The EPIC detectors on XMM-Newton provide the most sensitive broad band (0.3-12 keV) X-ray spectra to date. Observations of 6 Seyfert 1 galaxies, covering a wide luminosity range, are examined with the aim of identifying the primary X-ray continuum and constraining superimposed emission and absorption features. A soft excess emission component is seen in every case, but with a spectral form which differs markedly with luminosity across our sample. Current interpretations of the soft excess range from intrinsic thermal emission from the accretion disc to reprocessing of harder radiation absorbed in the disc skin. Visual examination of the broad-band EPIC spectra suggest that the luminosity trend in the observed spectral profiles may be governed primarily by differences in the line-of-sight absorption. In that case the underlying continuum could have a common form across the sample. Examination of spectral features in the Fe K band confirm the common presence of a narrow emission line at 6.4 keV. Modelling of the EPIC spectra above 7 keV is shown to be critical to quantifying (or confirming) a broad Fe K line in at least some cases.
- Pub Date:
- January 2002
- 7 pages, to appear in the Proceedings of the Symposium on `New Visions of the X-ray Universe in the XMM-Newton and Chandra Era', 26-30 November 2001, ESTEC, The Netherlands