A dust-enshrouded tidal disruption event with a resolved radio jet in a galaxy merger

S Mattila, M Perez-Torres, A Efstathiou, P Mimica, M. Fraser, E Kankare, A. Alberdi, M.A. Aloy, T Heikkila, P.G. Jonker, P Lundqvist, I. Marti-Vidal, W.P.S. Meikle, C Romero-Canizales, S J Smartt, S Tsygankov, Eskil Varenius, A Alonso-Herrero, M Bondi, C. FranssonR Herrero-Illana, T Kangas, R Kotak, N Ramirez-Olivencia, P Vaisanen, Robert Beswick, D. L. Clements, R. Greimel, J Harmanen, Jari Kotilainen, K Nandra, T Reynolds, S Ryder, N A Walton, K Wiik, G. Östlin

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    Abstract

    Tidal disruption events (TDEs) are transient flares produced when a star is ripped apart by the gravitational field of a supermassive black hole (SMBH). We have observed a transient source in the western nucleus of the merging galaxy pair Arp 299 that radiated >1.5 × 1052 erg at infrared and radio wavelengths but was not luminous at optical or x-ray wavelengths. We interpret this as a TDE with much of its emission reradiated at infrared wavelengths by dust. Efficient reprocessing by dense gas and dust may explain the difference between theoretical predictions and observed luminosities of TDEs. The radio observations resolve an expanding and decelerating jet, probing the jet formation and evolution around a SMBH.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)482-485
    Number of pages4
    JournalScience
    Volume361
    Issue number6401
    Early online date14 Jun 2018
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 14 Jun 2018

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