The role of black holes in regulating star formation
Black holes are a fundamental ingredient in our current understanding of galaxy formation. In the absence of their feedback, state-of-the-art numerical simulations fail to match the observed properties of massive galaxies. Effectively, within a Lambda Cold Dark Matter Universe, black holes reconcile cosmology and galaxy formation theories by regulating baryonic processes. However, despite of this widely-accepted and fundamental role, evidence of black hole regulated star formation remains elusive. I will present our observational efforts to characterize and understand the interplay between black hole activity and star formation, based on detailed stellar populations analyses. Our observations show that black hole and stellar population properties are tightly related, calling for a rich and complex observational framework where star formation, black holes and chemical enrichment evolve coupled in time.
About the talk
University of California, Santa Cruz