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Probing black hole accretion tracks, scaling relations, and radiative efficiencies from stacked X-ray active galactic nuclei

Probing black hole accretion tracks, scaling relations, and radiative efficiencies from stacked X-ray active galactic nuclei
Probing black hole accretion tracks, scaling relations, and radiative efficiencies from stacked X-ray active galactic nuclei
The masses of supermassive black holes at the centres of local galaxies appear to be tightly correlated with the mass and velocity dispersions of their galactic hosts. However, the local Mbh–Mstar relation inferred from dynamically measured inactive black holes is up to an order-of-magnitude higher than some estimates from active black holes, and recent work suggests that this discrepancy arises from selection bias on the sample of dynamical black hole mass measurements. In this work, we combine X-ray measurements of the mean black hole accretion luminosity as a function of stellar mass and redshift with empirical models of galaxy stellar mass growth, integrating over time to predict the evolving Mbh–Mstar relation. The implied relation is nearly independent of redshift, indicating that stellar and black hole masses grow, on average, at similar rates. Matching the de-biased local Mbh–Mstar relation requires a mean radiative efficiency ε ≳ 0.15, in line with theoretical expectations for accretion on to spinning black holes. However, matching the ‘raw’ observed relation for inactive black holes requires ε ∼ 0.02, far below theoretical expectations. This result provides independent evidence for selection bias in dynamically estimated black hole masses, a conclusion that is robust to uncertainties in bolometric corrections, obscured active black hole fractions, and kinetic accretion efficiency. For our fiducial assumptions, they favour moderate-to-rapid spins of typical supermassive black holes, to achieve ε ∼ 0.12–0.20. Our approach has similarities to the classic Soltan analysis, but by using galaxy-based data instead of integrated quantities we are able to focus on regimes where observational uncertainties are minimized.
0035-8711
1500-1511
Shankar, Francesco
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Weinberg, David H
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Marsden, Christopher
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Grylls, Philip J.
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Bernardi, Mariangela
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Yang, Guang
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Moster, Benjamin
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Fu, Hao
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Carraro, Rosamaria
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Alexander, David M.
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Allevato, Viola
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Ananna, Tonima T.
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Bongiorno, Angela
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Calderone, Giorgio
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Civano, Francesca
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Daddi, Emanuele
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Delvecchio, Ivan
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Duras, Federica
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La franca, Fabio
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Lapi, Andrea
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Lu, Youjun
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Menci, Nicola
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Mezcua, Mar
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Ricci, Federica
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Rodighiero, Giulia
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Sheth, Ravi K
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Suh, Hyewon
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Villforth, Carolin
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Zanisi, Lorenzo
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Shankar, Francesco
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Weinberg, David H
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Marsden, Christopher
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Grylls, Philip J.
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Bernardi, Mariangela
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Yang, Guang
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Moster, Benjamin
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Fu, Hao
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Carraro, Rosamaria
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Alexander, David M.
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Allevato, Viola
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Ananna, Tonima T.
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Bongiorno, Angela
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Calderone, Giorgio
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Civano, Francesca
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Daddi, Emanuele
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Delvecchio, Ivan
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Duras, Federica
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La franca, Fabio
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Lapi, Andrea
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Lu, Youjun
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Menci, Nicola
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Mezcua, Mar
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Ricci, Federica
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Rodighiero, Giulia
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Sheth, Ravi K
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Suh, Hyewon
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Villforth, Carolin
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Zanisi, Lorenzo
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Shankar, Francesco, Weinberg, David H, Marsden, Christopher, Grylls, Philip J., Bernardi, Mariangela, Yang, Guang, Moster, Benjamin, Fu, Hao, Carraro, Rosamaria, Alexander, David M., Allevato, Viola, Ananna, Tonima T., Bongiorno, Angela, Calderone, Giorgio, Civano, Francesca, Daddi, Emanuele, Delvecchio, Ivan, Duras, Federica, La franca, Fabio, Lapi, Andrea, Lu, Youjun, Menci, Nicola, Mezcua, Mar, Ricci, Federica, Rodighiero, Giulia, Sheth, Ravi K, Suh, Hyewon, Villforth, Carolin and Zanisi, Lorenzo (2020) Probing black hole accretion tracks, scaling relations, and radiative efficiencies from stacked X-ray active galactic nuclei. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 493 (1), 1500-1511. (doi:10.1093/mnras/stz3522).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The masses of supermassive black holes at the centres of local galaxies appear to be tightly correlated with the mass and velocity dispersions of their galactic hosts. However, the local Mbh–Mstar relation inferred from dynamically measured inactive black holes is up to an order-of-magnitude higher than some estimates from active black holes, and recent work suggests that this discrepancy arises from selection bias on the sample of dynamical black hole mass measurements. In this work, we combine X-ray measurements of the mean black hole accretion luminosity as a function of stellar mass and redshift with empirical models of galaxy stellar mass growth, integrating over time to predict the evolving Mbh–Mstar relation. The implied relation is nearly independent of redshift, indicating that stellar and black hole masses grow, on average, at similar rates. Matching the de-biased local Mbh–Mstar relation requires a mean radiative efficiency ε ≳ 0.15, in line with theoretical expectations for accretion on to spinning black holes. However, matching the ‘raw’ observed relation for inactive black holes requires ε ∼ 0.02, far below theoretical expectations. This result provides independent evidence for selection bias in dynamically estimated black hole masses, a conclusion that is robust to uncertainties in bolometric corrections, obscured active black hole fractions, and kinetic accretion efficiency. For our fiducial assumptions, they favour moderate-to-rapid spins of typical supermassive black holes, to achieve ε ∼ 0.12–0.20. Our approach has similarities to the classic Soltan analysis, but by using galaxy-based data instead of integrated quantities we are able to focus on regimes where observational uncertainties are minimized.

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Accepted/In Press date: 9 December 2019
e-pub ahead of print date: 16 December 2019
Published date: March 2020

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 441822
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/441822
ISSN: 0035-8711
PURE UUID: 47b19b04-32ee-4f81-a479-f7f17adfb780

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Date deposited: 29 Jun 2020 16:32
Last modified: 29 Jun 2020 16:32

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Contributors

Author: David H Weinberg
Author: Christopher Marsden
Author: Philip J. Grylls
Author: Mariangela Bernardi
Author: Guang Yang
Author: Benjamin Moster
Author: Hao Fu
Author: Rosamaria Carraro
Author: David M. Alexander
Author: Viola Allevato
Author: Tonima T. Ananna
Author: Angela Bongiorno
Author: Giorgio Calderone
Author: Francesca Civano
Author: Emanuele Daddi
Author: Ivan Delvecchio
Author: Federica Duras
Author: Fabio La franca
Author: Andrea Lapi
Author: Youjun Lu
Author: Nicola Menci
Author: Mar Mezcua
Author: Federica Ricci
Author: Giulia Rodighiero
Author: Ravi K Sheth
Author: Hyewon Suh
Author: Carolin Villforth
Author: Lorenzo Zanisi

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