoming transient surveys.

  9. Testing General Relativity with Stellar Orbits around the Supermassive Black Hole in Our Galactic Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hees, A.; Do, T.; Ghez, A. M.; Martinez, G. D.; Naoz, S.; Becklin, E. E.; Boehle, A.; Chappell, S.; Chu, D.; Dehghanfar, A.; Kosmo, K.; Lu, J. R.; Matthews, K.; Morris, M. R.; Sakai, S.; Schödel, R.; Witzel, G.

    2017-05-01

    We demonstrate that short-period stars orbiting around the supermassive black hole in our Galactic center can successfully be used to probe the gravitational theory in a strong regime. We use 19 years of observations of the two best measured short-period stars orbiting our Galactic center to constrain a hypothetical fifth force that arises in various scenarios motivated by the development of a unification theory or in some models of dark matter and dark energy. No deviation from general relativity is reported and the fifth force strength is restricted to an upper 95% confidence limit of |α | <0.016 at a length scale of λ =150 astronomical units. We also derive a 95% confidence upper limit on a linear drift of the argument of periastron of the short-period star S0-2 of |ω˙ S0-2| <1.6 ×10-3 rad /yr , which can be used to constrain various gravitational and astrophysical theories. This analysis provides the first fully self-consistent test of the gravitational theory using orbital dynamic in a strong gravitational regime, that of a supermassive black hole. A sensitivity analysis for future measurements is also presented.

  10. 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.

  11. Searching for GW signals from eccentric supermassive black-hole binaries with pulsar-timing arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Stephen; Gair, Jonathan; Huerta, Eliu; McWilliams, Sean

    2015-04-01

    The mergers of massive galaxies leads to the formation of supermassive black-hole binaries in the common merger remnants. Various mechanisms have been proposed to harden these binaries into the adiabatic GW inspiral regime, from interactions with circumbinary disks to stellar scattering. It may be the case that these mechanisms leave the binary with a residual eccentricity, such that the deviation to the time-of-arrival of pulsar signals induced by the emitted GW passing between the Earth and a pulsar will contain a signature of this eccentricity. Current pulsar-timing search pipelines only probe circular binary systems, but much effort is now being devoted to considering the influence of the binary environment on GW signals. We will detail our efforts in constructing a generalised GW search pipeline to constrain the eccentricity of single systems with arrays of precisely-timed pulsars, which may shed light on the influence of various supermassive black-hole binary hardening mechanisms and illuminate the importance of environmental couplings.

  12. GENERAL RELATIVISTIC SIMULATIONS OF MAGNETIZED PLASMAS AROUND MERGING SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

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

    2012-06-10

    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 {approx}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 10{sup 4} larger than comparable calculations done in the force-free regime where such amplifications are not possible.

  13. Testing General Relativity with Stellar Orbits around the Supermassive Black Hole in Our Galactic Center.

    PubMed

    Hees, A; Do, T; Ghez, A M; Martinez, G D; Naoz, S; Becklin, E E; Boehle, A; Chappell, S; Chu, D; Dehghanfar, A; Kosmo, K; Lu, J R; Matthews, K; Morris, M R; Sakai, S; Schödel, R; Witzel, G

    2017-05-26

    We demonstrate that short-period stars orbiting around the supermassive black hole in our Galactic center can successfully be used to probe the gravitational theory in a strong regime. We use 19 years of observations of the two best measured short-period stars orbiting our Galactic center to constrain a hypothetical fifth force that arises in various scenarios motivated by the development of a unification theory or in some models of dark matter and dark energy. No deviation from general relativity is reported and the fifth force strength is restricted to an upper 95% confidence limit of |α|<0.016 at a length scale of λ=150 astronomical units. We also derive a 95% confidence upper limit on a linear drift of the argument of periastron of the short-period star S0-2 of |ω[over ˙]_{S0-2}|<1.6×10^{-3}  rad/yr, which can be used to constrain various gravitational and astrophysical theories. This analysis provides the first fully self-consistent test of the gravitational theory using orbital dynamic in a strong gravitational regime, that of a supermassive black hole. A sensitivity analysis for future measurements is also presented.

  14. X-Ray Constraints on the Local Supermassive Black Hole Occupation Fraction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-01-01

    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 X with M star, accounting for intrinsic scatter, measurement uncertainties, and X-ray limits. For early-type galaxies with M star < 1010 M ⊙, 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 X upon log M 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Direct probe of the inner accretion flow around the supermassive black hole in NGC 2617

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giustini, M.; Costantini, E.; De Marco, B.; Svoboda, J.; Motta, S. E.; Proga, D.; Saxton, R.; Ferrigno, C.; Longinotti, A. L.; Miniutti, G.; Grupe, D.; Mathur, S.; Shappee, B. J.; Prieto, J. L.; Stanek, K.

    2017-01-01

    Aims: NGC 2617 is a nearby (z 0.01) active galaxy that recently switched from being a Seyfert 1.8 to be a Seyfert 1.0. At the same time, it underwent a strong increase of X-ray flux by one order of magnitude with respect to archival measurements. We characterise the X-ray spectral and timing properties of NGC 2617 with the aim of studying the physics of a changing-look active galactic nucleus (AGN). Methods: We performed a comprehensive timing and spectral analysis of two XMM-Newton pointed observations spaced by one month, complemented by archival quasi-simultaneous INTEGRAL observations. Results: We found that, to the first order, NGC 2617 looks like a type 1 AGN in the X-ray band and, with the addition of a modest reflection component, its continuum can be modelled well either with a power law plus a phenomenological blackbody, a partially covered power law, or a double Comptonisation model. Independent of the continuum adopted, in all three cases a column density of a few 1023 cm-2 of neutral gas covering 20-40% of the continuum source is required by the data. Most interestingly, absorption structures due to highly ionised iron have been detected in both observations with a redshift of about 0.1c with respect to the systemic redshift of the host galaxy. Conclusions: The redshifted absorber can be ascribed to a failed wind/aborted jets component, to gravitational redshift effects, and/or to matter directly falling towards the central supermassive black hole. In either case, we are probing the innermost accretion flow around the central supermassive black hole of NGC 2617 and might be even watching matter in a direct inflow towards the black hole itself.

  19. 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.

  20. CO-EVOLUTION OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE AND HOST GALAXY FROM z {approx} 1 TO z = 0

    SciTech Connect

    Kiuchi, Gaku; Ohta, Kouji; Akiyama, Masayuki

    2009-05-01

    Stellar masses of bulges in hosts of active galactic nuclei (AGNs) and black hole masses in the AGNs are derived at z = 0.5-1.15 to study evolution of the black hole-to-bulge mass relation. In order to derive bulge stellar masses, we use a sample of type-2 AGNs to avoid the bright nuclear light. 34 type-2 AGNs are selected from the spectroscopically identified X-ray sources in the Chandra Deep Field South. We use optical images from the Hubble Space Telescope, and near- and mid-infrared photometry from the Very Large Telescope and the Spitzer Space Telescope. The bulge components are derived by fitting the two-dimensional surface brightness model consisting of a bulge and a disk component to the optical images. We derive stellar masses (M {sub bulge}) and star formation rates (SFRs) of the bulge components by spectral energy distribution fitting. The derived M {sub bulge} ranges over 10{sup 9}-10{sup 11} M {sub sun}, and the estimated SFR is 0.01-100 M {sub sun} yr{sup -1}. Masses of supermassive black holes (SMBHs; M {sub .}) and black hole accretion rates (BHARs) are estimated with the absorption-corrected X-ray luminosities in the 2-10 keV band under an assumption of the constant Eddington ratio of 0.1 and the constant energy conversion factor of 0.1. Resulting black hole masses and BHARs range over 10{sup 5.5}-10{sup 8} M {sub sun} and 0.001-1 M {sub sun} yr{sup -1}, respectively. For luminous AGNs, the estimated M {sub .}/M {sub bulge} ratio is {approx}4 x 10{sup -4} in the median, which is lower than that for local galaxies and for type-2 AGNs at z {approx} 0.2. However, these differences are within uncertainty and are not significant. This can imply that SMBHs and their host galaxies are evolving almost holding the constant M {sub .}/M {sub bulge} ratio from z {approx} 1.0 to 0 in a cosmological timescale. Meanwhile, the estimated BHAR/SFR ratio is about 60 times larger than the M {sub .}/M {sub bulge} ratio in the median value. This indicates that growths

  1. Rapid black hole growth under anisotropic radiation feedback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugimura, Kazuyuki; Hosokawa, Takashi; Yajima, Hidenobu; Omukai, Kazuyuki

    2017-07-01

    Discovery of high-redshift (z > 6) supermassive black holes (BHs) may indicate that the rapid (or super-Eddington) gas accretion has aided their quick growth. Here, we study such rapid accretion of the primordial gas on to intermediate-mass (102-105 M⊙) BHs under anisotropic radiation feedback. We perform two-dimensional radiation hydrodynamics simulations that solve the flow structure across the Bondi radius, from far outside of the Bondi radius down to a central part that is larger than a circum-BH accretion disc. The radiation from the unresolved circum-BH disc is analytically modelled considering self-shadowing effect. We show that the flow settles into a steady state, where the flow structure consists of two distinct parts: (1) bipolar ionized outflowing regions, where the gas is pushed outward by thermal gas pressure and super-Eddington radiation pressure, and (2) an equatorial neutral inflowing region, where the gas falls towards the central BH without affected by radiation feedback. The resulting accretion rate is much higher than that in the case of isotropic radiation, far exceeding the Eddington-limited rate to reach a value slightly lower than the Bondi one. The opening angle of the equatorial inflowing region is determined by the luminosity and directional dependence of the central radiation. We find that photoevaporation from its surfaces set the critical opening angle of about 10° below which the accretion to the BH is quenched. We suggest that the shadowing effect allows even stellar-remnant BHs to grow rapidly enough to become high-redshift supermassive BHs.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. A Strongly Magnetized Pulsar within the Grasp of the Milky Way's Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    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 \\dot{P} = 6.61(4)\\times 10^{-12} s s-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-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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Constraining the properties of the proposed supermassive black hole system in 3C66B: limits from pulsar timing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jenet, F. A.; Lommen, A.; Larson, S. L.; Wen, L.

    2003-01-01

    Data from long term timing observations of the radio pulsar PSR B1855+09 have been searched for the signature of Gravitational waves (G-waves) emitted by the proposed supermassive binary black hole system in 3C66B.

  9. 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.

  10. Impact of baryonic streaming velocities on the formation of supermassive black holes via direct collapse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Latif, M. A.; Niemeyer, J. C.; Schleicher, D. R. G.

    2014-06-01

    Baryonic streaming motions produced prior to the epoch of recombination became supersonic during the cosmic dark ages. Various studies suggest that such streaming velocities change the halo statistics and also influence the formation of Population III stars. In this study, we aim to explore the impact of streaming velocities on the formation of supermassive black holes at z>10 via the direct collapse scenario. To accomplish this goal, we perform cosmological large eddy simulations for two haloes of a few times 107M⊙ with initial streaming velocities of 3, 6 and 9 km s-1. These massive primordial haloes illuminated by the strong Lyman-Werner flux are the potential cradles for the formation of direct collapse seed black holes. To study the evolution for longer times, we employ sink particles and track the accretion for 10 000 years. Our findings show that higher streaming velocities increase the circular velocities from about 14 to 16 km s-1. They also delay the collapse of haloes for a few million years, but do not have any significant impact on the halo properties such as turbulent energy, radial velocity, density and accretion rates. Sink particles of about ˜105M⊙ are formed at the end of our simulations and no clear distribution of sink masses is observed in the presence of streaming motions. It is further found that the impact of streaming velocities is less severe in massive haloes compared to the minihaloes as reported in the previous studies.

  11. Supermassive Black Hole Binary Evolution in Axisymmetric Galaxies: The Final Parsec Problem is Not a Problem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khan, Fazeel Mahmood; Holley-Bockelmann, Kelly; Berczik, Peter; Just, Andreas

    2013-08-01

    During a galaxy merger, the supermassive black hole (SMBH) in each galaxy is thought to sink to the center of the potential and form an SMBH binary; this binary can eject stars via three-body scattering, bringing the SMBHs ever closer. In a static spherical galaxy model, the binary stalls at a separation of about a parsec after ejecting all the stars in its loss cone—this is the well-known final parsec problem. Earlier work has shown that the centrophilic orbits in triaxial galaxy models are key in refilling the loss cone at a high enough rate to prevent the black holes from stalling. However, the evolution of binary SMBHs has never been explored in axisymmetric galaxies, so it is not clear if the final parsec problem persists in these systems. Here we use a suite of direct N-body simulations to follow SMBH binary evolution in galaxy models with a range of ellipticity. For the first time, we show that mere axisymmetry can solve the final parsec problem; we find the SMBH evolution is independent of N for an axis ratio of c/a = 0.8, and that the SMBH binary separation reaches the gravitational radiation regime for c/a = 0.75.

  12. SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE BINARY EVOLUTION IN AXISYMMETRIC GALAXIES: THE FINAL PARSEC PROBLEM IS NOT A PROBLEM

    SciTech Connect

    Khan, Fazeel Mahmood; Holley-Bockelmann, Kelly; Berczik, Peter; Just, Andreas E-mail: just@ari.uni-heidelberg.de E-mail: k.holley@vanderbilt.edu

    2013-08-20

    During a galaxy merger, the supermassive black hole (SMBH) in each galaxy is thought to sink to the center of the potential and form an SMBH binary; this binary can eject stars via three-body scattering, bringing the SMBHs ever closer. In a static spherical galaxy model, the binary stalls at a separation of about a parsec after ejecting all the stars in its loss cone-this is the well-known final parsec problem. Earlier work has shown that the centrophilic orbits in triaxial galaxy models are key in refilling the loss cone at a high enough rate to prevent the black holes from stalling. However, the evolution of binary SMBHs has never been explored in axisymmetric galaxies, so it is not clear if the final parsec problem persists in these systems. Here we use a suite of direct N-body simulations to follow SMBH binary evolution in galaxy models with a range of ellipticity. For the first time, we show that mere axisymmetry can solve the final parsec problem; we find the SMBH evolution is independent of N for an axis ratio of c/a = 0.8, and that the SMBH binary separation reaches the gravitational radiation regime for c/a = 0.75.

  13. 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

  14. Evidence for Supermassive Black Holes in Active Galactic Nuclei from Emission-Line Reverberation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peterson, Bradley M.; Wandel, Amri

    2000-01-01

    Emission-line variability data for Seyfert 1 galaxies provide strong evidence for the existence of supermassive black holes in the nuclei of these galaxies and that the line-emitting gas is moving in the gravitational potential of that black hole. The time-delayed response of the emission lines to continuum variations is used to infer the size of the line-emitting region, which is then combined with measurements of the Doppler widths of the variable line components to estimate a virial mass. la the case of the best-studied galaxy, NGC 5548, various emission lines spanning an order of magnitude in distance from the central source show the expected V proportional to r(sup -l/2) correlation between distance and line width and are thus consistent with a single value for the mass. Two other Seyfert galaxies, NGC 7469 and 3C 390.3, show a similar relationship. We compute the ratio of luminosity to mass for these three objects and the narrow-line Seyfert I galaxy NGC 4051 and find that the gravitational force on the line-emitting gas is much stronger than radiation pressure. These results strongly support the paradigm of gravitationally bound broad emission line region clouds.

  15. 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.

  16. Constraints on supermassive black hole spins from observations of active galaxy jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kun, E.; Wiita, P. J.; Gergely, L. Á.; Keresztes, Z.; Gopal-Krishna; Biermann, P. L.

    2013-11-01

    We discuss the origin of the low-energy cutoff, or LEC, seen in the radio spectra of many extragalactic jets and relate this to the spin of the supermassive black holes that presumably power them. Pion decay via proton-proton collisions is a possible mechanism to supply a secondary positron population with a low energy limit. We expect that pion production would occur in advection dominated accretion flows or ADAFs. In radiatively inefficient ADAFs the heat energy of the accreting gas is unable to radiate in less than the accretion time and the particle temperature could be high enough so that thermal protons can yield such pion production. Strong starbursts are another option for the injection of a truncated particle population into the jet. The role of both mechanisms is discussed with respect to the black hole spin estimate. The energy demanded to produce the pion decay process involves a minimum threshold for kinetic energy of the interacting protons. Therefore the mean proton speed in the flow can determine whether a LEC is generated. In ADAFs the random velocity of the protons can exceed the minimum speed limit of pion production around the jet launching region in the innermost part of the flow. Finally we summarize the additional work needed to put the model assumptions on a more rigorous basis.

  17. Evidence for Supermassive Black Holes in Active Galactic Nuclei from Emission-Line Reverberation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peterson, Bradley M.; Wandel, Amri

    2000-01-01

    Emission-line variability data for Seyfert 1 galaxies provide strong evidence for the existence of supermassive black holes in the nuclei of these galaxies and that the line-emitting gas is moving in the gravitational potential of that black hole. The time-delayed response of the emission lines to continuum variations is used to infer the size of the line-emitting region, which is then combined with measurements of the Doppler widths of the variable line components to estimate a virial mass. la the case of the best-studied galaxy, NGC 5548, various emission lines spanning an order of magnitude in distance from the central source show the expected V proportional to r(sup -l/2) correlation between distance and line width and are thus consistent with a single value for the mass. Two other Seyfert galaxies, NGC 7469 and 3C 390.3, show a similar relationship. We compute the ratio of luminosity to mass for these three objects and the narrow-line Seyfert I galaxy NGC 4051 and find that the gravitational force on the line-emitting gas is much stronger than radiation pressure. These results strongly support the paradigm of gravitationally bound broad emission line region clouds.

  18. Constraining the Orbit of the Supermassive Black Hole Binary 0402+379

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bansal, K.; Taylor, G. B.; Peck, A. B.; Zavala, R. T.; Romani, R. W.

    2017-07-01

    The radio galaxy 0402+379 is believed to host a supermassive black hole binary (SMBHB). The two compact-core sources are separated by a projected distance of 7.3 pc, making it the most (spatially) compact resolved SMBHB known. We present new multi-frequency VLBI observations of 0402+379 at 5, 8, 15, and 22 GHz and combine them with previous observations spanning 12 years. A strong frequency-dependent core shift is evident, which we use to infer magnetic fields near the jet base. After correcting for these shifts we detect significant relative motion of the two cores at β =v/c=0.0054+/- 0.0003 at {PA}=-34\\buildrel{\\circ}\\over{.} 4. With some assumptions about the orbit, we use this measurement to constrain the orbital period P≈ 3× {10}4 yr and SMBHB mass M≈ 15× {10}9 {M}⊙ . While additional observations are needed to confirm this motion and obtain a precise orbit, this is apparently the first black hole system resolved as a visual binary.

  19. Precessing supermassive black hole binaries and dark energy measurements with LISA

    SciTech Connect

    Stavridis, Adamantios; Arun, K. G.; Will, Clifford M.

    2009-09-15

    Spin induced precessional modulations of gravitational wave signals from supermassive black hole binaries can improve the estimation of luminosity distance to the source by space based gravitational wave missions like the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA). We study how this impacts the ability of LISA to do cosmology, specifically, to measure the dark energy equation of state (EOS) parameter w. Using the {lambda}CDM model of cosmology, we show that observations of precessing binaries with mass ratio 10 ratio 1 by LISA, combined with a redshift measurement, can improve the determination of w up to an order of magnitude with respect to the nonprecessing case depending on the total mass and the redshift.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Soft gamma-ray constraints on a bright flare from the Galactic Center supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trap, G.; Goldwurm, A.; Terrier, R.; Dodds-Eden, K.; Gillessen, S.; Genzel, R.; Pantin, E.; Lagage, P. O.; Ferrando, P.; Bélanger, G.; Porquet, D.; Grosso, N.; Yusef-Zadeh, F.; Melia, F.

    2010-02-01

    Sagittarius A★(SgrA★) is the supermassive black hole residing at the center of the Milky Way. It has been the main target of an extensive multiwavelength campaign we carried out in April 2007. Herein, we report the detection of a bright flare from the vicinity of the horizon, observed simultaneously in X-rays (XMM-Newton/EPIC) and near infrared (VLT/NACO) on April 4th for 1-2 h. For the first time, such an event also benefitted from a soft γ-rays (INTEGRAL/ISGRI) and mid infrared (VLT/VISIR) coverage, which enabled us to derive upper limits at both ends of the flare spectral energy distribution (SED). We discuss the physical implications of the contemporaneous light curves as well as the SED, in terms of synchrotron, synchrotron self-Compton and external Compton emission processes.

  3. 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.

  4. Supermassive Black Hole Mass and Spiral Galaxy Pitch Angle at Intermediate to High Redshift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hughes, John A.; Barrows, R. S.; Berrier, J. C.; Davis, B. L.; Kennefick, D.; Kennefick, J. D.; Lacy, C. H. S.; Seigar, M. S.; Shields, D. W.; Zoldak, K. A.

    2012-01-01

    A possible correlation between spiral galaxy pitch angle (P) and the mass of the central supermassive black hole (SMBH) of the galaxy (M) was reported (Seigar et al. 2008) from a sample of 27 nearby galaxies. Here we investigate the extension of this result to intermediate and high redshifts. We have selected AGN showing spiral structure in their host galaxies from the GOODS fields and from a sample of AGN with reverberation mapping SMBH mass estimates. After careful measure of the pitch angle of these galaxies, we compare the mass found from the M-P relation to that reported from reverberation mapping or estimated from their MgII profiles. By extending the sample to higher redshift, we demonstrate how the M-P relationship can be used to estimate the mass of SMBHs in the center of galaxies with imaging data alone, a useful tool in the study of galaxy evolution.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. Supermassive Black Hole Binaries in High Performance Massively Parallel Direct N-body Simulations on Large GPU Clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spurzem, R.; Berczik, P.; Zhong, S.; Nitadori, K.; Hamada, T.; Berentzen, I.; Veles, A.

    2012-07-01

    Astrophysical Computer Simulations of Dense Star Clusters in Galactic Nuclei with Supermassive Black Holes are presented using new cost-efficient supercomputers in China accelerated by graphical processing cards (GPU). We use large high-accuracy direct N-body simulations with Hermite scheme and block-time steps, parallelised across a large number of nodes on the large scale and across many GPU thread processors on each node on the small scale. A sustained performance of more than 350 Tflop/s for a science run on using simultaneously 1600 Fermi C2050 GPUs is reached; a detailed performance model is presented and studies for the largest GPU clusters in China with up to Petaflop/s performance and 7000 Fermi GPU cards. In our case study we look at two supermassive black holes with equal and unequal masses embedded in a dense stellar cluster in a galactic nucleus. The hardening processes due to interactions between black holes and stars, effects of rotation in the stellar system and relativistic forces between the black holes are simultaneously taken into account. The simulation stops at the complete relativistic merger of the black holes.

  8. Origin of the Correlations Between Supermassive Black Holes and Their Host Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sherman, Sydney; Li, Y.; Zhu, Q.

    2013-01-01

    It has been well established from observations that suppermassive black holes in nearby elliptical galaxies correlate tightly with the stellar velocity dispersion (the M - σ relation) and mass (the MBH - Mhost relation) of their host spheroids. However, the origin of these correlations remains ambiguous. Here, we compile a sample of observed galaxies with different properties (e.g., mass, type, kinematics, growth history, etc.) and examine the dependence of the above correlations on these parameters. We find that galaxies that satisfy the M - σ correlation appear to have reached virial equilibrium, as indicated by the ratio between kinetic energy and gravitational potential, 2K/U ~ 1. Furthermore, the ratio of black hole accretion rate to star formation rate remains nearly constant, AR /SFR ~ 10-3, over a wide range of galaxy mass from redshift z=0 - 2. These results confirm our previous theoretical model that the observed correlations have different origins: the M - σ relation may be the result of virial equilibrium, while MBH - Mhost relation may be the result of self-regulated star formation and black hole growth in galaxies.

  9. Dependence of the Spin of Supermassive Black Holes on the Eddington Factor for Accretion Disks in Active Galactic Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piotrovich, M. Yu.; Buliga, S. D.; Gnedin, Yu. N.; Mikhailov, A. G.; Natsvlishvili, T. M.

    2016-12-01

    An equation relating the spin of supermassive black holes (SMBH) to the Eddington factor, i.e., the ratio of the bolometric and Eddington luminosities for accretion disks in active galactic nuclei (AGN), is presented. This equation also depends on the relationship between the magnetic field pressure and the flux of accreted matter at the radius of the event horizon for a black hole. When the pressures of the magnetic field and of the accreted matter are equal, there is a direct relationship between the spin of the black hole and the Eddington factor. Based on available data on the bolometric luminosity and mass of black holes, it is possible to determine the spin of a black hole. The spins of the central SMBH are given for a number of AGN. The proposed method can also be used to determine the ratio of the magnetic field pressure and the pressure of the accreted gas at the event horizon of SMBH for AGN for which the spin of the black hole has been determined reliably.

  10. The cosmic growth of the active black hole population at 1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulze, A.; Bongiorno, A.; Gavignaud, I.; Schramm, M.; Silverman, J.; Merloni, A.; Zamorani, G.; Hirschmann, M.; Mainieri, V.; Wisotzki, L.; Shankar, F.; Fiore, F.; Koekemoer, A. M.; Temporin, G.

    2015-03-01

    We present a census of the active black hole population at 1 < z < 2, by constructing the bivariate distribution function of black hole mass and Eddington ratio, employing a maximum likelihood fitting technique. The study of the active black hole mass function (BHMF) and the Eddington ratio distribution function (ERDF) allows us to clearly disentangle the active galactic nuclei (AGN) downsizing phenomenon, present in the AGN luminosity function, into its physical processes of black hole mass downsizing and accretion rate evolution. We are utilizing type-1 AGN samples from three optical surveys (VVDS, zCOSMOS and SDSS), that cover a wide range of 3 dex in luminosity over our redshift interval of interest. We investigate the cosmic evolution of the AGN population as a function of AGN luminosity, black hole mass and accretion rate. Compared to z = 0, we find a distinct change in the shape of the BHMF and the ERDF, consistent with downsizing in black hole mass. The active fraction or duty cycle of type-1 AGN at z ˜ 1.5 is almost flat as a function of black hole mass, while it shows a strong decrease with increasing mass at z = 0. We are witnessing a phase of intense black hole growth, which is largely driven by the onset of AGN activity in massive SMBHs (supermassive black holes) towards z = 2. We finally compare our results to numerical simulations and semi-empirical models and while we find reasonable agreement over certain parameter ranges, we highlight the need to refine these models in order to match our observations.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. On the orbital evolution of supermassive black hole binaries with circumbinary accretion discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Yike; MacFadyen, Andrew; Haiman, Zoltán

    2017-08-01

    Gaseous circumbinary accretion discs provide a promising mechanism to facilitate the mergers of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) in galactic nuclei. We measure the torques exerted on accreting SMBH binaries, using 2D, isothermal, moving-mesh, viscous hydrodynamical simulations of circumbinary accretion discs. Our computational domain includes the entire inner region of the circumbinary disc, with the individual black holes (BHs) treated as point masses on the grid. A sink prescription is used to account for accretion on to each BH through well-resolved minidiscs. We explore a range of mass-removal rates for the sinks. We find that the torque exerted on the binary is primarily gravitational, and dominated by the gas orbiting close behind and ahead of the individual BHs. The torques are sensitive to the sink prescription: slower sinks result in more gas accumulating near the BHs and more negative torques, driving more rapid binary merger. For faster sinks, the torques are less negative, and eventually turn positive (for unphysically fast sinks). When the minidiscs are modelled as standard α discs, our results are insensitive to the chosen sink radius. When scaled to \\dot{M}/\\dot{M}_Edd=0.3, the implied residence time-scale is ≈3 × 106 yr, independent of the SMBH masses and orbital separation. For binaries with total mass ≲ 107 M⊙, this is shorter than the inspiral time due to gravitational wave (GW) emission alone, implying that gas discs will have a significant impact on the SMBH binary population and can affect the GW signal for pulsar timing arrays.

  14. Kinematically Identified Recoiling Supermassive Black Hole Candidates in SDSS QSOs with z > 0.25

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, D.-C.; Evans, A. S.; Stierwalt, S.; Privon, G. C.

    2016-06-01

    We have performed a spectral decomposition to search for recoiling supermassive black holes (rSMBHs) in Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) quasi-stellar objects (QSOs) with z < 0.25. Out of 1271 QSOs, we have identified 26 rSMBH candidates that are recoiling toward us. The projected recoil velocities range from -76 to -307 km s-1 with a mean of -149 ± 58 km s-1. Most of the rSMBH candidates are hosted by gas-rich luminous infrared galaxies (LIRGs)/ultra-luminous infrared galaxies (ULIRGs), but only 23% of them show signs of tidal features, which suggests that a majority of them are advanced mergers. We find that the black hole masses M BH of the rSMBH candidates are on average ˜5 times smaller than those of their stationary counterparts and cause a scatter in the {M}{BH}-{σ }\\ast relation. The Eddington ratios of all of the rSMBH candidates are larger than 0.1, with a mean of 0.52 ± 0.27, suggesting that they are actively accreting mass. Velocity shifts in high-excitation coronal lines suggest that the rSMBH candidates are recoiling with an average velocity of about -265 km s-1. The electron density in the narrow line region of the H ii rSMBH candidates is about 1/10 of that in active galactic nucleus (AGN) rSMBH candidates, probably because the AGN in the former was more spatially offset than that in the latter. The estimated spatial offsets between the rSMBH candidate and the center of the host galaxy range from 0.″21 to 1.″97 and need to be confirmed spatially with high-resolution adaptive optics imaging observations.

  15. 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.

  16. Dynamical Friction and the Evolution of Supermassive Black Hole Binaries: The Final Hundred-parsec Problem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dosopoulou, Fani; Antonini, Fabio

    2017-05-01

    The supermassive black holes originally in the nuclei of two merging galaxies will form a binary in the remnant core. The early evolution of the massive binary is driven by dynamical friction before the binary becomes “hard” and eventually reaches coalescence through gravitational-wave emission. We consider the dynamical friction evolution of massive binaries consisting of a secondary hole orbiting inside a stellar cusp dominated by a more massive central black hole. In our treatment, we include the frictional force from stars moving faster than the inspiralling object, which is neglected in the standard Chandrasekhar treatment. We show that the binary eccentricity increases if the stellar cusp density profile rises less steeply than ρ \\propto {r}-2. In cusps shallower than ρ \\propto {r}-1, the frictional timescale can become very long due to the deficit of stars moving slower than the massive body. Although including fast stars increases the decay rate, low mass-ratio binaries (q≲ {10}-3) in sufficiently massive galaxies have decay timescales longer than one Hubble time. During such minor mergers, the secondary hole stalls on an eccentric orbit at a distance of order one-tenth the influence radius of the primary hole (i.e., ≈ 10{--}100 {pc} for massive ellipticals). We calculate the expected number of stalled satellites as a function of the host galaxy mass and show that the brightest cluster galaxies should have ≳ 1 of such satellites orbiting within their cores. Our results could provide an explanation for a number of observations, which include multiple nuclei in core ellipticals, off-center AGNs, and eccentric nuclear disks.

  17. SEARCH FOR SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE BINARIES IN THE SLOAN DIGITAL SKY SURVEY SPECTROSCOPIC SAMPLE

    SciTech Connect

    Ju, Wenhua; Greene, Jenny E.; Rafikov, Roman R.; Bickerton, Steven J.; Badenes, Carles

    2013-11-01

    Supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries are expected in a ΛCDM cosmology given that most (if not all) massive galaxies contain a massive black hole (BH) at their center. So far, however, direct evidence for such binaries has been elusive. We use cross-correlation to search for temporal velocity shifts in the Mg II broad emission lines of 0.36 < z < 2 quasars with multiple observations in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. For ∼10{sup 9} M{sub ☉} BHs in SMBH binaries, we are sensitive to velocity drifts for binary separations of ∼0.1 pc with orbital periods of ∼100 yr. We find seven candidate sub-parsec-scale binaries with velocity shifts >3.4σ ∼ 280 km s{sup –1}, where σ is our systematic error. Comparing the detectability of SMBH binaries with the number of candidates (N ≤ 7), we can rule out that most 10{sup 9} M{sub ☉} BHs exist in ∼0.03-0.2 pc scale binaries, in a scenario where binaries stall at sub-parsec scales for a Hubble time. We further constrain that ≤16% (one-third) of quasars host SMBH binaries after considering gas-assisted sub-parsec evolution of SMBH binaries, although this result is very sensitive to the assumed size of the broad line region. We estimate the detectability of SMBH binaries with ongoing or next-generation surveys (e.g., Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey, Subaru Prime Focus Spectrograph), taking into account the evolution of the sub-parsec binary in circumbinary gas disks. These future observations will provide longer time baselines for searches similar to ours and may in turn constrain the evolutionary scenarios of SMBH binaries.

  18. 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.

  19. Investigating the Relativistic Motion of the Stars Near the Supermassive Black Hole in the Galactic Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parsa, M.; Eckart, A.; Shahzamanian, B.; Karas, V.; Zajaček, M.; Zensus, J. A.; Straubmeier, C.

    2017-08-01

    The S-star cluster in the Galactic center allows us to study the physics close to a supermassive black hole, including distinctive dynamical tests of general relativity. Our best estimates for the mass of and the distance to Sgr A* using the three stars with the shortest period (S2, S38, and S55/S0-102) and Newtonian models are M BH = (4.15 ± 0.13 ± 0.57) × 106 M ⊙ and R 0 = 8.19 ± 0.11 ± 0.34 kpc. Additionally, we aim at a new and practical method to investigate the relativistic orbits of stars in the gravitational field near Sgr A*. We use a first-order post-Newtonian approximation to calculate the stellar orbits with a broad range of periapse distance r p . We present a method that employs the changes in orbital elements derived from elliptical fits to different sections of the orbit. These changes are correlated with the relativistic parameter defined as ϒ ≡ r s /r p (with r s being the Schwarzschild radius) and can be used to derive ϒ from observational data. For S2 we find a value of ϒ = 0.00088 ± 0.00080, which is consistent, within the uncertainty, with the expected value of ϒ = 0.00065 derived from M BH and the orbit of S2. We argue that the derived quantity is unlikely to be dominated by perturbing influences such as noise on the derived stellar positions, field rotation, and drifts in black hole mass.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. Detection of Supermassive Black Holes in Two Virgo Ultracompact Dwarf Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2017-04-01

    We present the detection of supermassive black holes (BHs) in two Virgo ultracompact dwarf galaxies (UCDs), VUCD3 and M59cO. We use adaptive optics assisted data from the Gemini/NIFS instrument to derive radial velocity dispersion profiles for both objects. Mass models for the two UCDs are created using multi-band Hubble Space Telescope imaging, including the modeling of mild color gradients seen in both objects. We then find a best-fit stellar mass-to-light ratio (M/L) and BH mass by combining the kinematic data and the deprojected stellar mass profile using Jeans Anisotropic Models. Assuming axisymmetric isotropic Jeans models, we detect BHs in both objects with masses of {4.4}-3.0+2.5× {10}6 M ⊙ in VUCD3 and {5.8}-2.8+2.5× {10}6 M ⊙ in M59cO (3σ uncertainties). The BH mass is degenerate with the anisotropy parameter, {β }z; for the data to be consistent with no BH requires {β }z=0.4 and {β }z=0.6 for VUCD3 and M59cO, respectively. Comparing these values with nuclear star clusters shows that, while it is possible that these UCDs are highly radially anisotropic, it seems unlikely. These detections constitute the second and third UCDs known to host supermassive BHs. They both have a high fraction of their total mass in their BH; ˜13% for VUCD3 and ˜18% for M59cO. They also have low best-fit stellar M/Ls, supporting the proposed scenario that most massive UCDs host high-mass fraction BHs. The properties of the BHs and UCDs are consistent with both objects being the tidally stripped remnants of ˜ {10}9 {{{M}}}⊙ galaxies.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Rapid X-ray flaring from the direction of the supermassive black hole at the Galactic Centre.

    PubMed

    Baganoff, F K; Bautz, M W; Brandt, W N; Chartas, G; Feigelson, E D; Garmire, G P; Maeda, Y; Morris, M; Ricker, G R; Townsley, L K; Walter, F

    2001-09-06

    The nuclei of most galaxies are now believed to harbour supermassive black holes. The motions of stars in the central few light years of our Milky Way Galaxy indicate the presence of a dark object with a mass of about 2.6 x 106 solar masses (refs 2, 3). This object is spatially coincident with the compact radio source Sagittarius A* (Sgr A*) at the dynamical centre of the Galaxy, and the radio emission is thought to be powered by the gravitational potential energy released by matter as it accretes onto a supermassive black hole. Sgr A* is, however, much fainter than expected at all wavelengths, especially in X-rays, which has cast some doubt on this model. The first strong evidence for X-ray emission was found only recently. Here we report the discovery of rapid X-ray flaring from the direction of Sgr A*, which, together with the previously reported steady X-ray emission, provides compelling evidence that the emission is coming from the accretion of gas onto a supermassive black hole at the Galactic Centre.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Coevolution of supermassive black holes and circumnuclear dense molecular gas disk in Seyfert galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Izumi, T.

    2015-09-01

    The energy emitted by an active galactic nucleus (AGN) is commonly ascribed to mass accretion onto a supermassive black hole (SMBH). However, the physics of angular momentum transfer at r < 100 pc from the SMBH is still unclear. Interestingly, recent high resolution IR observations suggest a possible connection between a circumnuclear (i.e., < 100 pc scale) star formation rate and a mass accretion rate onto a SMBH (e.g., Esquej et al. 2014). But to study such a tentative AGN-starburst connection in detail, it is also necessary to investigate properties of circumnuclear molecular gas, because such gas is the site of massive star formation, and also be the fuel for AGNs. Therefore, we compiled interferometric data of the 100 pc scale circumnuclear molecular gas disk (CND) in nearby Seyfert galaxies, and found a (tentative) correlation between (1) a ratio of the mass of the CND and the mass of the SMBH and (2) a mass accretion rate onto the SMBH. The mass of the CND is estimated by using HCN(1-0) emission line, which is a typical tracer of dense molecular gas (unlike J=1-0 CO). This correlation can be expected in a turbulent disk

  9. 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.

  10. Inward Bound---The Search For Supermassive Black Holes In Galactic Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kormendy, John; Richstone, Douglas

    Dynamical searches reveal central dark objects with masses $\\sim 10^6$to $10^{9.5}$ \\msun in the Galaxy, \\m31, \\mm32, M87, NGC 3115, NGC 3377, NGC 4258, and NGC 4594. Indirect arguments suggest but do not prove that these are supermassive black holes (BHs) like those postulated as quasar engines. This paper reviews dynamical search techniques, the robustness of the evidence, and BH demographics. Stellar-dynamical evidence is generally more robust than gas-dynamical evidence (gas velocities can be nongravitational), but gas measurements reach closer to the Schwarzschild radius, and in NGC 4258 they show a Keplerian rotation curve. A statistical survey finds BHs in $\\sim 20\\%$ of nearby E--Sbc galaxies, consistent with predictions based on quasar energetics. BH masses are proportional to the mass of the bulge component. Most candidates are inactive; in some cases, the abundance of fuel is not easily reconciled with BH starvation. Flashes caused by the accretion of individual stars may provide a test of the BH picture.

  11. A CHANDRA SURVEY OF SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES WITH DYNAMICAL MASS MEASUREMENTS

    SciTech Connect

    Gueltekin, Kayhan; Miller, Jon M.; Richstone, Douglas O.; Cackett, Edward M.; Di Matteo, Tiziana; Markoff, Sera

    2012-04-20

    We present Chandra observations of 12 galaxies that contain supermassive black holes (SMBHs) with dynamical mass measurements. Each galaxy was observed for 30 ks and resulted in a total of 68 point-source detections in the target galaxies including SMBH sources, ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs), and extragalactic X-ray binaries. Based on our fits of the X-ray spectra, we report fluxes, luminosities, Eddington ratios, and slope of the power-law spectrum. Normalized to the Eddington luminosity, the 2-10 keV band X-ray luminosities of the SMBH sources range from 10{sup -8} to 10{sup -6}, and the power-law slopes are centered at {approx}2 with a slight trend toward steeper (softer) slopes at smaller Eddington fractions, implying a change in the physical processes responsible for their emission at low accretion rates. We find 20 ULX candidates, of which 6 are likely (>90% chance) to be true ULXs. The most promising ULX candidate has an isotropic luminosity in the 0.3-10 keV band of 1.0{sup +0.6}{sub -0.3} Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 40} erg s{sup -1}.

  12. Fast coalescence of post-Newtonian Supermassive Black Hole Binaries in real galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sobolenko, M.; Berczik, P.; Spurzem, R.; Kupi, G.

    2017-01-01

    We present the results of theoretical modeling of supermassive black hole binary (SMBHB) mergers using direct 2-body simulations with a Hermite integration scheme. The BH's gravitational interaction is described based on the post-Newtonian (PN terms) approximation up to the 3.5PN terms. We carry out a large set of runs using a parametric description of SMBHB orbits. The final time of the SMBHs gravitational coalescence is parametrized as a function of initial eccentricity e_{0} and mass ratio q of the binary. We carry out detailed tests of our coding. We tested our PN terms against the analytic prescription described in te{Peters1963, Peters1964}. The gravitational radiation polarization amplitudes h_{+} and h_× from the SMBHBs merging process are also analyzed. Based on our numerical work we estimate the expected merging time for a list of selected potential SDSS SMBHBs. Our results show that the merging time is a strong function of the assumed initial eccentricities and fall within the range of thousands years.

  13. OGLE16aaa - a signature of a hungry supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wyrzykowski, Łukasz; Zieliński, M.; Kostrzewa-Rutkowska, Z.; Hamanowicz, A.; Jonker, P. G.; Arcavi, I.; Guillochon, J.; Brown, P. J.; Kozłowski, S.; Udalski, A.; Szymański, M. K.; Soszyński, I.; Poleski, R.; Pietrukowicz, P.; Skowron, J.; Mróz, P.; Ulaczyk, K.; Pawlak, M.; Rybicki, K. A.; Greiner, J.; Krühler, T.; Bolmer, J.; Smartt, S. J.; Maguire, K.; Smith, K.

    2017-02-01

    We present the discovery and first three months of follow-up observations of a currently on-going unusual transient detected by the Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment (OGLE-IV) survey, located in the centre of a galaxy at redshift z = 0.1655. The long rise to absolute magnitude of -20.5 mag, slow decline, very broad He and H spectral features make OGLE16aaa similar to other optical/UV tidal disruption events (TDEs). Weak narrow emission lines in the spectrum and archival photometric observations suggest the host galaxy is a weak-line active galactic nucleus, which has been accreting at higher rate in the past. OGLE16aaa, along with SDSS J0748, seems to form a sub-class of TDEs by weakly or recently active supermassive black holes (SMBHs). This class might bridge the TDEs by quiescent SMBHs and flares observed as `changing-look quasars', if we interpret the latter as TDEs. If this picture is true, the previously applied requirement for identifying a flare as a TDE that it had to come from an inactive nucleus, could be leading to observational bias in TDE selection, thus affecting TDE-rate estimations.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. A population of short-period variable quasars from PTF as supermassive black hole binary candidates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charisi, M.; Bartos, I.; Haiman, Z.; Price-Whelan, A. M.; Graham, M. J.; Bellm, E. C.; Laher, R. R.; Márka, S.

    2016-12-01

    Supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs) at sub-parsec separations should be common in galactic nuclei, as a result of frequent galaxy mergers. Hydrodynamical simulations of circum-binary discs predict strong periodic modulation of the mass accretion rate on time-scales comparable to the orbital period of the binary. As a result, SMBHBs may be recognized by the periodic modulation of their brightness. We conducted a statistical search for periodic variability in a sample of 35 383 spectroscopically confirmed quasars in the photometric data base of the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF). We analysed Lomb-Scargle periodograms and assessed the significance of our findings by modelling each individual quasar's variability as a damped random walk (DRW). We identified 50 quasars with significant periodicity beyond the DRW model, typically with short periods of a few hundred days. We find 33 of these to remain significant after a re-analysis of their periodograms including additional optical data from the intermediate-PTF and the Catalina Real-Time Transient Survey. Assuming that the observed periods correspond to the redshifted orbital periods of SMBHBs, we conclude that our findings are consistent with a population of unequal-mass SMBHBs, with a typical mass ratio as low as q ≡ M2/M1 ≈ 0.01.

  18. Powerful Radio Emission from Low-mass Supermassive Black Holes Favors Disk-like Bulges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, J.; Xu, Y.; Xu, D. W.; Wei, J. Y.

    2016-12-01

    The origin of spin of low-mass supermassive black holes (SMBHs) is still a puzzle at present. We report here a study on the host galaxies of a sample of radio-selected nearby (z < 0.05) Seyfert 2 galaxies with a BH mass of 106-7 M ⊙. By modeling the SDSS r-band images of these galaxies through a two-dimensional bulge+disk decomposition, we identify a new dependence of SMBH's radio power on host bulge surface brightness profiles, in which more powerful radio emission comes from an SMBH associated with a more disk-like bulge. This result means low-mass and high-mass SMBHs are spun up by two entirely different modes that correspond to two different evolutionary paths. A low-mass SMBH is spun up by a gas accretion with significant disk-like rotational dynamics of the host galaxy in the secular evolution, while a high-mass one by a BH-BH merger in the merger evolution.

  19. 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

    2015-02-05

    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.

  20. Evidence for a supermassive black hole in the nucleus of the Seyfert galaxy NGC 5548

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crenshaw, D. Michael; Blackwell, James H., Jr.

    1990-01-01

    The international campaign to monitor the variable Seyfert 1 galaxy NGC 5548 with the IUE has provided an extensive and well-sampled set of spectroscopic observations. These observations are used to study the response of the C IV 1550 A emission-line profile to changes in the photoionizing continuum. Near the end of the IUE campaign, the continuum flux at 1440 A and the total C IV flux dopped by factors of 2.9 and 1.8, respectively, in 16 days. The red wing of the C IV profile responded more rapidly to the sharp continuum drop than the blue wing, indicating that clouds in the inner broad-line region (BLR) are undergoing gravitational infall. These results provide direct evidence that the central engine is a supermassive object, presumably a black hole, with a mass on the order of 10 to the 7th solar masses. Analysis of the profile variations also demonstrates that excess emission in the blue wing of C IV is from a component that is physically distinct from the bulk of the BLR.

  1. Pulsar Timing Array Based Search for Supermassive Black Hole Binaries in the Square Kilometer Array Era.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yan; Mohanty, Soumya D

    2017-04-14

    The advent of next generation radio telescope facilities, such as the Square Kilometer Array (SKA), will usher in an era where a pulsar timing array (PTA) based search for gravitational waves (GWs) will be able to use hundreds of well timed millisecond pulsars rather than the few dozens in existing PTAs. A realistic assessment of the performance of such an extremely large PTA must take into account the data analysis challenge posed by an exponential increase in the parameter space volume due to the large number of so-called pulsar phase parameters. We address this problem and present such an assessment for isolated supermassive black hole binary (SMBHB) searches using a SKA era PTA containing 10^{3} pulsars. We find that an all-sky search will be able to confidently detect nonevolving sources with a redshifted chirp mass of 10^{10}  M_{⊙} out to a redshift of about 28 (corresponding to a rest-frame chirp mass of 3.4×10^{8}  M_{⊙}). We discuss the important implications that the large distance reach of a SKA era PTA has on GW observations from optically identified SMBHB candidates. If no SMBHB detections occur, a highly unlikely scenario in the light of our results, the sky-averaged upper limit on strain amplitude will be improved by about 3 orders of magnitude over existing limits.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Searching for Binary Supermassive Black Holes via Variable Broad Emission Line Shifts: Low Binary Fraction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Lile; Greene, Jenny E.; Ju, Wenhua; Rafikov, Roman R.; Ruan, John J.; Schneider, Donald P.

    2017-01-01

    Supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHs) are expected to result from galaxy mergers, and thus are natural byproducts (and probes) of hierarchical structure formation in the universe. They are also the primary expected source of low-frequency gravitational wave emission. We search for binary BHs using time-variable velocity shifts in broad Mg ii emission lines of quasars with multi-epoch observations. First, we inspect velocity shifts of the binary SMBH candidates identified in Ju et al., using Sloan Digital Sky Survey spectra with an additional epoch of data that lengthens the typical baseline to ∼10 yr. We find variations in the line of sight velocity shifts over 10 yr that are comparable to the shifts observed over 1–2 yr, ruling out the binary model for the bulk of our candidates. We then analyze 1438 objects with eight-year median time baselines, from which we would expect to see velocity shifts >1000 {km} {{{s}}}-1 from sub-parsec binaries. We find only one object with an outlying velocity of 448 {km} {{{s}}}-1, indicating—based on our modeling—that ≲1% (the value varies with different assumptions) of SMBHs that are active as quasars reside in binaries with ∼0.1 pc separations. Binaries either sweep rapidly through these small separations or stall at larger radii.

  5. 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. Copyright © 2014, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  6. The connection between the formation of galaxies and that of their central supermassive black holes.

    PubMed

    Haehnelt, Martin G

    2005-03-15

    Massive black holes appear to be an essential ingredient of massive galactic bulges but little is known yet to what extent massive black holes reside in dwarf galaxies and globular clusters. Massive black holes most likely grow by a mixture of merging and accretion of gas in their hierarchically merging host galaxies. While the hierarchical merging of dark matter structures extends to sub-galactic scales and very high redshift, it is uncertain if the same is true for the build-up of massive black holes. I discuss here some of the relevant problems and open questions.

  7. 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.

  8. The sustainable growth of the first black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pezzulli, Edwige; Volonteri, Marta; Schneider, Raffaella; Valiante, Rosa

    2017-10-01

    Super-Eddington accretion has been suggested as a possible formation pathway of 109 M⊙ supermassive black holes (SMBHs) 800 Myr after the big bang. However, stellar feedback from BH seed progenitors and winds from BH accretion discs may decrease BH accretion rates. In this work, we study the impact of these physical processes on the formation of z ∼ 6 quasar, including new physical prescriptions in the cosmological, data-constrained semi-analytic model GAMETE/QSOdust. We find that the feedback produced by the first stellar progenitors on the surrounding does not play a relevant role in preventing SMBHs formation. In order to grow the z ≳ 6 SMBHs, the accreted gas must efficiently lose angular momentum. Moreover, disc winds, easily originated in super-Eddington accretion regime, can strongly reduce duty cycles. This produces a decrease in the active fraction among the progenitors of z ∼ 6 bright quasars, reducing the probability to observe them.

  9. Tidal disruption of stars by supermassive black holes: Status of observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komossa, S.

    2015-09-01

    Stars in the immediate vicinity of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) can be ripped apart by the tidal forces of the black hole. The subsequent accretion of the stellar material causes a spectacular flare of electromagnetic radiation. Here, we provide a review of the observations of tidal disruption events (TDEs), with an emphasis on the important contributions of Swift to this field. TDEs represent a new probe of matter under strong gravity, and have opened up a new window into studying accretion physics under extreme conditions. The events probe relativistic effects, provide a new means of measuring black hole spin, and represent signposts of intermediate-mass BHs, binary BHs and recoiling BHs. Luminous, high-amplitude X-ray flares, matching key predictions of the tidal disruption scenario, have first been discovered with ROSAT, and more recently with other missions and in other wavebands. The Swift discovery of two γ-ray emitting, jetted TDEs, never seen before, has provided us with a unique probe of the early phases of jet formation and evolution, and Swift J1644+75 has the best covered lightcurve of any TDE to date. Further, Swift has made important contributions in providing well-covered lightcurves of TDEs discovered with other instruments, setting constraints on the physics that govern the TDE evolution, and including the discovery of the first candidate binary SMBH identified from a TDE lightcurve. In X-rays, TDEs probe relativistic effects (via emission-line profiles or precession effects in the Kerr metric) and the extremes of accretion physics at high rates and near the last stable orbit, and provide us with a new means of measuring BH spin. Jetted TDEs provide new insight into the formation and early evolution of radio jets, and may shed new light on related issues like the cause of the radio-loud radio-quiet dichotomy of active galactic nuclei (AGN). TDEs, once detected in large numbers, will unveil the population of IMBHs in the universe. TDE rates

  10. Updating the (supermassive black hole mass)-(spiral arm pitch angle) relation: a strong correlation for galaxies with pseudobulges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Benjamin L.; Graham, Alister W.; Seigar, Marc S.

    2017-10-01

    We have conducted an image analysis of the (current) full sample of 44 spiral galaxies with directly measured supermassive black hole (SMBH) masses, MBH, to determine each galaxy's logarithmic spiral arm pitch angle, ϕ. For predicting black hole masses, we have derived the relation: log (MBH/M⊙) = (7.01 ± 0.07) - (0.171 ± 0.017)[|ϕ| - 15°]. The total root mean square scatter associated with this relation is 0.43 dex in the log MBH direction, with an intrinsic scatter of 0.30 ± 0.08 dex. The MBH-ϕ relation is therefore at least as accurate at predicting SMBH masses in spiral galaxies as the other known relations. By definition, the existence of an MBH-ϕ relation demands that the SMBH mass must correlate with the galaxy discs in some manner. Moreover, with the majority of our sample (37 of 44) classified in the literature as having a pseudobulge morphology, we additionally reveal that the SMBH mass correlates with the large-scale spiral pattern and thus the discs of galaxies hosting pseudobulges. Furthermore, given that the MBH-ϕ relation is capable of estimating black hole masses in bulge-less spiral galaxies, it therefore has great promise for predicting which galaxies may harbour intermediate-mass black holes (IMBHs, MBH < 105 M⊙). Extrapolating from the current relation, we predict that galaxies with |ϕ| ≥ 26.7° should possess IMBHs.

  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. The supermassive black hole in Centaurus A: a benchmark for gas kinematical measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marconi, A.; Pastorini, G.; Pacini, F.; Axon, D. J.; Capetti, A.; Macchetto, D.; Koekemoer, A. M.; Schreier, E. J.

    2006-03-01

    We present new HST Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph observations of the nearby radio galaxy NGC 5128 (Centaurus A). The bright emission line with longest wavelength accessible from HST, [S III]λ 9533 Å, was used to study the kinematics of the ionized gas in the nuclear region with a 0.1 arcsec spatial resolution. The STIS data were analized in conjunction with the ground-based near-infrared Very Large Telescope ISAAC spectra used by Marconi et al. (2001, ApJ, 549, 915) to infer the presence of a supermassive black hole and measure its mass. The two sets of data have spatial resolutions differing by almost a factor of five but provide independent and consistent measures of the BH mass, which are in agreement with our previous estimate based on the ISAAC data alone. The gas kinematical analysis provides a mass of MBH(1.1±0.1)× 108 {M}⊙ for an assumed disk inclination of i=25 deg or MBH= (6.5±0.7)× 107 {M}⊙ for i=35 deg, the largest i value allowed by the data. We performed a detailed analysis of the effects on MBH of the intrinsic surface brightness distribution of the emission line, a crucial ingredient in the gas kinematical analysis. We estimate that the associated systematic errors are no larger than 0.08 in log MBH, comparable with statistical errors and indicating that the method is robust. However, the intrinsic surface brightness distribution has a large impact on the value of the gas velocity dispersion. A mismatch between the observed and model velocity dispersion is not necessarily an indication of non-circular motions or kinematically hot gas, but is as easily due to an inaccurate computation arising from too course a model grid, or the adoption of an intrinsic brightness distribution which is too smooth. The observed velocity dispersion in our spectra can be matched with a circularly rotating disk and also the observed line profiles and the higher order moments in the Hermite expansion of the line profiles, h3 and h4, are consistent with

  13. Possibility of catastrophic black hole growth in the warped brane-world scenario at the LHC

    SciTech Connect

    Casadio, Roberto; Fabi, Sergio; Harms, Benjamin

    2009-10-15

    In this paper, we present the results of our analysis of the growth and decay of black holes possibly produced at the Large Hadron Collider, based on our previous study of black holes in the context of the warped brane-world scenario. The black hole mass accretion and decay is obtained as a function of time, and the maximum black hole mass are obtained as a function of a critical mass parameter. The latter occurs in our expression for the luminosity and is related to the size of extra-dimensional corrections to Newton's law. Based on this analysis, we argue against the possibility of catastrophic black hole growth at the LHC.

  14. Electromagnetic counterparts of supermassive black hole binaries resolved by pulsar timing arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanaka, Takamitsu; Menou, Kristen; Haiman, Zoltán.

    2012-02-01

    Pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) are expected to detect gravitational waves (GWs) from individual low-redshift (z≲ 1.5) compact supermassive (M≳ 109 M⊙) black hole (SMBH) binaries with orbital periods of ˜0.1-10 yr. Identifying the electromagnetic (EM) counterparts of these sources would provide confirmation of putative direct detections of GWs, present a rare opportunity to study the environments of compact SMBH binaries and could enable the use of these sources as standard sirens for cosmology. Here we consider the feasibility of such an EM identification. We show that because the host galaxies of resolved PTA sources are expected to be exceptionally massive and rare, it should be possible to find unique hosts of resolved sources out to z≈ 0.2. At higher redshifts, the PTA error boxes are larger, and may contain as many as ˜100 massive-galaxy interlopers. The number of candidates, however, remains tractable for follow-up searches in upcoming wide-field EM surveys. We develop a toy model to characterize the dynamics and the thermal emission from a geometrically thin gaseous disc accreting on to a PTA-source SMBH binary. Our model predicts that at optical and infrared frequencies, the source should appear similar to a typical luminous active galactic nucleus (AGN). However, owing to the evacuation of the accretion flow by the binary's tidal torques, the source might have an unusually low soft X-ray luminosity and weak ultraviolet (UV) and broad optical emission lines, as compared to an AGN powered by a single SMBH with the same total mass. For sources at z˜ 1, the decrement in the rest-frame UV should be observable as an extremely red optical colour. These properties would make the PTA sources stand out among optically luminous AGN, and could allow their unique identification. Our results also suggest that accreting compact SMBH binaries may be included among the observed population of optically bright, X-ray-dim AGN.

  15. Supermassive Black Holes in a Star-forming Gaseous Circumnuclear Disk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-09-01

    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 107 years.

  16. Is there a kicked supermassive black hole in E1821+643?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robinson, Andrew

    2013-10-01

    The formation of binary supermassive black holes {BBH} in galaxy centers appears to be an inevitable consequence of hierarchical structure formation. General Relativity predicts that, when a BBH coalesces, the merged SMBH recoils with a velocity that may reach several 1000 km/s. The luminous quasar E1821+643 is one of only 3 SMBH recoil candidates that have been identified via Doppler shifting of emission lines from the retained gas. This case is unique in that the Doppler shift is seen in both direct and scattered light, allowing us to infer a relative velocity of 2100 km/s between the quasar nucleus and host galaxy. By itself, this does not exclude alternative models such as a BBH or anisotropic wind, but follow-up spectroastrometric measurements reveal a relative displacement between the nucleus and the gas emitting the [OIII]4959,5007 lines that is consistent with the recoil hypothesis. The apparent displacement, however, could also be due to an asymmetric circum-nuclear distribution of the [OIII] emission. In order to distinguishbetween these two possibilities we propose ACS/WFC ramp filter imaging in [OIII] to map the distribution of narrow-line emission on sub-arcsecond scales. The observations will also allow us to study the relationship between the narrow-line gas and the arcsecond-scale radio source, which has morphological features that may relate to precession in a BBH system, or a "spin-flip" following coalescence. With this modest investment of HST time we will take a key step in establishing the nature of the E1821+643 system, which may ultimately yield direct observational evidence for BBH coalescence and high velocity gravitational recoils.

  17. Constraints on the nature of CID-42: recoil kick or supermassive black hole pair?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2013-01-01

    The galaxy CXOC J100043.1+020637, also known as CID-42, is a highly unusual object. As an apparent galaxy merger remnant, it displays signatures of both an inspiraling, kiloparsec-scale active galactic nucleus (AGN) pair and of a recoiling AGN with a kick velocity of ≳ 1300 km s-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 ≳ 2000 km s-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-line and narrow-line features will be critical for determining the nature of this unique source.

  18. 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.

  19. Effects of high-energy particles on accretion flows onto a supermassive black hole

    SciTech Connect

    Kimura, Shigeo S.; Takahara, Fumio; Toma, Kenji

    2014-08-20

    We study the effects of high-energy particles (HEPs) on the accretion flows onto a supermassive black hole and luminosities of escaping particles such as protons, neutrons, gamma rays, and neutrinos. We formulate a one-dimensional model of the two-component accretion flow consisting of thermal particles and HEPs, supposing that some fraction of the released energy is converted to the acceleration of HEPs. The thermal component is governed by fluid dynamics while the HEPs obey the moment equations of the diffusion-convection equation. By solving the time evolution of these equations, we obtain advection-dominated flows as the steady state solutions. The effects of the HEPs on the flow structures turn out to be small even if the pressure of the HEPs dominates over the thermal pressure. For a model in which the escaping protons take away almost all the energy released, the HEPs have a large enough influence to make the flow have a Keplerian angular velocity at the inner region. We calculate the luminosities of the escaping particles for these steady solutions. The escaping particles can extract the energy from about 10{sup −4} M-dot c{sup 2} to 10{sup −2} M-dot c{sup 2}, where M-dot is the mass accretion rate. The luminosities of the escaping particles depend on parameters such as the injection Lorentz factors, the mass accretion rates, and the diffusion coefficients. We also discuss some implications on the relativistic jet production by the escaping particles.

  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. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Recurring flares from supermassive black hole binaries: implications for tidal disruption candidates and OJ 287

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanaka, Takamitsu L.

    2013-09-01

    I discuss the possibility that accreting supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries with sub-parsec separations produce periodically recurring luminous outbursts that interrupt periods of relative quiescence. This hypothesis is motivated by two characteristics found generically in simulations of binaries embedded in prograde accretion discs: (i) the formation of a central, low-density cavity around the binary and (ii) the leakage of gas into this cavity, occurring once per orbit via discrete streams on nearly radial trajectories. The first feature would reduce the emergent optical/UV flux of the system relative to active galactic nuclei powered by a single SMBH, while the second can trigger quasi-periodic fluctuations in luminosity. I argue that the quasi-periodic accretion signature may be much more dramatic than previously thought, because the infalling gas streams can strongly shock-heat via self-collision and tidal compression, thereby enhancing viscous accretion. Any optically thick gas that is circularized about either SMBH can accrete before the next pair of streams is deposited, fuelling transient, luminous flares that recur every orbit. Due to the diminished flux in between accretion episodes, such cavity-accretion flares could plausibly be mistaken for the tidal disruptions of stars in quiescent nuclei. The flares could be distinguished from tidal disruption events if their quasi-periodic recurrence is observed, or if they are produced by very massive (≳109 M⊙) SMBHs that cannot disrupt solar-type stars. They may be discovered serendipitously in surveys such as LSST or eROSITA. I present a heuristic toy model as a proof of concept for the production of cavity-accretion flares, and generate mock light curves and spectra. I also apply the model to the active galaxy OJ 287, whose production of quasi-periodic pairs of optical flares has long fuelled speculation that it hosts an SMBH binary.

  5. Prospects for gravitational-wave detection and supermassive black hole astrophysics with pulsar timing arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ravi, V.; Wyithe, J. S. B.; Shannon, R. M.; Hobbs, G.

    2015-03-01

    Large-area sky surveys show that massive galaxies undergo at least one major merger in a Hubble time. Ongoing pulsar timing array (PTA) experiments are aimed at measuring the gravitational-wave (GW) emission from binary supermassive black holes (SMBHs) at the centres of galaxy merger remnants. In this paper, using the latest observational estimates for a range of galaxy properties and scaling relations, we predict the amplitude of the GW background generated by the binary SMBH population. We also predict the numbers of individual binary SMBH GW sources. We predict the characteristic strain amplitude of the GW background to lie in the range 5.1 × 10-16 < Ayr < 2.4 × 10-15 at a frequency of (1 yr)-1, with 95 per cent confidence. Higher values within this range, which correspond to the more commonly preferred choice of galaxy merger time-scale, will fall within the expected sensitivity ranges of existing PTA projects in the next few years. In contrast, we find that a PTA consisting of at least 100 pulsars observed with next-generation radio telescopes will be required to detect continuous-wave GWs from binary SMBHs. We further suggest that GW memory bursts from coalescing SMBH pairs are not viable sources for PTAs. Both the GW background and individual GW source counts are dominated by binaries formed in mergers between early-type galaxies of masses ≳5 × 1010 M⊙ at redshifts ≲1.5. Uncertainties in the galaxy merger time-scale and the SMBH mass-galaxy bulge mass relation dominate the uncertainty in our predictions.

  6. Growing supermassive black holes in the late stages of galaxy mergers are heavily obscured

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ricci, C.; Bauer, F. E.; Treister, E.; Schawinski, K.; Privon, G. C.; Blecha, L.; Arevalo, P.; Armus, L.; Harrison, F.; Ho, L. C.; Iwasawa, K.; Sanders, D. B.; Stern, D.

    2017-01-01

    Mergers of galaxies are thought to cause significant gas inflows to the inner parsecs, which can activate rapid accretion onto supermassive black holes (SMBHs), giving rise to Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN). During a significant fraction of this process, SMBHs are predicted to be enshrouded by gas and dust. Studying 52 galactic nuclei in infrared-selected local Luminous and Ultra-luminous infrared galaxies in different merger stages in the hard X-ray band, where radiation is less affected by absorption, we find that the amount of material around SMBHs increases during the last phases of the merger. We find that the fraction of Compton-thick (CT, N_ H≥ 10^{24} cm^{-2}) AGN in late merger galaxies is higher (f_ CT=65^{+12}_{-13}%) than in local hard X-ray selected AGN (f CT = 27 ± 4%), and that obscuration reaches its maximum when the nuclei of the two merging galaxies are at a projected distance of D12 ≃ 0.4 - 10.8 kiloparsecs (f_ CT=77_{-17}^{+13}%). We also find that all AGN of our sample in late merger galaxies have N_ H> 10^{23} cm^{-2}, which implies that the obscuring material covers 95^{+4}_{-8}% of the X-ray source. These observations show that the material is most effectively funnelled from the galactic scale to the inner tens of parsecs during the late stages of galaxy mergers, and that the close environment of SMBHs in advanced mergers is richer in gas and dust with respect to that of SMBHs in isolated galaxies, and cannot be explained by the classical AGN unification model in which the torus is responsible for the obscuration.

  7. Supermassive black holes and their host galaxies. II. The correlation with near-infrared luminosity revisited

    SciTech Connect

    Läsker, Ronald; Van de Ven, Glenn; Ferrarese, Laura; Shankar, Francesco

    2014-01-01

    We present an investigation of the scaling relations between supermassive black hole (SMBH) masses, M {sub •}, and their host galaxies' K-band bulge (L {sub bul}) and total (L {sub tot}) luminosities. The wide-field WIRCam imager at the Canada-France-Hawaii-Telescope was used to obtain the deepest and highest resolution near-infrared images available for a sample of 35 galaxies with securely measured M {sub •}, selected irrespective of Hubble type. For each galaxy, we derive bulge and total magnitudes using a two-dimensional image decomposition code that allows us to account, if necessary, for large- and small-scale disks, cores, bars, nuclei, rings, envelopes, and spiral arms. We find that the present-day M {sub •}-L {sub bul} and M {sub •}-L {sub tot} relations have consistent intrinsic scatter, suggesting that M {sub •} correlates equally well with bulge and total luminosity of the host. Our analysis provides only mild evidence of a decreased scatter if the fit is restricted to elliptical galaxies. The log-slopes of the M {sub •}-L {sub bul} and M {sub •}-L {sub tot} relations are 0.75 ± 0.10 and 0.92 ± 0.14, respectively. However, while the slope of the M {sub •}-L {sub bul} relation depends on the detail of the image decomposition, the characterization of M {sub •}-L {sub tot} does not. Given the difficulties and ambiguities of decomposing galaxy images into separate components, our results indicate that L {sub tot} is more suitable as a tracer of SMBH mass than L {sub bul}, and that the M {sub •}-L {sub tot} relation should be used when studying the co-evolution of SMBHs and galaxies.

  8. Supermassive black holes and their host galaxies. I. Bulge luminosities from dedicated near-infrared data

    SciTech Connect

    Läsker, Ronald; Van de Ven, Glenn; Ferrarese, Laura

    2014-01-01

    In an effort to secure, refine, and supplement the relation between central supermassive black hole masses, M {sub •}, and the bulge luminosities of their host galaxies, L {sub bul}, we obtained deep, high spatial resolution K-band images of 35 nearby galaxies with securely measured M {sub •}, using the wide-field WIRCam imager at the Canada-France-Hawaii-Telescope. A dedicated data reduction and sky subtraction strategy was adopted to estimate the brightness and structure of the sky, a critical step when tracing the light distribution of extended objects in the near-infrared. From the final image product, bulge and total magnitudes were extracted via two-dimensional profile fitting. As a first order approximation, all galaxies were modeled using a simple Sérsic-bulge+exponential-disk decomposition. However, we found that such models did not adequately describe the structure that we observed in a large fraction of our sample galaxies which often include cores, bars, nuclei, inner disks, spiral arms, rings, and envelopes. In such cases, we adopted profile modifications and/or more complex models with additional components. The derived bulge magnitudes are very sensitive to the details and number of components used in the models, although total magnitudes remain almost unaffected. Usually, but not always, the luminosities and sizes of the bulges are overestimated when a simple bulge+disk decomposition is adopted in lieu of a more complex model. Furthermore, we found that some spheroids are not well fit when the ellipticity of the Sérsic model is held fixed. This paper presents the details of the image processing and analysis, while we discuss how model-induced biases and systematics in bulge magnitudes impact the M {sub •}-L {sub bul} relation in a companion paper.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. WISDOM Project - II. Molecular gas measurement of the supermassive black hole mass in NGC 4697

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Timothy A.; Bureau, Martin; Onishi, Kyoko; Cappellari, Michele; Iguchi, Satoru; Sarzi, Marc

    2017-07-01

    As part of the mm-Wave Interferometric Survey of Dark Object Masses (WISDOM) project, we present an estimate of the mass of the supermassive black hole (SMBH) in the nearby fast-rotating early-type galaxy NGC 4697. This estimate is based on Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) cycle-3 observations of the 12CO(2-1) emission line with a linear resolution of 29 pc (0.53 arcsec). We find that NGC 4697 hosts a small relaxed central molecular gas disc with a mass of 1.6 × 107 M⊙, co-spatial with the obscuring dust disc visible in optical Hubble Space Telescope imaging. We also resolve thermal 1 mm continuum emission from the dust in this disc. NGC 4697 is found to have a very low molecular gas velocity dispersion, σgas = 1.65^{+0.68}_{-0.65} km s-1. This seems to be partially because the giant molecular cloud mass function is not fully sampled, but other mechanisms such as chemical differentiation in a hard radiation field or morphological quenching also seem to be required. We detect a Keplerian increase of the rotation of the molecular gas in the very centre of NGC 4697, and use forward modelling of the ALMA data cube in a Bayesian framework with the KINematic Molecular Simulation (kinms) code to estimate an SMBH mass of (1.3_{-0.17}^{+0.18}) × 108 M⊙ and an i-band mass-to-light ratio of 2.14_{-0.05}^{+0.04} M⊙/L⊙ (at the 99 per cent confidence level). Our estimate of the SMBH mass is entirely consistent with previous measurements from stellar kinematics. This increases confidence in the growing number of SMBH mass estimates being obtained in the ALMA era.

  13. 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.

  14. STRUCTURE AND EVOLUTION OF CIRCUMBINARY DISKS AROUND SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE BINARIES

    SciTech Connect

    Rafikov, Roman R.

    2013-09-10

    We explore properties of circumbinary disks around supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries in centers of galaxies by reformulating standard viscous disk evolution in terms of the viscous angular momentum flux F{sub J}. If the binary stops gas inflow and opens a cavity in the disk, then the inner disk evolves toward a constant-F{sub J} (rather than a constant M-dot ) state. We compute disk properties in different physical regimes relevant for SMBH binaries, focusing on the gas-assisted evolution of systems starting at separations 10{sup -4} - 10{sup -2} pc, and find the following. (1) Mass pileup at the inner disk edge caused by the tidal barrier accelerates binary inspiral. (2) Binaries can be forced to merge even by a disk with a mass below that of the secondary. (3) Torque on the binary is set non-locally, at radii far larger than the binary semi-major axis; its magnitude does not reflect disk properties in the vicinity of the binary. (4) Binary inspiral exhibits hysteresis-it depends on the past evolution of the disk. (5) The Eddington limit can be important for circumbinary disks even if they accrete at sub-Eddington rates, but only at late stages of the inspiral. (6) Gas overflow across the orbit of the secondary can be important for low secondary mass, high- M-dot systems, but mainly during the inspiral phase dominated by the gravitational wave emission. (7) Circumbinary disks emit more power and have harder spectra than constant M-dot disks; their spectra are very sensitive to the amount of overflow across the secondary orbit.

  15. The kinetic flux of X-ray jets, and a connection to spinning super-massive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwartz, Daniel A.

    2017-08-01

    We use the kinetic fluxes measured for 100 kpc X-ray jets to calculate the required mass loss for rapidly spinning supermassive black holes to supply the power. For the quasars in the survey by Marshall et al. (2005, 2011, 2017, submitted) this power can be accommodated, even with parameterized spins as low as a=0.2. If we assume the initial power is purely Poynting flux, then since the magnetic field carries both the energy and the angular momentum lost by the black hole, we can derive constraints on the magnetic field as a function of jet radius, r. This must break down at some distance prior to the initiation of radiation from the jet; e.g., where particles are accelerated.

  16. 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).

  17. Supermassive Black Holes as the Regulators of Star Formation in Central Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Terrazas, Bryan A.; Bell, Eric F.; Woo, Joanna; Henriques, Bruno M. B.

    2017-08-01

    We present the relationship between the black hole mass, stellar mass, and star formation rate (SFR) of a diverse group of 91 galaxies with dynamically measured black hole masses. For our sample of galaxies with a variety of morphologies and other galactic properties, we find that the specific SFR is a smoothly decreasing function of the ratio between black hole mass and stellar mass, or what we call the specific black hole mass. In order to explain this relation, we propose a physical framework where the gradual suppression of a galaxy’s star formation activity results from the adjustment to an increase in specific black hole mass, and accordingly, an increase in the amount of heating. From this framework, it follows that at least some galaxies with intermediate specific black hole masses are in a steady state of partial quiescence with intermediate specific SFRs, implying that both transitioning and steady-state galaxies live within this region that is known as the “green valley.” With respect to galaxy formation models, our results present an important diagnostic with which to test various prescriptions of black hole feedback and its effects on star formation activity.

  18. Supermassive Black Holes As The Regulators Of Star Formation In Central Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Terrazas, Bryan A.; Bell, Eric F.; Henriques, Bruno M. B.; Woo, Joanna; White, Simon D. M.; Cattaneo, Andrea

    2017-06-01

    We present a relationship between the black hole mass, stellar mass, and star formation rate of a diverse group of 91 galaxies with dynamically-measured black hole masses. For our sample of galaxies with a variety of morphologies and other galactic properties, we find that the specific star formation rate is a smoothly decreasing function of the ratio between black hole mass and stellar mass, or what we call the specific black hole mass. In order to explain this relation, we propose a physical framework where the gradual suppression of a galaxy's star formation activity and gas cooling results from the adjustment to an increase in specific black hole mass and, accordingly, an increase in the amount of gas heating. From this framework, it follows that galaxies with intermediate specific black hole masses are in a steady state of partial quiescence with an intermediate amount of gas cooling and intermediate specific star formation rates, implying that both transitioning and steady-state galaxies live within this region known as the "green valley." With respect to galaxy formation models, our observational results present an important diagnostic with which to test various prescriptions of black hole feedback and its effects on star formation activity.

  19. The Starburst in the Abell 1835 Cluster Central Galaxy: A Case Study of Galaxy Formation Regulated by an Outburst from a Supermassive Black Hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNamara, B. R.; Rafferty, D. A.; Bîrzan, L.; Steiner, J.; Wise, M. W.; Nulsen, P. E. J.; Carilli, C. L.; Ryan, R.; Sharma, M.

    2006-09-01

    We present an analysis of the starburst in the Abell 1835 cluster's cD galaxy. The dense gas surrounding the galaxy is radiating X-rays at a rate of ~1045 ergs s-1, which is consistent with a cooling rate of ~1000-2000 Msolar yr-1. However, Chandra and XMM-Newton observations found less than 200 Msolar yr-1 of cooling below ~2 keV, a level that is consistent with the cD's current star formation rate of 100-180 Msolar yr-1. One or more heating agents (feedback) must then be replenishing the remaining radiative losses. Supernova explosions and thermal conduction are unable to do so. However, the active galactic nucleus (AGN) is pumping ~=1.4×1045 ergs s-1into the hot gas, which is enough power to offset most of the radiative cooling losses. The AGN jet power exceeds the radio synchrotron power by ~4000 times, making this one of the most radiatively inefficient radio sources known. The jet power implies that the supermassive black hole has accreted at a mean rate of ~0.3 Msolar yr-1 over the last 40 Myr or so, which is a small fraction of the Eddington accretion rate for a ~109 Msolar black hole. The ratio of black hole growth rate by accretion to bulge growth by star formation is consistent with the slope of the (Magorrian) relationship between bulge and central black hole mass in nearby quiescent galaxies. The starburst follows the Schmidt-Kennicutt parameterizations, indicating that the local environment is not substantially altering the IMF and other conditions leading to the onset of star formation. The consistency between net cooling, heating (feedback), and the cooling sink (star formation) in this system resolves the primary objection to traditional cooling flow models.

  20. Gravitational torque-driven black hole growth and feedback in cosmological simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anglés-Alcázar, Daniel; Davé, Romeel; Faucher-Giguère, Claude-André; Özel, Feryal; Hopkins, Philip F.

    2017-01-01

    We investigate black hole-host galaxy scaling relations in cosmological simulations with a self-consistent black hole growth and feedback model. Our sub-grid accretion model captures the key scalings governing angular momentum transport by gravitational torques from galactic scales down to parsec scales, while our kinetic feedback implementation enables the injection of outflows with properties chosen to match observed nuclear outflows (star formation-driven winds are not included to isolate the effects of black hole feedback). We show that `quasar mode' feedback can have a large impact on the thermal properties of the intergalactic medium and the growth of galaxies and massive black holes for kinetic feedback efficiencies as low as 0.1 per cent relative to the bolometric luminosity. None the less, our simulations indicate that the black hole-host scaling relations are only weakly dependent on the effects of black hole feedback on galactic scales, since black hole feedback suppresses the growth of galaxies and massive black holes by a similar amount. In contrast, the rate at which gravitational torques feed the central black hole relative to the host galaxy star formation rate governs the slope and normalization of the black hole-host correlations. Our results suggest that a common gas supply regulated by gravitational torques is the primary driver of the observed co-evolution of black holes and galaxies.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Brightening of an accretion disk due to viscous dissipation of gravitational waves during the coalescence of supermassive black holes.

    PubMed

    Kocsis, Bence; Loeb, Abraham

    2008-07-25

    Mergers of supermassive black hole binaries release peak power of up to approximately 10(57) erg s(-1) in gravitational waves (GWs). As the GWs propagate through ambient gas, they induce shear and a small fraction of their power is dissipated through viscosity. The dissipated heat appears as electromagnetic (EM) radiation, providing a prompt EM counterpart to the GW signal. For thin accretion disks, the GW heating rate exceeds the accretion power at distances farther than approximately 10(3) Schwarzschild radii, independently of the accretion rate and viscosity coefficient.

  5. New Opportunities for the Observations of Strong Gravity Effects Near Stellar-Mass and Supermassive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cherepashchuk, A. M.

    2017-06-01

    With the great discovery of gravitational waves, performed by the LIGO observatory, there is hope that in the near future scientists would be able to “ hear” the ring from the merging of stellar-mass black holes (BHs) in a number of binary systems, and with the help of the ground and space short-wave interferometers λ ≤ 1 mm (“Event Horizon Telescope”, “Millimetron”) we will be able to “see” the images of the shadows from supermassive BHs in galactic nuclei.

  6. Mergers of Unequal-mass Galaxies: Supermassive Black Hole Binary Evolution and Structure of Merger Remnants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khan, Fazeel Mahmood; Preto, Miguel; Berczik, Peter; Berentzen, Ingo; Just, Andreas; Spurzem, Rainer

    2012-04-01

    Galaxy centers are residing places for supermassive black holes (SMBHs). Galaxy mergers bring SMBHs close together to form gravitationally bound binary systems, which, if able to coalesce in less than a Hubble time, would be one of the most promising sources of gravitational waves (GWs) for the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna. In spherical galaxy models, SMBH binaries stall at a separation of approximately 1 pc, leading to the "final parsec problem" (FPP). On the other hand, it has been shown that merger-induced triaxiality of the remnant in equal-mass mergers is capable of supporting a constant supply of stars on the so-called centrophilic orbits that interact with the binary and thus avoid the FPP. In this paper, using a set of direct N-body simulations of mergers of initially spherically symmetric galaxies with different mass ratios, we show that the merger-induced triaxiality is also able to drive unequal-mass SMBH binaries to coalescence. The binary hardening rates are high and depend only weakly on the mass ratios of SMBHs for a wide range of mass ratios q. There is, however, an abrupt transition in the hardening rates for mergers with mass ratios somewhere between q ~ 0.05 and 0.1, resulting from the monotonic decrease of merger-induced triaxiality with mass ratio q, as the secondary galaxy becomes too small and light to significantly perturb the primary, i.e., the more massive one. The hardening rates are significantly higher for galaxies having steep cusps in comparison with those having shallow cups at centers. The evolution of the binary SMBH leads to relatively shallower inner slopes at the centers of the merger remnants. The stellar mass displaced by the SMBH binary on its way to coalescence is ~1-5 times the combined mass of binary SMBHs. The coalescence timescales for SMBH binary with mass ~106 M ⊙ are less than 1 Gyr and for those at the upper end of SMBH masses 109 M ⊙ are 1-2 Gyr for less eccentric binaries whereas they are less than 1 Gyr

  7. MERGERS OF UNEQUAL-MASS GALAXIES: SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE BINARY EVOLUTION AND STRUCTURE OF MERGER REMNANTS

    SciTech Connect

    Khan, Fazeel Mahmood; Preto, Miguel; Berentzen, Ingo; Just, Andreas; Berczik, Peter; Spurzem, Rainer

    2012-04-20

    Galaxy centers are residing places for supermassive black holes (SMBHs). Galaxy mergers bring SMBHs close together to form gravitationally bound binary systems, which, if able to coalesce in less than a Hubble time, would be one of the most promising sources of gravitational waves (GWs) for the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna. In spherical galaxy models, SMBH binaries stall at a separation of approximately 1 pc, leading to the 'final parsec problem' (FPP). On the other hand, it has been shown that merger-induced triaxiality of the remnant in equal-mass mergers is capable of supporting a constant supply of stars on the so-called centrophilic orbits that interact with the binary and thus avoid the FPP. In this paper, using a set of direct N-body simulations of mergers of initially spherically symmetric galaxies with different mass ratios, we show that the merger-induced triaxiality is also able to drive unequal-mass SMBH binaries to coalescence. The binary hardening rates are high and depend only weakly on the mass ratios of SMBHs for a wide range of mass ratios q. There is, however, an abrupt transition in the hardening rates for mergers with mass ratios somewhere between q {approx} 0.05 and 0.1, resulting from the monotonic decrease of merger-induced triaxiality with mass ratio q, as the secondary galaxy becomes too small and light to significantly perturb the primary, i.e., the more massive one. The hardening rates are significantly higher for galaxies having steep cusps in comparison with those having shallow cups at centers. The evolution of the binary SMBH leads to relatively shallower inner slopes at the centers of the merger remnants. The stellar mass displaced by the SMBH binary on its way to coalescence is {approx}1-5 times the combined mass of binary SMBHs. The coalescence timescales for SMBH binary with mass {approx}10{sup 6} M{sub Sun} are less than 1 Gyr and for those at the upper end of SMBH masses 10{sup 9} M{sub Sun} are 1-2 Gyr for less eccentric

  8. Are X-ray emitting coronae around supermassive black holes outflowing?

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, Teng; Wang, Jun-Xian; Yang, Huan; Zhu, Fei-Fan; Zhou, You-Yuan E-mail: jxw@ustc.edu.cn

    2014-03-10

    Hard X-ray emission in radio-quiet active galactic nuclei (AGNs) is believed to be produced via inverse Compton scattering by hot and compact coronae near the supermassive black hole. However, the origin and physical properties of the coronae, including geometry, kinematics, and dynamics, remain poorly known. In this work, taking [O IV] 25.89 μm emission line as an isotropic indicator of AGNs' intrinsic luminosity, we compare the intrinsic corona X-ray emission between Seyfert 1 and Compton-thin Seyfert 2 galaxies, which are viewed at different inclinations according to the unification scheme. We compile a sample of 130 Compton-thin Seyfert galaxies with both [O IV] 25.89 μm line luminosities measured with the Spitzer Infrared Spectrometer and X-ray spectra observed by XMM-Newton, Chandra, Suzaku, or Swift. Known radio-loud sources are excluded. We fit the X-ray spectra to obtain the absorption-corrected 2-10 keV continuum luminosities. We find that Seyfert 1 galaxies are intrinsically brighter in intrinsic 2-10 keV emission by a factor of 2.8{sub −0.4}{sup +0.5} (2.2{sub −0.3}{sup +0.9} in Swift Burst Alert Telescope 14-195 keV emission), compared with Compton-thin Seyfert 2 galaxies. The Seyfert 1 and Compton-thin Seyfert 2 galaxies follow a statistically identical correlation between the absorption-corrected 2-10 keV luminosity and the 14-195 keV luminosity, indicating that our absorption correction to the 2-10 keV flux is sufficient. The difference in X-ray emission between the two populations is thus unlikely to be due to X-ray absorption, and instead implies an intrinsic anisotropy in the corona X-ray emission. This striking anisotropy of X-ray emission can be explained by a bipolar outflowing corona with a bulk velocity of ∼0.3-0.5c. This would provide a natural link between the so-called coronae and weak jets in these systems. Other consequences of outflowing coronae are also discussed.

  9. A search for and characterization of the infrared emission from our galaxy's supermassive black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hornstein, Seth David

    Ever since its discovery over 30 years ago, the radio source Sgr A* has been suspected of being associated with a supermassive black hole at the center of our Galaxy. Motivated by detections of extreme variability from Sgr A* at X-ray wavelengths, this dissertation uses a variety of observational and analysis techniques to analyze twelve years of infrared observations focused on the Galactic Center using the Keck 10 m telescopes. From speckle and natural guide star adaptive optics (AO) two-micron observations collected from 1995--2004, I present detection limits for Sgr A*'s IR emission from 36 individual observations. Collectively, these detection limits establish a dereddened upper limit of 19 mJy ( K obs = 14.73 mag) for three-hour outbursts occurring on the order of once per day and rule out the possibility of the outbursts being created by a model involving direct heating of thermal electrons unless additional restrictions are applied. Additionally, the single deepest image of the data set limits Sgr A*'s quiescent dereddened IR emission to be below 2 mJy ( K obs = 17.17 mag). With advancing technology, infrared detections of Sgr A* quickly emerged and revealed a variable source with similar outburst durations as the X-ray outbursts but occurring much more frequently. Using results from the Keck laser guide star AO system, I present the first time-series of Sgr A*'s broadband infrared color measurements throughout several outbursting events, including the largest detected IR outburst to date. These observations reveal that Sgr A*'s spectral index of a = -0.6 ± 0.2 ( F n 0( n a ) is independent of intensity, wavelength, time, or outburst. When coupled with X- ray observations showing a similar, and also constant, spectral index in the X- ray domain, these results imply that while the X-ray emission is most likely from synchrotron self-Compton scattering of the electron energy distribution responsible for the infrared emission, it cannot be coupled to electrons

  10. 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⊙.

  11. A Bar Fuels a Supermassive Black Hole?: Host Galaxies of Narrow-Line Seyfert 1 Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohta, Kouji; Aoki, Kentaro; Kawaguchi, Toshihiro; Kiuchi, Gaku

    2007-03-01

    We present optical images of nearby 50 narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxies (NLS1s) that cover all the NLS1s at z<0.0666 and δ>=-25deg known in 2001. Among the 50 NLS1s, 40 images are newly obtained by our observations and 10 images are taken from archive data. Motivated by the hypothesis that NLS1s are in an early phase of a supermassive black hole (BH) evolution, we present a study of NLS1 host galaxy morphology to examine trigger mechanism(s) of active galactic nuclei (AGNs) by seeing the early phase of AGN. With these images, we made morphological classification by visual inspection and by quantitative method, and found a high bar frequency of the NLS1s in the optical band; the bar frequency is 85%+/-7% among disk galaxies (64%-71% in total sample) which is more frequent than that (40%-70%) of broad-line Seyfert 1 galaxies (BLS1s) and normal disk galaxies, although the significance is marginal. Our results confirm the claim by Crenshaw and coworkers with a similar analysis for 19 NLS1s. The frequency is comparable to that of H II/starburst galaxies. We also examined the bar frequency against width of the broad Hβ emission line, Eddington ratio, and BH mass, but no clear trend is seen. Possible implications, such as an evolutionary sequence from NLS1s to BLS1s, are discussed briefly. Based on data collected at University of Hawaii 88 inch telescope, Subaru Telescope, which is operated by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, Kitt Peak National Observatory 2.1 m telescope, which is operated by the National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO), operated by AURA, Inc., under contract with the National Science Foundation; and the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope with MegaPrime/MegaCam, a joint project of CFHT and CEA/DAPNIA, at the Canada-France-Hawaii-Telescope (CFHT), which is operated by the National Research Council (NRC) of Canada, the Institute National des Sciences de l'Univers of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique of France, and the

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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).

  18. A milliparsec supermassive black hole binary candidate in the galaxy SDSS J120136.02+300305.5

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, F. K.; Li, Shuo; Komossa, S.

    2014-05-10

    Galaxy mergers play a key role in the evolution of galaxies and the growth of their central supermassive black holes (SMBHs). A search for (active) SMBH binaries (SMBHBs) at the centers of the merger remnants is currently ongoing. Perhaps the greatest challenge is to identify the inactive SMBHBs, which might be the most abundant, but are also the most difficult to identify. Liu et al. predicted characteristic drops in the light curves of tidal disruption events (TDEs), caused by the presence of a secondary SMBH. Here, we apply that model to the light curve of the optically inactive galaxy SDSS J120136.02+300305.5, which was identified as a candidate TDE with XMM-Newton. We show that the deep dips in its evolving X-ray light curve can be well explained by the presence of a SMBHB at its core. A SMBHB model with a mass of the primary of M {sub BH} = 10{sup 7} M {sub ☉}, a mass ratio q ≅ 0.08, and a semi-major axis a {sub b} ≅ 0.6 mpc is in good agreement with the observations. Given that primary mass, introducing an orbital eccentricity is needed, with e {sub b} ≅ 0.3. Alternatively, a lower mass primary of M {sub BH} = 10{sup 6} M {sub ☉} in a circular orbit fits the light curve well. Tight binaries like this one, which have already overcome the 'final parsec problem', are prime sources of gravitational wave radiation once the two SMBHs coalesce. Future transient surveys, which will detect TDEs in large numbers, will place tight constraints on the SMBHB fraction in otherwise non-active galaxies.

  19. 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.

  20. Supermassive recoil velocities for binary black-hole mergers with antialigned spins.

    PubMed

    González, José A; Hannam, Mark; Sperhake, Ulrich; Brügmann, Bernd; Husa, Sascha

    2007-06-08

    Recent calculations of the recoil velocity in binary black-hole mergers have found the kick velocity to be of the order of a few hundred km/s in the case of nonspinning binaries and about 500 km/s in the case of spinning configurations, and have lead to predictions of a maximum kick of up to 1300 km/s. We test these predictions and demonstrate that kick velocities of at least 2500 km/s are possible for equal-mass binaries with antialigned spins in the orbital plane. Kicks of that magnitude are likely to have significant repercussions for models of black-hole formation, the population of intergalactic black holes, and the structure of host galaxies.

  1. Model for coeval growth of bulges and their seed black holes in presence of radiative feedback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, KwangHo; Bogdanovic, Tamara; Wise, John

    2017-01-01

    The discovery of billion solar mass accreting black holes at high redshift poses a great challenge for the modeling of the seed black hole (BH) formation and growth. Radiation-hydrodynamic simulations represent a crucial test of plausible scenarios by providing estimated growth rates for the seeds in the intermediate-mass black hole range. Previous works show that radiative feedback from black holes suppresses the cold gas accretion rate dramatically, making it difficult to explain the rapid growth of seed black holes. We however find that the fueling rate of black holes embedded in bulges can increase with the bulge-to-BH mass ratio when the bulge mass is greater than the critical value of ˜106 M⊙. The critical bulge mass is independent of the central black hole mass, thus the growth rate of light seeds (< 102 M⊙) and heavy seed black holes (> 105 M⊙) exhibits distinct dependencies on the bulge-to-BH mass ratio. Our results imply that heavy seeds, that may form via direct collapse, can grow efficiently and coevally with the host galaxies despite radiative feedback whereas the growth of light seeds is stunted. We present the results of an extended semi-analytic model based on the radiation-hydrodynamic simulations, which follows the coeval growth of black holes and their bulges.

  2. The role of major mergers in (obscured) black hole growth and galaxy evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treister, E.; Privon, G.; Ricci, C.; Bauer, F.; Schawinski, K.; MODA Collaboration

    2017-10-01

    A clear picture is emerging in which rapid supermassive black hole (SMBH) growth episodes (luminous AGN) are directly linked to major galaxy mergers. Here, we present the first results from our MODA program aimed to obtain optical and near-IR Integral Field Unit (IFU) spectroscopy and mm/sub-mm ALMA maps for a sample of confirmed nearby dual AGN (separation 10 kpc), including the archetypical galaxy NGC6240. Specifically, we will focus here on Mrk 463, a very rich system of two galaxies separated by 3.8 kpc hosting two SMBH growing simultaneously. Clear evidence for complex morphologies and kinematics, outflows and feedback effects can be seen in this system, evidencing the deep connection between major galaxy mergers, SMBH growth and galaxy evolution.

  3. Different Flavors of Black Holes

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2014-01-09

    A range of supermassive black holes lights up this new image from NASA NuSTAR. All of the dots are active black holes tucked inside the hearts of galaxies, with colors representing different energies of X-ray light.

  4. Secular evolution of very eccentric, inclined orbits around a supermassive rotating black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Will, Clifford; Maitra, Matthew

    2017-01-01

    We analyze the secular evolution of the highly eccentric, inclined orbit of a star or black hole in the field of a rotating massive Kerr black hole. Such orbits, with 1 - e ranging from 10-2 to 10-6 may be the end result of a process of stellar interactions in a dense nuclear star cluster surrounding the black hole, leading to extreme-mass ratio inspirals (EMRIs). The calculations are done in post-Newtonian (PN) theory, through 3PN order in the conservative sector, including spin-orbit, quadrupolar and (spin)2 terms from the Kerr geometry, and through 4.5PN order, including 4PN spin-orbit contributions, in the radiation reaction sector. We also incorporate an accurate criterion for capture of the body by the rotating black hole for arbitrary inclinations. For a range of initial values of the body's semi-major axis, eccentricity and inclination, we determine the time and number of orbits until plunge and the final orbital eccentricity. We also estimate the gravitational-wave frequency and energy flux at the final plunge, as a function of the orbital inclination. Supported in part by the National Science Foundation PHY 13-06069 & PHY 16-00188.

  5. Understanding the build-up of supermassive black holes and galaxies at the heyday of the Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrera, Francisco

    Open questions that relate to our current understanding of black hole growth and its relation to the build-up of galaxies include: what are the physical conditions (e.g. fuelling mode, triggering mechanism) that initiate major black hole accretion events; what is the nature of AGN feedback and whether it plays a significant role in the evolution of galaxies. X-rays are essential for addressing these points as they uniquely probe AGN at both the early heavily obscured stage and the later blow-out phase. 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, X-ray studies of the incidence, nature and energetics of AGN feedback are limited to the local Universe. The Athena mission concept will provide the technological leap required for a breakthrough in our understanding of AGN and galaxy evolution at the heyday of the Universe. Its high throughput will allow the systematic study of AGN feedback to z˜ 4 via the identification and measurement of blue-shifted X-ray absorption lines with Athena/X-IFU. The excellent survey and spectral capabilities of Athena/WFI (effective area, angular resolution, field of view) will complete the census of black hole growth by yielding samples of up to 100 times larger than is currently possible of the most heavily obscured, including Compton thick, AGN to redshifts z˜ 3. The demographics of this population relative to their hosts is fundamental for understanding how major black hole growth events relate to the build-up of galaxies.

  6. Supermassive Black Hole Formation at High Redshifts via Direct Collapse: Physical Processes in the Early Stage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2013-09-01

    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 vir ~ 2 × 108 M ⊙ and R vir ~ 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 <~ 1-10 pc. We have followed this inflow down to ~10-4 pc (~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 ~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 on scales ~20-50 pc outside the disk, and appears to be supported by turbulent

  7. 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

  8. NASA's Chandra Finds Black Holes Are "Green"

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-04-01

    Black holes are the most fuel efficient engines in the Universe, according to a new study using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. By making the first direct estimate of how efficient or "green" black holes are, this work gives insight into how black holes generate energy and affect their environment. The new Chandra finding shows that most of the energy released by matter falling toward a supermassive black hole is in the form of high-energy jets traveling at near the speed of light away from the black hole. This is an important step in understanding how such jets can be launched from magnetized disks of gas near the event horizon of a black hole. Illustration of Fuel for a Black Hole Engine Illustration of Fuel for a Black Hole Engine "Just as with cars, it's critical to know the fuel efficiency of black holes," said lead author Steve Allen of the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University, and the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. "Without this information, we cannot figure out what is going on under the hood, so to speak, or what the engine can do." Allen and his team used Chandra to study nine supermassive black holes at the centers of elliptical galaxies. These black holes are relatively old and generate much less radiation than quasars, rapidly growing supermassive black holes seen in the early Universe. The surprise came when the Chandra results showed that these "quiet" black holes are all producing much more energy in jets of high-energy particles than in visible light or X-rays. These jets create huge bubbles, or cavities, in the hot gas in the galaxies. Animation of Black Hole in Elliptical Galaxy Animation of Black Hole in Elliptical Galaxy The efficiency of the black hole energy-production was calculated in two steps: first Chandra images of the inner regions of the galaxies were used to estimate how much fuel is available for the black hole; then Chandra images were used to estimate the power required to produce

  9. 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

  10. First Results from the 7 Ms Chandra Deep Field-South Survey: A Good Hard Look at Growing Supermassive Black Holes in the Distant Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, William; Chandra Deep Fields Team

    2017-01-01

    Sensitive cosmic X-ray surveys with the Chandra, XMM-Newton, and now NuSTAR observatories have revolutionized our ability to find and study distant active galactic nuclei (AGNs), the main sites of supermassive black hole growth in the Universe. I will describe some recent discoveries about the demographics, physics, and ecology of distant AGNs coming from the deepest Chandra survey to date, the 7 Ms Chandra Deep Field-South. Some specific topics covered will include (1) robust X-ray spectral and variability characterization of the AGNs producing most of cosmic accretion power; (2) the demographics of AGNs in the first galaxies as revealed by direct detection and stacking; and (3) AGN/galaxy interactions as investigated via the host properties of X-ray AGNs. I will also briefly describe other remarkable discoveries coming from this survey; e.g., measurements of the evolving X-ray binary populations of normal and starburst galaxies.

  11. Constraint on the quadrupole moment of super-massive black hole candidates from the estimate of the mean radiative efficiency of AGN

    SciTech Connect

    Bambi, Cosimo

    2011-05-15

    The supermassive objects at the center of many galaxies are commonly thought to be black holes. In 4-dimensional general relativity, a black hole is completely specified by its mass M and by its spin angular momentum J. All the higher multipole moments of the gravitational field depend in a very specific way on these two parameters. For instance, the mass quadrupole moment is Q=-J{sup 2}/M. If we can estimate M, J, and Q for the supermassive objects in galactic nuclei, we overconstrain the theory and we can test the black hole hypothesis. While there are many works studying how this can be done with future observations, in this paper a constraint on the quadrupole moment of these objects is obtained by using the current estimate of the mean radiative efficiency of AGN. In terms of the anomalous quadrupole moment q, the bound is -2.01

  12. Fluctuations in the high-redshift Lyman-Werner background: close halo pairs as the origin of supermassive black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dijkstra, Mark; Haiman, Zoltán; Mesinger, Andrei; Wyithe, J. Stuart B.

    2008-12-01

    The earliest generation of stars and black holes must have established an early `Lyman-Werner' background (LWB) at high redshift, prior to the epoch of reionization. Because of the long mean free path of photons with energies hν < 13.6eV, the LWB was nearly uniform. However, some variation in the LWB is expected due to the discrete nature of the sources, and their highly clustered spatial distribution. In this paper, we compute the probability distribution function (PDF) of the LW flux that irradiates dark matter (DM) haloes collapsing at high redshift (z ~ 10). Our model accounts for (i) the clustering of DM haloes, (ii) Poisson fluctuations in the number of corresponding star-forming galaxies and (iii) scatter in the LW luminosity produced by haloes of a given mass (calibrated using local observations). We find that >99 per cent of the DM haloes are illuminated by an LW flux within a factor of 2 of the global mean value. However, a small fraction, ~10-8 to 10-6, of DM haloes with virial temperatures Tvir >~ 104 K have a close luminous neighbour within <~10 kpc, and are exposed to an LW flux exceeding the global mean by a factor of >20, or to J21,LW > 103 (in units of 10-21 erg s-1 Hz-1 sr-1 cm-2). This large LW flux can photodissociate H2 molecules in the gas collapsing due to atomic cooling in these haloes, and prevent its further cooling and fragmentation. Such close halo pairs therefore provide possible sites in which primordial gas clouds collapse directly into massive black holes (MBH ~ 104-6Msolar), and subsequently grow into supermassive (MBH >~ 109Msolar) black holes by z ~ 6.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. The Nearest Black Holes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oliversen, Ronald J. (Technical Monitor); Garcia, M.

    2003-01-01

    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. This program facilitates this study by funding related travel, computer equipment, and partial salary for a post-doc.

  16. The Nearest Black Holes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Garcia, M.; Oliversen, Ronald J. (Technical Monitor)

    2004-01-01

    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. This program facilitate this study by funding related travel, computer equipment, and partial salary for a post-doc.

  17. 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 a