Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Revealing a Highly Dynamic Cluster Core in Abell 1664 with Chandra

Calzadilla, Michael S.; Russell, Helen R.; McDonald, Michael A.; Fabian, Andrew C.; Baum, Stefi A.; Combes, Françoise; Donahue, Megan; Edge, Alastair C.; McNamara, Brian R.; Nulsen, Paul E.J.; O’Dea, Christopher P.; Oonk, J.B. Raymond; Tremblay, Grant R.; Vantyghem, Adrian N.

Revealing a Highly Dynamic Cluster Core in Abell 1664 with Chandra Thumbnail


Michael S. Calzadilla

Helen R. Russell

Michael A. McDonald

Andrew C. Fabian

Stefi A. Baum

Françoise Combes

Megan Donahue

Brian R. McNamara

Paul E.J. Nulsen

Christopher P. O’Dea

J.B. Raymond Oonk

Grant R. Tremblay

Adrian N. Vantyghem


We present new, deep (245 ks) Chandra observations of the galaxy cluster Abell 1664 (z = 0.1283). These images reveal rich structure, including elongation and accompanying compressions of the X-ray isophotes in the NE–SW direction, suggesting that the hot gas is sloshing in the gravitational potential. This sloshing has resulted in cold fronts, at distances of 50, 110, and 325 kpc from the cluster center. Our results indicate that the core of A1664 is highly disturbed, as the global metallicity and cooling time flatten at small radii, implying mixing on a range of scales. The central active galactic nucleus (AGN) appears to have recently undergone a mechanical outburst, as evidenced by our detection of cavities. These cavities are the X-ray manifestations of radio bubbles inflated by the AGN and may explain the motion of cold molecular CO clouds previously observed with the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA). The estimated mechanical power of the AGN, using the minimum energy required to inflate the cavities as a proxy, is ${P}_{\mathrm{cav}}=(1.1\pm 1.0)\times {10}^{44}$ erg s−1, which may be enough to drive the molecular gas flows, and offset the cooling luminosity of the intracluster medium, at ${L}_{\mathrm{cool}}=(1.53\pm 0.01)\times {10}^{44}$ erg s−1. This mechanical power is orders of magnitude higher than the measured upper limit on the X-ray luminosity of the central AGN, suggesting that its black hole may be extremely massive and/or radiatively inefficient. We map temperature variations on the same spatial scale as the molecular gas and find that the most rapidly cooling gas is mostly coincident with the molecular gas reservoir centered on the brightest cluster galaxy's systemic velocity observed with ALMA and may be fueling cold accretion onto the central black hole.


Calzadilla, M. S., Russell, H. R., McDonald, M. A., Fabian, A. C., Baum, S. A., Combes, F., …Vantyghem, A. N. (2019). Revealing a Highly Dynamic Cluster Core in Abell 1664 with Chandra. Astrophysical Journal, 875(1), Article 65.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 22, 2019
Online Publication Date Apr 16, 2019
Publication Date Apr 16, 2019
Deposit Date May 9, 2019
Publicly Available Date May 9, 2019
Journal Astrophysical Journal
Print ISSN 0004-637X
Publisher American Astronomical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 875
Issue 1
Article Number 65


Published Journal Article (1.7 Mb)

Copyright Statement
© 2019. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.

You might also like

Downloadable Citations