ROSAT X-ray observations of the interacting pair of galaxies NGC 4410: evidence for a central starburst
D. Tschöke 1,
G. Hensler 1 and
N. Junkes 2
Received 21 July 1998 / Accepted 6 November 1998
We present X-ray observations of the interacting pair of galaxies NGC 4410a/b with the ROSAT HRI and PSPC. The ROSAT HRI images reveal a point-like source corresponding to NGC 4410a and an X-ray halo, extending from the nucleus toward the southeast. The halo emission accounts for 1/3 ( = 1.310 erg s-1 in the 0.1-2.4 keV ROSAT band) of the total X-ray emission detected from NGC 4410a. The spectrum of the total X-ray emission from NGC 4410a can be fitted at best with a two-component emission model, combining a Raymond-Smith spectrum with T = 107 K and a power-law spectrum ( = 2.2). The fraction of the thermal component to the total flux within this model is 35%, supporting the results of the HRI observation. The total unresolved X-ray luminosity detected with the PSPC amounts to 410 erg s-1 in the ROSAT PSPC band (for D = 97 Mpc).
A preferable explanation might be the interaction between the two galaxies causing a circumnuclear starburst around the active nucleus in the peculiar late type Sab galaxy NGC 4410a. As a cumulative effect of exploding stars a superbubble forms a bipolar outflow from the galactic disk with an expansion time of 8 Myr. The central source injects mechanical energy at a constant rate of a few times 1042 erg s-1 into the superbubble.
A HST WFPC2 image decovers that NGC 4410a is seen almost face-on so that only the approaching outflow is visible. The HRI contours reveal an elongation of this outflow indicative for a faint X-ray ridge below the detection limit ( 1.410 erg s-1) toward the neighbouring galaxy NGC 4410b caused by its tidal interaction. NGC 4410b houses only a faint X-ray source ( 3.810 erg s-1).
Key words: X-rays: galaxies galaxies: starbust galaxies: interactions galaxies: individual: NGC 4410 galaxies: active
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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1999
Online publication: March 1, 1999