Journal Article

Comparison of ejection events in the jet and accretion disc outflows in 3C 111

F. Tombesi, R. M. Sambruna, A. P. Marscher, S. G. Jorstad, C. S. Reynolds and A. Markowitz

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 424, issue 1, pages 754-761
Published in print July 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online July 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Comparison of ejection events in the jet and accretion disc outflows in 3C 111

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We present a comparison of the parameters of accretion disc outflows and the jet of the broad-line radio galaxy 3C 111 on subparsec (sub-pc) scales. We make use of published X-ray observations of ultra-fast outflows (UFOs) and new 43-GHz Very Long Baseline Array images to track the jet knot ejection. We find that the superluminal jet coexists with the mildly relativistic outflows on sub-pc scales, possibly indicating a transverse stratification of a global flow. The two are roughly in pressure equilibrium, with the UFOs potentially providing additional support for the initial jet collimation. The UFOs are much more massive than the jet, but their kinetic power is probably about an order of magnitude lower, at least for the observations considered here. However, their momentum flux is equivalent and both of them are powerful enough to exert a concurrent feedback impact on the surrounding environment. A link between these components is naturally predicted in the context of magnetohydrodynamic models for jet/outflow formation. However, given the high radiation throughput of active galactic nuclei, radiation pressure should also be taken into account. From the comparison with the long-term 2–10 keV Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer light curve, we find that the UFOs are preferentially detected during periods of increasing flux. We also find the possibility to place the UFOs within the known X-ray dips–jet ejection cycles, which has been shown to be a strong proof of the disc–jet connection, in analogue with stellar mass black holes. However, given the limited number of observations presently available, these relations are only tentative and additional spectral monitoring is needed to test them conclusively.

Keywords: accretion, accretion discs; black hole physics; galaxies: active; galaxies: jets; radio continuum: galaxies; X-rays: galaxies

Journal Article.  6435 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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