Active galaxies tend to be powerful or weak radio sources, and we still do not understand the underlying cause. Perhaps the engine is the same in both systems and the jet gets disrupted by dense interstellar medium in radio-quiet objects, or else the difference is intrinsic with jet power scaling with black hole spin. To distinguish, one can look for signs of interaction between the jet and the narrow-line region, and to measure the jet speed close to the jet base, before environmental effects become important. We find one-sided parsec-scale jet structures in Mrk 348, Mrk 231, NGC 4151, and NGC 5506 using VLBI, and we measure low jet speeds (typically <= 0.25 c). The one-sidedness probably is not due to Doppler boosting, but rather is probably free-free absorption. Plasma conditions required to produce the absorption are Ne >= 2 × 105 cm-3 assuming a path length of 0.1 pc, typical of that expected at the inner edge of the obscuring torus.
|Title of host publication||Galaxies and their Constituents at the Highest Angular Resolutions|
|Subtitle of host publication||Proceedings of IAU Symposium #205, held 15-18 August 2000|
|Editors||R. T. Schilizzi|
|Publication status||Published - Jan 2001|