AAS Meeting #193 - Austin, Texas, January 1999
Session 5. Relativistic Jets and their Interactions
Display, Wednesday, January 6, 1999, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall 1

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[5.13] Radio Jet Interactions with Massive Clouds

Z. Wang, P. J. Wiita, J. Joyce (Georgia St. U.), J. S. Hooda (Inst. Paper Sci. Tech.)

Rather high resolution three-dimensional simulations of hydrodynamical jets are computed using the Zeus-3D code. The parameters we employ are suitable for moderate to high power radio jets emerging through a galactic atmosphere or halo, and eventually crossing a tilted pressure matched interface with a hotter intracluster medium. Before they cross this interface, these simulations aim the jets so that they hit massive clouds within the galactic halo, with densities 10 or more times higher than the ambient atmospheric density, and 100's of times the jet density. Such clouds are set up with radii several times that of the jet, and could correspond to giant molecular cloud complexes or small cannibalized galaxies. We find that powerful jets eventually disperse the clouds, but that, for off-center collisions, non-axisymmetric instabilities are induced in those jets. Those instabilities grow faster for lower Mach number jets, and can produce disruptions substantially sooner than occurred in our earlier work on jets crossing tilted interfaces in the absence of collisions with massive clouds. Such interactions, particularly with weaker jets, could be related to some Compact Steep Spectrum source morphologies. Very weak jets can be effectively halted by reasonably massive clouds, and this may have relevance for the paucity of radio jets in spiral galaxies. The possibility of jets being bent, yet remaining stable, after such collisions is also investigated.

This work was supported by NPACI allocation GSU200 on the Cray T90 and by RPE funds at Georgia State University.

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