The connection between supermassive black holes and dark matter halos

Jul 6, 2023
At the center of each galaxy lurks a supermassive black hole (SMBH). These black holes grow during phases of extreme accretion when nearby gas and dust fall into their deep gravitational wells, which we observe as active galactic nuclei (AGN). Zooming out to much greater distances, halos of dark matter surround each galaxy, extending millions of light-years. But while various galaxy properties are known to correlate with SMBHs and their dark matter halos separately, the black hole - dark matter halo connection has been less explored. How does the dark matter environment of a galaxy impact the growth and coevolution of its central supermassive black hole?

What happens to the supermassive black holes at the hearts of merging galaxy trios?

Feb 19, 2021
While there have been extensive previous studies of mergers between two galaxies, a recent study that helps reveal what happens when three galaxies merge is one of the first to systematically look at the consequences for the supermassive black holes at their hearts when a trio of galaxies comes together.