The Milky Way's nuclear star cluster and massive black hole

Schödel, Rainer
Star Clusters and Black Holes in Galaxies across Cosmic Time, Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union, IAU Symposium, Volume 312, pp. 274-281 (2016).


Because of its nearness to Earth, the centre of the Milky Way is the only galaxy nucleus in which we can study the characteristics, distribution, kinematics, and dynamics of the stars on milli-parsec scales. We have accurate and precise measurements of the Galactic centre's central black hole, Sagittarius A*, and can study its interaction with the surrounding nuclear star cluster in detail. This contribution aims at providing a concise overview of our current knowledge about the Milky Way's central black hole and nuclear star cluster, at highlighting the observational challenges and limitations, and at discussing some of the current key areas of investigation.