Journal Article

On the cosmological evolution of the black hole–host galaxy relation in quasars

Laura Portinari, Jari Kotilainen, Renato Falomo and Roberto Decarli

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 420, issue 1, pages 732-744
Published in print February 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online January 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
On the cosmological evolution of the black hole–host galaxy relation in quasars

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Quasars are useful tracers of the cosmological evolution of the black hole mass–galaxy relation. We compare the expectations of semi-analytical models (SAMs) of galaxy evolution to the largest available data sets of quasar host galaxies out to z≃ 3.

Observed quasar hosts are consistent with no evolution from the local MBHLhost relation and suggest a significant increase of the mass ratio from z= 0 to 3. Taken at face value, this is totally at odds with the predictions of SAMs, where the intrinsic Γ shows little evolution and quasar host galaxies at high redshift are systematically overluminous (and/or have an undermassive BH). However, since quasars preferentially trace very massive black holes (109–1010 M) at the steep end of the luminosity and mass function, the ensuing selection biases can reconcile the present SAMs with the observations. A proper interpretation of quasar host data thus requires the global approach of SAMs so as to account for statistical biases.

Keywords: galaxies: active; galaxies: evolution; galaxies: formation; galaxies: high-redshift; quasars: general

Journal Article.  9555 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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