Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 439, 3969-3985 (2014/April-3)
Relativistic AGN jets - II. Jet properties and mixing effects for episodic jet activity.
WALG S., ACHTERBERG A., MARKOFF S., KEPPENS R. and PORTH O.
Abstract (from CDS):
Various radio galaxies show signs of having gone through episodic jet outbursts in the past. An example is the class of double-double radio galaxies (DDRGs). However, to follow the evolution of an individual source in real-time is impossible due to the large time-scales involved. Numerical studies provide a powerful tool to investigate the temporal behaviour of episodic jet outbursts in a (magneto)hydrodynamical setting. We simulate the injection of two jets from active galactic nuclei (AGNs), separated by a short interruption time. Three different jet models are compared. We find that an AGN jet outburst cycle can be divided into four phases. The most prominent phase occurs when the restarted jet is propagating completely inside the hot and inflated cocoon left behind by the initial jet. In that case, the jet-head advance speed of the restarted jet is significantly higher than the initial jet-head. While the head of the initial jet interacts strongly with the ambient medium, the restarted jet propagates almost unimpeded. As a result, the restarted jet maintains a strong radial integrity. Just a very small fraction of the amount of shocked jet material flows back through the cocoon compared to that of the initial jet and much weaker shocks are found at the head of the restarted jet. We find that the features of the restarted jet in this phase closely resemble the observed properties of a typical DDRG.