A deep chandra observation of the active galactic nucleus outburst and merger in hickson compact group 62

D. A. Rafferty, L. Bǐrzan, P. E.J. Nulsen, B. R. McNamara, W. N. Brandt, M. W. Wise, H. J.A. R̈ottgering

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

We report on an analysis of new Chandra data of the galaxy group HCG 62, well known for possessing cavities in its intragroup medium (IGM) that were inflated by the radio lobes of its central active galactic nucleus (AGN). With the new data, a factor of 3 deeper than previous Chandra data, we re-examine the energetics of the cavities and determine new constraints on their contents. We confirm that the ratio of radiative to mechanical power of the AGN outburst that created the cavities is less than 10-4, among the lowest of any known cavity system, implying that the relativistic electrons in the lobes can supply only a tiny fraction of the pressure required to support the cavities. This finding implies additional pressure support in the lobes from heavy particles (e.g. protons) or thermal gas. Using spectral fits to emission in the cavities, we constrain any such volume-filling thermal gas to have a temperature kT ≤ 4.3 keV. For the first time, we detect X-ray emission from the central AGN, with a luminosity of L2-10 keV = (1.1 ± 0.4) × 1039 erg s-1 and properties typical of a lowluminosity AGN. Finally, we report evidence for a recent merger from the surface brightness, temperature and metallicity structure of the IGM.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)58-70
Number of pages13
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume428
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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