Seminar: On the Origin of Supermassive Black Holes, Jonathan Tan (Chalmers University & University of Virginia)

OATS seminar
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10/14/2022 - 12:00
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10/14/2022 - 13:00
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Abstract: I discuss one of the most pressing open questions in cosmic origins studies: how do the supermassive black holes (SMBHs) that reside in the centers of most large galaxies come into being? After a review of different ideas, I present a model that aims to explain the birth of all SMBHs via a single mechanism and involves them being among the very first objects to form after the Big Bang, from special Population III star-forming dark matter minihalos (Pop III.1 sources). Such a model can naturally explain the minimum mass scale of SMBHs of ~100,000 solar masses, predicts all SMBH are in place by z~25, and that the sources have relatively low levels of spatial clustering. The mechanism relies on dark matter self-annihilation changing the structure of Pop III.1 protostars and so also places constraints on the nature of dark matter. I discuss various observational tests of this scenario.


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Last update: 10-12-2022 - 08:04