Dusty sources and accretion in the Galactic Center

The proximity of the Galactic Center makes it unique for studying the

interactions that take place between the interstellar medium, the

stars and the supermassive black holes in galactic nuclei.  The galactic

supermassive black hole is not very bright but at about 1 pc there is a

large reservoir of material, a molecular gas torus, that could trigger a

more intense phase of activity. Smaller-scale processes can also accrete

material onto the black hole and potentially trigger short peaks in

activity. Here I present the structure and dynamics of the interstellar

medium from few parsecs to sub-parsec scales through spectro-imaging

data gathered by the VLT and Keck. In particular I will highlight the

  unexpected presence of molecular hydrogen in the central parsec (where

the strong UV field is supposed to dissociate it) that could have

migrated from the molecular gas torus or have been formed locally. At

smaller scale, I’ll focus on the unveiling of several dust-enshrouded

objects orbiting close to the central black hole: the "G objects",

likely the dusty product of binary mergers, and X7 a tidally stretching

gas cloud.

Date

Affiliation

UCLA

Speakers

Anna Ciurlo