A FLARE IN THE JET OF PICTOR A

H. L. Marshall*, M. J. Hardcastle, M. Birkinshaw, J. Croston, D. Evans, H. Landt, E. Lenc, F. Massaro, E. S. Perlman, D. A. Schwartz, A. Siemiginowska, L. Stawarz, C. M. Urry, D. M. Worrall

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A Chandra X-ray imaging observation of the jet in Pictor A showed a feature that appears to be a flare that faded between 2000 and 2002. The feature was not detected in a follow-up observation in 2009. The jet itself is over 150 kpc long and about 1 kpc wide, so finding year-long variability is surprising. Assuming a synchrotron origin of the observed high-energy photons and a minimum energy condition for the outflow, the synchrotron loss time of the X-ray emitting electrons is of order 1200 years, which is much longer than the observed variability timescale. This leads to the possibility that the variable X-ray emission arises from a very small sub-volume of the jet, characterized by a magnetic field that is substantially larger than the average over the jet.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)L213-L216
Number of pages4
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Volume714
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 May 2010

Keywords

  • galaxies: active
  • galaxies: individual (Pictor A)
  • galaxies: jets
  • X-rays: galaxies
  • X-RAY-EMISSION
  • M87 JET
  • CHANDRA
  • HST-1

Cite this

Marshall, H. L., Hardcastle, M. J., Birkinshaw, M., Croston, J., Evans, D., Landt, H., Lenc, E., Massaro, F., Perlman, E. S., Schwartz, D. A., Siemiginowska, A., Stawarz, L., Urry, C. M., & Worrall, D. M. (2010). A FLARE IN THE JET OF PICTOR A. Astrophysical Journal Letters, 714(2), L213-L216. https://doi.org/10.1088/2041-8205/714/2/L213