Vol 15, No 2

Possible evidence of destroying small PAH particles by radiation from AGNs

Qi-Chen Feng, Jing Wang, Jian-Yan Wei


Abstract The issue of destroying small polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) particles by radiation from AGNs is examined through optical narrow-emission line ratios of a sample of type II AGNs. We find that narrow-line ratios [OI]λ6300/Hα and [SII]λ6716, λ6731/Hα have prominent correlations with the PAH 11.3/7.7 ratio in our selected sample of AGNs. Because of the marginal (and in some cases no) dependence of the PAH ratio on the gas metallicity, a possible explanation for the correlations is the destruction of small PAH particles by the hard ionizing field associated with the AGNs.


Keywords infrared: ISM — quasars: emission lines — galaxies: active — galaxies: AGN — methods: statisticalve; galaxies: Seyfert; methods: statistical

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