Where do most black holes in the Universe come from?


  • Datum: 01.12.2023
  • Uhrzeit: 10:30 - 12:00
  • Vortragender: Prof. Dr. Hans-Walter Rix
  • Hans-Walter Rix is director at the Max-Planck-Institute for Astronomy (MPIA) and professor at the University of Heidelberg faculty for physics and astronomy. In his thesis work with Simon White he figured out that most large elliptical galaxies also have sizable stellar disks, and hence must have a different formation history than thought at the time. He also had the opportunity to work with Craig Hogan on gravitational lensing, with Marcia and George Rieke on infrared imaging and spectroscopy, and with Rob Kennicutt. He then went on to the Institute for Advanced Studies in Princeton, working on some of the very first Hubble Space Telescope data on gravitational lensing and giving in to the numerous, exciting scientific diversions that Princeton has to offer. After a year at MPA, Garching and three years on the faculty at the University of Arizona, he came to MPIA late 1998. In the first five years, his focus was on galaxy evolution, helping to draw up a comprehensive picture of what the population of galaxies looked like when the Universe was half its age. In recent years he has focused his research on our very own galaxy, the Milky Way, because the intricate detail in which it can be studied, should lead us to a better understanding of galaxy formation as a whole. As of 2016, the Gaia space mission along with other vast spectroscopic surveys of stars, and then Hubble's successor James Webb Space Telescope are the next beacons on his science path.
  • Ort: IPP Garching
  • Raum: Arnulf-Schlüter Lecture Hall in Building D2 and Zoom
  • Gastgeber: IPP
  • Kontakt: karl.krieger@ipp.mpg.de
Where do most black holes in the Universe come from?

Over the last 50 years the existence of black holes has been established by different astrophysical means: the dynamics of stars and gas, emission from accretion disks surrounding them and gravitational waves. Black holes appear to exist over a vast range of masses, from a few times the mass of the Sun to a few billion Solar masses. But in many circumstances black holes have remained undetectable by current detection efforts, and we may just see the tip of the population iceberg. I’ll discuss some of the ongoing and upcoming efforts (including our own) to detect new parts of the black hole population. And I’ll sketch what this implies for their origin: When do massive stars leave black holes behind? Do all black holes in the Universe ultimately trace back to stellar remnants?

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