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Astronomy & Astrophysics

The optical polarization of radio-loud and radio-intermediate broad absorption line quasi-stellar objects+

D. Hutsemékers1,2,* and H. Lamy2

1 European Southern Observatory, Casilla 19001, Santiago, Chile
2 Institut d'Astrophysique et de Géophysique - Université de Liège, Avenue de Cointe 5, 4000 Liège, Belgium

* Chercheur Qualifié FNRS, Belgium

+ Based on observations collected at the European Southern Observatory (ESO, La Silla)


     On the basis of a sample of approximately 50 broad absorption line quasi-stellar objects (BAL QSOs), we investigate possible correlations between BAL QSO radio properties and other spectral characteristics, including polarization. For this purpose new polarization data have been obtained.

     The main result of our statistical study is the absence of significant correlations between the radio-to-optical flux ratio R* and all other quantities: the polarization p0 of the continuum, the slope of the continuum, the balnicity and detachment indices which characterize the BAL profiles, and the terminal velocity of the flow vmax. The claimed anticorrelation between R* and vmax is therefore not confirmed, as well as the correlation between R* and p0 predicted by some models. Although marginally significant, the only possible correlations occur for the BAL QSOs with low-ionization troughs.

Key Words
Quasars: general - Quasars: absorption lines - Polarization

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