MOJAVE. XVII. Jet Kinematics and Parent Population Properties of Relativistically Beamed Radio-loud Blazars

M. L. Lister*, D. C. Homan, T. Hovatta, K. Kellermann, S. Kiehlmann, Y. Y. Kovalev, W. Max-Moerbeck, A. B. Pushkarev, A. C. S. Readhead, E. Ros, T. Savolainen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)
108 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

We present results from a parsec-scale jet kinematics study of 409 bright radio-loud active galactic nuclei (AGNs) based on 15 GHz Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) data obtained between 1994 August 31 and 2016 December 26 as part of the 2 cm VLBA survey and Monitoring Of Jets in Active galactic nuclei with VLBA Experiments (MOJAVE) programs. We tracked 1744 individual bright features in 382 jets over at least 5 epochs. A majority (59%) of the best-sampled jet features showed evidence of accelerated motion at the >3σ level. Although most features within a jet typically have speeds within ∼40% of a characteristic median value, we identified 55 features in 42 jets that had unusually slow pattern speeds, nearly all of which lie within 4 pc (100 pc deprojected) of the core feature. Our results, combined with other speeds from the literature, indicate a strong correlation between apparent jet speed and synchrotron peak frequency, with the highest jet speeds being found only in low-peaked AGNs. Using Monte Carlo simulations, we find best-fit parent population parameters for a complete sample of 174 quasars above 1.5 Jy at 15 GHz. Acceptable fits are found with a jet population that has a simple unbeamed power-law luminosity function incorporating pure luminosity evolution and a power-law Lorentz factor distribution ranging from 1.25 to 50 with slope -1.4 ± 0.2. The parent jets of the brightest radio quasars have a space density of 261 ± 19 Gpc -3 and unbeamed 15 GHz luminosities above ∼10 24.5 W Hz -1 , consistent with FR II class radio galaxies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number43
Number of pages19
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume874
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Mar 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • BL Lacertae objects: general
  • galaxies: active
  • galaxies: jets
  • galaxies: Seyfert
  • quasars: general
  • radio continuum: galaxies
  • ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI
  • OPTICAL SPECTROSCOPY
  • COSMIC EVOLUTION
  • RAY
  • QUASARS
  • COMPACT
  • SAMPLE
  • REDSHIFT
  • SPECTRUM
  • AGN

Projects

Physics of Black Hole-Powered Jets

Chamani Velasco, W. & Savolainen, T.

01/09/201724/09/2019

Project: Academy of Finland: Other research funding

Equipment

  • Cite this