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Astron. Astrophys. 327, 550-554 (1997)

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Jet deflections in radio galaxies

S.J. Tingay

Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, MS238-332, 4800 Oak Grove Drive, Pasadena, CA 91109-8099, USA

Received 17 February 1997 / Accepted 27 June 1997


Convincing evidence for the interaction between jets and their environments has been found in many extragalactic radio sources. In some radio galaxies these interactions appear to cause the jet to be deflected, not completely stopped or disrupted. This paper presents a simple model which accounts for jet deflections with oblique shocks in a relativistic flow. Using the model in conjunction with measurements of jet deflection angles, it is possible to derive estimates of pre and post-shock jet speeds as well as the strength and obliquity of the shocks. The model is applied to two radio galaxies, PKS 1308-441 and 3C 277.3. A range in shock strength of 2 - 30 and jet Lorentz factors of 2 - 5 are required to explain the data for these two sources.

Key words: shock waves – galaxies: individual: PKS 1308-441, 3C 277.3 – galaxies: active – galaxies: jets – radio continuum: galaxies

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1997

Online publication: April 6, 1998