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Dissecting the active galactic nucleus in Circinus – II. A thin dusty disc and a polar outflow on parsec scales

Dissecting the active galactic nucleus in Circinus – II. A thin dusty disc and a polar outflow on parsec scales
Dissecting the active galactic nucleus in Circinus – II. A thin dusty disc and a polar outflow on parsec scales
Recent observations which resolved the mid-infrared (MIR) emission of nearby active galactic nuclei (AGNs), surprisingly revealed that their dust emission appears prominently extended in the polar direction, at odds with the expectations from the canonical dusty torus. This polar dust, tentatively associated with dusty winds driven by radiation pressure, is found to have a major contribution to the MIR flux from scales of a few to hundreds of parsecs. When facing a potential change of paradigm, case studies of objects with the best intrinsic resolution are essential. One such source with a clear detection of polar dust is a nearby, well-known AGN in the Circinus galaxy. In the first paper, we successfully explained the peculiar MIR morphology of Circinus observed on large, tens of parsec scales with a model consisting of a compact dusty disc and an extended hollow dusty cone. In this work, we further refine the model on smaller, parsecs scales to test whether it can also explain the MIR interferometric data. We find that a model composed of a thin dusty disc seen almost edge-on and a polar outflow in the form of a hyperboloid shell can reproduce well the VLTI/MIDI observations at all wavelengths, baselines, and position angles. In contrast, while providing a good fit to the integrated MIR spectrum, the dusty torus model fails to reproduce the spatially resolved interferometric data. We put forth the disc + hyperboloid wind model of Circinus AGN as a prototype for the dust structure in the AGN population with polar dust.
0035-8711
3334-3355
Stalevski, Marko
6f6b37b3-7a57-4024-b190-a2ea2d538051
Tristram, Konrad R.W.
37fab926-5cfc-4c23-8f75-52fafaa518b6
Asmus, Daniel
f783516a-c74c-4912-b68e-4e896e4317b2
Stalevski, Marko
6f6b37b3-7a57-4024-b190-a2ea2d538051
Tristram, Konrad R.W.
37fab926-5cfc-4c23-8f75-52fafaa518b6
Asmus, Daniel
f783516a-c74c-4912-b68e-4e896e4317b2

Stalevski, Marko, Tristram, Konrad R.W. and Asmus, Daniel (2019) Dissecting the active galactic nucleus in Circinus – II. A thin dusty disc and a polar outflow on parsec scales. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 484 (3), 3334-3355. (doi:10.1093/mnras/stz220).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Recent observations which resolved the mid-infrared (MIR) emission of nearby active galactic nuclei (AGNs), surprisingly revealed that their dust emission appears prominently extended in the polar direction, at odds with the expectations from the canonical dusty torus. This polar dust, tentatively associated with dusty winds driven by radiation pressure, is found to have a major contribution to the MIR flux from scales of a few to hundreds of parsecs. When facing a potential change of paradigm, case studies of objects with the best intrinsic resolution are essential. One such source with a clear detection of polar dust is a nearby, well-known AGN in the Circinus galaxy. In the first paper, we successfully explained the peculiar MIR morphology of Circinus observed on large, tens of parsec scales with a model consisting of a compact dusty disc and an extended hollow dusty cone. In this work, we further refine the model on smaller, parsecs scales to test whether it can also explain the MIR interferometric data. We find that a model composed of a thin dusty disc seen almost edge-on and a polar outflow in the form of a hyperboloid shell can reproduce well the VLTI/MIDI observations at all wavelengths, baselines, and position angles. In contrast, while providing a good fit to the integrated MIR spectrum, the dusty torus model fails to reproduce the spatially resolved interferometric data. We put forth the disc + hyperboloid wind model of Circinus AGN as a prototype for the dust structure in the AGN population with polar dust.

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Accepted/In Press date: 16 January 2019
e-pub ahead of print date: 23 January 2019
Published date: 11 April 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 430174
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/430174
ISSN: 0035-8711
PURE UUID: 5b58c44a-53fe-47aa-ab89-a28ccb6a477c

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Date deposited: 16 Apr 2019 16:30
Last modified: 16 Dec 2019 17:39

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Contributors

Author: Marko Stalevski
Author: Konrad R.W. Tristram
Author: Daniel Asmus

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