Event Title

Mid-Infrared Variability within Galaxies Surveyed for Water Megamaser Emission

Date

4-9-2022

Location

Schewel 208

Description

Microwave Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation (maser) from water molecules in galaxy centers prove to be an important tool for probing supermassive black holes and distance measurements to extragalactic astrophysical sources. Masers are crucial for providing foundations of our understanding of how the universe formed and evolves. Unfortunately, luminous water masers are rare. Currently, there is tentative evidence connecting the maser pumping mechanism with accretion of matter onto supermassive black holes in galactic centers, known as active galactic nuclei (AGN). Herein, we investigate identifying AGNs in maser galaxy hosts via mid-infrared variability, a method that is less sensitive to cosmic obscuration while still revealing variations in the AGNs. We employ the Megamaser Cosmological Project (MCP), which offers a complete list of galaxies surveyed for water maser emission, as well as multi-epoch mid-infrared data from Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), and present analysis of variability in surveyed galaxies.

Presentation Type

Presentation

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Mid-Infrared Variability within Galaxies Surveyed for Water Megamaser Emission

Schewel 208

Microwave Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation (maser) from water molecules in galaxy centers prove to be an important tool for probing supermassive black holes and distance measurements to extragalactic astrophysical sources. Masers are crucial for providing foundations of our understanding of how the universe formed and evolves. Unfortunately, luminous water masers are rare. Currently, there is tentative evidence connecting the maser pumping mechanism with accretion of matter onto supermassive black holes in galactic centers, known as active galactic nuclei (AGN). Herein, we investigate identifying AGNs in maser galaxy hosts via mid-infrared variability, a method that is less sensitive to cosmic obscuration while still revealing variations in the AGNs. We employ the Megamaser Cosmological Project (MCP), which offers a complete list of galaxies surveyed for water maser emission, as well as multi-epoch mid-infrared data from Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), and present analysis of variability in surveyed galaxies.