Anisotropic metal-enriched outflows driven by active galactic nuclei in clusters of galaxies.
KIRKPATRICK C.C., McNAMARA B.R. and CAVAGNOLO K.W.
Abstract (from CDS):
We present an analysis of the spatial distribution of metal-rich gas in 10 galaxy clusters using deep observations from the Chandra X-ray Observatory. The brightest cluster galaxies (BCGs) have experienced recent active galactic nucleus activity in the forms of bright radio emission, cavities, and shock fronts embedded in the hot atmospheres. The heavy elements are distributed anisotropically and are aligned with the large-scale radio and cavity axes. They are apparently being transported from the halo of the BCG into the intracluster medium along large-scale outflows driven by the radio jets. The radial ranges of the metal-enriched outflows are found to scale with jet power as RFe ∝ P 0.42jet, with a scatter of only 0.5 dex. The heavy elements are transported beyond the extent of the inner cavities in all clusters, suggesting that this is a long-lasting effect sustained over multiple generations of outbursts. Black holes in BCGs will likely have difficulty ejecting metal-enriched gas beyond 1 Mpc unless their masses substantially exceed 109 M☉.