AAS 198th Meeting, June 2001
Session 72. Seyfert Galaxies
Display, Thursday, June 7, 2001, 9:20am-4:00pm, Exhibit Hall

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[72.08] NIR Spectroscopy as a Probe of the Dust Obscuration in Seyferts

J. H. Rhee, J. E. Larkin (University of California, Los Angeles)

We report near-infrared spectroscopic data of Seyfert galaxies obtained using the Gemini twin channel near-infrared camera on the Shane 3m telescope at Lick Observatory. With the unique design of the Gemini camera, full J and K spectra were taken simultaneously through the same slit. This produced a very accurate comparisons of hydrogen recombination line fluxes over a large wavelength range. For our Seyfert 1s, the line ratios of Pa\beta/Br\gamma are not only comparable in both broad and narrow line regions but were also consistent with case B recombination. This confirms that the ratio Pa\beta/Br\gamma is less affected by collisional effects than optical lines and is a good indicator of dust extinction in AGN, even in the broad line region. Seyfert 1 galaxies show little or no extinction in both narrow and broad line regions while Seyfert 2 galaxies show substantial reddening in the narrow line regions. Historically, narrow line regions have been known for dust extinction in both Seyfert 1s and Seyfert 2s, with more extinction to those in Seyfert 2s. We compare our results with recent optical data from the literature to support this conclusion. We will also present CO bandhead measurements of the sample to look for nonstellar contamination and evidence of recent star formation activity.


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