Large-scale environments of narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxies

E. Järvelä, A. Lähteenmäki, H. Lietzen, A. Poudel, P. Heinämäki, M. Einasto

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Studying large-scale environments of narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLS1) galaxies gives a new perspective on their properties, particularly their radio loudness. The large-scale environment is believed to have an impact on the evolution and intrinsic properties of galaxies, however, NLS1 sources have not been studied in this context before. We have a large and diverse sample of 1341 NLS1 galaxies and three separate environment data sets constructed using Sloan Digital Sky Survey. We use various statistical methods to investigate how the properties of NLS1 galaxies are connected to the large-scale environment, and compare the large-scale environments of NLS1 galaxies with other active galactic nuclei (AGN) classes, for example, other jetted AGN and broad-line Seyfert 1 (BLS1) galaxies, to study how they are related. NLS1 galaxies reside in less dense environments than any of the comparison samples, thus confirming their young age. The average large-scale environment density and environmental distribution of NLS1 sources is clearly different compared to BLS1 galaxies, thus it is improbable that they could be the parent population of NLS1 galaxies and unified by orientation. Within the NLS1 class there is a trend of increasing radio loudness with increasing large-scale environment density, indicating that the large-scale environment affects their intrinsic properties. Our results suggest that the NLS1 class of sources is not homogeneous, and furthermore, that a considerable fraction of them are misclassified. We further support a published proposal to replace the traditional classification to radio-loud, and radio-quiet or radio-silent sources with a division into jetted and non-jetted sources.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberA9
Number of pages16
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Galaxies: active
  • Galaxies: Seyfert
  • Large-scale structure of Universe


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