School of Physics & Astronomy

School Colloquium

B13 Physics Building
Wednesday 24th April 2019 (16:00-17:00)

Professor Francoise Combes, College de France and Observatoire de Paris


Title:  When supermassive black holes are too gluttonous

 The majority of galaxies host in their center a super-massive black hole of mass between one million and a few billion solar masses. The mass of the black hole is proportional to the bulge mass, which suggests a tight relation between star formation and black hole growth. When gas infalls to the center, the black hole swallows as much mass as possible, but it is limited. Matter infalling on the black hole liberates a considerable energy, as radiation and kinetic energy. The galaxy nucleus becomes active, either a Seyfert, or a quasar. The winds and jets emitted by the nucleus, drag the molecular gas around. So much mass is ejected that it can have a large impact on the host galaxy, quenching the star formation. The supermassive black holes, in rejecting their food, thus control the star formation rate in galaxies.-




School of Physics and Astronomy

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