Hydrodynamical Simulations of Recollimation Shocks within Relativistic Astrophysical Jets

Kaye, Christopher D., Cawthorne, Timothy Vernon and Hughes, Philip A. (2018) Hydrodynamical Simulations of Recollimation Shocks within Relativistic Astrophysical Jets. Galaxies, 6 (2). p. 53. ISSN 2075-4434

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/galaxies6020053


Abstract: Astrophysical jets launched from active galactic nuclei can remain tightly collimated over large distances due, in part, to recollimation shocks. Formed within the jets due to their supersonic nature, recollimation shocks are predicted to leave signatures in the observed radio emission due to magnetic flux freezing and the geometric relationship between magnetic fields and the polarization of synchrotron radiation. In the course of this work, we will compare how predictions of emission from recollimation shocks change when the flow is modelled using a hydrodynamical code, as opposed to semi-dynamical and magnetohydrodynamical codes. Jets generally exhibit low levels of polarization, which implies a substantially disordered magnetic field. It is difficult to model such fields using magnetohydrodynamics, hence this work uses hydrodynamical code and a statistical treatment of the magnetic field (c.f. Scheuer and Matthews, 1990). It should then be possible to assess whether certain radio jet phenomena, such as knots and radio-cores, may be modelled as singular or multiple recollimation shocks. To date, the hydrodynamical code has been successfully built and executed on UCLan’s supercomputer cluster, and parallelepiped vector triads have been included to monitor the fluid deformation within the simulation, so that the emergent flux and polarization may be calculated. The parallelepiped advection is currently being verified and some results are discussed. Code for radiative transfer throughout the jet is also being implemented, in order to simulate images for comparison with previous works and observations.

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