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Investigating the origins of supermassive black holes

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BOZEMAN – What can we learn about the origin of supermassive black holes from studying small galaxies? Dr. Amy Reines, assistant professor of Physics at Montana State University, will offer insights on this question in the fifth and final virtual presentation of the winter/spring 2021 Science Inquiry Series.

The talk will be presented online via Zoom on Wednesday, May 12, at 7 p.m., sponsored by the Gallatin Valley Friends of the Sciences, and co-sponsored by the non-profit community service organization Hopa Mountain and the Museum of the Rockies.

The series explores cutting edge science topics, their latest developments and their relevance to society through speaker presentations followed by questions from the audience.  The talks are free to the public.

In her presentation titled “The Origin of Supermassive Black Holes,” Reines will discuss how observations of dwarf galaxies using world-class telescopes are being used to reveal the birth and growth of black holes that can reach masses upwards of a billion times the mass of our Sun.

Dr. Reines holds a Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of Virginia, subsequently receiving NASA Einstein and Hubble Postdoctoral Fellowships before joining the faculty of MSU. Her research interests include dwarf galaxies, the black holes they can harbor and the origin of black hole “seeds.”

The Zoom presentation will be followed by a question-and-answer period via the Zoom chat function; the event will last approximately an hour. To access the Zoom link for the talk, go to the Gallatin Valley Friends of the Sciences web site at

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