Tidal disruption event demographics with the Zwicky Transient Facility: volumetric rates, luminosity function, and implications for the local black hole mass function

Yuhan Yao*, Vikram Ravi, Suvi Gezari, Sjoert van Velzen, Wenbin Lu, Steve Schulze, Jean J. Somalwar, S. R. Kulkarni, Erica Hammerstein, Matt Nicholl, Matthew J. Graham, Daniel A. Perley, S. Bradley Cenko, Robert Stein, Angelo Ricarte, Urmila Chadayammuri, Eliot Quataert, Eric C. Bellm, Joshua S. Bloom, Richard DekanyAndrew J. Drake, Steven L. Groom, Ashish A. Mahabal, Thomas A. Prince, Reed Riddle, Ben Rusholme, Yashvi Sharma, Jesper Sollerman, Lin Yan

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

We conduct a systematic tidal disruption event (TDE) demographics analysis using the largest sample of optically selected TDEs. A flux-limited, spectroscopically complete sample of 33 TDEs is constructed using the Zwicky Transient Facility over 3 yr (from 2018 October to 2021 September). We infer the black hole (BH) mass (M BH) with host galaxy scaling relations, showing that the sample M BH ranges from 105.1 M ⊙ to 108.2 M ⊙. We developed a survey efficiency corrected maximum volume method to infer the rates. The rest-frame g-band luminosity function can be well described by a broken power law of ϕ(Lg)∝Lg/Lbk0.3+Lg/Lbk2.6−1 , with L bk = 1043.1 erg s−1. In the BH mass regime of 105.3 ≲ (M BH/M ⊙) ≲ 107.3, the TDE mass function follows ϕ(MBH)∝MBH−0.25 , which favors a flat local BH mass function ( dnBH/dlogMBH≈constant ). We confirm the significant rate suppression at the high-mass end (M BH ≳ 107.5 M ⊙), which is consistent with theoretical predictions considering direct capture of hydrogen-burning stars by the event horizon. At a host galaxy mass of M gal ∼ 1010 M ⊙, the average optical TDE rate is ≈3.2 × 10−5 galaxy−1 yr−1. We constrain the optical TDE rate to be [3.7, 7.4, and 1.6] × 10−5 galaxy−1 yr−1 in galaxies with red, green, and blue colors.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberL6
Number of pages31
JournalThe Astrophysical Journal Letters
Volume955
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Sept 2023

Keywords

  • Galaxy nuclei
  • Tidal disruption
  • Supermassive black holes
  • Black holes
  • Time domain astronomy
  • Luminosity function

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