An X-ray view of quasars

K. P. Singh*
Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Homi Bhabha Road, Mumbai 400 005, India
Received: 30th April 2013 | Accepted: 03 June 2013

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I present an overview of observational studies of quasars of all types, with particular emphasis on X-ray observational studies. The presentation is based on the most popularly accepted unified picture of quasars - collectively referred to as AGN (active galactic nuclei) in this review. Characteristics of X-ray spectra and X-ray variability obtained from various X-ray satellites over the last 5 decades have been presented and discussed. The contribution of AGN in understanding the cosmic X-ray background is discussed very briefly. Attempt has been made to provide up-to-date information; however, this is a vast subject and this presentation is not intended to be comprehensive.

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Keywords : quasars: general – galaxies: active – galaxies: nuclei – galaxies: Seyfert – X-rays: galaxies – X-rays: diffuse background