Astrophys. J., 692, 856-868 (2009/February-2)
Upper limits on the masses of 105 supermassive black holes from Hubble Space Telescope/Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph archival data.
BEIFIORI A., SARZI M., CORSINI E.M., DALLA BONTA E., PIZZELLA A., COCCATO L. and BERTOLA F.
Abstract (from CDS):
Based on the modeling of the central emission-line width measured over subarcsecond apertures with the Hubble Space Telescope, we present stringent upper bounds on the mass of the central supermassive black hole, M•, for a sample of 105 nearby galaxies (D < 100 Mpc) spanning a wide range of Hubble types (E-Sc) and values of the central stellar velocity dispersion, σc(58-419 km/s). For the vast majority of the objects, the derived M• upper limits run parallel and above the well-known M•-σc relation independently of the galaxy distance, suggesting that our nebular line-width measurements trace rather well the nuclear gravitational potential. For values of σc between 90 and 220 km/s, 68% of our upper limits falls immediately above the M•-σc relation without exceeding the expected M• values by more than a factor 4.1. No systematic trends or offsets are observed in this σc range as a function of the galaxy Hubble type or with respect to the presence of a bar. For 6 of our 12 M• upper limits with σc<90 km/s, our line-width measurements are more sensitive to the stellar contribution to the gravitational potential, either due to the presence of a nuclear stellar cluster or because of a greater distance compared to the other galaxies at the low-σc end of the M•-σcrelation. Conversely, our M• upper bounds appear to lie closer to the expected M• in the most massive elliptical galaxies with values of σc above 220 km/s. Such a flattening of the M•-σc relation at its high-σc end would appear consistent with a coevolution of supermassive black holes and galaxies driven by dry mergers, although better and more consistent measurements for σc and K-band luminosity are needed for these kinds of objects before systematic effects can be ruled out.
black hole physics - galaxies: kinematics and dynamics - galaxies: structure
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<Available at CDS (J/ApJ/692/856): table1.dat table2.dat refs.dat>
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