Quasar PSO J334.2028+01.4075 has a very healthy heart rate of 6.7 beats per decade, or once every 542 days. One explanation is that this guy hosts a pair of supermassive black holes. If true, then the astonishing interpretation of this quasar’s heart rate is that its black holes are only a few orbits away from merging!
Dark matter, neutron stars, black holes, and an extremely exotic explanation for Fast Radio Bursts.
Supermassive black holes (SMBH) likely exist at the center of every massive galaxy in our universe. How these million to billion solar mass beasts form is not well understood. The authors in today’s astrobite examine the possibility of the direct collapse of massive gas clouds to form SMBH seeds in a computer simulation of a galaxy merger.
Mergers make bulges in galaxies and black holes generally live in bulges, so mergers must grow black holes – simple. That was until we found bulgeless galaxies containing growing black holes…
Every galaxy is thought to contain a black hole at the centre – but why are some active and some not? What process has ‘switched-on’ these active galaxies? Theorists suggest that major galaxy mergers could play a part for the highly luminous active galaxies but we’re currently lacking conclusive observational evidence to support this theory.
Short gamma-ray bursts, extremely energetic explosions in the Universe, might be caused by the merger of two compact objects. In the two papers we discuss today, the authors test this scenario by looking for light emitted still a few days after the explosion.