F. Walter et al. report
on their VLA observations of the most distant quasar
SDSS J1148+5251. The redshift of this source is equal to 6.42.
So it is really observed at the dawn of the universe.
The observations were done at CO(3-2) frequency.
This value is normally used to study properties of
molecular gas (CO is one of the best moleculas for
radio observations in astronomy).
Angular resolution was equal to 0.17” x 0.13” which corresponds to ~1 kpc for z=6.42.
Thanks to the excellent resolution of the VLA the authors were
able to resolve the structure of a molecular gas
However, it is just the beginning of the story.
Having in hands the picture of the gas distribution the astronomers were able to estimate
1. The total mass of the gas
2. The total dynamical mass
(It is necessary to note, that the mass of the black hole in
this quasar is more or less known.)
Gathering all together it is possible to check the famous
relation between a black hole mass and a mass of a bulge
(a spherical component of a galaxy).
This relation is well followed by closer galaxies with
supermassive black holes. However, in the case of SDSS J1148+5251 it is not so! The mass of the bulge is smaller (or one can say, that the mass of the black hole is larger)
than it is expected. It can be a real discovery which shed light on the process of growth of supermassive black holes and on galaxy formation.
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