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An X-Ray imaging survey of Quasar jets: testing the inverse compton model


Marshall, HL and Gelbord, JM and Schwartz, DA and Murphy, DW and Lovell, JEJ and Worrall, DM and Birkinshaw, M and Perlman, ES and Godfrey, L and Jauncey, DL, An X-Ray imaging survey of Quasar jets: testing the inverse compton model, Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series, 193, (1) Article 15. ISSN 0067-0049 (2011) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright 2011 American Astronomical Survey

DOI: doi:10.1088/0067-0049/193/1/15


We present results from continued Chandra X-ray imaging and spectroscopy of a flux-limited sample of flat spectrum radio-emitting quasars with jet-like extended structure. X-rays are detected from 24 of the 39 jets observed so far. We compute the distribution of αrx, the spectral index between the X-ray and radio bands, showing that it is broad, extending at least from 0.8 to 1.2. While there is a general trend that the radio brightest jets are detected most often, it is clear that predicting the X-ray flux from the radio knot flux densities is risky, so a shallow X-ray survey is the most effective means for finding jets that are X-ray bright. We test the model in which the X-rays result from inverse Compton (IC) scattering of cosmic microwave background (CMB) photons by relativistic electrons in the jet moving with a high bulk Lorentz factor nearly along the line of sight. Depending on how the jet magnetic fields vary with z, the observed X-ray to radio flux ratios do not follow the redshift dependence expected from the IC–CMB model. For a subset of our sample with known superluminal motion based on VLBI observations, we estimate the angle of the kiloparsec-scale jet to the line of sight by considering the additional information in the bends observed between parsec- and kiloparsec-scale jets. These angles are sometimes much smaller than estimates based on the IC–CMB model with a Lorentz factor of 15, indicating that these jets may decelerate significantly from parsec scales to kiloparsec scales.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:galaxies: active – galaxies: jets – surveys
Research Division:Physical Sciences
Research Group:Astronomical sciences
Research Field:Cosmology and extragalactic astronomy
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the physical sciences
UTAS Author:Lovell, JEJ (Dr Jim Lovell)
ID Code:70777
Year Published:2011
Web of Science® Times Cited:39
Deposited By:Mathematics and Physics
Deposited On:2011-07-01
Last Modified:2017-11-03

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