EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 467, Number 2, May IV 2007
Page(s) 501 - 508
Section Extragalactic astronomy
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20066226

A&A 467, 501-508 (2007)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20066226

SWIFT observations of TeV BL Lacertae objects

A. Tramacere1, P. Giommi2, E. Massaro1, 2, M. Perri2, R. Nesci1, S. Colafrancesco3, G. Tagliaferri4, G. Chincarini4, A. Falcone5, D. N. Burrows5, P. Roming5, M. McMath Chester5, and N. Gehrels6

1  Dipartimento di Fisica, Università La Sapienza, Piazzale A. Moro 2, 00185 Roma, Italy
2  ASI Science Data Center, ESRIN, via G. Galilei, 00044 Frascati, Italy
    e-mail: paolo.giommi@asdc.asi.it
3  INAF, Osservatorio Astronomico di Roma, via Frascati 33, Monteporzio Catone, Italy
4  INAF, Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera, via Bianchi 46, 23807 Merate, Italy
5  Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Pennsylvania State University, USA
6  NASA-Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA

(Received 10 August 2006 / Accepted 8 November 2006 )

Context.We present the results of a set of observations of nine TeV detected BL Lac objects performed by the XRT and UVOT detectors on board the Swift satellite between March and December 2005.
Aims.Our main goal is the accurate measurement of the spectral shape of TeV detected BL Lacs. Particular attention was given to the presence of intrinsic spectral curvature in the X-ray band.
Methods.To perform our X-ray spectral analysis we have assumed either a log-parabolic or a simple power-law model.
Results.The X-ray data of many objects in our sample clearly show highly significant spectral curvature. However, in sources with spectral energy distribution peaked at energies lower than ~0.1 keV the X-ray spectrum is steep and generally consistent with a power law. In most of these cases poor statistics did not allow us to obtain tight constraints on the spectral curvature. We have used UVOT observations to verify if X-ray spectra can be extrapolated to lower frequencies and to search for multiple emission components.
Conclusions.The results of our analysis are useful for the study of possible signatures of statistical acceleration processes predicting intrinsically curved spectra and for modelling the SED of BL Lacertae objects up to TeV energies where a corresponding curvature is likely to be present.

Key words: radiation mechanisms: non-thermal -- galaxies: BL Lacertae objects: general -- X-rays: galaxies

© ESO 2007