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Unraveling the Complex Behavior of Mrk 421 with Simultaneous X-Ray and VHE Observations during an Extreme Flaring Activity in 2013 April



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Barrio Uña, Juan Abel and Contreras González, José Luis and Fonseca González, Mª Victoria and Hoang, Kim Dinh and López Moya, Marcos and Miener, Tjark and Morcuende, D. and Peñil del Campo, Pablo and Saha, Lab and otros, ... (2020) Unraveling the Complex Behavior of Mrk 421 with Simultaneous X-Ray and VHE Observations during an Extreme Flaring Activity in 2013 April. Astrophysical journal supplement series, 248 (2). ISSN 0067-0049


Official URL: https://doi.org/10.3847/1538-4365/ab89b5



We report on a multiband variability and correlation study of the TeV blazar Mrk 421 during an exceptional flaring activity observed from 2013 April 11 to 19. The study uses, among others, data from GLAST-AGILE Support Program (GASP) of the Whole Earth Blazar Telescope (WEBT), Swift, Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR), Fermi Large Area Telescope, Very Energetic Radiation Imaging Telescope Array System (VERITAS), and Major Atmospheric Gamma Imaging Cherenkov (MAGIC). The large blazar activity and the 43 hr of simultaneous NuSTAR and MAGIC/VERITAS observations permitted variability studies on 15 minute time bins over three X-ray bands (3-7 keV, 7-30 keV, and 30-80 keV) and three very-high-energy (VHE; >0.1 TeV) gamma-ray bands (0.2-0.4 TeV, 0.4-0.8 TeV, and >0.8 TeV). We detected substantial flux variations on multi-hour and sub-hour timescales in all of the X-ray and VHE gamma-ray bands. The characteristics of the sub-hour flux variations are essentially energy independent, while the multi-hour flux variations can have a strong dependence on the energy of the X-rays and the VHE gamma-rays. The three VHE bands and the three X-ray bands are positively correlated with no time lag, but the strength and characteristics of the correlation change substantially over time and across energy bands. Our findings favor multi-zone scenarios for explaining the achromatic/chromatic variability of the fast/slow components of the light curves, as well as the changes in the flux-flux correlation on day-long timescales. We interpret these results within a magnetic reconnection scenario, where the multi-hour flux variations are dominated by the combined emission from various plasmoids of different sizes and velocities, while the sub-hour flux variations are dominated by the emission from a single small plasmoid moving across the magnetic reconnection layer.

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Artículo firmado por 238 autores. The MAGIC collaboration would like to thank the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias for the excellent working conditions at the Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos in La Palma. The financial support of the German BMBF and MPG, the Italian INFN and INAF, the Swiss National Fund SNF, the ERDF under the Spanish MINECO (FPA2017-87859-P, FPA2017-85668-P, FPA2017-82729-C6-2-R, FPA2017-827 29-C6-6-R, FPA2017-82729-C6-5-R, AYA2015-71042-P, AYA2016-76012-C3-1-P, ESP2017-87055-C2-2-P, and FPA 201790566REDC), the Indian Department of Atomic Energy, the Japanese JSPS and MEXT, the Bulgarian Ministry of Education and Science, National RI Roadmap Project DO-1153/28.08.2018 and the Academy of Finland grant No. 320045 is gratefully acknowledged. This work was also supported by the Spanish Centro de Excelencia "Severo Ochoa" SEV-20160588 and SEV-2015-0548, and Unidad de Excelencia "María de Maeztu" MDM-2014-0369, by the Croatian Science Foundation (HrZZ) Project IP-2016-06-9782 and the University of Rijeka Project, by the DFG Collaborative Research Centers SFB823/C4 and SFB876/C3, the Polish National Research Centre grant UMO-2016/22/M/ST9/00382, and by the Brazilian MCTIC, CNPq and FAPERJ.; The Fermi-LAT.Collaboration acknowledges generous ongoing support from a number of agencies and institutes that have supported both the development and the operation of the LAT as well as scientific data analysis. These include the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Department of Energy in the United States, the Commissariat a l'Energie Atomique and the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique/Institut National de Physique Nucleaire et de Physique des Particules in France, the Agenzia Spaziale Italiana and the Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare in Italy, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), High Energy Accelerator Research Organization (KEK), and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) in Japan, and the K..A..Wallenberg Foundation, the Swedish Research Council, and the Swedish National Space Board in Sweden. Additional support for science analysis during the operations phase is gratefully acknowledged from the Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica in Italy and the Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales in France.; This work made use of data from the NuSTAR mission, a project led by the California Institute of Technology, managed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and funded by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. We thank the NuSTAR Operations, Software, and Calibration teams for support with the execution and analysis of these observations. This research has made use of the NuSTAR Data Analysis Software (NuSTARDAS) jointly developed by the ASI Science Data Center (ASDC; Italy) and the California Institute of Technology (USA).; D.P. and A.B. are grateful to Amy Furniss and Wystan Benbow for providing the VERITAS VHE gamma-ray fluxes and for useful discussions about them. M.P. acknowledges support from the Lyman Jr. Spitzer Postdoctoral Fellowship and NASA Fermi grant No. 80NSSC18K1745., and J.F. is partially supported by NASA under contract S-15633Y. M.B. acknowledges support from NASA Headquarters under the NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship Program (grant NNX14AQ07H) and the black hole Initiative at Harvard University, which is funded in part by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation (grant GBMF8273) and in part by the John Templeton Foundation.; This research was partially supported by the Bulgarian National Science Fund of the Ministry of Education and Science under grants DN 18-13/2017, DN 18-10/2017, KP06-H28/3 (2018), and KP-06-PN38/1 (2019), as well as for the Spanish MIMECO (AYA2016-80889-P, RYC-2013-14511) and the IAA-CSIC "Severo Ochoa" program SEV2017-0709. The St. Petersburg University team acknowledges support from Russian Science Foundation grant 17-12-01029. The Abastumani team acknowledges financial support of the project FR/638/6-320/12 by the Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation under contract 31/77. T.G. acknowledges support from Istanbul University (Project numbers 49429 and 48285), Bilim Akademisi (BAGEP program), and TUBITAK (project numbers 13AT100-431, 13AT100-466, and 13AT60-430). The Boston University effort was supported in part by NASA grants NNX12AO90G and NNX14AQ58G. Data from the Steward Observatory spectropolarimetric monitoring project were used in this paper. This program is supported by Fermi Guest Investigator grants NNX08AW56G, NNX09 AU10G, NNX12AO93G, and NNX15AU81G. The OVRO 40 m monitoring program is supported in part by NASA grants NNX08AW31G and NNX11A043G and NSF grants AST-0808050 and AST-1109911. The Metsahovi team acknowledges the support from the Academy of Finland to our observing projects (numbers 212656, 210338, 121148, and others). W.M. acknowledges support from CONICYT project Basal AFB-170002.

Uncontrolled Keywords:Fast tev variability; Reconnection; Emission; Plasmoids; Blazars; Fermi; Jets; Markarian-421; Acceleration; Photons
Subjects:Sciences > Physics > Nuclear physics
ID Code:61634
Deposited On:28 Jul 2020 11:52
Last Modified:28 Jul 2020 12:10

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