Journal Article

Models of the iron Kα fluorescent line and the Compton Shoulder in irradiated accretion disc spectra

A. Różańska and J. Madej

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 386, issue 4, pages 1872-1880
Published in print June 2008 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online April 2008 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2008.13173.x
Models of the iron Kα fluorescent line and the Compton Shoulder in irradiated accretion disc spectra

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We present a full set of model atmosphere equations for the accretion disc around a supermassive black hole irradiated by a hard X-ray lamp of power-law spectral distribution. Model equations allow for multiple Compton scattering of radiation on free electrons, and for large relative photon–electron energy exchange at the time of scattering. We present spectra in specific intensities integrated over the disc surface. Theoretical outgoing intensity spectra show soft X-ray excess below 1 keV, and distinct Kα and Kβ fluorescent lines of iron. We demonstrate the existence of the Compton Shoulder and claim that it can contribute to the asymmetry and equivalent widths of some observed Fe Kα lines in active galactic nuclei. Our models exhibit the effect of limb-brightening in reflected X-rays.

Keywords: accretion, accretion discs; line: profiles; radiative transfer; scattering; galaxies: active

Journal Article.  5684 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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