Some reddened quasars appear to be transitional objects in the paradigm of merger-induced black hole growth/galaxy evolution, where a heavily obscured nucleus starts to be unveiled by powerful quasar winds evacuating the surrounding cocoon of dust and gas. Hard X-ray observations are able to peer through this gas and dust, revealing the properties of circumnuclear obscuration. Here, we present NuSTAR and XMM-Newton/Chandra observations of FIRST-2MASS-selected red quasars F2M 0830+3759 and F2M 1227+3214. We find that though F2M 0830+3759 is moderately obscured (NH,Z = (2.1 ±0.2) ×1022 cm-2) and F2M 1227+3214 is mildly absorbed (NH,Z = 3.4-0.07+0.8 × 1021 cm-2) along the line of sight, heavier global obscuration may be present in both sources, with NH,S = 3.7-2.6+4.1 × 1023 cm-2 and <5.5 ×1023 cm-2 for F2M 0830+3759 and F2M 1227+3214, respectively. F2M 0830+3759 also has an excess of soft X-ray emission below 1 keV, which is well accommodated by a model where 7% of the intrinsic X-ray emission from the active galactic nucleus (AGN) is scattered into the line of sight. While F2M 1227+3214 has a dust-to-gas ratio (E(B - V)/NH) consistent with the Galactic value, the value of E(B - V)/NH for F2M 0830+3759 is lower than the Galactic standard, consistent with the paradigm that the dust resides on galactic scales while the X-ray reprocessing gas originates within the dust sublimation zone of the broad-line region. The X-ray and 6.1 μm luminosities of these red quasars are consistent with the empirical relations derived for high-luminosity, unobscured quasars, extending the parameter space of obscured AGNs previously observed by NuSTAR to higher luminosities.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science