Supermassive black holes inhibit birth of stars

Scientists have concluded that supermassive black holes strongly inhibit the process of star formation in galaxies. They obtained this result using three different machine learning systems.

Black holes inhibit birth of stars. Source:

Machine learning systems have shown, what inhibits birth of stars

A team of scientists from the Kavli Institute of Cosmology has concluded that among all the factors that affect the inhibition of the formation of stars from gas, the most important is the influence of supermassive black holes. These colossal objects are located in the centers of galaxies and attract a large mass of gas from which new luminaries could be formed.

Such is the statement of an article published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. Researchers investigated which of the three main mechanisms of inhibition of star formation is affecting development of the galaxy the most. To answer this question, they used three different cosmological models: EAGLE, Illustris and IllustrisTNG.

Machine learning methods were applied to each of them, and the result was similar in all three cases. Supernova explosions and shock heating of interstellar gas do not slow down the process of star formation the most. The main culprits were black holes, the mass of which is millions of times greater than the sun.

What inhibits star formation?

The most interesting thing about the new study is that the results obtained exclusively by computer analysis are in good agreement with Sloan’s digital survey of galaxies. It is the world’s largest database of galaxies scattered throughout the universe. In fact, it is thanks to these data that scientists have noticed that some galaxies are much dimmer and calmer than others.

It indicates the processes of star formation are greatly slowed down in those galaxies. Scientists have studied quite well how interstellar gas and dust are compressed in stars. But it has been under discussion for 20 years as for what phenomena can slow down this process.

The author talks about her research

It is known that this process can be affected by supernova explosions that blow gas and dust. At the same time, potential components of stars can be heated by shock waves and scattered in space. Finally, supermassive black holes act like constantly hungry vacuum cleaners. And a new study has finally put an end to the discussion as for the main factor here.

At the same time, some more general issues remain. After all, it is known that in small galaxies, black holes help star formation, as opposed to the above mentioned situation.

Machine learning

The technology of machine learning deserves a separate explanation. This is a field of artificial intelligence, where problems are solved by computers not directly, but by learning. This method involves a large number of similar tasks and answers. Then statistical methods are applied, helping to find out which parameters of the question correspond to a certain conclusion.

And on this basis it is determined how an overall answer to such questions depends on one or another of the parameters. With regard to black holes, this means that they are not the only responsibles for inhibiting star formation. But their contribution is the greatest.

According to Р