A&A 400, 95-118 (2003)
K. Nilsson1 - T. Pursimo1 - J. Heidt2 - L. O. Takalo1 - A. Sillanpää1 - W. Brinkmann3
1 - Tuorla Observatory, Väisäläntie 20, 21500 Piikkiö, Finland
2 - Landessternwarte Heidelberg, Königstuhl, 69117 Heidelberg, Germany
3 - Max-Planck-Institut für Extraterrestrische Physik, Giessenbachstrasse, 85740 Garching, Germany
Received 23 August 2002 / Accepted 16 December 2002
We present optical R-band images of 100 BL Lacertae objects in the ROSAT-Green Bank (RGB) sample obtained at the Nordic Optical Telescope (NOT). For 62 objects we could not find any previously published images in the literature, of these 35 are new BL Lacs discovered during the RGB BL Lac survey. We were able to resolve the host galaxy in 62% of the objects. We analyze the host galaxies using a two-dimensional fitting procedure and tabulate the best-fit core magnitude and host galaxy parameters (magnitude, effective radius, ellipticity, position angle and shape parameter ) for each object. With two exceptions, all objects are better fit by a model representing an elliptical galaxy ( ) than by a disk galaxy model ( ). In the two exceptions the disk host fit is only marginally better than the elliptical host fit, however, and we do not find a single clear example of a disk-dominated host galaxy. The host galaxies have an average brightness and average effective radius kpc. Their bulk properties are indistinguishable from normal elliptical and radio galaxies. The median is 0.18, well below the value 0.25 that is normally used to describe ellipticals. However, the difference may be caused by a selection effect due to the dependence of on host galaxy luminosity.
Key words: BL Lacertae objects: general - galaxies: nuclei - galaxies: structure
BL Lacertae objects (BL Lacs) are a subclass of active galactic nuclei characterized by almost featureless optical continuum, high optical polarization () and variability over the whole electromagnetic spectrum. These properties are believed to be caused by a relativistic jet aligned close to the line of sight. Doppler boosting and relativistic beaming enhance the nuclear radiation considerably and make the detection of the host galaxy and the line emission very difficult.
Previous studies (e.g. Abraham et al. 1991; Stickel et al. 1993; Wurtz et al. 1996; Falomo & Kotilainen 1999; Scarpa et al. 2000a; Urry et al. 2000; Pursimo et al. 2002) have shown that BL Lacs lie in the nuclei of luminous ( ) and large ( kpc) elliptical galaxies. Their bulk properties appear to be indistinguishable from those of the host galaxies of Fanaroff-Riley (FR) type I radio sources (Fanaroff & Riley 1974), supporting the unifying view that BL Lacs are FR I radio sources seen almost along the direction of the jet (Urry & Padovani 1995). Further support for the unifying view comes from the fact that the extended radio luminosities and emission line luminosities seem to be similar in both types of objects (see Urry & Padovani 1995).
So far any possible connection between the nuclear properties and the host galaxy properties has remained elusive. Wurtz et al. (1996) found no difference between the host galaxies of X-ray and radio selected BL Lacs. A similar conclusion was reached by Urry et al. (2000), who found no difference between the host galaxies of "red'' and "blue'' (i.e. low frequency peaked and high frequency peaked) BL Lacs in their HST study of 110 objects. On the other hand, the broad emission line AGN studied by Schade et al. (2000) showed a weak but significant correlation between the nuclear brightness and the host galaxy brightness. A similar weak correlation was found for X-ray selected BL Lacs by Falomo & Kotilainen (1999) and for the radio selected 1 Jy BL Lacs by Pursimo et al. (2002), although in both papers it was noted that this correlation may be a result of selection effects, e.g. missing faint nuclei in very luminous hosts.
Since the central black hole is ultimately responsible for the production of nuclear activity, the possibility of a nucleus-host galaxy connection has become more appealing recently with the findings that many global properties of galaxies seem to correlate with the central black hole mass. Firstly, Magorrian et al. (1998) found that the kinematic data of 36 nearby galaxies indicate the presence of a massive dark object in the center of the galaxies and that the mass of the dark object correlates with the bulge luminosity and mass. Recent studies of this relationship obtain (McLure & Dunlop 2002; Merritt & Ferrarese 2001). Secondly, the central velocity dispersion of the bulge has been found to exhibit a tight correlation with the central black hole mass (Ferrarese & Merritt 2000, Gebhardt et al. 2000). Falomo et al. (2002) have recently applied this correlation to 7 BL Lacs and found the black hole masses to be in the range of - . Furthermore, Wu et al. (2002) estimated for 92 AGN with elliptical hosts using the fundamental plane and found a range of masses of - . Finally, Graham et al. (2001) discovered a correlation between the bulge light profile and the central black hole mass that appears to be even tighter than the correlation with central velocity dispersion. Fitting Sérsic (1968) 1/n light profiles to the bulge light distributions they found with a 0.32 dex scatter in .
Given the above relations it seems that an accurate analysis of the host galaxy light profile might provide a way to estimate the central black hole masses in BL Lacs and to study the dependence of nuclear parameters on the host galaxy parameters. This kind of analysis can also be used to test the unified scheme, the relation between BL Lacs and nonactive galaxies and the cosmological evolution of the BL Lac population. With these goals in mind we started an observing program of several BL Lac samples at the Nordic Optical Telescope (NOT). Part of these observations have already been published (Heidt et al. 1999a; Nilsson et al. 1999a; Pursimo et al. 2002). Here we present the images and fitting results for the RGB sample. A more detailed statistical analysis will follow in a subsequent paper.
Throughout the paper we assume H0 = 50 km s-1 Mpc-1 and q0 = 0.0 when computing absolute parameters.
The ROSAT-Green Bank (RGB) sample of BL Lacertae objects was formed by Laurent-Muehleisen et al. (1999, hereafter LM99). The ROSAT All-Sky Survey (Voges 1992) was first correlated with the 5 GHz Green Bank radio survey (Gregory et al. 1996) by selecting sources with arcsec (Brinkmann et al. 1996). This initial catalog of 2127 sources was then observed at the VLA for accurate radio positions, which produced a list of 1567 reliable RASS-VLA matches. Optical identification was made using the Automatic Plate Measuring (APM) scans of the Palomar Observatory Sky Survey (POSS) I plates (971 reliable RASS-VLA-POSS I matches were found) after which optical spectroscopy was used to classify the brightest (O 18.5) objects (Laurent-Muehleisen et al. 1998, hereafter LM98). Of the 594 classified sources 53 turned out to be BL Lacs, of which 38 were new discoveries. Combining these BL Lacs with previously known BL Lacs in the RGB catalog yielded the final RGB BL Lac catalog of 127 objects.
The catalog is triply limited (radio, optical, X-ray) but not complete, although a complete subsample of 33 objects was drawn from the sample (LM99). The flux limits in the three different bands depend on various factors: the radio limit is 15 mJy for declinations above 30 and 24 mJy below. The X-ray limit is set by the RASS to a few times 10-13 erg cm-2 s-1 in the 0.1 - 2.4 keV band depending on spectral shape and amount of galactic absorption. The optical limit is less well defined. The complete sample has the limit O < 18.0 mag, but the rest of the sample has no clearly defined optical limit. Given the above limits, the completeness of the sample is hard to assess (LM99).
In the color-color diagram the RGB BL Lacs cover a larger area than previous samples made using a single selection frequency. Given this wide scatter in broadband nuclear properties the RGB catalog provides an excellent sample to study the nucleus - host galaxy connection. Another interesting feature of the RGB sample is the inclusion of borderline objects, termed as BL Lac "candidates'' in LM99. These objects do not adhere to the rather strict definition used by Stocke et al. (1991), namely that all emission lines must have Å and the spectral drop at the Ca H&K lines near 4000 Å (Br ) is smaller than 25%. In addition to objects satisfying these criteria LM99 included also objects with 25% < Br < 40% as candidate BL Lacs. The candidate objects were also allowed to have Å if it was smaller than a Br -dependent limit prescribed by Marchã et al. (1996). The latter criterion is still somewhat arbitrary, but it is less dependent of the dilution of nuclear light by the host galaxy and thus includes objects with optically fainter nuclei with BL Lac type characteristics. Additionally, any object denoted as candidate by previous authors or objects whose classification was based on a low resolution (80 Å) spectrum was termed as candidate. There are altogether 27 candidates in the RGB BL Lac sample, 21 of which were observed during this study.
One unfortunate deficit of the RGB BL Lac sample is that the redshifts are known for only 50% of the sample and some redshifts are highly uncertain. Since the determination of the redshift requires detection of nuclear emission lines or absorption lines of the host galaxy, it is possible that objects with strong emission lines (for a BL Lac object) and/or bright host galaxies are preferred among the objects with known z. Given the possibility of these biases one should thus be careful when interpreting the results.
The observations were carried out at the Nordic Optical Telescope (NOT) on La Palma, Spain during several observing runs in 1995-2002. We used three different instruments, whose characteristics are listed in Table 1. HiRAC and StanCam are direct imaging cameras with field of view of and , respectively, whereas ALFOSC is a focal reducer giving a field of view of .
We obtained (Cousins) R-band images for 100 objects, and additional B, V or I-band images for 40 objects. Here we discuss the R-band images only. The individual exposures of the BL Lacs were kept short enough as not to saturate the nucleus. For bright objects (R < 15) we obtained several exposures of 15-150 s, which were then combined. For fainter objects a few exposures of 300-900 s were sufficient. The total exposure times vary from 90 to 6000 s depending on the relative prominence of the host galaxy. Table 3 gives the log of observations. Columns 1 and 2 give the RGB name and the name in other catalogs, Col. 3 indicates whether the object is a BL Lac candidate in LM98, Col. 4 whether the object was a new BL Lac in LM98, Col. 5 gives the galactic extinction in the R-band from Schlegel et al. (1998), obtained through NED, Col. 6 the observing date, Col. 7 the instrument, Col. 8 the total integration time, Col. 9 the seeing and Col. 10 gives references to previous observations that have been published since 1990.
We have already published data for 14 BL Lac objects in Table 3. Pursimo et al. (2002) analyzed the host galaxies of 1 Jy BL Lacs. Of the 9 objects common to this study 8 are re-analyzed here with our 2-dimensional decomposition procedure. We excluded 0721+713 from this study due to the fact that no suitable PSF stars were available in the frame. Images of 1745+398 and 1806+468 have been published before by Nilsson et al. (1997, 1999b), but no host galaxy analysis was made. The images and fitting results for 1104+382, 1442+120, 1653+397, 1743+195 and 2039+523 are reproduced here from our previous studies for completeness (Heidt et al. 1999a, 1999b; Nilsson et al. 1999a). We have indicated in Table 3 the objects for which we have published data before with the reference to the original publication.
The images were reduced in a standard way by subtracting the bias, dividing by twilight flat-fields and removing the cosmic ray hits using IRAF procedures. For ALFOSC we used flat-fields obtained at different position angles of the instrument to remove the background nonuniformity caused by scattered light. Generally a better than 1% uniformity of the sky background over the entire field was achieved. The photometric calibration was made by observing several photometric standard stars in Landolt (1992) during the night. When the weather conditions were not photometric we used calibrated comparison stars in the same field as the object (Fiorucci & Tosti 1996; Fiorucci et al. 1998; Villata et al. 1998).
It is well known that an accurate determination of the PSF is crucial to the nucleus/host galaxy separation, especially for marginally resolved objects. The best results are obtained by using observed stars in the same field as the BL Lac under study. In this way one can circumvent problems associated with changing seeing conditions and/or tracking errors. However, aberrations in the imaging system can introduce PSF changes over the field of view and thus degrade the results.
We made an examination of the PSF shape (FWHM, ellipticity and PA) over the field of all three instruments. This examination revealed that in HiRAC and StanCam the PSF is very stable over the field of view. In ALFOSC, however, the PSF shape is changing considerably: in typical frames the FWHM changes 7%, the ellipticity by 0.04 and the position angle more than 90 degrees over the field of view. These changes are caused by the re-imaging optics of ALFOSC that introduce a curved focal plane and astigmatism (Rasmussen 1996; Andersen, priv. comm.).
We investigated whether the PSF changes could be modeled such that they could be used in our simulations (Sect. 4.3). We decided to concentrate on the lowest order aberrations that cause the change of FWHM, and PA over the field. The star images contain also higher order aberrations (e.g. coma) but to model these would complicate the task considerably with little gain since the low-order aberrations usually dominate. ALFOSC produces also ghost images that may contribute to the PSF variability, but their brightness is very low (<0.05% of peak intensity).
We experimented with different ways to model the PSF and ended up with
a model that consists of two parts, an atmospheric part and an
aberration part. The atmospheric part is modeled with an azimuthally
symmetric Moffat profile described by three parameters, the magnitude,
and FWHM. This part represents the atmospheric smearing
and it is assumed to be constant over the field. The aberration part
is described via the 6 lowest order Zernike polynomials
k = 1...6, of which the first 3 terms Z1..3 (the "piston'', tip
and tilt terms, respectively) have no effect on the PSF shape. The
Z4-term is associated with defocus and Z5 and Z6 with
astigmatism. We first compute the phase error
at the pupil
In Fig. 1 we show two examples of the results obtained with this fitting procedure. Each circle/line pair corresponds to a star in the two particular BL Lac fields shown here as an example. Since the NOT is an alt-az telescope, the alignment of the telescope optics changes with respect to the instrument from object to object and each field gives slightly different results. The two cases in Fig. 1 are typical, however, and illustrate the difference of PSF variability in HiRAC and ALFOSC.
|Figure 1: Two examples of the PSF variability over the field of view in HiRAC (upper panel) and ALFOSC (lower panel). Each symbol corresponds to a star in the field. The diameter of the symbol is proportional to the fitted a4 (defocus) coefficient. The direction and length of the lines are proportional to the a5 and a6 (astigmatism) coefficients. Note the difference in PSF variations across the field of view of the two instruments.|
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Our analysis of the PSF changes across the field of view confirms our
initial finding that the PSF variations are more severe in
ALFOSC than in HiRAC and StanCam. The focal planes of HiRAC and
StanCam are flat but slightly tilted with the direction of the tilt
changing from object to object. In ALFOSC the focal plane is curved
with possible tapering in the edges, and relatively constant from
object to object. It is qualitatively similar to the focal plane map
given in Rasmussen (1996). The average peak-to-peak
variation in a4 is 1.7, which corresponds to a 0.54
phase error or
This procedure works reasonably well when the aberrations are roughly constant, i.e. when the observations have been made during a short interval and/or when the instrument has not rotated strongly. Occasionally, bad results are obtained even though the optical alignment should have been stable during the exposures. These may be cases where tracking errors or higher order aberrations contribute significantly to the PSF shape. It was also found that a good S/N is required for optimal results and thus the noise in a4 - a6 is higher in fields populated mostly by faint stars.
The host galaxy fitting procedure is described in detail in Nilsson et
al. (1999a). A 2-dimensional model is fitted to the observed
minimization using a Levenberg-Marquardt loop. The
model consists of two components, the BL Lac core and the host
galaxy. The core is parametrized by its position (,
whereas the host galaxy is parametrized by position
), total magnitude ,
position angle PA and shape parameter (equal to 1/n in the Sérsic (1968) model). The surface
brightness of the galaxy is obtained from
The model is convolved with the PSF determined by averaging 2-3 stars in the field, that were comparable in brightness to the BL Lac. In a few cases bright enough stars were not available, which resulted in a lower S/N PSF. This may have caused a failure to detect a weak host galaxy or resulted in less accurate host galaxy parameters in some cases. However, our error simulations (Sect. 5) take into account the effect of the noisy PSF, so cases where this effect might be significant can be recognized. We also tried to improve the PSF using our modeling of the PSF changes across the field in the previous section. In principle, if sufficiently many stars in the field could be modeled, one could predict the shape of the PSF at the object's location. Tests on several fields showed that the PSF can be improved when the exposures have been made over a short time period, i.e. when the optical aberrations are almost constant, and when sufficient number of stars (15-20) are available in the field. Since these conditions are not always met, we decided not to correct the PSF in order to treat all objects in the same way.
Before fitting, the background level was estimated by averaging measurements made in rectangular areas around the BL Lac and subtracted. In cases where a background gradient was present a low-order surface was fit to the background pixels and subtracted. All overlapping objects were masked out prior to fitting. In some cases we iterated between fitting the BL Lac and a nearby object and subtracting either of the objects before fitting the other. Sometimes it was not possible to completely mask a nearby source because it extended over the BL Lac core. We note in Sect. 5.2 the cases where we suspect that nearby sources have affected the results. The fit was limited to a circular region with such a radius that the minimum surface brightness of the object was 3-5 times higher than the uncertainty of the background level, (typically mag/sq arcsec at the outer radius).
The amount of information obtainable of the host galaxies depends on the distance of the object and on the nuclear dominance , both of which vary considerably over the sample. The minimum we wanted to achieve is to get an estimate of the magnitude and size of the host galaxy. Therefore we made two types of fits depending on the relative brightness of the host galaxy. When the host galaxy was reasonably strong compared to the nucleus, we fitted three galaxy models with (de Vaucouleurs profile), (exponential profile) and as a free parameter. The total number of free parameters was 9 or 10. If the host galaxy was very weak (more than 2 mag fainter than the nucleus), we fitted only two models ( and 1.0) keeping the core and host galaxy position fixed and = PA = 0. The number of free parameters was three (, and ) in these cases. There were 7 such cases in the sample. The effective radii obtained with these two methods are not directly comparable, but they can be made such by multiplying the effective radii of the first type fits by .
We have made simulations to test the modeling algorithm and its sensitivity to different noise sources, including photon and readout noise, PSF variability and background determination error. We made 14 simulation runs corresponding to different contributions of the above noise sources. In each run we created six sets of 30 simulated images of an adopted "standard'' BL Lac + host galaxy (elliptical, MR = -23.7 and kpc). The six sets corresponded to two cases of nuclear brightness, and and three redshifts z = 0.15, 0.3 and 0.5. We added the effect of galactic extinction ( AR = 0.1 was assumed), K-correction and passive evolution to the apparent magnitudes of the host galaxy. All simulated images corresponded to a 900 s exposure with the HiRAC at 0 7 seeing and a sky background of 21.5 mag/sq arcsec.
Each simulated image was constructed as follows: first a noise-free core + host galaxy image was made. Then a4 - a6 in Eq. (1) were drawn from an uniform distribution and the corresponding PSF was created, after which the model was convolved with this PSF. Then photon and readout noise plus a small offset from a zero-mean Gaussian distribution that represents the sky determination error were added to the simulated image. Prior to the fitting the defocus coefficient a4 was changed by a small amount and a second PSF was created. Photon and readout noise were added to this second PSF, after which it was used as the PSF model in the fit. Each simulated image was thus convolved with a different PSF and fitted with a another PSF that differed from the first PSF with respect to the defocus coefficient a4. This simple approach produced residuals that closely resemble the "quadrupole-like'' residuals seen in the data (see e.g. 0929+502 in Fig. 10). For the simulated fits we used the same procedure as for the real data (Sect. 4.2). After each fit the mean values and standard deviations we logged.
In the noiseless case the program found the correct parameters to a high accuracy. As expected, the more noise was added the higher the scatter in the fitted parameters became. The most significant finding was that noise in the PSF biases the results if the host galaxy is apparently small (i.e. at z > 0.3). One obtains too small and too faint host galaxies from the fits when using a low S/N PSF star. To avoid this bias one should use a PSF star that is 1 to 2 magnitudes brighter than the object or, alternatively, average several stars in the field. Noise in the BL Lac image also biases the results in a similar way, but in this case the bias is <10% for and <0.05 mag for at for an exposure of 900 s. Well-resolved sources (z = 0.15) are virtually free from the above biases. PSF or background determination errors increase the scatter in parameter distributions, but do not bias the average results.
The results of the host galaxy fits are given in Tables 4 and 5. Table 4 gives the fit results for the de Vaucouleurs model and for the unresolved objects. Table 5 gives the results for the free model. As explained above, the free model was fitted only to objects that were subjectively judged to be resolved well enough (55 objects).
The errors of the fitted parameters were estimated via simulations. For each object we created 30-50 simulated images that corresponded to the best-fitting parameters and performed the fits in a way similar to the actual fits. To the simulated images we added photon and readout noise, background uncertainty and PSF noise in a way similar to the test simulations (Sect. 4.3). The amount of defocus needed to introduce the PSF errors was determined by examining the residuals of the actual fits and adjusting the defocus to match the observed residuals. It is clear that this simple approach does not take into account all elements of the PSF variability, but in most cases the residuals are very similar to the residuals seen in the actual data. The residuals are more complex in cases where the exposures have been taken over the course of several hours or during different nights. In these cases the defocus was adjusted to obtain the right amplitude of residuals although their exact shape is not correct.
The errors in Tables 4 and 5 give the standard deviation of each parameter in the simulations. To the magnitude errors we have added in square the error of photometric calibration, which is 0.03-0.05 mag in most cases. Although we have included most noise sources into our simulations, the errors should still be treated as lower limits, since they do not include systematic errors. The latter may arise e.g. when a de Vaucouleurs model does not adequately describe the surface brightness distribution of the host galaxy (and in many host galaxies it clearly does not).
The columns in Table 4 give:
(1) Object name in the RGB list.
(3) Resolved or unresolved? Via simulations we determined that the fitting program converges either towards or when the host galaxy is below the noise level. Any object producing this kind of result is denoted as "unresolved'' in Table 4. For the rest we require that for the object to be resolved, where comes from the error simulations. Given that the error bars are lower limits we decided to use this rather strict limit.
(4) R-band magnitude of the BL Lac nucleus. For unresolved objects this comes from a fit with a core component only. The magnitudes are observed magnitudes with no corrections applied.
(5) R-band magnitude of the host galaxy. These are, again, observed magnitudes with no corrections applied.
(6) Effective (half-light) radius of the host galaxy in arcsec along the major axis.
(7) Surface brightness at the effective radius of the host galaxy in mag/sq arcsec.
(8) Ellipticity of the host galaxy. A dash indicates that the ellipticity was held constant (0.0) during the fit.
(9) Position angle of the host galaxy, measured anticlockwise from the north. A dash indicates that the PA was held constant (0.0) during the fit.
(10) Reduced chi squared of the fit.
(11) The ratio between the of the exponential model ( ) and the of the de Vaucouleurs model ( ).
(12) This column is marked with a Y if a new host galaxy detection has been made in this paper.
The same parameters for the free model are given in Table 5 in addition to the best-fitting in Col. 8.
In Fig. 2 we show the 1-dim. radial profiles of the 37 objects where we have made a new host galaxy detection. The profiles were extracted from the 2-dim. images using the ellipse task in IRAF. In addition to the observed points (marked with asterisks) we show the seeing-convolved core + host galaxy model (solid line), host galaxy model (dashed line) and the core model (dotted line). In Fig. 10 we show four examples of BL Lac images before and after subtracting the best-fitting 2-dim. model. The field size, lowest contour level (in mag/sq arcsec) and the host galaxy model used in the subtraction are given below each image. Contour interval is 1 mag/sq arcsec. In Fig. 11 we show similar images of four interesting objects.
Table 6 gives the intrinsic parameters of the host galaxies for objects with known redshift. The meaning of the Cols. is:
(1) RGB name.
(2) The K-correction in the R-band from Fukugita et al. (1995).
(3) Core absolute magnitude for the de Vaucouleurs model. For unresolved objects the core magnitude comes from a fit with the core component only. The magnitudes have been corrected for galactic absorption, but no K-correction has been applied (i.e. we have assumed a power law spectrum of the form ).
(4) Host galaxy absolute magnitude for the de Vaucouleurs model. The magnitudes have been corrected for galactic absorption and a K-correction from Fukugita et al. (1995) has been applied.
(5) Host galaxy effective radius in kpc. The values have been multiplied by , where is the host galaxy ellipticity.
(6)-(8) Same as (3)-(5), but for the free model.
|Figure 2: Radial profiles of the new host galaxy detections. The x-axis shows the major axis distance from the nucleus in arcsec and the y-axis the R-band surface brightness in mag arcsec-2. Asterisks mark the observed points, the solid line the core + host galaxy model, dashed line the host galaxy model and the dotted line the core model. The used in the host galaxy model is also given, except when a de Vaucoulerus model ( ) has been used.|
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|Figure 2: Continued.|
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There are 5 objects in the sample that have a spectroscopically measured redshift, but no host galaxy was detected. We have estimated an upper limit for their host galaxy luminosity using sets of simulated BL Lac images. Each set consisted of 30 simulations and the brightness of the host galaxy was changed by 0.3 mag between the sets. In all sets we used kpc (the average value of the whole sample) and for the host galaxy. The core magnitude was obtained from the fits with a core component only. We fitted the 30 simulated images with a core + host galaxy model and computed the average fitted effective radius and the rms scatter for each simulation set. We then plotted / against the host galaxy magnitude and the point where this curve fell below / was adopted as the upper limit for the host galaxy magnitude. This upper limit and the corresponding upper limit for the host galaxy luminosity are given in Tables 4 and 6, respectively.
In Fig. 3 we compare the fitted host galaxy parameters (magnitude and effective radius) to those found in the literature. We found 26 objects common in three studies. All have used a de Vaucouleurs model for the host galaxy. Two of the studies (Falomo & Kotilainen 1999; hereafter FK99 and Pursimo et al. 2002; hereafter P02) have obtained their data with the NOT, the P02 data are the same as used in this study. Any differences between our results and the P02 results should thus reflect differences in the analysis method. The third dataset comes from the HST study of Scarpa et al. (2000a; hereafter SU00). All comparison sets have been analyzed with the same 1-dim analysis package, whereas we have used a 2-dim method. To facilitate the comparison we have multiplied our effective radii by .
|Figure 3: The comparison of the fitted a) magnitude and b) effective radius with previous results (this work - comparison work). Filled triangles: Falomo & Kotilainen (1999); open circles: Scarpa et al. (2000a); filled circles: Pursimo et al. (2002).|
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For the host galaxy magnitudes we do not find any systematic differences (Fig. 3a). The average difference between our magnitudes and the comparison magnitudes is mag with a rms scatter of 0.23 mag. The latter is clearly larger than most of the quoted error bars, which is most likely due to systematic errors not accounted for in the error analyses. The average difference to the P02, who used the same data as we did, is mag (6 data points) with a 0.09 mag rms scatter. The effective radius seems to be less well determined, especially for large , as can be seen in 3b. For objects with arcsec the rms scatter is 1.5 arcsec, i.e. 50% in most of the sources. For large host galaxies ( arcsec) a systematic difference is seen with respect to the HST data, which seem to indicate systematically smaller galaxies than our ground-based images.
The reason for these differences lies probably in the difficulty of
accurately determining the scale length in the presence of a bright
nucleus. One source of discrepancy could be that host galaxies do not
always follow closely the de Vaucouleurs law. If one tries to fit a de
Vaucouleurs model to a host galaxy that deviates from such law,
different analysis methods may produce different results. We
correlated the difference of
in Fig. 3b
but did not find an increasing difference of
with increasing deviation from
as might be
expected if the above effect were strong. It was also noted by P02,
that the fitted effective radius depends on the outer radius of
the fit region, which might contribute to the scatter.
0007+472: This object is unresolved, but our upper limit for the host galaxy luminosity ( MR > -22.4) indicates that the host galaxy should have been easily detected at z = 0.280 (see also Fig. 4) . The redshift is from Kock et al. (1996), who report two possible absorption features (G-band and NaD) at in a "partially reduced spectrum''. The redshift clearly needs to be checked.
0035+598: This object consists of two point sources separated by 1.6 arcsec (Scarpa et al. 1999a, FK99). Of these, the eastern object (object B in Scarpa et al. 1999a) is the likely BL Lac candidate. Gravitational lensing seems to be ruled out by the color difference of the two components. FK99 found the object resolved but noted the possibility of contaminating light from a nearby bright star. Our fit for this object was made by iterating between the object and the nearby companion and subtracting either of the objects before fitting the other. We find both objects to be unresolved and subtracting both of them leaves no significant residuals, except the faint galaxy (galaxy G in Scarpa et al. 1999a) 1.4 arcsec south of the BL Lac.
0040+408: This BL Lac candidate is located towards M 31. The background is peppered with stars of M 31 and a correct determination of the background is impossible. Thus we did not attempt to fit a host galaxy model to this object. Subtraction of a point source reveals a faint object 0.9 arcsec away at PA . It is not clear whether the nearby companion belongs to M 31 or is associated with the BL Lac object.
0109+182: Bauer et al. (2000) give z = 0.145 for this object. A weak nebulosity is observed after subtracting the core (Fig. 10). This nebulosity corresponds to a host galaxy with and arcsec. The error in the effective radius does not satisfy our criterion for a resolved object, thus this object is denoted unresolved in Table 4. With the above values the host galaxy would be rather faint ( MR = -22.0) and small ( kpc).
0250+172: Bauer et al. (2000) give z = 1.10 for this BL Lac. The object is clearly resolved, and at z = 1.10 the host galaxy would be exceedingly bright ( MR < -29.0) and large ( kpc). Thus the redshift is most likely too high. There is a faint (R = 22.0) object 0.9 arcsec away from the nucleus at PA 90. We could not determine if this object is resolved or not, but it could be a distant star-forming galaxy giving rise to the high redshift in Bauer et al. (2000).
0314+247: A dust lane is visible crossing the host galaxy SE of the nucleus. A second, fainter dust lane is visible south of the nucleus. In the log( )- projection of the fundamental plane (Fig. 9) this object lies below the general trend, probably due to the absorption by dust in the host galaxy.
0326+024: Falomo (1996) noted the two nearby companions roughly west of the nucleus. The outer one seems to be severely distorted, possibly due to interaction with the BL Lac host galaxy. It could also consist of two overlapping galaxies.
0416+010: This BL Lac has been previously imaged extensively (see Table 3). The host galaxy parameters have been determined by 7 studies with the host magnitude and effective radius ranging from 17.45 to 17.80 and from 0.8 to 6.1 arcsec, respectively. Our values (17.73 and 2.9 arcsec) lie within this range.
0424+006: This object was found to be resolved by Abraham et al. (1991) and Falomo (1996) and unresolved by Wright et al. (1998b). We find the object unresolved, which may be due to the fact that the nucleus was very bright (R = 13.7) during our observations.
0505+072: Bauer et al. (2000) give z = 0.0272, but they note that the spectrum is of poor quality. At this redshift the host galaxy would be very faint ( MR = -18.3) and small ( kpc). The redshift probably needs to be checked.
0650+250: As in all previous studies, this object remains unresolved. FK99 note that the tentative redshift 0.203 would lead to a relatively faint host galaxy.
0757+099: All previous authors find this object barely resolved. Falomo (1996) gives R = 18.9 and arcsec for the host galaxy and SU00 R = 19.2 and arcsec. Our results indicate a slightly brighter (R = 18.55) and smaller ( arcsec) host galaxy. This object has a tentative redshift z = 0.66, but this would lead to a very bright host galaxy (SU00). The galaxy 14 arcsec NE of 0757+099 has a redshift z = 0.270 (Pesce et al. 1995). At this redshift our results would indicate MR = -23.2, and kpc.
|RGB||Other name||C||N||AR||Date||Instr.1||Exp.||FWHM||Prev. obs.|
|RGB||Other name||C||N||AR||Date||Instr.1||Exp.||FWHM||Prev. obs.|
1 A = ALFOSC, S = StanCam, H = HiRAC.
2 Data published before, reanalysis is made in this paper.
3 Reference to the original publication.
References : 1. Falomo et al. (1990); 2. Abraham et al. (1991); 3. Falomo & Tanzi (1991); 4. McHardy et al. (1992); 5. Romanishin (1992); 6. Kotilainen et al. (1993); 7. Stickel et al. (1993); 8. Kotilainen & Ward (1994); 9. Benítez et al. (1996); 10. Falomo (1996); 11. Wurtz et al. (1996); 12. Falomo et al. (1997); 13. Gladders et al. (1997); 14. Jannuzi et al. (1997); 15. Nilsson et al. (1997); 16. Yanny et al. (1997); 17. Kotilainen et al. (1998); 18. Wright et al. (1998b); 19. Wright et al. (1998a); 20. Falomo & Kotilainen (1999); 21. Heidt et al. (1999a); 22. Heidt et al. (1999b); 23. Heidt et al. (1999c); 24. Martel et al. (1999); 25. Nilsson et al. (1999a); 26. Nilsson et al. (1999b); 27. Scarpa et al. (1999a); 28. Scarpa et al. (1999b); 29. Urry et al. (1999); 30. Falomo et al. (2000); 31. Gonzáles-Serrano & Carballo (2000); 32. Gorham et al. (2000); 33. Jansen et al. (2000); 34. Scarpa et al. (2000a); 35. Scarpa et al. (2000b); 36. Urry et al. (2000); 37. Pursimo et al. (2002).
0854+441: A weak nebulosity is seen SE of the nucleus after point source subtraction. This nebulosity could be due to PSF subtraction errors.
0854+201: This object is one of the most studied in the sample, yet the host galaxy parameters are still poorly determined. SU00 found 0854+201 to be unresolved. P02 found the object marginally resolved using the same dataset as in the present paper and a 1-dim. analysis method. The best-fitting host galaxy parameters corresponded to R = 18.9 and arcsec. The object remains unresolved with the 2-dim. analysis method used in this study. We derive an upper limit MR> -24.0 for the host galaxy. A weak nebulosity is seen around the nucleus after PSF subtraction extending a bit further towards S and SE. No redshift information is available for the close companion at 3.6 arcsec distance and PA . Our optical spectra obtained at the William Herschel Telescope (WHT) show that the diffuse galaxy 10 arcsec away at PA has a narrow emission line at 7200 Å (Nilsson et al. 1995).
0915+295: Abraham et al. (1991) found the object unresolved. A faint nebulosity is seen SW of the nucleus after PSF subtraction (Fig. 11). We cannot determine if this nebulosity is due to an intervening galaxy or a nearby companion. The fits have been made under the assumption that it is a companion and the SW part of the object was masked out from the fit. However, an equally good fit can be achieved assuming a decentered host. In this case the host galaxy would have R = 16.02 and arcsec with a 0.2 arcsec decentering between the nucleus and the host. Higher resolution images are clearly needed to resolve the issue.
0928+747: This is one of the highest redshift objects resolved in this study (z = 0.638). Our results agree well with the those obtained with the HST (SU00).
1104+382: This object is discussed in more detail by Nilsson et al. (1999a). The bright companion galaxy was masked from the fit, but its outer parts may still be affecting the results. Gorham et al. (2000) find the companion to be a spiral with an unresolved nucleus.
1136+676: The host galaxy is clearly elongated towards a nearby galaxy, possibly due to interaction with it and the ellipticity of the host galaxy increases monotonically from 2 to 16 arcsec distance. Due to this increase our constant ellipticity model underestimates the flux at large distances from the nucleus (Fig. 2).
1136+701: The bright star (R = 15.16) 6.3 arcsec away from the nucleus at PA 174 was iteratively removed before final fitting.
1149+246: The redshift (z = 0.402) is from Beckmann et al. (2002, priv. comm.).
1217+301: The nearby companion galaxy SW of the nucleus may affect the fit results.
1221+282: There is a companion galaxy ( ) SW of the nucleus. The companion appears distorted and a weak bridge of emission extends towards the BL Lac nucleus from it. The bright nucleus made the determination of host galaxy parameters difficult, hence the large error in .
1310+323: This is the highest redshift object in the sample (z = 0.996). We have a very deep exposure (6000 s) taken under good seeing conditions (0.9 arcsec), yet no sign of the host galaxy is seen. Urry et al. (1999) found the object also unresolved in their deep HST exposure. Stickel et al. (1993) noted that the outer isophotes are extended more to the west than to the east. There is a very faint galaxy ( ) at 3.8 arcsec distance and PA that could be the cause of the isophote asymmetry.
1419+543: This is one of the two objects in the sample for which a formally better fit is obtained when using a disk model ( ) than when using the de Vaucouleurs model ( ). It has also the highest fitted (0.57) of the sample. Previous authors have alternatively described 1419+543 as a disk galaxy (Abraham et al. 1991; Wurtz et al. 1996) or an elliptical galaxy (SU00, P02). Stickel et al. (1993) noted that the outer parts of the host (r > 5 arcsec) follow closely, whereas in the inner part there is an additional component that showed up after subtraction of the elliptical model. This object is discussed in more detail in Sect. 6.
1427+541: After subtracting the model a pattern resembling spiral arms is seen (Fig. 11). This BL Lac candidate could thus be hosted by a galaxy with a considerable disk component. The fitted is also among the highest (0.32) in the sample. However, the nucleus is very weak, and an almost equally good fit can be obtained without any nuclear component. The 4000 Å break is also very close to the limit (39%) set by LM99. It is therefore not clear if this object really has a BL Lac nucleus.
1442+541: This object was discussed in more detail in Heidt et al. (1999a). There is a very bright companion galaxy only 2.5 arcsec away whose physical association with 1442+120 is confirmed by spectroscopy (Heidt, priv. comm.). Scarpa et al. (1999a) found a pointlike object 0.29 arcsec East of the BL Lac nucleus and discuss a possible lensing scenario. We do not detect this point source due to much lower resolution.
1516+293: This object has several bright companions that could not be masked out completely, and thus may affect the fit.
1517+654: Scarpa et al. (1999a) found three arclets and two bright spots surrounding the object, indicative of gravitational lensing. We barely detect the spots, and with a priori knowledge of their location also very faint trails of the arcs can be seen. The object remains unresolved as in FK99 and Scarpa et al. (1999a).
1540+147: Our result agrees well with the recent HST results for this high-redshift (z = 0.605) BL Lac. Urry et al. (1999) found R = 19.0 and arcsec for the host galaxy and SU00 R = 20.2 and arcsec, whereas we find R = 19.9and arcsec. P02 found R = 19.9 and arcsec using the same data as in this study. This object is one of the two objects for which an exponential host galaxy profile gives a better fit than a de Vaucouleurs profile. The is almost the same for both models, however. Urry et al. (1999) also found 1540+147 equally well fitted by the two models
1626+352: The core plus a de Vaucouleurs fit for this object gives and arcsec for the host galaxy. Because of the errors in this object is denoted as unresolved in Table 4. At redshift z = 0.500 the above values would indicate MR = -24.1and kpc.
1653+397: This object is discussed in more detail in Nilsson et al. (1999a). Fairly large residuals are seen in the inner part of the object after subtracting the best-fitting free model. Gonzáles-Serrano & Carballo (2000) report 1653+397 to have disky isophotes.
1719+177: Abraham et al. (1991) found the object resolved, but could no determine the host galaxy type. We find the object unresolved, but our exposure time is relatively short (360 s).
1743+195: See Heidt et al. (1999b) for a detailed discussion of the object. The two nearby companions are at the same redshift as the BL Lac object.
1745+398: Nilsson et al. (1999b) discuss the arclike structure 8 arcsec SE of the BL Lac nucleus (z = 0.267) and show it to be a lensed image of a background galaxy at z = 1.057. Assuming that the arc lies on the Einstein ring one obtains and inside a radius of 40 kpc. Like in 1136+676, the ellipticity of the host galaxy increases outwards and our model underestimates the flux at large distances from the nucleus.
1748+700: This distant BL Lac (z = 0.770) was not resolved by the HST (SU00) and it remains unresolved in the deep NOT exposure (P02, this study).
1750+470: The bright nearby companion may be affecting the fit.
1806+698: Nilsson et al. (1997) discovered the optical jet roughly SW of the nucleus. This jet has also been imaged with HST (Martel et al. 1999; Scarpa et al. 1999b). There is a bridge of emission connecting the host galaxy of 1806+698 to a pair of companion galaxies SW of the BL Lac. The radio structure of 1806+698 is atypical, resembling more an FR II radio galaxy than an FR I radio galaxy (Wrobel & Lind 1990).
|0110+418||0.096||R||18.62 0.05||15.57 0.04||6.6 0.1||22.70 0.05||0.29||62||0.99||1.72||Y|
|0115+253||-||R||18.02 0.04||18.63 0.04||2.9 0.2||24.06 0.16||0.22||173||1.17||1.12||Y|
|0123+343||0.272||R||17.98 0.03||18.20 0.03||1.7 0.1||22.65 0.10||0.08||138||1.05||1.19||-|
|0152+017||0.080||R||16.80 0.05||14.65 0.05||5.1 0.1||21.40 0.05||0.15||52||1.29||5.02||Y|
|0153+712||0.022||R||18.23 0.06||13.33 0.05||17.4 0.4||22.87 0.06||0.05||120||1.06||2.59||Y|
|0202+088||-||R||18.98 0.05||19.90 0.09||2.9 0.5||25.45 0.32||0.13||20||1.20||1.04||Y|
|0214+517||0.049||R||17.05 0.04||14.54 0.04||7.7 0.1||22.18 0.04||0.15||130||1.10||2.26||Y|
|0227+020||-||R||18.86 0.05||19.56 0.06||1.6 0.2||23.85 0.22||0.10||177||1.18||1.03||Y|
|0250+172||-||R||17.99 0.06||17.00 0.06||5.7 0.1||23.86 0.06||0.25||176||1.34||1.91||Y|
|0314+247||0.054||R||18.59 0.04||16.15 0.04||5.8 0.1||23.01 0.04||0.27||71||1.99||1.70||Y|
|0326+024||0.147||R||16.86 0.03||17.05 0.03||2.7 0.1||22.33 0.10||0.22||50||1.28||2.19||-|
|0416+010||0.287||R||17.18 0.05||17.73 0.05||2.9 0.1||23.01 0.10||0.32||80||1.18||1.51||-|
|0505+042||-||R||17.42 0.03||18.05 0.04||3.8 0.2||24.03 0.12||0.25||4||1.28||1.48||Y|
|0654+427||0.126||R||17.55 0.04||15.98 0.04||4.8 0.1||22.65 0.05||0.11||146||1.41||2.96||Y|
|0656+426||0.059||R||17.26 0.05||13.99 0.05||10.7 0.1||22.20 0.05||0.26||120||1.40||3.71||Y|
|0710+591||0.125||R||17.70 0.03||15.81 0.03||5.1 0.1||22.44 0.04||0.24||30||1.53||3.99||-|
|0757+099||-||R||16.32 0.03||18.55 0.04||1.3 0.2||22.51 0.27||-||-||1.81||1.22||-|
|0806+595||-||R||17.13 0.05||17.14 0.05||5.8 0.2||24.10 0.07||0.20||29||1.38||1.83||Y|
|0831+044||0.180||R||15.62 0.03||17.05 0.04||3.1 0.3||22.44 0.20||0.34||143||2.58||1.46||-|
|0916+526||0.190||R||18.42 0.05||16.21 0.05||5.0 0.1||22.90 0.05||0.16||17||1.11||2.55||Y|
|0928+747||0.638||R||20.25 0.07||20.12 0.06||1.3 0.2||23.74 0.32||0.27||73||1.00||1.07||-|
|1000+225||0.419||R||18.74 0.05||18.63 0.05||3.3 0.2||24.42 0.11||0.16||27||1.13||1.29||Y|
|1012+424||0.364||R||17.90 0.03||18.13 0.04||3.8 0.2||24.36 0.11||0.05||125||1.20||1.29||Y|
|1015+494||0.200||R||16.23 0.03||17.09 0.03||2.4 0.1||22.04 0.13||0.27||41||1.99||1.98||-|
|1053+494||0.140||R||17.79 0.07||15.33 0.07||7.1 0.1||22.66 0.08||0.25||69||1.09||1.69||Y|
|1104+382||0.031||R||12.91 0.05||12.99 0.05||11.0 0.3||21.33 0.06||0.21||105||6.02||2.66||-|
|1136+676||0.136||R||17.91 0.10||16.10 0.10||3.3 0.1||21.93 0.10||0.13||130||1.35||3.36||Y|
|1136+701||0.046||R||15.79 0.02||14.17 0.02||7.0 0.1||21.73 0.03||0.05||11||1.14||1.80||-|
|1149+246||0.402||R||19.28 0.04||18.74 0.03||1.1 0.1||22.18 0.10||0.13||158||1.20||1.42||Y|
|1217+301||0.130||R||14.84 0.05||16.24 0.05||4.5 0.7||22.72 0.34||0.15||18||2.43||1.44||-|
|1221+282||0.102||R||14.26 0.10||16.60 0.10||2.1 0.4||21.36 0.40||0.20||61||2.92||1.62||-|
|1341+399||0.163||R||18.36 0.07||16.02 0.07||6.8 0.2||23.15 0.08||0.32||84||1.07||1.77||Y|
|1415+485||-||R||18.51 0.04||20.09 0.07||1.2 0.2||23.87 0.45||-||-||1.08||1.00||Y|
|1419+543||0.151||R||15.51 0.02||16.18 0.02||4.5 0.2||22.32 0.07||0.38||146||3.58||0.94||-|
|1427+541||0.105||R||19.21 0.02||14.95 0.02||8.8 0.1||22.91 0.02||0.13||154||1.40||2.03||Y|
|1428+426||0.130||R||17.34 0.02||16.10 0.02||3.7 0.1||21.83 0.03||0.37||120||1.08||1.51||-|
|1442+120||0.162||R||17.56 0.02||17.18 0.02||2.3 0.1||22.16 0.04||0.18||170||1.60||2.30||-|
|1516+293||0.130||R||18.95 0.02||15.73 0.02||4.8 0.1||22.36 0.03||0.14||65||1.09||3.25||Y|
|1532+302||0.064||R||18.22 0.02||15.01 0.02||5.1 0.1||21.89 0.02||0.04||59||1.36||6.06||Y|
|1534+372||0.143||R||18.21 0.02||17.18 0.02||2.0 0.1||21.98 0.04||0.08||86||1.08||1.55||Y|
|1540+147||0.605||R||17.46 0.02||19.94 0.05||3.0 0.5||25.71 0.32||-||-||16.1||0.99||-|
|1554+201||0.222||R||18.03 0.06||16.82 0.05||2.8 0.1||22.27 0.11||0.15||148||1.09||1.06||-|
|1644+457||0.220||R||18.72 0.06||17.04 0.06||2.8 0.2||22.53 0.13||0.12||146||1.05||1.11||Y|
|1653+397||0.033||R||14.16 0.04||12.60 0.04||13.0 0.2||21.26 0.04||0.24||171||5.24||6.37||-|
|1704+716||-||R||17.77 0.03||19.06 0.04||1.6 0.1||22.84 0.24||0.44||18||1.10||1.01||Y|
|1728+502||0.055||R||16.56 0.03||15.50 0.02||3.7 0.1||21.60 0.06||0.11||38||1.15||1.10||-|
|1742+597||-||R||17.06 0.03||19.33 0.06||1.6 0.2||23.74 0.38||-||-||1.19||1.01||Y|
|1743+195||0.083||R||16.35 0.02||14.47 0.03||11.6 0.3||22.71 0.04||0.35||48||1.76||6.99||-|
|1745+398||0.267||R||18.38 0.03||16.64 0.04||6.0 0.1||23.68 0.04||0.20||159||1.27||2.02||Y|
|1750+470||0.160||R||19.30 0.04||16.60 0.04||4.4 0.1||22.96 0.06||0.20||5||1.14||1.60||Y|
|1806+698||0.051||R||14.89 0.03||14.22 0.03||8.6 0.1||22.18 0.04||0.09||64||1.97||4.87||-|
|1808+468||-||R||17.61 0.03||19.97 0.08||1.2 0.2||23.75 0.59||-||-||1.13||1.01||Y|
|1811+442||-||R||21.19 0.06||18.24 0.04||3.6 0.1||24.18 0.07||0.19||10||1.10||1.18||Y|
|1813+317||0.117||R||16.89 0.05||17.92 0.05||2.9 0.3||23.26 0.22||0.28||0||1.27||1.12||Y|
|1824+568||0.664||R||18.07 0.04||20.02 0.06||2.5 0.2||25.40 0.19||-||-||1.15||1.05||-|
|1838+480||-||R||16.29 0.02||19.12 0.05||1.0 0.1||22.51 0.33||-||-||1.62||1.04||Y|
|1841+591||0.530||R||19.63 0.02||19.04 0.03||2.1 0.1||23.77 0.13||0.22||82||1.10||1.07||Y|
|2039+523||0.053||R||19.30 0.03||15.86 0.03||9.0 0.2||23.79 0.04||0.19||120||1.17||3.49||-|
|2145+073||0.237||R||18.18 0.06||17.83 0.06||2.6 0.2||22.91 0.14||0.30||54||1.02||1.06||-|
|2202+422||0.069||R||14.93 0.07||15.04 0.07||8.2 0.3||22.39 0.09||0.43||33||4.88||8.59||-|
|2250+384||0.119||R||17.14 0.02||16.04 0.03||5.7 0.2||23.06 0.05||0.13||160||1.08||1.61||Y|
|2322+346||0.098||R||17.99 0.05||15.30 0.05||6.7 0.1||22.51 0.06||0.25||65||1.03||1.94||Y|
1824+568: This is the highest redshift (z = 0.664) resolved object in the sample. We use the same data as P02 and our results agree well with each other ( , arcsec and , arcsec in P02 and this study, respectively). The two HST studies (Urry et al. 1999, SU00) find similar host magnitudes, but smaller host galaxy (1 arcsec).
1838+480: The nearby bright companion may be affecting the fit.
1848+427: The object remains unresolved, but faint emission is seen between the object and a nearby companion.
2039+523: The redshift (z = 0.053) is from our own observations at the Calar Alto 2.2 m telescope (Rector et al., in preparation). The nearby star was iteratively removed before final fitting. SU00 report a faint companion galaxy at 0.6 arcsec distance and PA 135.
2202+422: The analysis of this object is complicated by the presence of numerous overlapping stars and galaxies, a nearby bright star, and diffuse galactic emission. Most of the Eastern side of the object was masked from the fit. There are higher than usual residuals in the inner part of the object, which could be due to an inner component or an artifact due to insufficient masking of the overlapping objects.
2319+161: Like 0035+598 this object consists of two point sources close to each other (Fig. 11). An astrometric solution to 17 APM stars in the field pinpoints the radio coordinates to the NW object. The accuracy of this solution is 0.5 arcsec. The nearby object is 3.3 arcsec away at PA 124. The spectra obtained at the Calar Alto 2.2 m telescope (Rector et al., in preparation) show the companion to be a galactic M class star.
In this section we discuss briefly the general properties of the objects. A more detailed analysis will be given in a forthcoming paper.
In Fig. 4 we show the dependence of the host galaxy absolute magnitudes on redshift for the de Vaucouleurs model. Candidate objects are denoted with open symbols and confirmed BL Lacs with filled symbols. The solid line gives the behavior of an object with R = 19.0assuming AR = 0.1, the K-correction from Fukugita et al. (1995) and no evolution. The R = 19 line seems to determine the bottom envelope of the data pretty well indicating an optical cutoff for the host galaxies at roughly this magnitude. As a result of this cutoff an increase of average absolute magnitude with redshift is seen.
|Figure 4: The dependence of the host galaxy luminosity on redshift. Open symbols refer to BL Lac candidates, filled symbols to confirmed BL Lacs. Arrows mark the objects for which only an upper limit could be determined. The line gives the absolute magnitude of an object with R = 19.0.|
|Open with DEXTER|
|0110+418||18.86 0.05||15.48 0.05||7.6 0.2||22.99 0.06||0.29||62||0.21 0.01||0.98||Y|
|0115+253||18.05 0.04||18.36 0.11||4.2 0.5||24.83 0.22||0.22||173||0.16 0.03||1.17||Y|
|0123+343||18.10 0.04||17.88 0.07||2.0 0.2||23.07 0.16||0.08||137||0.12 0.02||1.04||-|
|0152+017||16.92 0.05||14.56 0.05||5.7 0.1||21.64 0.05||0.15||51||0.21 0.01||1.24||Y|
|0153+712||19.28 0.09||13.03 0.07||29.1 1.8||23.85 0.13||0.05||119||0.18 0.01||1.01||Y|
|0202+088||18.98 0.05||19.83 0.19||3.3 1.2||25.73 0.53||0.13||19||0.22 0.07||1.20||Y|
|0214+517||17.58 0.06||14.08 0.06||17.4 1.0||23.88 0.15||0.15||132||0.12 0.01||1.00||Y|
|0227+020||18.86 0.06||19.58 0.12||1.6 0.2||23.85 0.23||0.10||176||0.26 0.06||1.18||Y|
|0250+172||17.98 0.06||17.02 0.06||5.6 0.3||23.82 0.12||0.25||176||0.26 0.01||1.34||Y|
|0314+247||18.36 0.04||16.39 0.04||4.2 0.1||22.34 0.05||0.25||71||0.40 0.01||1.79||Y|
|0326+024||17.01 0.04||16.60 0.07||3.9 0.3||23.17 0.18||0.21||50||0.10 0.01||1.15||-|
|0416+010||17.25 0.05||17.39 0.09||4.2 0.3||23.85 0.19||0.33||80||0.12 0.02||1.15||-|
|0505+042||17.45 0.03||17.65 0.06||7.1 0.5||25.31 0.16||0.26||4||0.13 0.01||1.22||Y|
|0654+427||17.91 0.05||15.50 0.06||10.3 0.7||24.25 0.17||0.12||146||0.11 0.01||1.16||Y|
|0656+426||18.58 0.08||13.56 0.05||22.9 0.7||23.75 0.08||0.27||119||0.13 0.01||1.10||Y|
|0710+591||18.09 0.05||15.46 0.04||8.4 0.4||23.52 0.10||0.24||31||0.13 0.01||1.28||-|
|0806+595||17.17 0.05||16.74 0.06||11.2 0.6||25.44 0.13||0.20||29||0.14 0.01||1.33||Y|
|0831+044||15.68 0.04||16.37 0.09||6.5 1.0||24.16 0.38||0.33||143||0.06 0.01||2.34||-|
|0916+526||18.63 0.06||16.03 0.05||6.5 0.2||23.48 0.08||0.15||17||0.18 0.01||1.07||Y|
|0928+747||20.30 0.09||19.99 0.10||1.4 0.2||23.90 0.32||0.28||73||0.19 0.04||1.00||-|
|1000+225||18.82 0.05||18.25 0.09||5.8 0.5||25.61 0.21||0.16||28||0.13 0.02||1.11||Y|
|1012+424||17.96 0.03||17.64 0.09||8.6 1.1||26.08 0.33||0.05||129||0.11 0.02||1.15||Y|
|1015+494||16.37 0.04||16.40 0.08||4.0 0.5||23.21 0.33||0.28||42||0.06 0.01||1.63||-|
|1053+494||18.28 0.09||14.98 0.08||12.4 0.7||23.83 0.14||0.25||69||0.14 0.01||1.04||Y|
|1104+382||12.89 0.05||13.18 0.05||8.2 0.1||20.69 0.06||0.21||105||0.36 0.02||5.61||-|
|1136+676||18.21 0.11||15.89 0.10||4.1 0.1||22.43 0.12||0.13||130||0.16 0.01||1.24||Y|
|1136+701||15.90 0.03||14.04 0.03||8.3 0.3||22.12 0.07||0.04||15||0.19 0.01||1.12||-|
|1149+246||19.52 0.05||18.51 0.05||1.1 0.1||22.41 0.13||0.11||159||0.11 0.01||1.11||Y|
|1217+301||14.94 0.06||15.34 0.31||19.4 6.2||26.04 1.02||0.11||13||0.04 0.06||1.92||-|
|1221+282||14.29 0.10||16.02 0.22||3.4 0.4||22.42 0.26||0.21||59||0.08 0.06||2.60||-|
|1341+399||18.47 0.07||15.88 0.08||8.4 0.4||23.59 0.12||0.32||84||0.20 0.01||1.06||Y|
|1419+543||15.47 0.02||16.51 0.02||3.7 0.1||21.80 0.02||0.38||146||0.57 0.04||2.31||-|
|1427+541||18.91 0.02||15.11 0.03||6.8 0.2||22.40 0.06||0.12||154||0.32 0.01||1.36||Y|
|1428+426||17.37 0.02||16.06 0.03||3.8 0.1||21.89 0.05||0.37||120||0.23 0.01||1.08||-|
|1442+120||17.59 0.02||17.09 0.03||2.6 0.1||22.43 0.04||0.18||171||0.21 0.01||1.59||-|
|1516+293||19.11 0.04||15.66 0.03||5.3 0.2||22.57 0.08||0.14||65||0.22 0.01||1.08||Y|
|1532+302||18.87 0.04||14.75 0.02||7.8 0.3||22.79 0.08||0.04||60||0.16 0.01||1.11||Y|
|1534+372||18.33 0.02||17.04 0.03||2.2 0.1||22.22 0.08||0.08||87||0.18 0.01||1.07||Y|
|1554+201||18.03 0.08||16.83 0.08||2.8 0.1||22.28 0.11||0.15||148||0.25 0.04||1.09||-|
|1644+457||18.74 0.08||17.01 0.08||2.9 0.2||22.63 0.18||0.11||147||0.23 0.03||1.05||Y|
|1653+397||14.45 0.04||11.94 0.06||45.0 4.2||23.78 0.20||0.24||171||0.10 0.01||1.50||-|
|1704+716||17.75 0.04||19.21 0.13||1.6 0.1||22.82 0.18||0.43||17||0.36 0.12||1.10||Y|
|1728+502||16.62 0.04||15.46 0.04||3.8 0.1||21.69 0.06||0.11||38||0.22 0.02||1.15||-|
|1743+195||16.49 0.02||14.07 0.06||23.4 2.2||24.11 0.18||0.35||48||0.15 0.01||1.32||-|
|1745+398||18.56 0.03||16.14 0.06||14.4 1.0||25.41 0.16||0.21||158||0.13 0.01||1.17||Y|
|1750+470||19.45 0.04||16.51 0.05||5.1 0.3||23.28 0.12||0.20||4||0.21 0.01||1.13||Y|
|1806+698||15.00 0.03||13.68 0.05||22.0 1.6||24.11 0.16||0.09||63||0.11 0.01||1.29||-|
|1811+442||21.65 0.16||18.02 0.07||5.0 0.5||24.85 0.19||0.19||11||0.18 0.02||1.08||Y|
|1813+317||16.92 0.05||17.63 0.11||4.0 0.5||23.96 0.27||0.29||0||0.14 0.03||1.26||Y|
|1841+591||19.61 0.03||19.11 0.10||2.0 0.2||23.66 0.23||0.22||82||0.29 0.06||1.10||Y|
|2039+523||19.55 0.03||15.65 0.04||12.5 0.7||24.40 0.10||0.20||120||0.20 0.01||1.11||-|
|2145+073||18.19 0.07||17.82 0.10||2.6 0.2||22.92 0.19||0.30||54||0.24 0.04||1.02||-|
|2202+422||14.95 0.07||14.88 0.09||10.4 0.8||22.89 0.08||0.43||34||0.19 0.02||4.40||-|
|2250+384||17.17 0.02||15.92 0.05||6.8 0.4||23.41 0.12||0.13||159||0.21 0.01||1.08||Y|
|2322+346||18.20 0.06||15.15 0.05||8.4 0.3||22.99 0.08||0.25||65||0.19 0.01||1.02||Y|
At z < 0.2 the nuclei of the BL Lac candidates seem to have systematically fainter nuclei than the confirmed BL Lacs. The average nuclear brightness is for the candidate objects compared to of the certain BL Lacs. This difference is not surprising since the candidate objects have mostly 25% <Br indicative of weak nuclear activity and/or low nucleus/host galaxy flux ratios. The candidate nuclei are also fainter than the nuclei of the 1 Jy BL Lacs studied in P02 that are all brighter than MR = -22.0. However, in the EMSS sample studied by FK99, many nuclei have -22 <MR< -20, i.e. the candidate nuclei are not unprecedentedly faint. The nuclear brightnesses of the candidates and certain BL Lacs seem to form a homogeneous distribution with no gap between them. This further supports the view that the candidates represent the low-luminosity end of the RGB BL Lacs.
As Table 4 shows, our model fits favor almost exclusively the de Vaucouleurs model ( ) over the exponential disk model ( ). Only in two cases (1419+543 and 1540+147) among the 62 resolved objects one obtains a smaller for the disk model than for the elliptical model. In 1540+147 the difference is small and the overall fit is not very good ( for the disk model and 16.1 for the elliptical model). Thus we do not believe that the difference is significant.
In 1419+543 there is evidence of an inner component in the host galaxy (see individual notes on the objects). In addition to the core + bulge fits we also fitted a core + bulge + disk model to this object. The disk component was defined by four parameters, magnitude ( ), effective radius ( ), ellipticity ( ) and position angle (PA ). We used for the disk component and the disk and bulge were assumed to be cocentric. The total number of free parameters was thus 14 (3 for the core, 7 for the bulge and 4 for the disk). In Fig. 6 we show the two models and the corresponding model components. With the core + bulge + disk model we obtain a slightly better fit ( ) than with the core + bulge model ( ). The disk is fainter than the bulge ( and ), but larger ( kpc and kpc) and its ellipticity is higher ( and ). For the bulge we obtain .
|Figure 5: The redshift distribution of the resolved objects in the RGB sample (upper panel). For comparison the redshift distribution of resolved objects in Urry et al. (2000; middle panel) and Falomo & Kotilainen (1999; lower panel) are shown.|
|Open with DEXTER|
|de Vaucouleurs model||free model|
|0110+418||0.09||-20.47 0.05||-23.61 0.04||13.6 0.2||-20.23 0.05||-23.70 0.05||15.6 0.4||Y|
|0123+343||0.35||-23.52 0.03||-23.65 0.03||9.1 0.5||-23.40 0.04||-23.97 0.07||10.6 1.1||-|
|0152+017||0.07||-21.78 0.05||-24.00 0.05||9.7 0.2||-21.66 0.05||-24.09 0.05||10.9 0.2||Y|
|0153+712||0.03||-19.03 0.06||-23.95 0.05||10.5 0.2||-17.98 0.09||-24.25 0.07||17.6 1.1||Y|
|0214+517||0.05||-20.81 0.04||-23.37 0.04||9.4 0.1||-20.28 0.06||-23.83 0.06||21.3 1.2||Y|
|0314+247||0.05||-19.47 0.04||-21.96 0.04||7.2 0.1||-19.70 0.04||-21.72 0.04||5.3 0.1||Y|
|0326+024||0.15||-23.32 0.03||-23.28 0.03||8.3 0.3||-23.17 0.04||-23.73 0.07||12.1 0.9||-|
|0416+010||0.38||-24.61 0.05||-24.44 0.05||13.8 0.5||-24.54 0.05||-24.78 0.09||19.8 1.4||-|
|0654+427||0.12||-22.23 0.04||-23.93 0.04||13.9 0.3||-21.87 0.05||-24.41 0.06||29.7 2.0||Y|
|0656+426||0.06||-20.85 0.05||-24.17 0.05||14.5 0.1||-19.53 0.08||-24.60 0.05||30.8 0.9||Y|
|0710+591||0.12||-21.91 0.03||-23.92 0.03||13.6 0.3||-21.52 0.05||-24.27 0.04||22.3 1.1||-|
|0831+044||0.20||-24.82 0.03||-23.59 0.04||10.3 1.0||-24.76 0.04||-24.27 0.09||21.8 3.4||-|
|0916+526||0.21||-22.10 0.05||-24.52 0.05||19.6 0.4||-21.89 0.06||-24.70 0.05||25.6 0.8||Y|
|0928+747||1.38||-23.35 0.07||-24.86 0.06||10.1 1.6||-23.30 0.09||-24.99 0.10||10.8 1.5||-|
|1000+225||0.70||-23.75 0.05||-24.56 0.05||22.1 1.3||-23.67 0.05||-24.94 0.09||38.9 3.4||Y|
|1012+424||0.55||-24.20 0.03||-24.52 0.04||24.9 1.3||-24.14 0.03||-25.01 0.09||56.3 7.2||Y|
|1015+494||0.23||-24.40 0.03||-23.77 0.03||9.1 0.4||-24.26 0.04||-24.46 0.08||15.1 1.9||-|
|1053+494||0.14||-22.04 0.07||-24.64 0.07||20.6 0.3||-21.55 0.09||-24.99 0.08||36.0 2.0||Y|
|1104+382||0.03||-23.51 0.05||-23.46 0.05||8.4 0.2||-23.53 0.05||-23.27 0.05||6.3 0.1||-|
|1136+676||0.14||-21.81 0.10||-23.76 0.10||10.1 0.3||-21.51 0.11||-23.97 0.10||12.5 0.3||Y|
|1136+701||0.05||-21.50 0.02||-23.17 0.02||8.5 0.1||-21.39 0.03||-23.30 0.03||10.2 0.4||-|
|1149+246||0.65||-23.11 0.04||-24.30 0.03||7.3 0.7||-22.87 0.05||-24.53 0.05||7.4 0.7||Y|
|1217+301||0.13||-24.82 0.05||-23.54 0.05||13.1 2.0||-24.72 0.06||-24.44 0.31||57.7 18.4||-|
|1221+282||0.10||-24.84 0.10||-22.60 0.10||4.8 0.9||-24.81 0.10||-23.18 0.22||7.8 0.9||-|
|1341+399||0.17||-21.78 0.07||-24.29 0.07||21.2 0.6||-21.67 0.07||-24.43 0.08||26.2 1.2||Y|
|1419+543||0.15||-24.47 0.02||-23.96 0.02||12.6 0.6||-24.51 0.02||-23.63 0.02||10.4 0.3||-|
|1427+541||0.10||-19.93 0.02||-24.29 0.02||21.6 0.2||-20.23 0.02||-24.13 0.03||16.8 0.5||Y|
|1428+426||0.13||-22.29 0.02||-23.65 0.02||9.3 0.3||-22.26 0.02||-23.69 0.03||9.5 0.3||-|
|1442+120||0.17||-22.63 0.02||-23.18 0.02||7.9 0.3||-22.60 0.02||-23.27 0.03||8.9 0.3||-|
|1516+293||0.13||-20.72 0.02||-24.06 0.02||14.0 0.3||-20.56 0.04||-24.13 0.03||15.5 0.6||Y|
|1532+302||0.06||-19.85 0.02||-23.12 0.02||8.5 0.2||-19.20 0.04||-23.38 0.02||13.0 0.5||Y|
|1534+372||0.14||-21.66 0.02||-22.83 0.02||6.5 0.3||-21.54 0.02||-22.97 0.03||7.2 0.3||Y|
|1540+147||1.27||-26.06 0.02||-24.85 0.05||26.7 4.4||-||-||-||-|
|1554+201||0.26||-22.95 0.06||-24.42 0.05||12.4 0.4||-22.95 0.08||-24.41 0.08||12.4 0.4||-|
|1644+457||0.26||-22.15 0.06||-24.09 0.06||12.5 0.9||-22.13 0.08||-24.12 0.08||13.0 0.9||Y|
|1653+397||0.04||-22.41 0.04||-24.00 0.04||10.4 0.2||-22.12 0.04||-24.66 0.06||35.8 3.3||-|
|1728+502||0.05||-21.17 0.03||-22.28 0.02||5.2 0.1||-21.11 0.04||-22.32 0.04||5.3 0.1||-|
|1743+195||0.08||-22.46 0.02||-24.42 0.03||20.0 0.5||-22.32 0.02||-24.82 0.06||40.4 3.8||-|
|1745+398||0.34||-23.02 0.03||-25.11 0.04||29.4 0.5||-22.84 0.03||-25.61 0.06||70.1 4.9||Y|
|1750+470||0.17||-20.87 0.04||-23.73 0.04||14.7 0.3||-20.72 0.04||-23.82 0.05||17.0 1.0||Y|
|1806+698||0.05||-22.70 0.03||-23.42 0.03||11.3 0.1||-22.59 0.03||-23.96 0.05||29.0 2.1||-|
|1813+317||0.11||-22.59 0.05||-21.68 0.05||7.1 0.7||-22.56 0.05||-21.97 0.11||9.7 1.2||Y|
|1824+568||1.47||-25.71 0.04||-25.23 0.06||23.2 1.9||-||-||-||-|
|1841+591||1.02||-23.51 0.02||-25.12 0.03||15.4 0.7||-23.53 0.03||-25.05 0.10||14.7 1.5||Y|
|2039+523||0.05||-20.71 0.03||-24.20 0.03||11.6 0.3||-20.46 0.03||-24.41 0.04||15.9 0.9||-|
|2145+073||0.29||-23.03 0.06||-23.66 0.06||11.0 0.8||-23.02 0.07||-23.67 0.10||11.0 0.8||-|
|2202+422||0.06||-24.11 0.07||-24.06 0.07||11.2 0.4||-24.09 0.07||-24.22 0.09||14.3 1.1||-|
|2250+384||0.12||-22.65 0.02||-23.87 0.03||15.6 0.5||-22.62 0.02||-23.99 0.05||18.6 1.1||Y|
|2322+346||0.09||-21.28 0.05||-24.06 0.05||14.4 0.2||-21.07 0.06||-24.21 0.05||18.0 0.6||Y|
We have not determined for each object whether the de Vaucouleurs
model is significantly (in a statistical sense) better than the disk
model, but the
Table 4 and the fact that not a single clear case
of a disk host was detected strongly support the view that BL Lac
objects are almost exclusively found in elliptical galaxies. Urry et al. (1999) found that for 58 objects among the 72 that were
resolved the de Vaucouleurs model was preferred over the disk model
with a high statistical significance and concluded that at most 8% of
the BL Lacs are hosted by disk type galaxies.
|Figure 6: Surface brightness analysis of 1419+543. The upper panels show the observed surface brightness (asterisks) and two models (solid lines): the core+ bulge model (left) and the core + bulge + disk model (right). The core model (dotted line), bulge model (dashed line) and disk model(dot-dashed line) are also shown. The lower panels show the ellipticity and b4 Fourier coefficient. Asterisks mark observer values and filled symbols the values after subtraction of the disk component.|
|Open with DEXTER|
In Fig. 7 we show the distribution of the fitted values for the 55 objects that were judged to be well enough resolved for such a fit. The median is 0.18, well below typically used to describe elliptical galaxy profiles. It is well known, that not all ellipticals follow strictly the intensity profile (e.g. Caon et al. 1993). It is therefore interesting to ask whether the deviation in Fig. 7 is significant. This is currently very difficult to answer given the uncertainties in the determination of . There is also a selection effect at work here: only objects that were judged well enough resolved were fit with the free model, which means that bright and/or large host galaxies are favored. Caon et al. (1993) have shown that in normal E and S0 galaxies brighter and larger galaxies have also higher Sérsic n, i.e. smaller (= 1/n). We also see a correlation of this type in our data (Fig. 8), albeit with high scatter. The median size of the free fitted galaxies is 15.5 kpc which, applying the relationship log n = 0.28 + 0.52 log in Caon et al. (1993), would translate to , i.e. significantly lower than 0.25.
|Figure 7: The distribution of values.|
|Open with DEXTER|
|Figure 8: The dependence of on effective radius. The solid line gives the relationship in Caon et al. (1993) for normal E and S0 galaxies.|
|Open with DEXTER|
|Figure 9: The Kormendy relation for the host galaxies when the de Vaucouleurs model is used. The solid line gives the fitted slope for the data, the dashed line gives the relationship for normal ellipticals from Hamabe & Kormendy (1987).|
|Open with DEXTER|
Secondly, there is the possibility that the companion galaxies that are commonly seen around these BL Lacs could somehow decrease . Lower means that there is more light in the outer parts of the galaxy. This light could partially be light from nearby companions that we cannot mask out completely. To study the effect of the companions we made an examination of the BL Lac images and divided them into two groups: those that seemed to possess at least one relatively bright companion inside the fitting radius and those that did not. Of the 55 objects fitted with the free model 23 were judged to belong to the first group and 32 to the second. We found the median to be 0.18 in both groups, i.e. the same as for the whole sample. This simple test thus suggests, that we are able to mask the companions sufficiently to not seriously affect the fitted . A better solution than just mask the companions might be to fit and remove them iteratively. Recently McLure et al. (1999) fitted free models to a sample of radio galaxies, radio-quiet quasars and radio-loud quasars observed with the HST. They found the values to be concentrated around . The luminosities and sizes of the host galaxies studied by McLure et al. (1999) are similar to ours, so the difference in the average values of remains unexplained.
|Figure 10: Examples of objects in the RGB BL Lac sample. The upper panel for each object shows the observed image and the lower panel the model subtracted image. North is up and east is to the left in all images. Between the panels (from left to right) the field of view in arcsec, surface brightness of the lowest contour (mag/sq arcsec) and the galaxy model used in the subtraction are given. Contour interval is 1 mag/sq arcsec. If no galaxy model is given, only a point source has been subtracted from the observed image. The upper two objects are unresolved leaving either no residuals or PSF residuals due to the different focus of the object and the PSF star (see the text) after PSF subtraction. The lower left panel shows an object with faint emission around the nucleus, but this object is still unresolved according to the criteria used in this paper. The lower right panel shows a clearly resolved object.|
|Open with DEXTER|
|Figure 11: Examples of unusual objects : in 0915+295 a very nearby companion or an intervening galaxy is seen, 1419+253 has unusual residuals, 1427+541 has spiral arms and 2319+161 has a nearby companion point source, shown to be an M-star by spectroscopy.|
|Open with DEXTER|
In Fig. 9 we show the projection of the fundamental plane (the Kormendy relation) for the resolved BL Lacs with known redshifts when the de Vaucouleurs model is used for the host galaxy. The values of in Tables 4 and 5 have been corrected for the galactic extinction, K-correction and the cosmological surface brightness dimming. For the de Vaucouleurs model (Fig. 9) the best-fitting line is given by = (18.85 0.33) + (2.48 0.27) log( ) and for the free model = (17.50 0.49) + (3.91 0.38) log( ). The former relationship is similar to the relationship in Hamabe & Kormendy (1987), who fitted the de Vaucouleurs model to a sample of nonactive elliptical and early-type disk galaxies. The slope for the free model is somewhat steeper, but within the range found for other BL Lacs samples. FK99 found log( ), Urry et al. (2000) = (17.2 0.7) + (3.9 0.9) log( ) and P02 = (17.85 0.68) + (3.27 0.59) log( ). Moreover, the combined sample of FR I and II radio galaxies studied by Govoni et al. (2000) gave = (18.44 0.35) + (2.58 0.29) log( ). All these relationships are very similar and, like many previous authors, we can conclude that in the - plane the BL Lac host galaxies are indistinguishable from normal ellipticals and radio galaxies.
There are a few objects above or below the general trend in Fig. 9. The two objects below the main part at log( are 1813+317 (the object with larger error bars) and 0314+247. Both objects have been discussed in Sect. 5.2. The redshift of 1813+317 could be actually higher than what is quoted in the literature and 0314+247 is clearly affected by dust which probably lowers its . The four objects clearly above the main part in Fig. 9 are all high-redshift objects: these are 1149+246 (z = 0.402), 0928+747 (z = 0.638), 1841+591 (z = 0.530) and 1824+568 (z = 0.664) from upper left to lower right. All are intrinsically very bright and may thus not be representative of the whole elliptical galaxy class. Their large K-corrections (0.6-1.5) lift them above other objects and if their SEDs are not similar to elliptical galaxy SEDs, as we have assumed, our correction would be incorrect and they could actually lie lower in Fig. 9. We also do not correct for passive evolution of the host galaxies, which, if applied, would bring them lower in Fig. 9.
There are a handful of objects that are promising lensing candidates. The two double sources (0035+598 and 2319+161) are probably not lensed: there is no sign of the lensing galaxy in either object. In 0035+598 the colors of the two point objects are very different (FK99) and our spectrum shows the nearby object of 2319+161 to be a galactic star. In 0814+296 there are two very nearby objects and in 0915+295 our resolution is not sufficient to determine whether there is a nearby companion or a decentered host. In 0250+172 there is a faint object very close to the nucleus but the nature of this objects is unclear.
Finally, as was noted in Sect. 2, only 50% of the RGB BL Lacs have a spectroscopically determined redshift, and in some cases the redshift is uncertain. During this study we found altogether 14 resolved objects that do not currently have a redshift. We have started a program to determine the redshifts of these objects and for one object (2039+523, z = 0.053) a redshift has already been obtained. In Table 2 we show the estimated redshifts for the remaining 13 objects. We used the fitted host magnitude, effective radius and ellipticity to plot the object's location in the log( )- plane as a function of redshift. At some point this curve intersects with the fitted Kormendy relation in Fig. 9 and in Table 2 we give the redshift corresponding to this intersect point for each object. We tested this method with 13 objects with known redshifts between 0.1-0.6 and found the estimated redshifts to be accurate to within 0.05, except for two high-z objects that lie above the main part in Fig. 9. Thus some objects in Table 2 may have redshifts higher than indicated if their host galaxies are somehow unusual. Finally, we note that the objects in Table 2 have relatively high redshifts and if they are added to our sample, the redshift distibution of the resolved objects becomes more similar to that of Urry et al. (2000) and Falomo & Kotilainen (1999).
We have obtained new R-band images of 86 BL Lacertae objects in the ROSAT-Green Bank (RGB) sample. Combining the data from our previous studies we present here the optical images and host galaxy analysis of 100 objects. For 62 objects in the sample we did not find previously published data in the literature, 35 of these were new BL Lacs discovered during the RGB BL Lac survey. We were able to resolve the host galaxy in 62% of the objects. We analyze the host galaxies using a two-dimensional fitting procedure and give the best-fit core magnitude and host galaxy parameters (magnitude, effective radius, ellipticity, position angle and ) for each object.
With two exceptions, all objects are formally better fit by a model representing an elliptical galaxy ( ) than by a disk galaxy model ( ). However, the disk host fit is only marginally better in the two exceptions. One of them (1419+543) has a very large disk component, and should probably be classified as an S0 or Sb0 galaxy. Thus we do not find a single clear case of a disk-dominated host galaxy in our sample.
The host galaxies have an average brightness and effective radius kpc and their bulk properties are indistinguishable from normal ellipticals and radio galaxies. The median is 0.18, well below the value of 0.25 that is normally used to describe ellipticals. However, the difference may be due to a selection effect caused by the correlation (Caon et al. 1993).
In a subsequent paper (Nilsson et al., in preparation) we will present a more detailed statistical study of the relationship between BL Lac host galaxies and other ellipticals and the host galaxy - BL Lac nucleus connection.
This work has been supported by the Academy of Finland through project 42697 (KN) and through SFB 328 and 439 (JH). KN thanks Prof. I. Appenzeller, Prof. H. Jørgesen, Prof. N. H. Andersen and the staff of Landessternwarte Heidelberg, Copenhagen University Observatory and Risø National Laboratory for support and pleasant working environment during this work. We also thank R. Rekola and P. Keinänen for the help during the observations. The data presented here have been partly taken using ALFOSC, which is owned by the Instituto de Astrofisica de Andalucia (IAA) and operated at the Nordic Optical Telescope under agreement between IAA and the NBIfAFG of the Astronomical Observatory of Copenhagen.