Study of Correlations Between Radio Jet Velocity and Supermassive Black Hole Mass in Active Galaxies


Previous research has shown that numerous characteristics of many host galaxies, such as stellar velocity dispersion and bulge luminosity, are governed by the central supermassive black hole (SMBH). This same SMBH is also thought to be the origin of radio jets propagating outward from the nucleus of these galaxies. It was then hypothesized that the mass of a SMBH influences and correlates with the initial radio jet velocity in active galaxies. Mass and velocity data were collected for 48 radio galaxies but as a result from projection effects due to the nature of active galaxies, apparent transverse velocity replaced intrinsic velocity in this study as the dependent variable. From these transverse velocities, the minimum intrinsic velocities of the radio jets were calculated for further investigation. Three apparent transverse velocity groups arise in the results that may be weakly correlated to SMBH mass. The calculated minimum intrinsic velocity data supports this correlation. These results are qualitative in nature and need to be tested on additional samples. While no direct conclusion can be made, the positive trends produced in this research between SMBH mass and radio jet velocity may later aid in further studies and galactic evolutionary research.