Volume 431, Number 1, February III 2005
|Page(s)||111 - 125|
|Published online||02 February 2005|
The nature and origin of Seyfert warm absorbers
MSSL, University College London, Holmbury St. Mary, Dorking, Surrey RH5 6NT, England e-mail: email@example.com
Accepted: 18 October 2004
We collate the results of recent high resolution X-ray spectroscopic observations of 23 AGN, and use the resulting information to try to provide answers to some of the main open questions about warm absorbers: where do they originate, what effect do they have on their host galaxies, and what is their importance within the energetics and dynamics of the AGN system as a whole? We find that the warm absorbers of nearby Seyferts and certain QSOs are most likely to originate in outflows from the dusty torus, and that the kinetic luminosity of these outflows accounts for well under 1% of the bolometric luminosities of the AGN. Our analysis supports, however, the view that the relativistic outflows recently observed in two PG quasars have their origin in accretion disc winds, although the energetic importance of these outflows is similar to that of the Seyfert warm absorbers. We find that the observed soft X-ray absorbing ionisation phases fill less than 10% of the available volume. Finally, we show that the amount of matter processed through an AGN outflow system, over the lifetime of the AGN, is probably large enough to have a significant influence on the evolution of the host galaxy and of the AGN itself.
Key words: Galaxies: active / X-rays: galaxies / galaxies: general / galaxies: Seyfert / quasars: absorption lines / techniques: spectroscopic
© ESO, 2005
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