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The Extraordinary Abundances of QSO Broad Absorption Line Regions: A Matter of Novae?

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Type
Preprint
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Identifiers
DOI: 10.1086/310001
arXiv ID: astro-ph/9602126
Source
arXiv
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Abstract

The broad absorption lines (BALs) of QSOs indicate abundances of heavy elements, relative to hydrogen, that are 1 to 2 orders of magnitude higher than the solar values. In at least one QSO, an especially large enhancement of phosphorus is observed. These abundances resemble those in Galactic novae, and this suggests that novae may produce the BAL gas. The needed rate of nova outbursts may come from single white dwarfs that accrete gas as they pass through a supermassive accretion disk around a central black hole.

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