Large-scale curved radio jet discovered in galaxy cluster Abell 514

Astronomers have carried out deep low-frequency radio observations of the galaxy cluster Abell 514 using the uGMRT radio telescope. Scientists have discovered a large-scale curved radio jet in this cluster. The discovery is reported in a paper published Oct. 2 on the pre-print server arXiv. Abell 514 (abbreviated A514) is a merging galaxy cluster with a redshift of approximately 0.07. The cluster was discovered in 1958. Its mass is about 300 trillion solar masses, its overall temperature is 3.8 keV, and its metallicity is estimated at 0.22. Previous observations of A514 have shown that it has a rich morphology and contains several extended radio sources.

Recently, a team of astronomers led by Wonki Lee of Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea, decided to study the radio sources of A514 by making radio observations of the cluster using uGMRT. Observations have shown that radio emission from one of the three radio galaxies in A514, designated PKS 0446-20, originates from two radio lobes of the active galactic nucleus (AGN) and propagates to the southern periphery. The largest linear dimension of this curved ray is measured to be about 2.3 million light-years away. Images taken by uGMRT show two radio beams connected to a 1,300 light-year-long north-south structure nicknamed “the bridge.”

The southern end of the bridge connects to a 1,000 light-year arc concave toward the center of the cluster. The arc’s eastern end appears to touch the northern end of a 1,300 light-year long tail. Observations also show differences in X-ray surface brightness and high polarization at the site of extended radio emission at A514. According to the paper’s authors, this is a result of the redistribution of the plasma jet along the cold front of the recent cluster merger. The researchers explain that passive plasma bubbles formed during off-axis cluster mergers can extend along the cluster’s cold front.