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Two ten-billion-solar-mass black holes at the centres of giant elliptical galaxies

Overview of attention for article published in Nature, December 2011
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (98th percentile)
  • Good Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (72nd percentile)

Mentioned by

2 news outlets
7 blogs
8 tweeters
1 Facebook page
12 Wikipedia pages
2 Google+ users
1 video uploader


250 Dimensions

Readers on

137 Mendeley
1 CiteULike
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Two ten-billion-solar-mass black holes at the centres of giant elliptical galaxies
Published in
Nature, December 2011
DOI 10.1038/nature10636
Pubmed ID

Nicholas J. McConnell, Chung-Pei Ma, Karl Gebhardt, Shelley A. Wright, Jeremy D. Murphy, Tod R. Lauer, James R. Graham, Douglas O. Richstone


Observational work conducted over the past few decades indicates that all massive galaxies have supermassive black holes at their centres. Although the luminosities and brightness fluctuations of quasars in the early Universe suggest that some were powered by black holes with masses greater than 10 billion solar masses, the remnants of these objects have not been found in the nearby Universe. The giant elliptical galaxy Messier 87 hosts the hitherto most massive known black hole, which has a mass of 6.3 billion solar masses. Here we report that NGC 3842, the brightest galaxy in a cluster at a distance from Earth of 98 megaparsecs, has a central black hole with a mass of 9.7 billion solar masses, and that a black hole of comparable or greater mass is present in NGC 4889, the brightest galaxy in the Coma cluster (at a distance of 103 megaparsecs). These two black holes are significantly more massive than predicted by linearly extrapolating the widely used correlations between black-hole mass and the stellar velocity dispersion or bulge luminosity of the host galaxy. Although these correlations remain useful for predicting black-hole masses in less massive elliptical galaxies, our measurements suggest that different evolutionary processes influence the growth of the largest galaxies and their black holes.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 8 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 137 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United States 6 4%
Germany 4 3%
United Kingdom 2 1%
Canada 1 <1%
China 1 <1%
Israel 1 <1%
Unknown 122 89%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Researcher 45 33%
Student > Ph. D. Student 39 28%
Student > Master 13 9%
Student > Bachelor 8 6%
Professor > Associate Professor 8 6%
Other 17 12%
Unknown 7 5%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Physics and Astronomy 112 82%
Earth and Planetary Sciences 5 4%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 5 4%
Engineering 2 1%
Mathematics 1 <1%
Other 5 4%
Unknown 7 5%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 74. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 08 September 2021.
All research outputs
of 18,890,258 outputs
Outputs from Nature
of 82,762 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 169,352 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Nature
of 1,010 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 18,890,258 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 98th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 82,762 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 93.2. This one has done well, scoring higher than 76% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 169,352 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 98% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 1,010 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 72% of its contemporaries.