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Radio Power from a Direct-Collapse Black Hole in CR7

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • Daniel J. Whalen
  • Mar Mezcua
  • Avery Meiksin
  • Tilman Hartwig
  • Muhammad A. Latif

Related Edinburgh Organisations

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL45
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jun 2020


The leading contenders for the seeds of the first quasars are direct collapse black holes (DCBHs) formed during catastrophic baryon collapse in atomically-cooled halos at z ~ 20. The discovery of the Lyα emitter CR7 at z = 6.6 was initially held to be the first detection of a DCBH, although this interpretation has since been challenged on the grounds of Spitzer IRAC and Very Large Telescope
X-Shooter data. Here we determine if radio ux from a DCBH in CR7 could be detected and discriminated from competing sources of radio emission in the halo such as young supernovae and H II regions. We find that a DCBH would emit a ux of 10 - 200 nJy at 1.0 GHz, far greater than the sub-nJy signal expected for young supernovae but on par with continuum emission from star-forming regions. However, radio emission from a DCBH in CR7 could be distinguished from free-free emission from H II regions by its spectral evolution with frequency and could be detected by the Square Kilometer Array in the coming decade.

    Research areas

  • astro-ph.GA, astro-ph.CO

ID: 150205540