AAS 199th meeting, Washington, DC, January 2002
Session 51. Radio Galaxies
Display, Tuesday, January 8, 2002, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall

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[51.03] Preliminary Results from an XMM-Newton Observation of the Nearby Radio Galaxy Centaurus A

S. Vazquez (U Puerto Rico/Harvard-Smithsonian CfA), R.P. Kraft, W.R. Forman, C. Jones, S.S. Murray (Harvard-Smithsonian CfA), M.J. Hardcastle, D.M. Worrall (University of Bristol)

We present preliminary results from a 24ks XMM-Newton observation of the nearby radio galaxy Centaurus A (NGC 5128). Previous X-ray observations of this source have demonstrated its complex, multi-component X-ray morphology. In this poster, we will present images and spectra of X-ray emission from the radio lobes, the hot ISM, and the active nucleus taken with the EPIC instrument. We have detected a bright X-ray enhancement along the edge of the SW radio lobe, and an excess of emission above that expected from the hot ISM in the interior of the lobe. Spectral analysis indicates that this material is considerably hotter than the ISM. We model this material as a thin shell of emission surrounding the radio lobe which is the result of compression and heating of the ISM. We demonstrate that the morphology of this emission is consistent with a shell rotated to our line of sight. No such enhancement is detected around the NE radio lobe. We have also detected an elongated X-ray enhancement beyond the NE lobe that is aligned with the inner jet but which does not appear to be directly related to either the large scale jet or the so-called northern middle lobe. We present radial surface brightness, temperature, and abundance profiles of the hot ISM, and compare these results with those obtained from our previous Chandra observations. We find that there is a small asymmetry in the distribution of the hot ISM around the nucleus. The emission is extended along an axis approximately perpendicular to the NE-SW axis of the radio components. Finally, we present spectra from the active nucleus, which is well described by an absorbed power law model with photon index 1.79, consistent with previous ASCA observations, and a narrow Fe K\alpha line at 6.4 keV.

Research funded by the NSF through the REU (AST-9731923) program, the CXC (NAS8-39073), and the HRC (NAS8-38248).

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