Chemical abundance calibrations for the narrow-line region of active galaxies.
STORCHI-BERGMANN T., SCHMITT H.R., CALZETTI D. and KINNEY A.L.
Abstract (from CDS):
We investigate two chemical abundance calibrations for the narrow-line region (NLR) of active galaxies in terms of three easily observable optical emission-line ratios, namely, [O III] λλ4959, 5007/Hβ; [N II] λλ6548, 6584/Hα; and [O II] λ3727/[O III] λλ4959, 5007. The calibrations are obtained from a grid of models on the assumption that the main process responsible for the production of these lines is photoionization by a ``typical'' active galactic nucleus continuum. The elemental abundances vary with oxygen, except nitrogen, which is assumed to be a product of secondary nucleosynthesis. The calibrations are calculated for the range 8.4 ≤ 12 + log (O/H) ≤ 9.4 and tested using NLR data for a sample of Seyfert galaxies and LINERs that have H II regions in the vicinity of the nucleus. The gaseous abundances of these H II regions have been determined in previous works, and the NLR abundances are obtained on the assumption that they can be extrapolated from those of the H II regions. The calibrations work very well for the Seyfert galaxies, yielding abundance values that agree with those obtained from the H II regions, and can thus be used for quick estimates of the chemical abundances of the NLRs. For the LINERs, the calibrations yield lower values than those derived from the corresponding H II regions, suggesting that the assumptions of the models do not apply for them and that there are different physical processes at work in the NLR of the LINERs.
Galaxies: Active - Galaxies: ISM - Galaxies: Nuclei - Galaxies: Seyfert