A Novel Approach to Study the Variability of NGC 5548
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AuthorBelete, A. Bewketu; Goicoechea Santamaría, Luis Julián; Leao, I. C.; Martins, B. L. Canto; Medeiros, J. R. de
Understanding the properties of the continuum radiation and broad emission lines of active galactic nuclei provides significant information not only to model the radiation mechanism and constrain the geometry and kinematics of the broad-line region (BLR) but also to probe the central engine of the sources. Here we investigate the multifractal behavior of the Hβ emission line and the 5100 Å continuum flux light curves of NGC 5548. The aim is to search for multiscaling signatures in the light curves and heck if there is a possible nonlinear relationship between them. To this end, we use a multifractality analysis technique called the Multifractal Detrended Moving Average analysis. We detect multifractal (nonlinear) signatures in the full monitoring and densely sampled period of the Hβ line and 5100 Å continuum light curves of NGC 5548, possibly indicating the presence of complex and nonlinear interaction in the 5100 Å continuum and Hβ emission line regions. Moreover, the degree of multifractality of the Hβ line is found to be about twice that of the 5100 Å continuum. The nonlinearity of both emissions could be generated when the BLR reprocesses the radiation from the central compact source. Finally, we found that antipersistent long-range temporal correlation is the main source of the multifractality detected in both light curves.