AR 15054 (Archival Research)

Mon Jul 15 04:25:32 GMT 2024

Principal Investigator: Roeland van der Marel
PI Institution: Space Telescope Science Institute
Investigators (xml)

Title: Getting the sigma in the M_BH - sigma relation right
Cycle: 25

The relation between the mass of the central supermassive black hole (M_BH) and the velocity dispersion of its host spheroid (sigma) is fundamental for our understanding of galaxy evolution and its relation to their nuclei. Correspondingly many HST orbits have been invested in determining accurate M_BH masses. Surprisingly little has been done on standardizing the other axis, i.e. sigma measurements. These values are often derived from various long-slit datasets at different physical radii of the galaxy and no homogeneous definition has been given. We propose to remedy this situation by using our dataset of MUSE and PPAK kinematic maps out to 1 R_e of galaxies with a secure black hole mass. These data are useful for large scale kinematics, however, obtaining velocity dispersions at small radii is not possible. To measure velocity dispersions at small radii we require high-spatial resolution spectroscopy as provided by HST/STIS. In addtion, high-resolution photometric data is needed to define consistent apertures in each galaxy. We therefore propose to use the unique capabilities of HST and harvest years of efforts to collect archival spectroscopic and imaging data for BH host galaxies. This will allow creating a catalog of sigma values, calculated in various ways and at various radii and to re-calibrate the M_BH - sigma relation.