AAS Meeting #194 - Chicago, Illinois, May/June 1999
Session 50. High Angular Resolution Science with the NRAO Very Long Baseline Array
Display, Tuesday, June 1, 1999, 10:00am-7:00pm, Southwest Exhibit Hall

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[50.17] Structure of the M87 Jet on Light-week Scales

W. Junor (UNM), J. A. Biretta (STScI)

The elliptical galaxy M87 contains the nearest AGN with a bright radio core. We present new VLBI observations of its nucleus obtained with both global VLBI (including the VLBA) at 7mm, and with Space VLBI using Halca at 6 cm wavelength. The 7mm observations are the highest linear resolution observations yet obtained on a powerful radio galaxy nucleus. Both data sets show the jet is strongly limb-brightened on these scales and there is evidence for sinusoidal structures within the jet, confirming previous results at larger distance from the nucleus. The opening angle of the jet appears to increase significantly near the core, suggesting we are seeing direct evidence of the collimation region itself. These images constrain possible mechanisms for extragalactic jet production and collimation.

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