X-shaped Radio Sources Formation - Test of a New Interpretation

O. Te¸ileanu1,2 , S. Massaglia2 , M. Rusu1 s March 8, 2004
Universitatea Bucure¸ti, Facultatea de Fizic˘ s a Universit` degli Studi di Torino, Facolt` di a a Scienze M.F.N.
2 1

In continuation of the work of Capetti et al. (2002), the present work investigates the X-shaped morphologies and tries to establish the area in parameter space where such morphologies form. The main objective is to verify the new proposed interpretation for the X-shaped structures formation, by 2D and 3D numerical simulations.

the power of the source. According to this interpretation, the radio galaxies are AGNs of high power viewed from a direction close to the perpendicular on the jets - the central emission is obscured by the dust torus, and extended radio-emitting lobes are visible. The radio galaxies are classified in two groups, based on the power of their radio emission (Fanaroff & Riley 1974): FR I and FR II. Morphologic differences appear between these two classes. The jets terminate in large structures - the cocoons - that correspond to the lobes of radio emission. The structure of the cocoon was described by Massaglia et al. (1996). Figure 1: The structure of the cocoon


Bow Shock

Quiet medium

The classification of extragalactic radio sources is still subject of discussions, but a widely accepted classification exists and is based on observational characteristics. Its categories are (growing radio power): Seyfert galaxies (type I and II), Radio galaxies (FR I and FR II), and Quasars (radio and radio-quiet). A fourth category is formed by the variable sources Blazars (BL Lacs and OVV). Unified models were proposed for the Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN) that are the sites of the observed extragalactic radio sources. These models are based on the existence of a supermassive black hole (with mass > 108 M ) at the center of the host galaxy. The black hole is surrounded by an unresolved accretion disk and a dust torus, and two opposite jets are produced. The various morphologies observed are determinated by different positions of our line of sight with respect to the direction of the jets axis and by 1

Shocked IGM

4. 3.

Contact discontinuity Backflow



Mach disk

The overpressure factors inside the cocoon sustain the collimation of the jet (the observed collimation angles are below 15◦ ). The cocoon generates along the jet shock waves that compress it. In numerical simulations, structures like the radio emitting lobes observed in radio galaxies form

The distortions observed in FR II jets can be classified in: 2 The Sample • mirror-symmetric. 1985). Usually.in the next section. and thus radio emission.fits_0_contour 40 40 20 20 20 LL 40 60 20 LL 40 60 The new interpretation of the origin of X-shaped radio sources is based on two remarks: . About 7% of the FR II radio sources are X-shaped. Jets seem to be pressure-confined along their length. Several interpretations were made for the formation of X-shaped radio sources: backflow and buoyancy (Leahy & Williams 1984). The hot spots of radio pects. having also a pair of secondary radio lobes (Leahy & Parma 1992).1 3C 192 3C 223. (2002). The parameters that characterize a jet are the Mach number M with respect to the sound speed in the external medium and ν . or X or Z-shaped. 2002.However. The flow velocities are supersonic at large scales. The density profiles obtained in numerical simulations correspond to luminosity profiles and can be compared with observations. tures. the radio power of these sources is not very high. being at the lower limit for the FR II.for densities of the jet matter much below the densi. and even relativistic at parsec-scales (Kpc for FR II). emission correspond to the Mach disk. Velocity measurements are difficult due to the absence of emission/absorption lines. or C-shaped. The composition of extragalactic jets is not well known. none could explain all the observational asties of the external medium. with the relevant parameters of the radio source and of the host galaxy. reorientation of the jet axis. selected • centro-symmetric. The jet radius increases thousands times leaving the inner core. when the from the literature on the basis of the high extension of the secondary radio lobes. The mechanism of radio emission in radio galaxies is the synchrotron radiation from accelerated charged particles. The bow shock propagating through the ambient medium creates a compressed region where particle acceleration.. but after that it recollimates to a conical structure. conical precession (Parma et al.25 Optical 55 80 -80 -85 40 35 35 -25 90 Wings -65 -45 10 60 -40 -45 -50 70 -5 Offset 60 55 90 55 80 80 85 85 85 Radio 25 30 -70 -55 15 10 85 15 60 Figure 2: 3C52 radio map 3c52. although there are observational clues (polarization measurements) that support the electronpositron hypothesis. The new proposed interpretation will be discussed Less powerful sources have more complex struc.fits_0 MM 60 MM 60 3c52. jets bend in the same direction. and consists of 9 FR II radio galaxies. when the two Our test sample is the one used by Capetti et al. 2 Table 1: A list of the sample sources.03 4C 32. occur (Fermi’s mechanism). Name 3C 52 3C 63 3C 136.1 3C 315 3C 403 4C 12. Taken from Capetti et al. jets bend in opposite directions.the ratio between the jet density and the density of the external gas distribution in the central point.

ν = 0. This way the secondary jets (the “wings”) form.fits_0 DEC 26:09 DEC 26:09 3c315. having an average vr .003.20. and demonstrated that in a ellipsoidal stratified medium. • The X-shaped radio sources appear in host galaxies of high ellipticity. As resulted from the 2D simulations. Figure 3: 3C315 radio map 3c315. (2002) suggested that the “butterfly” morphologies appear naturally in some peculiar geo.ν ≤ 0.form for high velocities M ≥ 60 and low densities metrical situations. such structures do not form for any jet parameters. However. 15h13m45s 15h13m42s 15h13m39s 15h13m36s RA 15h13m45s 15h13m42s 15h13m39s 15h13m36s RA 3 2D Simulations The 2D simulations were performed in cylindrical symmetry on an uniform grid of 512x512 integration cells in one quadrant of the r − z space. of 75◦ .open circles represent the main axis of the gas distribution. The r − z profile is obtained by symmetry. pressure. so a study of the area in the parameter space where they develop was needed.• The angle between the main axis of the mass distribution in the external medium and the main Figure 4: M = 100. jets axis avoids small values. Density(log). if a supersonic jet is introduced along Figure 6: Parameter space . The jet is aligned to the gas distribution’s major For low Mach numbers (10. ν = 0. tures do not form at all.30) butterfly strucaxis (constraint imposed by the cylindrical symmetry). 26:08 26:08 26:07 26:07 while light jets do form such structures for high velocities.1. because for low densities 3 . The simulated structures could be identified as Xshaped sources for a wide range of view angles. the bow shock the formation X-shaped morphologies expands also sideways at great speeds because of the higher density gradient in that direction. the “wings” Capetti et al. lations. They performed some 2D simu.0001. vz profiles. Dense jets never form X-shaped structures. and was performed during this work.fits_0_contour Figure 5: M = 200.

2003. Annu. It is an observational constraint (the existence of knots and filaments in jets) that the jets should be supersonic. Massaglia S. however not large because the ratio between the scales of the King gas distribution was 3:6:4. Further 3D simulations are to be performed in order to understand the dependence of the wings extension with the angle between the jets and the main axis of the gas distribution. Rossi P. 1996. MNRAS 167. Ferrari A.Rev.. 997 7.. Modern Numerical Methods for Fluid Flow.G.. 539 5. Ferrari A. as described above. 1984. A&A 394. Zanni C. Riley J. Course Notes. viewed from different angles. are similar to the observed X-shaped sources. 4 .001 on a 312x312x96 stretched grid.. Puckett E. Ferrari A.. MNRAS 210. 1994.. Bodo G. A&A 36.P. Rossi P. 2002. 4 3D Simulations The 3D simulations. We have found. Bodo G.. University of California 3. Fanaroff B.. Constraining the Parameters of AGN Jets.. a zone where X-shaped morphologies form.. 8. 39 2. Durbala A. Massaglia S. produced morphologies close to those obtained in the corresponding 2D simulations. 1998. A&A 307. Figure 7: Full rotation of the simulated 3D density profile It may be concluded that the formation of X-shaped structures can be due to a particular geometrical configuration. The resulting morphologies. Colella P. Massaglia S..G.the velocity becomes subsonic with respect to the jet medium. References 1. in the M − ν parameter space. Leahy J. performed for M = 100 and ν = 0.M. 31P 4. 2002.. This sustains the validity of the conclusions on the parameter space drawn from the 2D simulations. Williams A. On the x and z directions the density gradient is close enough not to produce large asymmetries. Netherlands Asymmetries due to the ellipsoidal gas distribution can be observed. Zamfir S. Massaglia S. some of the simulated jets form extended secondary structures. 929 6.. Zanni C. 949 5 Conclusions Depending on their speed and density.L. Bodo G. 1974. Kluwer Academic Publishers. A&A 402. Capetti A..

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