Wednesday, July 24, 2013

1307.5845 (Q. D. Wang et al.)

Dissecting X-ray-emitting Gas around the Center of our Galaxy    [PDF]

Q. D. Wang, M. A. Nowak, S. B. Markoff, F. K. Baganoff, S. Nayakshin, F. Yuan, J. Cuadra, J. Davis, J. Dexter, A. C. Fabian, N. Grosso, D. Haggard, J. Houck, L. Ji, Z. Li, J. Neilsen, D. Porquet, F. Ripple, R. V. Shcherbakov
Most supermassive black holes (SMBHs) are accreting at very low levels and are difficult to distinguish from the galaxy centers where they reside. Our own Galaxy's SMBH provides a uniquely instructive exception, and we present a close-up view of its quiescent X-ray emission based on 3 mega-second of Chandra observations. Although the X-ray emission is elongated and aligns well with a surrounding disk of massive stars, we can rule out a concentration of low-mass coronally active stars as the origin of the emission based on the lack of predicted Fe Kalpha emission. The extremely weak H-like Fe Kalpha line further suggests the presence of an outflow from the accretion flow onto the SMBH. These results provide important constraints for models of the prevalent radiatively inefficient accretion state.
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