Journal Article

The relation between nuclear activity and stellar mass in galaxies

G. La Mura, D. Bindoni, S. Ciroi, V. Cracco, R. D'Abrusco, P. Rafanelli and L. Vaona

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 426, issue 3, pages 1893-1904
Published in print November 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online November 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2012.21840.x
The relation between nuclear activity and stellar mass in galaxies

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Abstract

The existence of correlations between the nuclear properties of galaxies, such as the mass of their central black holes, and larger scale features, such as the bulge mass and luminosity, represents a fundamental constraint on galaxy evolution. Although the actual reasons for these relations have not yet been identified, it is widely believed that they could stem from a connection between the processes that lead to black hole growth and stellar mass assembly. The problem of understanding how the processes of nuclear activity and star formation can affect each other became known to the literature as the starburst–active galactic nucleus (AGN) connection. Despite years of investigation, the physical mechanisms which lie at the basis of this relation are known only in part. In this work, we analyse the problem of star formation and nuclear activity in a large sample of galaxies. We study the relations between the properties of the nuclear environments and their host galaxies. We find that the mass of the stellar component within the galaxies of our sample is a critical parameter, which we have to consider in an evolutionary sequence, which provides further insight into the connection between AGN and star formation processes.

Keywords: galaxies: active; galaxies: evolution; galaxies: ISM; galaxies: nuclei; galaxies: stellar content

Journal Article.  8856 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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