Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 351, 83-100 (2004/June-2)
A physical classification scheme for blazars.
LANDT H., PADOVANI P., PERLMAN E.S. and GIOMMI P.
Abstract (from CDS):
Blazars are currently separated into BL Lacertae objects (BL Lacs) and flat spectrum radio quasars based on the strength of their emission lines. This is performed rather arbitrarily by defining a diagonal line in the Ca H&K break value-equivalent width plane, following Marchã et al. We readdress this problem and put the classification scheme for blazars on firm physical grounds. We study ∼100 blazars and radio galaxies from the Deep X-ray Radio Blazar Survey (DXRBS) and 2-Jy radio survey and find a significant bimodality for the narrow emission line [Oiii]λ5007. This suggests the presence of two physically distinct classes of radio-loud active galactic nuclei (AGN). We show that all radio-loud AGN, blazars and radio galaxies, can be effectively separated into weak- and strong-lined sources using the [Oiii]λ5007-[Oii]λ3727 equivalent width plane. This plane allows one to disentangle orientation effects from intrinsic variations in radio-loud AGN. Based on DXRBS, the strongly beamed sources of the new class of weak-lined radio-loud AGN are made up of BL Lacs at the ∼75 per cent level, whereas those of the strong-lined radio-loud AGN include mostly (∼97 per cent) quasars.
galaxies: active - BL Lacertae objects: general - quasars: emission lines