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From the "blazar sequence" to unification of blazars and radio galaxies  [PDF]
Dingrong Xiong,Xiong Zhang,Jinming Bai,Haojing Zhang
Physics , 2015,
Abstract: Based on a large Fermi blazar sample, the blazar sequence (synchrotron peak frequency $\nu_{\rm peak}$ versus synchrotron peak luminosity $L_{\rm peak}$) is revisited. It is found that there is significant anti-correlation between $\nu_{\rm peak}$ and $L_{\rm peak}$ for blazars. However, after being Doppler corrected, the anti-correlation disappears. The jet cavity power ($P_{\rm jet}$) is estimated from extended radio luminosity. So it is free of beaming effect. We find that there are significant anti-correlations between $P_{\rm jet}$ and beam-corrected $\nu_{\rm peak}^{'}$ for both blazars and radio galaxies, which supports the blazar sequence and unification of blazars and radio galaxies (an alternative relationship is the correlation between jet power and $\gamma$-ray photon index).
Faraday rotation in the MOJAVE blazars: Connection with gamma-ray studies  [PDF]
T. Hovatta,M. L. Lister,M. F. Aller,H. D. Aller,D. C. Homan,Y. Y. Kovalev,A. B. Pushkarev,T. Savolainen
Physics , 2012,
Abstract: We have conducted a survey of Faraday rotation in a sample of 191 compact radio-loud AGNs as part of the MOJAVE (Monitoring of Jets in Active galactic nuclei with VLBA Experiments) project. The observations were carried out with the VLBA at 8.1, 8.4, 12.1 and 15.3 GHz over 12 epochs in 2006. We detect sufficiently strong linear polarization in 159 out of 211 observations to calculate the rotation measure values, resulting in a large enough sample for statistical analysis of the Faraday rotation in blazars. These Faraday rotation measures can be used to study the intrinsic magnetic field order and orientation in parsec-scale blazar jets. Our sample includes 119 sources listed in the 1FGL or 2FGL catalogs and we detect rotation measure values in 111 out of 131 maps. Of the 72 sources that are not in the gamma-ray catalogs we detect RM in 48 out of 80 maps. The median RM values of the LAT-detected sources do not differ significantly from the non-LAT-detected sources. Nine of the sources in our sample have resolved enough jets to study the transverse Faraday rotation structure, and we detect significant transverse rotation measure gradients in four sources. In two of these (3C~273 and 3C~454.3) there is additional evidence to support helical magnetic field in the parsec-scale jets. The two others (0923+392 and 2230+114) require further observations to identify the nature of the gradient. It is interesting that three of the four sources with significant rotation measure gradients are sources that have shown large gamma-ray flares.
Unification of all Blazars  [PDF]
Gabriele Ghisellini
Physics , 1997,
Abstract: The overall spectra (SED) of blazars, from radio to gamma-ray energies, seem to obey well defined trends, with a continuity of properties between blazars of different classes. To quantify this statement we can either investigate their observed properties (see Fossati et al., this volume), or try to determine their intrinsic physical parameters by applying specific models, and trying to fit their SED. Results of the latter approach are reported here. We applied simple, one-zone, homogeneous models to all blazars strongly detected in the gamma-ray band, assuming or not the presence of seed (for the inverse Compton process) photons produced outside the active region. Our results suggest that the SEDs of blazars are ruled by the amount of radiative cooling suffered by the electrons producing most of the emission. In turn, the amount of cooling is ruled by the amount of the external photon emission, which can be identified with radiation coming from the broad line clouds. Blazar SEDs are therefore organized in a sequence: objects with no or very weak emission lines (X-ray selected BL Lacs, or HBL) are characterized by very high electron energies and a Compton luminosity of the same order of the synchrotron one. These are TeV sources. BL Lacertae objects selected in the radio band (or LBL) are characterized by smaller electron energies, more total power and more line luminosity, and by a larger ratio of the Compton to synchrotron luminosity. They are GeV sources. Increasing the total intrinsic power and the line emission luminosity, we have smaller still electron energies (more cooling) and greater still Compton to synchrotron power ratio. These are flat spectrum radio quasars, with a high energy peak located at MeV-GeV energies.
Unifying MeV-blazars with GeV-blazars  [PDF]
M. Blazejowski,M. Sikora,R. Moderski,G. Madejski
Physics , 2002,
Abstract: We demonstrate that the spectral differences between Flat Spectrum Radio Quasars (FSRQ) with steep gamma-ray spectra (MeV-blazars) and FSRQ with flat gamma-ray spectra (GeV-blazars) can be explained by assuming that in the MeV-blazars, the production of gamma-rays is dominated by Comptonization of infrared radiation of hot dust, whereas in the GeV-blazars -- by Comptonization of broad emission lines. Additional ingredient, required to reach satisfactory unification, is an assumption that the radiating electrons are accelerated via a two step process, in the lower energy range -- following instabilities driven by shock-reflected ions, and in the higher energy range -- via resonant scatterings off Alfven waves. Our model predicts that on average, the MeV-blazars should vary on longer time scales than GeV-blazars.
Blazars spectral properties at 74 MHz  [PDF]
F. Massaro,M. Giroletti,A. Paggi,R. D'Abrusco,G. Tosti,S. Funk
Physics , 2013, DOI: 10.1088/0067-0049/208/2/15
Abstract: Blazars are the most extreme class of active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Despite a previous investigation at 102 MHz for a small sample of BL Lacs and our recent analysis of blazars detected in the Westerbork Northern Sky Survey (WENSS), a systematic study of the blazar spectral properties at frequencies below 100 MHz has been never carried out. In this paper, we present the first analysis of the radio spectral behavior of blazars based on the recent Very Large Array Low-Frequency Sky Survey (VLSS) at 74 MHz. We search for blazar counterparts in the VLSS catalog confirming that they are detected at 74 MHz. We then show that blazars present radio flat spectra {(i.e., radio spectral indices ~0.5)} when evaluated also about an order of magnitude in frequency lower than previous analyses. Finally, we discuss the implications of our findings in the context of the blazars - radio galaxies connection since the low frequency radio data provide a new diagnostic tool to verify the expectations of the unification scenario for radio-loud active galaxies.
Monitoring of gamma-ray blazars with AGILE  [PDF]
Filippo D'Ammando,on behalf of the AGILE Team
Physics , 2010,
Abstract: Thanks to the wide field of view of its gamma-ray imager, the AGILE satellite obtained a long term monitoring of the brightest blazars in the sky and during the first 3 years of operation detected several blazars in a high gamma-ray state: 3C 279, 3C 454.3, PKS 1510-089, S5 0716+714, 3C 273, W Comae, and Mrk 421. Through the rapid dissemination of our alerts we were able to obtain also multi-wavelength data from many observatories such as Spitzer, Swift, RXTE, Suzaku, XMM-Newton, INTEGRAL, MAGIC, VERITAS, and ARGO as well as radio-to-optical coverage by means of the MOJAVE project, the GASP project of the WEBT and the REM Telescope. This large coverage over the whole electromagnetic spectrum gave us the opportunity to study the variability correlations between the emission at different frequencies and to build truly simultaneous spectral energy distributions of these sources from radio to gamma-rays, investigating in detail the emission mechanisms of blazars and uncovering in some cases a more complex behaviour with respect to the standard models. We present an overview of the most interesting AGILE results on these gamma-ray blazars and the relative multiwavelength data.
On the Nature of MeV-blazars  [PDF]
Marek Sikora,Michal Blazejowski,Rafal Moderski,Greg Madejski
Physics , 2002, DOI: 10.1086/342164
Abstract: Broad-band spectra of the FSRQ (flat-spectrum-radio quasars) detected in the high energy gamma-ray band imply that there may be two types of such objects: those with steep gamma-ray spectra, hereafter called MeV-blazars, and those with flat gamma-ray spectra, GeV-blazars. We demonstrate that this difference can be explained in the context of the ERC (external-radiation-Compton) model using the same electron injection function. A satisfactory unification is reachable, provided that: (a) spectra of GeV-blazars are produced by internal shocks formed at the distances where cooling of relativistic electrons in a jet is dominated by Comptonization of broad emission lines, whereas spectra of MeV-blazars are produced at the distances where cooling of relativistic electrons is dominated by Comptonization of near-IR radiation from hot dust; (b) electrons are accelerated via a two step process and their injection function takes the form of a double power-law, with the break corresponding to the threshold energy for the diffusive shock acceleration. Direct predictions of our model are that, on average, variability time scales of the MeV-blazars should be longer than variability time scales of the GeV-blazars, and that both types of the blazar phenomenon can appear in the same object.
Variability and Unification of Blazars and Gamma Ray Bursts  [PDF]
Charles D. Dermer,James Chiang
Physics , 1998,
Abstract: Most models for blazars and gamma-ray bursts involve relativistic plasma outflows powered by accretion processes onto black holes. The blast wave physics developed for cosmological models of GRBs is reviewed. Two points relevant for blazar modeling are made: (1) The injection of nonthermal relativistic particles in the comoving frame is simply treated though a process of energizing the plasma as it sweeps up material from the surrounding medium. (2) The primary energy source of blazar radiation derives from the bulk kinetic energy of the outflowing plasma. Thus deceleration of the plasma blast wave must be included in blazar flaring calculations, and this process will introduce temporal and spectral effects in addition to those produced by acceleration and radiative cooling.
Relativistic beaming and gamma-ray brightness of blazars  [PDF]
T. Savolainen,D. C. Homan,T. Hovatta,M. Kadler,Y. Y. Kovalev,M. L. Lister,E. Ros,J. A. Zensus
Physics , 2009, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/200913740
Abstract: We investigate the dependence of gamma-ray brightness of blazars on intrinsic properties of their parsec-scale radio jets and the implication for relativistic beaming. By combining apparent jet speeds derived from high-resolution VLBA images from the MOJAVE program with millimetre-wavelength flux density monitoring data from Metsahovi Radio Observatory, we estimate the jet Doppler factors, Lorentz factors, and viewing angles for a sample of 62 blazars. We study the trends in these quantities between the sources which were detected in gamma-rays by the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) during its first three months of science operations and those which were not detected. The LAT-detected blazars have on average higher Doppler factors than non-LAT-detected blazars, as has been implied indirectly in several earlier studies. We find statistically significant differences in the viewing angle distributions between gamma-ray bright and weak sources. Most interestingly, gamma-ray bright blazars have a distribution of comoving frame viewing angles that is significantly narrower than that of gamma-ray weak blazars and centred roughly perpendicular to the jet axis. The lack of gamma-ray bright blazars at large comoving frame viewing angles can be explained by relativistic beaming of gamma-rays, while the apparent lack of gamma-ray bright blazars at small comoving frame viewing angles, if confirmed with larger samples, may suggest an intrinsic anisotropy or Lorentz factor dependence of the gamma-ray emission.
Extragalactic radio source evolution & unification: clues to the demographics of blazars  [PDF]
C A Jackson,J V Wall
Physics , 2001,
Abstract: In this paper we discuss the demographics of the radio blazar population: (i) what are their parent (`unbeamed') sources and (ii) what magnitude and/or type of evolution have they undergone ? The discussion is based on models of radio source evolution and beaming based on a `dual population' unification paradigm. These models, developed from radio blazar properties in bright samples, predict blazar demographic trends at the lower flux-density levels; samples from deep mJy-level surveys (e.g. NVSS and FIRST) may now provide direct tests of these predictions.
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