SIMBAD references

2016MNRAS.458.2012V - Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 458, 2012-2023 (2016/May-2)

A selection effect boosting the contribution from rapidly spinning black holes to the cosmic X-ray background.


Abstract (from CDS):

The cosmic X-ray background (CXB) is the total emission from past accretion activity on to supermassive black holes in active galactic nuclei (AGN) and peaks in the hard X-ray band (30 keV). In this paper, we identify a significant selection effect operating on the CXB and flux-limited AGN surveys, and outline how they must depend heavily on the spin distribution of black holes. We show that, due to the higher radiative efficiency of rapidly spinning black holes, they will be over-represented in the X-ray background, and therefore could be a dominant contributor to the CXB. Using a simple bimodal spin distribution, we demonstrate that only 15 per cent maximally spinning AGN can produce 50 per cent of the CXB. We also illustrate that invoking a small population of maximally spinning black holes in CXB synthesis models can reproduce the CXB peak without requiring large numbers of Compton-thick AGN. The spin bias is even more pronounced for flux-limited surveys: 7 per cent of sources with maximally spinning black holes can produce half of the source counts. The detectability for maximum spin black holes can be further boosted in hard (>10 keV) X-rays by up to ∼60 per cent due to pronounced ionized reflection, reducing the percentage of maximally spinning black holes required to produce half of the CXB or survey number counts further. A host of observations are consistent with an over-representation of high-spin black holes. Future NuSTAR and ASTRO-H hard X-ray surveys will provide the best constraints on the role of spin within the AGN population.

Abstract Copyright: © 2016 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society

Journal keyword(s): black hole physics - galaxies: active - quasars: general - galaxies: Seyfert

CDS comments: © 2016 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society

Simbad objects: 24

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