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Black holes formed at the centers of galaxies in our young universe, and over the next 13 billion years or so accreted enormous amounts of matter from the surrounding galaxy. Presently, a black hole and its host galaxy have grown in mass by factors of a million or more, possibly in lockstep. Dr. Urry will discuss alternative descriptions of a black hole, explain how recent multi-wavelength surveys have allowed us to take a census of black hole growth, and present the big picture: What the evolution of the universe over the last 13 billion years would look like based on computer simulations and future prospects for observing black hole growth.
Meg Urry is the President of the American Astronomical Society, Director of the Yale Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics, and the Israel Munson Professor of Physics and Astronomy, Yale University.