• AGN STORM 2. I. First results: A Change in the Weather of Mrk 817

      Kara, E.; Mehdipour, M.; Kriss, G.A.; Cackett, E.M.; Arav, N.; Barth, A.J.; Byun, D.; Brotherton, M.S.; De Rosa, G.; Gelbord, J.; et al. (IOP Publishing Ltd, 2021)
      We present the first results from the ongoing, intensive, multiwavelength monitoring program of the luminous Seyfert 1 galaxy Mrk 817. While this active galactic nucleus was, in part, selected for its historically unobscured nature, we discovered that the X-ray spectrum is highly absorbed, and there are new blueshifted, broad, and narrow UV absorption lines, which suggest that a dust-free, ionized obscurer located at the inner broad-line region partially covers the central source. Despite the obscuration, we measure UV and optical continuum reverberation lags consistent with a centrally illuminated Shakura-Sunyaev thin accretion disk, and measure reverberation lags associated with the optical broad-line region, as expected. However, in the first 55 days of the campaign, when the obscuration was becoming most extreme, we observe a de-coupling of the UV continuum and the UV broad emission-line variability. The correlation recovered in the next 42 days of the campaign, as Mrk 817 entered a less obscured state. The short C iv and Lyα lags suggest that the accretion disk extends beyond the UV broad-line region. © 2021. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved..