The X-ray variability and the near-IR to X-ray spectral energy distribution of four low luminosity Seyfert 1 galaxies

I. E. Papadakis, Z. Ioannou, W. Brinkmann, E. M. Xilouris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Context. We present the results from a study of the X-ray variability and the near-IR to X-ray spectral energy distribution of four low-luminosity, Seyfert 1 galaxies.Aims. We compared their variability amplitude and broad band spectrum with those of more luminous AGN in order to investigate whether accretion in low-luminosity AGN operates as in their luminous counterparts.Methods. We used archival XMM-Newton and, in two cases, ASCA data to estimate their X-ray variability amplitude and determine their X-ray spectral shape and luminosity. We also used archival HST data to measure their optical nuclear luminosity, and near-IR measurements from the literature, in order to construct their near-IR to X-ray spectra.Results. The X-ray variability amplitude of the four Seyferts is what one would expect, given their black hole masses. Their near-IR to X-ray spectrum has the same shape as the spectrum of quasars that are 102-105 times more luminous.Conclusions. The objects in our sample are optically classified as Seyfert 1-1.5. This implies that they host a relatively unobscured AGN-like nucleus. They are also of low luminosity and accrete at a low rate. They are therefore good candidates to detect radiation from an inefficient accretion process. However, our results suggest that they are similar to AGN that are 102-105 times more luminous. The combination of a "radiative efficient accretion disc plus an X-ray producing hot corona" may persist at low accretion rates as well.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)995-1003
Number of pages9
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Volume490
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2008

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spectral energy distribution
luminosity
galaxies
energy
x rays
accretion
distribution
XMM-Newton telescope
accretion disks
quasars
newton
coronas
corona
broadband
nuclei
radiation
estimates

Keywords

  • Galaxies: active
  • Galaxies: Seyfert
  • X-rays: galaxies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics

Cite this

The X-ray variability and the near-IR to X-ray spectral energy distribution of four low luminosity Seyfert 1 galaxies. / Papadakis, I. E.; Ioannou, Z.; Brinkmann, W.; Xilouris, E. M.

In: Astronomy and Astrophysics, Vol. 490, No. 3, 11.2008, p. 995-1003.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Xilouris, E. M.

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N2 - Context. We present the results from a study of the X-ray variability and the near-IR to X-ray spectral energy distribution of four low-luminosity, Seyfert 1 galaxies.Aims. We compared their variability amplitude and broad band spectrum with those of more luminous AGN in order to investigate whether accretion in low-luminosity AGN operates as in their luminous counterparts.Methods. We used archival XMM-Newton and, in two cases, ASCA data to estimate their X-ray variability amplitude and determine their X-ray spectral shape and luminosity. We also used archival HST data to measure their optical nuclear luminosity, and near-IR measurements from the literature, in order to construct their near-IR to X-ray spectra.Results. The X-ray variability amplitude of the four Seyferts is what one would expect, given their black hole masses. Their near-IR to X-ray spectrum has the same shape as the spectrum of quasars that are 102-105 times more luminous.Conclusions. The objects in our sample are optically classified as Seyfert 1-1.5. This implies that they host a relatively unobscured AGN-like nucleus. They are also of low luminosity and accrete at a low rate. They are therefore good candidates to detect radiation from an inefficient accretion process. However, our results suggest that they are similar to AGN that are 102-105 times more luminous. The combination of a "radiative efficient accretion disc plus an X-ray producing hot corona" may persist at low accretion rates as well.

AB - Context. We present the results from a study of the X-ray variability and the near-IR to X-ray spectral energy distribution of four low-luminosity, Seyfert 1 galaxies.Aims. We compared their variability amplitude and broad band spectrum with those of more luminous AGN in order to investigate whether accretion in low-luminosity AGN operates as in their luminous counterparts.Methods. We used archival XMM-Newton and, in two cases, ASCA data to estimate their X-ray variability amplitude and determine their X-ray spectral shape and luminosity. We also used archival HST data to measure their optical nuclear luminosity, and near-IR measurements from the literature, in order to construct their near-IR to X-ray spectra.Results. The X-ray variability amplitude of the four Seyferts is what one would expect, given their black hole masses. Their near-IR to X-ray spectrum has the same shape as the spectrum of quasars that are 102-105 times more luminous.Conclusions. The objects in our sample are optically classified as Seyfert 1-1.5. This implies that they host a relatively unobscured AGN-like nucleus. They are also of low luminosity and accrete at a low rate. They are therefore good candidates to detect radiation from an inefficient accretion process. However, our results suggest that they are similar to AGN that are 102-105 times more luminous. The combination of a "radiative efficient accretion disc plus an X-ray producing hot corona" may persist at low accretion rates as well.

KW - Galaxies: active

KW - Galaxies: Seyfert

KW - X-rays: galaxies

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