High-frequency very long baseline interferometry studies of NRAO 530


E-mail: rslu@mpifr-bonn.mpg.de


NRAO 530 is an optically violent variable source and has been studied with multi-epoch multifrequency high-resolution very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) observations. NRAO 530 was monitored with the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) at three frequencies (22, 43 and 86 GHz) on 10 consecutive days in 2007 May during observations of the Galactic Centre (Sgr A*). Furthermore, analysis of archival data of NRAO 530 at 15 GHz over the last 10 years allows us to study its detailed jet kinematics. We identified the compact component located at the southern-end of the jet as the VLBI core, consistent with previous studies. The 10-d monitoring data at the three high frequencies were shown to produce high-quality and self-consistent measurements of the component positions, from which we detected for the first time a two-dimensional frequency-dependent position shift. In addition, the repeated measurements also permit us to investigate the interday flux density and structure variability of NRAO 530. We find that it is more variable for the inner jet components than those further out. We obtained apparent velocities for eight jet components with βapp ranging from 2 to 26c. Accordingly, we estimated physical jet parameters with the minimum Lorentz factor of 14 and Doppler factors in the range of 14–28 (component f). The changes in the morphology of NRAO 530 were related to the motion of separate jet components with the most pronounced changes occurring in the regions close to the core. For NRAO 530, we estimated a position angle swing of 3bsl000644 per year for the entire inner jet (components d and e). The non-ballistic motion and change of jet orientation make this source another prominent example of a helical and possibly ‘swinging’ jet.