Date of Award

7-17-2009

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Physics and Astronomy

First Advisor

Dr. D. Michael Crenshaw - Chair

Second Advisor

Dr. H. Richard Miller

Third Advisor

Dr. Paul Wiita

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Matthias Dietrich

Fifth Advisor

Dr. Xiaochun He

Abstract

We focus on determining the underlying physical cause of a Seyfert galaxy's appearance as type a 1.8 or 1.9. Are these "intermediate" Seyfert types typical Seyfert 1 nuclei reddened by central dusty tori or by nuclear dust lanes/spirals in the narrow-line region? Or, are they similar to NGC 2992, objects that have intrinsically weak continua and weak broad emission lines? Our study compares measurements of the reddenings of the narrow and broad-line regions with each other and with the X-ray column derived from XMM Newton 0.5-10 keV spectra to determine the presence and location of dust in the line of sight for a sample of 35 Seyfert 1.8s and 1.9s. From this, we find that Seyfert 1.9s are an almost equal mix of low-flux objects with unreddened broad line regions, and objects with broad line regions reddened by an internal dust source, either the torus or dust structures on the same size scale as the narrow line region. The 1.9s that recieved this designation due to a low continuum flux state showed variable type classifications. All three of the Seyfert 1.8s in our study are probably in low continuum states. Many objects have been misclassified as Seyfert 1.8/1.9s in the past, probably due to improper [N II]/H-alpha deconvolution leading to a false detection of weak broad H-alpha.

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