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How the monsters were made: the formation of the most massive black holes in the Universe

Descrizione del progetto

Alla scoperta dei segreti della formazione dei buchi neri supermassicci

Alcune galassie più lontane dell’Universo possono creare buchi neri supermassicci le cui masse superano i 100 milioni di masse solari nei primi miliardi di anni della storia cosmica. Gli scienziati stanno cercando di scoprire come questi singoli buchi neri supermassicci estremi si siano formati così rapidamente, così come la storia dell’accrescimento della più ampia popolazione di questo tipo di buchi neri nell’Universo primordiale. Per contribuire a rispondere a queste domande, il progetto HIZRAD, finanziato dall’UE, intende costruire un campione di nuclei galattici attivi selezionati via radio nell’Universo primordiale che raggiunga nuove aree di spazio parametrico e sia oltre 100 volte più grande dei campioni attuali. Queste serie di dati daranno luogo alle prime solide misurazioni della storia dell’accrescimento e della massa dei buchi neri supermassicci nell’Universo primordiale.

Obiettivo

Every massive galaxy in the Universe has at its heart a super-massive black hole (SMBH), with some extreme galaxies able to build SMBH with masses in excess of 100 million solar masses within only the first few Gyr of cosmic history. How did these individual extreme SMBH form so quickly, and what was the accretion history of the wider SMBH population in the early Universe? As a probe of black-hole accretion that is not subject to dust obscuration, sensitive new radio continuum surveys offer a unique opportunity to study the first few Gyr of SMBH formation in unprecedented detail and answer these fundamental questions. This project will combine two surveys the participant has a leading role in, the Low Frequency Array (LOFAR) Surveys Project and the WEAVE-LOFAR spectroscopic survey, to build a sample of radio selected active galactic nuclei in the early Universe that reaches new and extremely important areas of parameter space and is >100x larger than existing samples. The unprecedented scale and sensitivity of these datasets will result in the first robust measurements of the accretion and mass history of SMBH in the early Universe. This project will also discover the first sample of luminous radio galaxies within the Epoch of Reionization; an important breakthrough that opens an entirely new window onto the process of cosmic reionization - one of the outstanding current cosmological challenges. The University of Edinburgh is a leading centre for the study of galaxy and black-hole formation in the early Universe, both through radio continuum and optical spectroscopy surveys. The researcher is an expert in the optical astronomy techniques required to perform the proposed robust population studies and is uniquely placed to exploit the exquisite WEAVE-LOFAR data. Together, these transformational datasets and the complementary expertise of the host and researcher will result in world-leading research that has extensive impact within the wider astronomical community.

Parole chiave

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Coordinatore

THE UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH
Contribution nette de l'UE
€ 212 933,76
Indirizzo
Old college, south bridge
EH8 9YL Edinburgh
Regno Unito

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Regione
Scotland Eastern Scotland Edinburgh
Tipo di attività
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Collegamenti
Altri finanziamenti
€ 0,00