UNMASKING THE ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEUS IN PKS J2310-437

A. F. Bliss*, D. M. Worrall, M. Birkinshaw, S. S. Murray, H. Tananbaum

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

PKS J2310-437 is an active galactic nucleus (AGN) with bright X-ray emission relative to its weak radio emission and optical continuum. It is believed that its jet lies far enough from the line of sight that it is not highly relativistically beamed. It thus provides an extreme test of AGN models. We present new observations aimed at refining the measurement of the source's properties. In optical photometry with the New Technology Telescope we measure a central excess with relatively steep spectrum lying above the bright elliptical galaxy emission, and we associate the excess wholly or in part with the AGN. A new full-track radio observation with the Australian Telescope Compact Array finds that the core 8.64 GHz emission has varied by about 20% over 38 months, and improves the mapping of the weak jet. With Chandra we measure a well-constrained power-law spectral index for the X-ray core, uncontaminated by extended emission from the cluster environment, with a negligible level of intrinsic absorption. Weak X-ray emission from the resolved radio jet is also measured. Our analysis suggests that the optical continuum in this radio galaxy has varied by at least a factor of 4 over a timescale of about two years, something that should be testable with further observations. We conclude that the most likely explanation for the bright central X-ray emission is synchrotron radiation from high-energy electrons.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1061-1067
Number of pages7
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume698
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Jun 2009

Keywords

  • BL Lacertae objects: general
  • galaxies: active
  • galaxies: individual (PKS J2310-437)
  • galaxies: jets
  • X-rays: individual (PKS J2310-437)
  • UNUSUAL GALAXY J2310-43
  • RADIO GALAXIES
  • JET

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