No evidence for intermediate-mass black holes in globular clusters: Strong constraints from the jvla

Jay Strader, Laura Chomiuk, Thomas J. MacCarone, James C.A. Miller-Jones, Anil C. Seth, Craig O. Heinke, Gregory R. Sivakoff

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Abstract

With a goal of searching for accreting intermediate-mass black holes (IMBHs), we report the results of ultra-deep Jansky Very Large Array radio continuum observations of the cores of three Galactic globular clusters: M15, M19, and M22. We reach rms noise levels of 1.5-2.1 μJy beam-1 at an average frequency of 6 GHz. No sources are observed at the center of any of the clusters. For a conservative set of assumptions about the properties of the accretion, we set 3σ upper limits on IMBHs from 360 to 980 M . These limits are among the most stringent obtained for any globular cluster. They add to a growing body of work that suggests either (1) IMBHs ≳ 1000 M are rare in globular clusters or (2) when present, IMBHs accrete in an extraordinarily inefficient manner.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL27
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Volume750
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 10 2012

Keywords

  • adio continuum: general
  • black hole physics
  • lobular clusters: general

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