Probing the disk–corona systems and broad-line regions of changing-look quasars with X-ray and optical observations

Xiangyu Jin, John J. Ruan, Daryl Haggard, Marie Joëlle Gingras, Joseph Hountalas, Chelsea L. MacLeod, Scott F. Anderson, Anh Doan, Michael Eracleous, Paul J. Green, Jessie C. Runnoe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

“Changing-look” quasars are a new class of highly variable active galactic nuclei that have changed their spectral type over surprisingly short timescales of just a few years. The origin of this phenomenon is debated, but is likely to reflect some change in the accretion flow. To investigate the disk–corona systems in these objects, we measure optical/UV–X-ray spectral indices (aOX) and Eddington ratios (lEdd) of 10 previously discovered changing-look quasars at two or more epochs. By comparing these data with simulated results based on the behavior of X-ray binaries, we find possible similarities in spectral indices below the 1% Eddington ratio. We further investigate the Eddington ratios of changing-look quasars before and after their spectral type changes, and find that changing-look quasars cross the 1% Eddington ratio boundary when their broad emission lines disappear/emerge. This is consistent with the disk-wind model as the origin of broad emission lines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number20
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume912
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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