AAS 204th Meeting, June 2004
Session 44 Active Galaxies
Poster, Tuesday, June 1, 2004, 10:00am-7:00pm, Ballroom

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[44.03] The Central Engines in Narrow-Line Seyfert 1 Galaxies

M.M. De Robertis, C.J. Ryan (York University), S. Virani (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics), A. Laor (Technion), P.C. Dawson (Trent University)

Narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxies (NLS1s) are a sub-class of active galactic nuclei whose emission-line characteristics are similar to Seyfert 1s except that they have relatively narrow permitted emission lines. The accepted model to account for this, based on strong observational evidence, postulates a relatively lower-mass black hole accreting material at a significant fraction of its Eddington limit. To test this hypothesis, we have analyzed high-spatial resolution NIR data obtained at CFHT using adaptive optics. Using the two-dimensional fitting algorithm GALFIT, as well as an empirical technique for removing the nuclear light, galaxy bulge luminosities were determined for a sample of 11 NLS1s to an accuracy of ten percent. Assuming the established relation between the black hole mass and the bulge luminosity holds for this sample, we have determined that the masses of the compact objects at the centers of galaxies in our sample are indeed systematically less than black hole masses in "normal" Seyfert 1s. The mass accretion rates, relative to the Eddington limit, are up to an order of magnitude higher than that for their broad-line counterparts. We also find that only a small fraction of the galaxies show evidence for linear features that could facilitate material inflow, thereby supporting increased accretion rates.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: mmdr@yorku.ca

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