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Astrophsyics

PCOS Science Goals

Understand the formation and growth of massive black holes and their role in the evolution of galaxies

The massive black holes (~109 solar masses) ubiquitous in the Universe today are thought to stem from seed black holes formed early in the Reionization era. The origin of these seeds is uncertain. They may have formed from either large stellar mass black holes (~100 solar masses) left over from the first stars or intermediate mass black holes (~104–5 solar masses) formed directly by the collapse of supermassive gas clouds. Whether supermassive black holes grow through mergers or accretion, their host galaxies appear to have co-evolved with them. A strong correlation has become evident between the properties and evolution of galaxies and the growth of their central supermassive black holes. The energetic processes around SMBHs result in huge radiative andmechanical outputs that could potentially have a profound effect on their larger scale environment in galaxies, clusters and the intergalactic medium. But quantitative descriptions of the interaction between massive black hole growth and galaxy growth are lacking. Understanding the formation of galaxies, and their subsequent evolution, will be coupled to intensive study of the evolution of supermassive black holes.


The European Space Agency LISA observatory


PCOS News

Program News and Announcements

3 January 2022
PCOS and related activities being held next week in lieu of the cancelled AAS Winter Meeting »  Details.
17 December 2021
PCOS Chief Scientist Opening on USAJobs »  Details.
17 December 2021
ROSES-21: Revised Text and Budget for D.9 NuSTAR General Observer Program Cycle 8 »  Details.
17 December 2021
Science Information Policy RFI Released »  Details.
17 December 2021
ROSES-21: D.15 Astrophysics Pioneers Final Text and Due Dates »  Details.
17 December 2021
ROSES-21: D.12 XRISM Guest Scientist program deferred to 2022 »  Details.
15 December 2021
Invitation to the Joint PAG Session at AAS Meeting »  Details.
9 November 2021
Astrophysics Division (APD) Needs Community Inputs to NASA Astrophysics Technology Gap Prioritization Process Following Astro2020 »  Details.

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