C. Ricci, F. E. Bauer, P. Arevalo, S. Boggs, W. N. Brandt, F. E. Christensen, W. W. Craig, P. Gandhi, C. J. Hailey, F. A. Harrison, M. Koss, C. B. Markwardt, D. Stern, E. Treister, W. W. Zhang

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We present results of five Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) observations of the type 2 active galactic nucleus (AGN) in IC 751, three of which were performed simultaneously with XMM-Newton or Swift/X-Ray Telescope. We find that the nuclear X-ray source underwent a clear transition from a Compton-thick () to a Compton-thin () state on timescales of months, which makes IC 751 the first changing look AGN discovered by NuSTAR. Changes of the line of sight column density at the ∼2σ level are also found on a timescale of ∼48 hr (). From the lack of spectral variability on timescales of ∼100 ks, we infer that the varying absorber is located beyond the emission-weighted average radius of the broad-line region (BLR), and could therefore be related either to the external part of the BLR or a clumpy molecular torus. By adopting a physical torus X-ray spectral model, we are able to disentangle the column density of the non-varying absorber () from that of the varying clouds , and to constrain that of the material responsible for the reprocessed X-ray radiation (). We find evidence of significant intrinsic X-ray variability, with the flux varying by a factor of five on timescales of a few months in the 2-10 and 10-50 keV band.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 20 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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    Ricci, C., Bauer, F. E., Arevalo, P., Boggs, S., Brandt, W. N., Christensen, F. E., Craig, W. W., Gandhi, P., Hailey, C. J., Harrison, F. A., Koss, M., Markwardt, C. B., Stern, D., Treister, E., & Zhang, W. W. (2016). IC 751: A NEW CHANGING LOOK AGN DISCOVERED by NUSTAR. Astrophysical Journal, 820(1), [5]. https://doi.org/10.3847/0004-637X/820/1/5