Astronomy and Astrophysics, volume 451, 71-83 (2006/5-3)
A radio census of nuclear activity in nearby galaxies.
FILHO M.E., BARTHEL P.D. and HO L.C.
Abstract (from CDS):
In order to determine the incidence of black hole accretion-driven nuclear activity in nearby galaxies, as manifested by their radio emission, we have carried out a high-resolution Multi-Element Radio-Linked Interferometer Network (MERLIN) survey of LINERs and composite LINER/HII galaxies from a complete magnitude-limited sample of bright nearby galaxies (Palomar sample) with unknown arcsecond-scale radio properties. There are fifteen radio detections, of which three are new subarcsecond-scale radio core detections, all being candidate AGN. The detected galaxies supplement the already known low-luminosity AGN - low-luminosity Seyferts, LINERs and composite LINER/HII galaxies - in the Palomar sample. Combining all radio-detected Seyferts, LINERs and composite LINER/HII galaxies (LTS sources), we obtain an overall radio detection rate of 54% (22% of all bright nearby galaxies) and we estimate that at least ∼50% (∼20% of all bright nearby galaxies) are true AGN. The radio powers of the LTS galaxies allow the construction of a local radio luminosity function. By comparing the luminosity function with those of selected moderate-redshift AGN, selected from the 2dF/NVSS survey, we find that LTS sources naturally extend the RLF of powerful AGN down to powers of about 10 times that of Sgr A*.
galaxies: active - galaxies: nuclei - galaxies: luminosity function, mass function