EDP Sciences
Free Access
Volume 402, Number 2, May I 2003
Page(s) 477 - 486
Section Galactic structure and dynamics
DOI https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20030261
Published online 14 April 2003

A&A 402, 477-486 (2003)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20030261

XMM-NEWTON High resolution spectroscopy of NGC 5548

K. C. Steenbrugge1, J. S. Kaastra1, C. P. de Vries1 and R. Edelson2

1  SRON National Institute for Space Research, 3584 CA Utrecht, The Netherlands
2  Department of Physics and Astronomy; University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1562, USA

(Received 21 August 2002 / Accepted 14 February 2003 )

We analyze a 137 ks exposure X-ray spectrum of the Seyfert 1 galaxy NGC 5548 obtained with the XMM-Newton Reflection Grating Spectrometer. Due to the long exposure time, the spectrum is of higher statistical quality than the previous observations of this AGN. Therefore, we detect for the first time in NGC 5548 inner-shell transitions from $\ion{O}{iii}$ to $\ion{O}{vi}$ ions, and the Unresolved Transition Array of M-shell iron. The warm absorber found from this X-ray observation spans three orders of magnitude in ionization parameter. We detect $\ion{O}{iii}$, which is as lowly ionized as the warm absorber detected in the UV band, to $\ion{Fe}{xxiv}$. For $\ion{O}{vi}$ the column density determined from our X-ray data is an order of magnitude larger than the column density measured in previous UV observations. We conclude that there is substantially more low ionized material than previously deduced from UV observations. However, only a few percent of the warm absorber detected in the X-rays is lowly ionized. A 99.9% significant increase in the derived absorbing column density with higher ionization states is observed. The outflow velocities determined from the X-ray absorption lines are consistent with those deduced from the UV lines, evidence, together with the detection of $\ion{O}{vi}$, that the X-ray and UV warm absorber are different manifestations of the same phenomenon. From a simple mass conservation argument, we indicate that our data set is consistent with an outflow with small opening angle formed due to instabilities in the accretion disk. Possible due to uncertainties in the radiative transport mechanism, an apparent deviant iron to oxygen abundance is detected. No strong relativistically broadened emission lines of $\ion{O}{viii}$, $\ion{N}{vii}$ and $\ion{C}{vi}$ were detected.

Key words: galaxies: active -- galaxies: Seyfert -- X-rays: galaxies -- techniques: spectroscopic -- galaxies: individual: NGC 5548

Offprint request: K. C. Steenbrugge, K.C.Steenbrugge@sron.nl

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