Sep 18, 2014
Remco van den Bosch, , Max-Planck Institute for Astronomy, Germany
""Compact Galaxies and Super-Massive Black Holes""
Super-massive black holes reside at the center of galaxies. And the masses of these black holes correlate to various properties of their host galaxies. These correlations are the foundation for theories of the (co-)evolution of super-massive black holes and their host galaxies.
However, very few galaxies are nearby enough for direct black hole mass measurements. To find suitable galaxies, we surveyed a thousand galaxies with the Hobby-Eberly Telescope. The first results of this survey was the discovery of a dozen extremely compact, high-dispersion, galaxies, which are candidates to host extraordinary massive black holes. The prototype is NGC1277, which is a small, Re=1kpc, compact, lenticular galaxy which hosts a 10 billion solar mass black hole. Which is a significant fraction of this galaxies mass. These highly compact galaxies appear to be the passively evolved descendants of the red nuggets, sub-mm galaxies, and quasars found at high redshifts.