AAS 201st Meeting, January, 2003
Session 86. Radio Galaxies and Jets
Poster, Wednesday, January 8, 2003, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall AB

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[86.02] VLBA Polarimetry of Radio Galaxies

G.B. Taylor (NRAO), R.T. Zavala (NRAO/NMSU), L.K. Pollack (NRAO/UCB), D.H. Hough (Trinity Univ.), T. Venturi (Istituto di Radioastronomia)

We report on efforts to measure the polarization properties within the central parsecs of radio galaxies using the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) of the NRAO. Two decades of VLBI polarimetry on strong, compact extragalactic sources have led to many advances in our understanding of the physics of the parsec-scale jets in these objects, which are predominantly blazars/BL Lac objects and core-dominated quasars. The parsec-scale jets of radio galaxies have been a more challenging class of objects to detect in full polarization owing to their weaker compact structure and lower fractional polarization. Consequently our knowledge of radio galaxy jets is incomplete, and often based on inferences from the properties of quasar jets. We will report on several avenues of attack to measure polarization in radio galaxies including (1) looking at the bright, nearby sources (e.g. M87 and 3C120); (2) looking at large numbers of sources; and (3) looking deeply at a modest sample of 3CR FRII radio galaxies. Preliminary results indicate that about 20% of radio galaxies have detectable polarization on the parsec-scale. For those few that have been observed and detected with multi-frequency polarimetry, substantial Faraday Rotation Measures (> 1000 rad m-2) are in evidence.

The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is operated by Associated Universities, Inc., under cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: gtaylor@nrao.edu

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34, #4
© 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.