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AGN: A Global Perspective

Presentation #100.79 in the session AGN.

Published onJul 01, 2023
AGN: A Global Perspective

The discovery of Warm Absorbers (WA) and Ultra-Fast Outflows (UFO) in the X-ray spectra of AGN opened a novel view in the structure of AGN. The wide range of ionization parameter and velocities of these blue-shifted absorption features was proven inconsistent with outflows driven by the continuum radiation pressure or by thermal processes, since they demand wind densities along the observers’ LoS too shallow for these processes. They were shown, though, to be consistent with MHD accretion disk winds, thus establishing the importance of magnetic field wind driving across the entire AGN accretion disk (out to ~ 106 gravitational radii). Furthermore, the resulting density and velocity radial distributions showed the mass flux of these winds to increase with distance from the accreting black hole, implying that the accretion disk mass flux decreases toward the black hole across the entire disk, with only a small fraction of the available mass eventually accreted. We will show how this additional piece of information provides a resolution of several pieces of AGN phenomenology (e.g. the dependence of αOX on luminosity, the properties of AGN tori and the dust formation there), leading to a global perspective of AGN as structures that span coherently 5-6 decades in radius.

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