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Precise Masses of Supermassive Black Holes in Nearby Active Galaxies

Precise Masses of Supermassive Black Holes in Nearby Active Galaxies

Precise Masses of Supermassive Black Holes in Nearby Active Galaxies

Cheng-Yu Kuo (Virginia); James Braatz, C. Violette Impellizzeri, James Condon (NRAO); Christian Henkel (Max-Planck-Institut fur Radioastronomie); Mark Reid (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics); Nicole Gugliucci (Virginia); K. Y. Lo (NRAO)

KSPBlack holes are without question the astronomical object that most fascinates the general public. Moreover, they are of profound astronomical importance for galactic dynamics and other phenomena. Various methods exist for measuring black hole masses, but probably the most 'bomb-proof' of these is the use of maser disks surrounding the black holes. This group proposes high precision measurements of nuclear black holes, which will ultimately constrain the correlation between black hole mass and galactic velocity dispersion. Measuring black hole masses in this manner is a second goal of the Megamaser Cosmology Project.