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IRAS 13224-3809 was observed in 2011 for 500 ks with the XMM-Newton observatory. We detect highly significant X-ray lags between soft (0.3-1 keV) and hard (1.2-5 keV) energies. The hard band lags the soft at low frequencies (i.e. hard lag), while the opposite (i.e. soft lag) is observed at high frequencies. In this paper, we study the lag during flaring and quiescent periods. We find that the frequency and absolute amplitude of the soft lag are different during high-flux and low-flux periods. During the low-flux intervals, the soft lag is detected at higher frequencies and with smaller amplitude. Assuming that the soft lag is associated with the light travel time between primary and reprocessed emission, this behaviour suggests that the X-ray source is more compact during low-flux intervals, and irradiates smaller radii of the accretion disc (likely because of light bending effects). We continue with an investigation of the lag dependence on energy, and find that isolating the low-flux periods reveals a strong lag signature at the Fe Kα line energy, similar to results found using 1.3 Ms of data on another well-known narrow-line Seyfert I galaxy, 1H0707-495.


Cosmology, Relativity, and Gravity | External Galaxies


NOTICE IN COMPLIANCE WITH PUBLISHER POLICY: This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society ©2013 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved. Available at doi:10.1093/mnras/stt024