Publication details

Multimessenger Characterization of Markarian 501 during Historically Low X-Ray and gamma-Ray Activity

MAGIC collaboration, Abe et al.


Astroph.J. Suppl. 266, June 2023 (Submitted 2022/10/05)

External urlhttps://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.3847/1538-4365/acc181


We study the broadband emission of Mrk 501 using multiwavelength observations from 2017 to 2020 performed with a multitude of instruments, involving, among others, MAGIC, Fermi's Large Area Telescope (LAT), NuSTAR, Swift, GASP-WEBT, and the Owens Valley Radio Observatory. Mrk 501 showed an extremely low broadband activity, which may help to unravel its baseline emission. Nonetheless, significant flux variations are detected at all wave bands, with the highest occurring at X-rays and very-high-energy (VHE) γ-rays. A significant correlation (>3σ) between X-rays and VHE γ-rays is measured, supporting leptonic scenarios to explain the variable parts of the emission, also during low activity. This is further supported when we extend our data from 2008 to 2020, and identify, for the first time, significant correlations between the Swift X-Ray Telescope and Fermi-LAT. We additionally find correlations between high-energy γ-rays and radio, with the radio lagging by more than 100 days, placing the γ-ray emission zone upstream of the radio-bright regions in the jet. Furthermore, Mrk 501 showed a historically low activity in X-rays and VHE γ-rays from mid-2017 to mid-2019 with a stable VHE flux (>0.2 TeV) of 5% the emission of the Crab Nebula. The broadband spectral energy distribution (SED) of this 2 yr long low state, the potential baseline emission of Mrk 501, can be characterized with one-zone leptonic models, and with (lepto)-hadronic models fulfilling neutrino flux constraints from IceCube. We explore the time evolution of the SED toward the low state, revealing that the stable baseline emission may be ascribed to a standing shock, and the variable emission to an additional expanding or traveling shock.