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MUSE-AO view of the starburst-AGN connection: NGC 7130

Dr. Johan Knapen

January 8th, 2019


We present the discovery of a small 0.2'' (60 pc) radius kinematically decoupled core, as well as an outflow jet, in the archetypical AGN-starburst "composite" galaxy NGC 7130 from integral field data obtained with the adaptive optics-assisted MUSE-NFM instrument on the VLT. Correcting the already good natural seeing at the time of our science verification observations with the four-laser GALACSI AO system we reach an unprecedented spatial resolution of around 0.15''. We confirm the existence of star-forming knots arranged in an 0.58'' (185 pc) radius ring around the nucleus, previously observed from UV and optical  Hubble Space Telescope and CO(6-5) ALMA imaging. We determine the position of the nucleus as the location of a peak in gas velocity dispersion. A plume of material extends towards the NE from the nucleus until at least the edge of our FOV at 2'' (640 pc) radius which we interpret as an outflow jet originating in the AGN. The plume is not visible morphologically, but is clearly characterised in our data by emission lines ratios characteristic of AGN emission, enhanced gas velocity dispersion, and distinct non-circular gas velocities. Its orientation is roughly perpendicular to line of nodes of the rotating host galaxy disk. An 0.2''-radius circumnuclear area of positive and negative velocities indicates a tiny inner disk, which can only be seen after combining the integral field spectroscopic capabilities of MUSE with adaptive optics.