Traces of recent interactions in isolated Seyfert galaxies
By means of deep optical images obtained at the Special Astrophysical
Observatory 6-m telescope it was discovered that some Seyfert galaxies
that were earlier considered to be non-interacting objects displayed
signatures of elongated tidal envelopes belonging to satellite debris.
We found that 35 per cent of the sample of isolated galaxies are
undergoing merging during the last 0.5-1 Gyr. Our results suggest
that statistic studies based on popular imaging surveys (for example
SDSS) can lead to an underestimation of the fraction of minor mergers
among galaxies with active nuclei (AGN). Since the tidal perturbations
induced by interactions favour gas accumulation in the area of action of
the central machine of the AGN which is, according to modern view, is
a supermassive black hole. It is hence very important to find out the
role of galaxy merging in initiating and supporting the AGN activity.
Fig.1. From top to bottom: an digital sky survey archive image; SAO RAS 6-m telescope deep image in magnitudes; 6-m telescope deep image on a linear scale; a residual image after the 2D surface brightness model subtraction.