The black hole and central stellar population of MCG-6-30-15

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We present the first near-IR integral field spectroscopy observations of the galaxy MCG-6-30-15. The H-band data studied in this paper cover the central 500 pc of the galaxy at the best resolution (0.1 arcsec) so far. The spectra of the innermost regions are dominated by broad Brackett series emission lines and non-stellar continuum, under which we are able to trace the distribution and kinematics of the stars and also the [Fe II] line emission. We find that there is a counter-rotating stellar core extending out to 125 pc, which appears to be associated with the [Fe II] emission. Based on the mass-to-light ratio, and the presence of this emission line, we estimate the age of the central stellar population to be of the order of 65 Myr. We show that the gas needed to fuel the black hole is, at most, only 1 per cent of that needed to form these stars. We derive independent constraints on the black hole mass using the dynamical information and determine an upper limit for the black hole mass, MBH <6 × 107 M⊙, that is consistent with other estimates.
Original languageEnglish
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)2294-2306
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2013
Externally publishedYes

    Research areas

  • black hole physics, galaxies: active, galaxies: individual: MCG-6-30-15, galaxies: nuclei, infrared: galaxies

ID: 230475920