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Stratified disc wind models for the AGN broad-line region: ultraviolet, optical and X-ray properties

Matthews, James H. ; Knigge, Christian ; Higginbottom, Nick ; Long, Knox S. ; Sim, Stuart A. ; Mangham, Samuel W. ; Parkinson, Edward J. ; Hewitt, Henrietta A.

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  • Title:
    Stratified disc wind models for the AGN broad-line region: ultraviolet, optical and X-ray properties
  • Author: Matthews, James H. ; Knigge, Christian ; Higginbottom, Nick ; Long, Knox S. ; Sim, Stuart A. ; Mangham, Samuel W. ; Parkinson, Edward J. ; Hewitt, Henrietta A.
  • Description: The origin, geometry and kinematics of the broad line region (BLR) gas in quasars and active galactic nuclei (AGN) are uncertain. We demonstrate that clumpy biconical disc winds illuminated by an AGN continuum can produce BLR-like spectra. We first use a simple toy model to illustrate that disc winds make quite good BLR candidates, because they are self-shielded flows and can cover a large portion of the ionizing flux-density ($\phi_H$-$n_H$) plane. We then conduct Monte Carlo radiative transfer and photoionization calculations, which fully account for self-shielding and multiple scattering in a non-spherical geometry. The emergent model spectra show broad emission lines with equivalent widths and line ratios comparable to those observed in AGN, provided that the wind has a volume filling factor of $f_V\lesssim0.1$. Similar emission line spectra are produced for a variety of wind geometries (polar or equatorial) and for launch radii that differ by an order of magnitude. The line emission... Comment: Accepted to MNRAS. 20 pages, 13 figures plus appendix. Supplementary plots, some simulation data and demo notebooks can be found at https://github.com/jhmatthews/windy-blr-2020
  • Identifier: Arxiv ID: 2001.03625
  • Subjects: Astrophysics - Astrophysics Of Galaxies
  • Source: Cornell University

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