skip to main content

Title: The Intrinsic Structure of Sagittarius A* at 1.3 cm and 7 mm
Abstract

Sagittarius A* (Sgr A*), the Galactic Center supermassive black hole (SMBH), is one of the best targets in which to resolve the innermost region of an SMBH with very long baseline interferometry (VLBI). In this study, we have carried out observations toward Sgr A* at 1.349 cm (22.223 GHz) and 6.950 mm (43.135 GHz) with the East Asian VLBI Network, as a part of the multiwavelength campaign of the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) in 2017 April. To mitigate scattering effects, the physically motivated scattering kernel model from Psaltis et al. (2018) and the scattering parameters from Johnson et al. (2018) have been applied. As a result, a single, symmetric Gaussian model well describes the intrinsic structure of Sgr A* at both wavelengths. From closure amplitudes, the major-axis sizes are ∼704 ± 102μas (axial ratio ∼1.190.19+0.24) and ∼300 ± 25μas (axial ratio ∼1.28 ± 0.2) at 1.349 cm and 6.95 mm, respectively. Together with a quasi-simultaneous observation at 3.5 mm (86 GHz) by Issaoun et al. (2019), we show that the intrinsic size scales with observing wavelength as a power law, with an index ∼1.2 ± 0.2. Our results also provide estimates of the size and compact more » flux density at 1.3 mm, which can be incorporated into the analysis of the EHT observations. In terms of the origin of radio emission, we have compared the intrinsic structures with the accretion flow scenario, especially the radiatively inefficient accretion flow based on the Keplerian shell model. With this, we show that a nonthermal electron population is necessary to reproduce the source sizes.

« less
Authors:
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; more » ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; « less
Award ID(s):
1935980 2034306
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10362955
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal
Volume:
926
Issue:
2
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
Article No. 108
ISSN:
0004-637X
Publisher:
DOI PREFIX: 10.3847
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Abstract

    We present a toy model for the thermal optical/UV/X-ray emission from tidal disruption events (TDEs). Motivated by recent hydrodynamical simulations, we assume that the debris streams promptly and rapidly circularize (on the orbital period of the most tightly bound debris), generating a hot quasi-spherical pressure-supported envelope of radiusRv∼ 1014cm (photosphere radius ∼1015cm) surrounding the supermassive black hole (SMBH). As the envelope cools radiatively, it undergoes Kelvin–Helmholtz contractionRvt−1, its temperature risingTefft1/2while its total luminosity remains roughly constant; the optical luminosity decays asνLνRv2Tefft3/2. Despite this similarity to the mass fallback rateṀfbt5/3, envelope heating from fallback accretion is subdominant compared to the envelope cooling luminosity except near optical peak (where they are comparable). Envelope contraction can be delayed by energy injection from accretion from the inner envelope onto the SMBH in a regulated manner, leading to a late-time flattening of the optical/X-ray light curves, similar to those observed in some TDEs. Eventually, as the envelope contracts to near the circularization radius, the SMBH accretion rate rises to its maximum, in tandem with the decreasing optical luminosity. This cooling-induced (rather than circularization-induced) delay of up to several hundred days may account for themore »delayed onset of thermal X-rays, late-time radio flares, and high-energy neutrino generation, observed in some TDEs. We compare the model predictions to recent TDE light-curve correlation studies, finding both agreement and points of tension.

    « less
  2. Abstract

    We present a stellar dynamical mass measurement of a newly detected supermassive black hole (SMBH) at the center of the fast-rotating, massive elliptical galaxy NGC 2693 as part of the MASSIVE survey. We combine high signal-to-noise ratio integral field spectroscopy (IFS) from the Gemini Multi-Object Spectrograph with wide-field data from the Mitchell Spectrograph at McDonald Observatory to extract and model stellar kinematics of NGC 2693 from the central ∼150 pc out to ∼2.5 effective radii. Observations from Hubble Space Telescope WFC3 are used to determine the stellar light distribution. We perform fully triaxial Schwarzschild orbit modeling using the latest TriOS code and a Bayesian search in 6D galaxy model parameter space to determine NGC 2693's SMBH mass (MBH), stellar mass-to-light ratio, dark matter content, and intrinsic shape. We findMBH=1.7±0.4×109Mand a triaxial intrinsic shape with axis ratiosp=b/a= 0.902 ± 0.009 andq=c/a=0.7210.010+0.011, triaxiality parameterT= 0.39 ± 0.04. In comparison, the best-fit orbit model in the axisymmetric limit and (cylindrical) Jeans anisotropic model of NGC 2693 preferMBH=2.4±0.6×109MandMBH=2.9±0.3×109M, respectively. Neither model can account for the non-axisymmetric stellar velocity features present inmore »the IFS data.

    « less
  3. Abstract

    Cosmic reionization was the last major phase transition of hydrogen from neutral to highly ionized in the intergalactic medium (IGM). Current observations show that the IGM is significantly neutral atz> 7 and largely ionized byz∼ 5.5. However, most methods to measure the IGM neutral fraction are highly model dependent and are limited to when the volume-averaged neutral fraction of the IGM is either relatively low (x¯HI103) or close to unity (x¯HI1). In particular, the neutral fraction evolution of the IGM at the critical redshift range ofz= 6–7 is poorly constrained. We present new constraints onx¯HIatz∼ 5.1–6.8 by analyzing deep optical spectra of 53 quasars at 5.73 <z< 7.09. We derive model-independent upper limits on the neutral hydrogen fraction based on the fraction of “dark” pixels identified in the Lyαand Lyβforests, without any assumptions on the IGM model or the intrinsic shape of the quasar continuum. They are the first model-independent constraints on the IGM neutral hydrogen fraction atz∼ 6.2–6.8 using quasar absorption measurements. Our results give upper limits ofx¯more »mathvariant='normal'>HI(z=6.3)<0.79±0.04(1σ),x¯HI(z=6.5)<0.87±0.03(1σ), andx¯HI(z=6.7)<0.940.09+0.06(1σ). The dark pixel fractions atz> 6.1 are consistent with the redshift evolution of the neutral fraction of the IGM derived from Planck 2018.

    « less
  4. Abstract

    PG 1159-035 is the prototype of the PG 1159 hot (pre-)white dwarf pulsators. This important object was observed during the Kepler satellite K2 mission for 69 days in 59 s cadence mode and by the TESS satellite for 25 days in 20 s cadence mode. We present a detailed asteroseismic analysis of those data. We identify a total of 107 frequencies representing 32= 1 modes, 27 frequencies representing 12= 2 modes, and eight combination frequencies. The combination frequencies and the modes with very highkvalues represent new detections. The multiplet structure reveals an average splitting of 4.0 ± 0.4μHz for= 1 and 6.8 ± 0.2μHz for= 2, indicating a rotation period of 1.4 ± 0.1 days in the region of period formation. In the Fourier transform of the light curve, we find a significant peak at 8.904 ± 0.003μHz suggesting a surface rotation period of 1.299 ± 0.002 days. We also present evidence that the observed periods change on timescales shorter than those predicted by current evolutionary models. Our asteroseismic analysis finds an average period spacing for= 1 of 21.28 ± 0.02 s. The= 2 modes have a mean spacing of 12.97 ± 0.4 s. We performed a detailed asteroseismicmore »fit by comparing the observed periods with those of evolutionary models. The best-fit model hasTeff= 129, 600 ± 11 100 K,M*= 0.565 ± 0.024M, andlogg=7.410.54+0.38, within the uncertainties of the spectroscopic determinations. We argue for future improvements in the current models, e.g., on the overshooting in the He-burning stage, as the best-fit model does not predict excitation for all of the pulsations detected in PG 1159-035.

    « less
  5. Abstract

    Benchmark brown dwarf companions with well-determined ages and model-independent masses are powerful tools to test substellar evolutionary models and probe the formation of giant planets and brown dwarfs. Here, we report the independent discovery of HIP 21152 B, the first imaged brown dwarf companion in the Hyades, and conduct a comprehensive orbital and atmospheric characterization of the system. HIP 21152 was targeted in an ongoing high-contrast imaging campaign of stars exhibiting proper-motion changes between Hipparcos and Gaia, and was also recently identified by Bonavita et al. (2022) and Kuzuhara et al. (2022). Our Keck/NIRC2 and SCExAO/CHARIS imaging of HIP 21152 revealed a comoving companion at a separation of 0.″37 (16 au). We perform a joint orbit fit of all available relative astrometry and radial velocities together with the Hipparcos-Gaia proper motions, yielding a dynamical mass of244+6MJup, which is 1–2σlower than evolutionary model predictions. Hybrid grids that include the evolution of cloud properties best reproduce the dynamical mass. We also identify a comoving wide-separation (1837″ or 7.9 × 104au) early-L dwarf with an inferred mass near the hydrogen-burning limit. Finally, we analyze the spectra and photometry of HIP 21152 B using the Saumon & Marley (2008)more »atmospheric models and a suite of retrievals. The best-fit grid-based models havefsed= 2, indicating the presence of clouds,Teff= 1400 K, andlogg=4.5dex. These results are consistent with the object’s spectral type of T0 ± 1. As the first benchmark brown dwarf companion in the Hyades, HIP 21152 B joins the small but growing number of substellar companions with well-determined ages and dynamical masses.

    « less