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Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society


Department of Physics and Astronomy


We obtained adaptive-optics assisted SINFONI observations of the central regions of the giant elliptical galaxy NGC5419 with a spatial resolution of 0.2 arcsec (≈55 pc). NGC5419 has a large depleted stellar core with a radius of 1.58 arcsec (430 pc). HST and SINFONI images show a point source located at the galaxy's photocentre, which is likely associated with the low-luminosity AGN previously detected in NGC5419. Both the HST and SINFONI images also show a second nucleus, off-centred by 0.25 arcsec (≈70 pc). Outside of the central double nucleus, we measure an almost constant velocity dispersion of σ∼350 km/s. In the region where the double nucleus is located, the dispersion rises steeply to a peak value of ∼420 km/s. In addition to the SINFONI data, we also obtained stellar kinematics at larger radii from the South African Large Telescope. While NGC5419 shows low rotation (v<50 km/s), the central regions (inside ∼4rb) clearly rotate in the opposite direction to the galaxy's outer parts. We use orbit-based dynamical models to measure the black hole mass of NGC5419 from the kinematical data outside of the double nuclear structure. The models imply MBH=7.2+2.7−1.9×109 M⊙. The enhanced velocity dispersion in the region of the double nucleus suggests that NGC5419 possibly hosts two supermassive black holes at its centre, separated by only ≈70 pc. Yet our measured MBH is consistent with the black hole mass expected from the size of the galaxy's depleted stellar core. This suggests, that systematic uncertainties in MBH related to the secondary nucleus are small.