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Feedback from supermassive black holes transforms centrals into passive galaxies by ejecting circumgalactic gas

Oppenheimer, BD, Davies, JJ, Crain, RA, Wijers, NA, Schaye, J, Werk, JK, Burchett, JN, Trayford, JW and Horton, R (2019) Feedback from supermassive black holes transforms centrals into passive galaxies by ejecting circumgalactic gas. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 491 (2). pp. 2939-2952. ISSN 0035-8711

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Abstract

Davies et al. (2019) established that for L^* galaxies the fraction of baryons in the circumgalactic medium (CGM) is inversely correlated with the mass of their central supermassive black holes (BHs) in the EAGLE hydrodynamic simulation. The interpretation is that, over time, a more massive BH has provided more energy to transport baryons beyond the virial radius, which additionally reduces gas accretion and star formation. We continue this research by focusing on the relationship between the 1) BH masses, 2) physical and observational properties of the CGM, and 3) galaxy colours for Milky Way-mass systems. The ratio of the cumulative BH feedback energy over the gaseous halo binding energy is a strong predictor of the CGM gas content, with BHs injecting >~10x the binding energy resulting in gas-poor haloes. Observable tracers of the CGM, including CIV, OVI, and HI absorption line measurements, are found to be effective tracers of the total z~0 CGM halo mass. We use high-cadence simulation outputs to demonstrate that BH feedback pushes baryons beyond the virial radius within 100 Myr timescales, but that CGM metal tracers take longer (0.5-2.5 Gyr) to respond. Secular evolution of galaxies results in blue, star-forming or red, passive populations depending on the cumulative feedback from BHs. The reddest quartile of galaxies with M_*=10^{10.2-10.7} M_solar (median u-r = 2.28) has a CGM mass that is 2.5x lower than the bluest quartile (u-r=1.59). We propose strategies for observing the predicted lower CGM column densities and covering fractions around galaxies hosting more massive BHs using the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph on Hubble.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society ©: 2019 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 0201 Astronomical and Space Sciences
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Q Science > QC Physics
Divisions: Astrophysics Research Institute
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 08 Jan 2020 10:57
Last Modified: 08 Jan 2020 11:00
DOI or Identification number: 10.1093/mnras/stz3124
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/11973

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