Magnetic Field Structure in the Parsec Scale Jet of 3C 273 from Multifrequency VLBA Observations

T. Savolainen, K. Wiik, E. Valtaoja, M. Tornikoski

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientific


We present first results from a multifrequency VLBA observations of 3C 273 in 2003. The source was observed simultaneously at 5.0, 8.4, 15.3, 22.2, 43.2 and 86.2 GHz, and from this multifrequency data set, spectra of 16 emission features in the parsec scale jet were carefully constructed by using a new model-fitting based method. The measured spectra and sizes of the emission features were used to calculate the magnetic field density and the energy density of the relativistic electrons in the different parts of the parsec scale jet, independent of any equipartition assumption. We measure magnetic field density of an order of 1 Gauss in the core. The magnetic energy density in the core dominates over that of the relativistic electrons, while in the downstream region our data are roughly consistent with an equipartition. A strong gradient in the magnetic field density across the jet width, coincident with a transverse velocity structure at about 1.5 mas from the core, was found: the slower superluminal component B2 on the northern side of the jet has a magnetic field density two orders of magnitude lower than the faster southern components B3 and B4.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationExtragalactic Jets: Theory and Observation from Radio to Gamma Ray
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the conference held 21-24 May, 2007 in Girdwood, Alaska, USA
EditorsTravis Rector, Dave De Young
PublisherAstronomical Society of the Pacific
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-58381-336-2
ISBN (Print)978-1-58381-335-5
Publication statusPublished - 2008
MoE publication typeB3 Non-refereed conference publication

Publication series

NameAstronomical society of the pacific conference series
PublisherAstronomical Society of the Pacific
ISSN (Print)1050-3390


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