Spatially resolved spectroscopic study of nearby Seyfert galaxies: implications for a population of "missed" Seyferts at high-z.
XIA J., MALKAN M.A., ROSS N.R. and ANCHETA A.J.
Abstract (from CDS):
We present mosaicked long-slit spectral maps of 18 nearby Active Galactic Nuclei (AGNs), 2 LINERs, and 4 star-forming galaxies. With the resulting data cubes taken using the Kast dual spectrograph on the 3 m Shane telescope of the Lick Observatory, we measure the aperture effects on the spectroscopic classification of AGNs. With more starlight included in a larger aperture, the nuclear spectrum that is Seyfert-like may become contaminated. We generated standard spectroscopic classification diagrams in different observing apertures. These show quantitatively how the ensemble of Seyferts migrates toward the H II region classification when being observed with increasing aperture sizes. But the effect ranges widely in individual active galaxies. Some of the less luminous Seyferts shift by a large amount, while some others barely move or even shift in different directions. We find that those Seyfert galaxies with the fraction of nuclear Hα emission lower than 0.2 of the host galaxy, 2-10 keV hard X-ray luminosity lower than 1043 erg s–1, and the observed nuclear [O III] luminosity lower than 1040.5 erg s–1, are more likely to change activity classification type when the entire host galaxy is included. Overall, 4 of our 24 galaxies (18 Seyferts) change their spectral activity classification type when observed with a very large aperture.