NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2006A-0042

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Proposal Information for 2006A-0042


PI: Shai Kaspi, Technion, shai@physics.technion.ac.il
Address: Physics Department, Technion City, Haifa 32000, Israel

CoI: Ari Laor, Technion, Physics Department
CoI: Louis-Benoit Desroches, Department of Astronomy, Berkeley
CoI: Alexei Filippenko, Department of Astronomy, Berkeley
CoI: Bradley Peterson, Department of Astronomy, Ohio State University
CoI: Dan Maoz, School of Physics & Astronomy, Tel Aviv University
CoI: Yuzuru Yoshii, Institute of Astronomy, University of Tokyo
CoI: Takeo Minezaki, Institute of Astronomy, University of Tokyo

Title: Reverberation Mapping of the Least Luminous Seyfert 1 galaxy NGC 4395

Abstract: We propose a brief optical+IR reverberation mapping (RM) campaign on NGC 4395, by far the least luminous Seyfert 1 galaxy known (M_B~eq - 10), where the broad line region (BLR) is most likely between a fraction of a light hour to a few light hours across. Our earlier RM program with \em HST determined the size of the C IV emitting region, 1+/- 0.3 light hours, and the black hole mass M_\rm BH=(3.6+/- 1.1)\times 10^5M_\odot, both the smallest ever measured in an AGN. However, the two nights of simultaneous optical+IR coverage allocated to us at the KP-4m failed due to clouds. The proposed optical+IR RM will allow us to: 1. Extend to low luminosities, by a factor of ~ 100, the range of R_\rm BLR probed from the ground; 2. Test the consistency of M_\rm BH obtained from optical RM with that obtained in the UV using the C IV line, and thus to compare the techniques used for low- and high-z AGN; and 3. Measure the size of the inner most dusty region, predicted to reside just outside the BLR. Our previous campaign revealed ~ 20% optical continuum variability, and the few KP-4m spectra obtained demonstrated that we can reach a ~ 2% measurement accuracy for the H(alpha) line flux, indicating that the proposed experiment is likely to succeed.


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