Postgraduate research project

Investigating the properties of active black holes in interacting galaxies

Competition funded View fees and funding
Type of degree
Doctor of Philosophy
Entry requirements
2:1 honours degree
View full entry requirements
Faculty graduate school
Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences
Closing date

About the project

Supermassive black holes need gas to grow and power their activity. How the gas is transported all the way from the galaxy to the black hole is still a topic of research, but we have recently found evidence that interactions between galaxies can provide this gas. The reason why this is important, is because when black holes are active, the so called ‘Active Galactic Nuclei’ or AGN, they can release a copious amount of energy into their surroundings, possibly affecting the galaxy in which they are hosted.

In this project the student will investigate the properties of active supermassive black holes in galaxies with past interactions. The student will use state-of-the-art observational data (integral field spectroscopy, or 3D data cubes) of galaxies to: 

  • determine the past history of black hole activity, to establish a timeline for the onset of AGN
  • search for evidence for more than one supermassive black hole in galaxies with interactions