Imaging relativistic jets in active galactic nuclei (AGN) at angular resolution significantly surpassing that of the ground-based VLBI at centimetre wavelengths is one of the key science objectives of the RadioAstron space-VLBI mission. There are three RadioAstron imaging key science programs that target both nearby radio galaxies and blazars, with one of the programs specifically focusing on polarimetry of the jets. The first images from these programs reach angular resolution of a few tens of microarcseconds and reveal unprecedented details about the jet collimation profile, magnetic field configuration, and Kelvin-Helmholtz instabilities along the flow in some of the most studied AGN (3C 84, BL Lac, 3C 273, S5 0836 + 710). Here we give an overview of the goals and strategy of these three ongoing programs, highlight their early results, and discuss the challenges of space-VLBI imaging.
Advances in Space Research
- Pub Date:
- January 2020
- Radio interferometry;
- Active galactic nuclei;
- Astrophysics - Astrophysics of Galaxies
- Accepted on the Advances in Space Research (ASR) special issue entitled "High-resolution Space-Borne Radio Astronomy"