Skip to main content

The mass and growth of (obscured) black holes and their host galaxies since the Universe was young

Final Report Summary - HIGH-Z BLACK HOLES (The mass and growth of (obscured) black holes and their host galaxies since the Universe was young)

The 2009-235038 Intra European Marie Curie fellowship was successfully concluded. During the course of it, the fellow (Dr K. Dasyra) presented 2 first-author publications, and participated to 2 second-author, and 12 other publications. Dasyra & Combes (2011) reported on the first discovery of an outflow of the most abundant molecular species, H2. The outflow is likely to be driven by the radio jet of an active galactic nucleus (AGN), and it entrains an impressive amount of gas, i.e. 1/4th of the total gas mass reservoir at a temperature of a few hundred Kelvin. It is through such outflows that AGN could affect the formation of new stars in their host galaxies. In Dasyra et al. (2011), we presented a new method for estimating black hole masses from the luminosity-corrected velocity dispersion of the gas that AGN photoionize. We attribute it to a dependence of the detected gas motions on the AGN luminosity or feedback effects (i.e. jets/winds/radiation pressure), which on their turn depend on the black hole mass. The full high-resolution spectroscopic archive of the Spitzer space telescope was used for this calibration, which is expected to have a large impact in the field of galaxy evolution: it will permit us to weigh black holes in obscured galaxies up to z~4 with the next generation IR space missions. Thanks to this calibration, the fellow was included in the consortium of the future SPICA space mission's far infrared instrument to add to its discovery-space science. She was also granted access to Herschel guaranteed time. The goal of the new Herschel observations will be the density and mass determination of the diffuse gas that AGN photoionize. During this Marie Curie grant, the fellow was also added to 3 Herschel groups or consortia, and developed a most fruitful collaboration with Prof. Combes at the neighbouring Observatoire de Paris, where she is now working.