- [*] An HST study of the double nucleus in the ULIRG NGC 6240
- Gerssen J., van der Marel R.P., Axon D.,
Barnes J., Hernquist L., Mihos C.
- BAAS, 33, 2, 899, 2001 (AAS Meeting 198, 74.09)
- © 2001. The American Astronomical Society.
All Rights Reserved.
The ultraluminous infra-red galaxy (ULIRG) NGC 6240 shows both tidal
tails and a double nucleus, suggesting an on-going merger. The IR
emission is due in part to dust-heating by a starburst, but strong
X-ray emission indicates that at least part of the IR luminosity is
powered by an AGN. NGC 6240 is thus a possible prototype for the
obscured AGNs at high redshifts that are now being detected in large
numbers by Chandra. We present the results of a detailed photometric
and spectroscopic study with HST of the region around the double
nucleus. Absorption- and emission-line spectra are used to derive the
stellar and ionized gas kinematics. These are used to study the
central mass distribution and to search for possible supermassive
black holes in the nuclei. N-body merger simulations are used to
address to what extent the kinematics have been affected by tidal
forces in the interaction. The results are discussed in the context of
results from other wavelength ranges, and for other ULIRGs.
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Last modified June 15, 2001.
Roeland van der Marel,