A moderate cooling flow phase at galaxy formation

Noam Soker*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


I study the possibility that a cooling flow (CF) exists at the main phase of supermassive black hole (SMBH) growth during galaxy formation. To ensure that jets launched by the SMBH efficiently expel gas from the galaxy, as is required by recent results, the gas should be in the hot phase, rather than in cold clouds. The short radiative cooling time of the hot gas leads to the formation of a CF, but heating by the active galactic nucleus prevents catastrophic cooling. Cold blobs that start as instabilities in the hot phase feed the SMBH from an extended region, form an accretion disc, and lead to the formation of jets. These jets can expel large quantities of gas out of the galaxy. This cycle, which is termed the cold feedback mechanism in CFs in clusters of galaxies, might explain the correlation of SMBH to bulge masses. Stars are formed, but at a lower rate than what is expected when heating is not included. Such a CF is termed a moderate CF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2355-2361
Number of pages7
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Galaxies: Jets
  • Galaxies: bulges


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