Suzaku X-ray imaging of the extended lobe in the giant radio galaxy NGC6251 associated with the fermi-lat source 2FGLJ1629.4+8236

Y. Takeuchi*, J. Kataoka, Stawarz, Y. Takahashi, K. Maeda, T. Nakamori, C. C. Cheung, A. Celotti, Y. Tanaka, T. Takahashi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


We report the results of a Suzaku X-ray imaging study of NGC6251, a nearby giant radio galaxy with intermediate FRI/II radio properties. Our pointing direction was centered on the γ-ray emission peak recently discovered with the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) around the position of the northwest (NW) radio lobe 15 arcmin offset from the nucleus. After subtracting two "off-source" pointings adjacent to the radio lobe and removing possible contaminants in the X-ray Imaging Spectrometer field of view, we found significant residual X-ray emission most likely diffuse in nature. The spectrum of the excess X-ray emission is well fitted by a power law with a photon index Γ = 1.90 ± 0.15 and a 0.5-8keV flux of 4 × 10 -13ergcm-2s-1. We interpret this diffuse X-ray emission component as being due to inverse Compton upscattering of the cosmic microwave background photons by ultrarelativistic electrons within the lobe, with only a minor contribution from the beamed emission of the large-scale jet. Utilizing archival radio data for the source, we demonstrate by means of broadband spectral modeling that the γ-ray flux of the Fermi-LAT source 2FGLJ1629.4+8236 may well be accounted for by the high-energy tail of the inverse Compton continuum of the lobe. Thus, this claimed association of γ-rays from the NW lobe of NGC6251, together with the recent Fermi-LAT imaging of the extended lobes of CentaurusA, indicates that particles may be efficiently (re-)accelerated up to ultrarelativistic energies within extended radio lobes of nearby radio galaxies in general.

Original languageEnglish
Article number66
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Apr 10


  • X-rays: galaxies
  • acceleration of particles
  • galaxies: individual (NGC 6251)
  • galaxies: jets
  • gamma rays: general
  • radiation mechanisms: non-thermal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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