RSAA Colloquia / Seminars / Feast-of-Facts: Wednesday, 17 April 2019, 11:00-12:00; CSO Common Room

Stephanie Juneau

"The Influence of Supermassive Black Holes on the Fate of Galaxies"

All massive galaxies host a supermassive black hole - with masses of millions to billions of times that of the Sun - in their centers. These black holes act as the power engine of Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN), which can release tremendous amounts of energy into the surrounding medium, potentially heating and/or ejecting the gas reservoirs of galaxies. AGN feedback and outflows have often been proposed as necessary ingredients for the regulation of star formation in galaxies, but the observational evidence has been mixed. After a brief overview, I will present observational and numerical constraints on the fueling of black holes, and on the extent to which they can change the fate of galaxies. I will then highlight findings from a multi-scale analysis of gas ionization and dynamics thanks to 3D spectroscopy with the VLT/MUSE instrument. Lastly, I will conclude with a global view of black hole growth and feedback in galaxies, including major questions that remain open for new capabilities such as the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), and large galaxy survey experiments such as DESI and Euclid.