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Rapid Coeval Black Hole and Host Galaxy Growth in MRC 1138-262: The Hungry Spider

  • Seymour, N.
  • Altieri, B.
  • De Breuck, C.
  • Barthel, P.
  • Coia, D.
  • Conversi, L.
  • Dannerbauer, H.
  • Dey, A.
  • Dickinson, M.
  • Drouart, G.
  • Galametz, A.
  • Greve, T. R.
  • Haas, M.
  • Hatch, N.
  • Ibar, E.
  • Ivison, R.
  • Jarvis, M.
  • Kovacs, A.
  • Kurk, J.
  • Lehnert, M.
  • And 13 more
Publication Date
Jun 25, 2012
Submission Date
Jun 25, 2012
DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/755/2/146
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We present a detailed study of the infrared spectral energy distribution of the high-redshift radio galaxy MRC 1138-26 at z = 2.156, also known as the Spiderweb Galaxy. By combining photometry from Spitzer, Herschel and LABOCA we fit the rest-frame 5-300 um emission using a two component, starburst and active galactic nucleus (AGN), model. The total infrared (8 - 1000 um) luminosity of this galaxy is (1.97+/-0.28)x10^13 Lsun with (1.17+/-0.27) and (0.79+/-0.09)x10^13 Lsun due to the AGN and starburst components respectively. The high derived AGN accretion rate of \sim20% Eddington, and the measured star formation rate (SFR) of 1390pm150 Msun/yr, suggest that this massive system is in a special phase of rapid central black hole and host galaxy growth, likely caused by a gas rich merger in a dense environment. The accretion rate is sufficient to power both the jets and the previously observed large outflow. The high SFR and strong outflow suggest this galaxy could potentially exhaust its fuel for stellar growth in a few tens of Myr, although the likely merger of the radio galaxy with nearby satellites suggest bursts of star formation may recur again on time scales of several hundreds of Myr. The age of the radio lobes implies the jet started after the current burst of star formation, and therefore we are possibly witnessing the transition from a merger-induced starburst phase to a radio-loud AGN phase. We also note tentative evidence for [CII]158um emission. This paper marks the first results from the Herschel Galaxy Evolution Project (Project HeRGE), a systematic study of the evolutionary state of 71 high redshift, 1 < z < 5.2, radio galaxies.

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