ASIAA Summer Students Program
ASIAA Summer Student Program 2024
July 1 - August 30

2024 Project Description

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Investigating the Supermassive Black Hole & Host Galaxy in Type-1 AGN with JWST

Active Galactic Nuclei
OIR Astronomy


Bovornpratch Vijarnwannaluk, Wei-Hao Wang, Chian-Chou Chen (TC)
Find out more about supervisors on ASIAA website

Task Description and Goals

It is currently well-accepted that most massive galaxies contain a supermassive black hole (SMBH) within the nuclear region of the galaxy. In the local universe, these black holes show a strong correlation with the properties of the host such as the stellar mass. While this is seen most strongly among local massive passive galaxies, the correlation is also present among galaxies which host Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN), which are SMBH within a phase of rapid growth by gas accretion. However, due to the need for high angular resolution and sensitivity required to distinguish between the host galaxy and emission from the AGN, previous studies have been limited to either local AGN or small samples of type-1 AGN. This is due to change thanks to the high angular resolution and sensitivity of JWST which will allow us to reinvestigate the relationship between the AGN and the host galaxy at unprecedented details up to higher redshift (z~2-3). For the ASIAA summer student program, the student is expected to use the JWST NIRCAM mosaic produced by the ASIAA dusty galaxy group to investigate the relationship between the stellar mass or other properties of the host galaxy and AGN in the COSMOS survey area. The student is expected to perform the following task.

  1. Review the important literature and concepts on the topic of SMBH-Host galaxy co-evolution in preparation for the final presentation.
  2. Produce a sample of type-1 AGN in the COSMOS field with SMBH mass estimated from spectroscopic observations (eg. SDSS).
  3. Produce cutout of the type-1 AGN from the JWST mosaic
  4. Perform image decomposition of the AGN point source and the host galaxy
  5. Estimate the host galaxy's stellar mass using SED fitting (if possible) or assuming a mass-to-light ratio.
  6. Perform image decomposition of the AGN point source and the host galaxy
  7. Discuss the MBH-Mstellar relationship compared to previous studies or against the properties of the AGN.

Required Background

Basic Astronomy and physics knowledge Basic Python programing skills, Linux commands Good English proficiency for communication and writing.

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