Published in Astronomy & Astrophysics, Volume 663, July 1, 2022.
The definitive version is available at https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361/202243697.
Context. The host galaxy conditions for rapid supermassive black hole growth are poorly understood. Narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLS1) galaxies often exhibit high accretion rates and are hypothesized to be prototypes of active galactic nuclei (AGN) at an early stage of their evolution.
Aims. We present adaptive optics (AO) assisted VLT MUSE NFM observations of Mrk 1044, the nearest super-Eddington accreting NLS1. Together with archival MUSE WFM data, we aim to understand the host galaxy processes that drive Mrk 1044’s black hole accretion.
Methods. We extracted the faint stellar continuum emission from the AGN-deblended host and performed spatially resolved emission line diagnostics with an unprecedented resolution. Combining both MUSE WFM and NFM-AO observations, we used a kinematic model of a thin rotating disk to trace the stellar and ionized gas motion from 10 kpc galaxy scales down to ∼30 pc around the nucleus.
Results. Mrk 1044’s stellar kinematics follow circular rotation, whereas the ionized gas shows tenuous spiral features in the center. We resolve a compact star-forming circumnuclear ellipse (CNE) that has a semi-minor axis of 306 pc. Within this CNE, the gas is metal-rich and its line ratios are entirely consistent with excitation by star formation. With an integrated star formation rate of 0.19 ± 0.05 M⊙ yr−1, the CNE contributes 27% of the galaxy-wide star formation.
Conclusions. We conclude that Mrk 1044’s nuclear activity has not yet affected the circumnuclear star formation. Thus, Mrk 1044 is consistent with the idea that NLS1s are young AGN. A simple mass budget consideration suggests that the circumnuclear star formation and AGN phase are connected and the patterns in the ionized gas velocity field are a signature of the ongoing AGN feeding.
© 2022 The Author(s)
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