On the X-ray properties of OH megamaser sources: Chandra snapshot observations

Cristian Vignali, William N. Brandt, Andrea Comastri, Jeremy Darling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


We present Chandra snapshot observations for a sample of seven sources selected from the Arecibo OH megamaser (OHM) survey at z ≈ 0.13-0.22 and with far-infrared (FIR) luminosities in excess of 1011 L . In contrast with the known H2O megamasers, which are mostly associated with powerful active galactic nuclei (AGN), the situation is far less clear for OHMs, which have been poorly studied in the X-ray band thus far. All of the observed sources are X-ray weak, with only one OHM, IRAS FSC 03521+0028 (z = 0.15), being detected by Chandra (with five counts). The results from this pilot programme indicate that the X-ray emission, with luminosities of less than ≈1042 erg s-1, is consistent with that from star formation (as also suggested in some cases by the optical spectra) and low-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGN) emission. If an AGN is present, its contribution to the broad-band emission of OHM galaxies is likely modest. Under reasonable assumptions about the intrinsic X-ray spectral shape, the observed count distribution from stacking analysis suggests absorption of ≈1022cm-2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-106
Number of pages8
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 21 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


Dive into the research topics of 'On the X-ray properties of OH megamaser sources: Chandra snapshot observations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this