Volume 638, June 2020
|Number of page(s)||16|
|Published online||08 June 2020|
The life cycle of radio galaxies in the LOFAR Lockman Hole field
Kapteyn Astronomical Institute, University of Groningen, PO Box 800, 9700 AV Groningen, The Netherlands
2 ASTRON, Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy, Oude Hoogeveensedijk 4, 7991 PD Dwingeloo, The Netherlands
3 Dipartimento di Fisica e Astronomia, Universitá di Bologna, Via P. Gobetti 93/2, 40129 Bologna, Italy
4 INAF – Istituto di Radio Astronomia, Via P. Gobetti 101, 40129 Bologna, Italy
5 Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, PO Box 9513, 2300 RA Leiden, The Netherlands
6 Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Scheinerstr. 1, 81679 Munich, Germany
7 SUPA, Institute for Astronomy, Royal Observatory, Blackford Hill, Edinburgh EH9 3HJ, UK
8 School of Natural Sciences, University of Tasmania, Private Bag 37, Hobart, TAS 7001, Australia
9 Centre for Astrophysics Research, School of Physics, Astronomy and Mathematics, University of Hertfordshire, College Lane, Hatfield AL10 9AB, UK
10 School of Physical Sciences, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA, UK
11 GEPI, Observatoire de Paris, Université PSL, CNRS, 5 place Jules Janssen, 92190 Meudon, France
12 Department of Physics & Electronics, Rhodes University, PO Box 94, Grahamstown 6140, South Africa
Accepted: 30 March 2020
Radio galaxies are known to go through cycles of activity, where phases of apparent quiescence can be followed by repeated activity of the central supermassive black hole. A better understanding of this cycle is crucial for ascertaining the energetic impact that the jets have on the host galaxy, but little is known about it. We used deep LOFAR images at 150 MHz of the Lockman Hole extragalactic field to select a sample of 158 radio sources with sizes > 60″ in different phases of their jet life cycle. Using a variety of criteria (e.g. core prominence combined with low-surface brightness of the extended emission and steep spectrum of the central region) we selected a subsample of candidate restarted radio galaxies representing between 13% and 15% of the 158 sources of the main sample. We compare their properties to the rest of the sample, which consists of remnant candidates and active radio galaxies. Optical identifications and characterisations of the host galaxies indicate similar properties for candidate restarted, remnant, and active radio galaxies, suggesting that they all come from the same parent population. The fraction of restarted radio galaxies is slightly higher with respect to remnants, suggesting that the restarted phase can often follow after a relatively short remnant phase (the duration of the remnant phase being a few times 107 years). This confirms that the remnant and restarted phases are integral parts of the life cycle of massive elliptical galaxies. A preliminary investigation does not suggest a strong dependence of this cycle on the environment surrounding any given galaxy.
Key words: surveys / radio continuum: galaxies / galaxies: active
© ESO 2020
Current usage metrics show cumulative count of Article Views (full-text article views including HTML views, PDF and ePub downloads, according to the available data) and Abstracts Views on Vision4Press platform.
Data correspond to usage on the plateform after 2015. The current usage metrics is available 48-96 hours after online publication and is updated daily on week days.
Initial download of the metrics may take a while.