Radio power from direct-collapse black holes

Daniel Whalen, Mar Mezcua, Samuel James Patrick, Avery Meiksin, Muhammad A. Latif

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Direct-collapse black holes (DCBHs) forming at z ∼ 20 are currently the leading candidates for the seeds of the first quasars, over 200 of which have now been found at z > 6. Recent studies suggest that DCBHs could be detected in the near infrared by the James Webb Space Telescope, Euclid, and the Roman Space Telescope. However, new radio telescopes with unprecedented sensitivities such as the Square Kilometer Array (SKA) and the Next-Generation Very Large Array (ngVLA) may open another window on the properties of DCBHs in the coming decade. Here we estimate the radio flux from DCBHs at birth at z = 8 - 20 with several fundamental planes of black hole accretion. We find that they could be detected at z ∼ 8 by the SKA-FIN all-sky survey. Furthermore, SKA and ngVLA could discover 106 - 107 M BHs out to z ∼ 20, probing the formation pathways of the first quasars in the Universe.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Publication statusAccepted for publication - 1 Nov 2021


  • quasars: supermassive black holes
  • black hole physics
  • early universe
  • dark ages, reionization, first stars
  • galaxies: formation
  • galaxies: high-redshift
  • UKRI
  • STFC
  • ST/N504245/1
  • ST/R000972/1


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