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Sample records for quasar absorption-line constraints

  1. Quasar Outflow Constraints using Broad Absorption Line Variability Studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGraw, Sean; Shields, Joseph C.; Hamann, Fred; Capellupo, Daniel M.; Gallagher, Sarah; Brandt, W. Niel; Herbst, Hanna

    2016-01-01

    Quasar outflows are plausible candidates for AGN feedback processes influencing the host galaxy and may explain the established correlations between the supermassive black hole (SMBH) and the surrounding bulge. In order to better understand feedback and the physical conditions of the outflowing gas, observational constraints on absorber kinematics and energetics are needed. We are utilizing multiple epoch, rest frame UV quasar spectra to establish limits on outflow locations and total column densities for the purpose of estimating wind kinetic energies and momenta. We are also investigating the variability patterns of broad absorption lines (BALs) and mini-BALs across a range of ionization states to probe underlying connections between the various classes of absorbers. This work employs observations from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, Hobby Eberly Telescope, and MDM observatory. We detect BAL variability in 3 out of 12 FeLoBAL quasars over multiple year timescales and conclude that the variable absorbers lie within tens of parsecs of the SMBH based on interpretations of the Fe II and Mg II BALS. We also measure significant BAL changes across daily to yearly timescales in a sample of 71 quasars with plausible detections of the P V 1117,1128 BAL. Detecting phosphorus in absorption is notable because it traces high column density outflows and is therefore relevant for studying AGN feedback. Constraints on outflow energetics and other selected results will be presented.

  2. On the statistics of quasar absorption lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zuiderwijk, E. J.

    1984-12-01

    The distribution of absorption lines in 13 quasar spectra is analyzed and shown to be fully consistent with the hypothesis of randomly, but not uniformly, distributed absorption features. The analysis by Libby et al. (1984), in which it is claimed that the number of wavelength coincidences among absorption lines in different quasar spectra (as measured in the rest frame of the quasars) is much larger than expected, implying absorbers in the quasars themselves, is totally invalid. Instead, the number of these coincidences is fully commensurate with the expected one on the assumption of randomness.

  3. SPECTROPOLARIMETRY OF RADIO-SELECTED BROAD ABSORPTION LINE QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    DiPompeo, M. A.; Brotherton, M. S.; Becker, R. H.; Gregg, M. D.; Tran, H. D.; White, R. L.; Laurent-Muehleisen, S. A.

    2010-07-15

    We report spectropolarimetry of 30 radio-selected broad absorption line (BAL) quasars with the Keck Observatory, 25 from the sample of Becker et al. Both high- and low-ionization BAL quasars are represented, with redshifts ranging from 0.5 to 2.5. The spectropolarimetric properties of radio-selected BAL quasars are very similar to those of radio-quiet BAL quasars: a sizeable fraction (20%) shows large continuum polarization (2%-10%) usually rising toward short wavelengths; emission lines are typically less polarized than the continuum; and absorption line troughs often show large polarization jumps. There are no significant correlations between polarization properties and radio properties, including those indicative of system orientation, suggesting that BAL quasars are not simply normal quasars seen from an edge-on perspective.

  4. Ionization states of metallic absorption-line systems in continua of quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Denda, Kiyomi; Ikeuchi, Satoru

    1993-01-01

    Ionization states of metallic absorption-line systems in continua of quasars (QSO's) are studied, assuming that the metallic lines arise in gaseous halos of high-redshift galaxies in photoionization equilibrium under the background UV radiation, and constraints on the intensity and spectral shape of the UV radiation are obtained. Then a structure of absorbers suitable for all of the metallic absorption line systems are discussed.

  5. Broad Absorption Line Quasar catalogues with Supervised Neural Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scaringi, Simone; Cottis, Christopher E.; Knigge, Christian; Goad, Michael R.

    2008-12-01

    We have applied a Learning Vector Quantization (LVQ) algorithm to SDSS DR5 quasar spectra in order to create a large catalogue of broad absorption line quasars (BALQSOs). We first discuss the problems with BALQSO catalogues constructed using the conventional balnicity and/or absorption indices (BI and AI), and then describe the supervised LVQ network we have trained to recognise BALQSOs. The resulting BALQSO catalogue should be substantially more robust and complete than BI-or AI-based ones.

  6. Broad Absorption Line Quasar catalogues with Supervised Neural Networks

    SciTech Connect

    Scaringi, Simone; Knigge, Christian; Cottis, Christopher E.; Goad, Michael R.

    2008-12-05

    We have applied a Learning Vector Quantization (LVQ) algorithm to SDSS DR5 quasar spectra in order to create a large catalogue of broad absorption line quasars (BALQSOs). We first discuss the problems with BALQSO catalogues constructed using the conventional balnicity and/or absorption indices (BI and AI), and then describe the supervised LVQ network we have trained to recognise BALQSOs. The resulting BALQSO catalogue should be substantially more robust and complete than BI-or AI-based ones.

  7. Monitoring the variability of intrinsic absorption lines in quasar spectra , ,

    SciTech Connect

    Misawa, Toru; Charlton, Jane C.; Eracleous, Michael

    2014-09-01

    We have monitored 12 intrinsic narrow absorption lines (NALs) in five quasars and seven mini-broad absorption lines (mini-BALs) in six quasars for a period of 4-12 yr (1-3.5 yr in the quasar rest-frame). We present the observational data and the conclusions that follow immediately from them, as a prelude to a more detailed analysis. We found clear variability in the equivalent widths (EWs) of the mini-BAL systems but no easily discernible changes in their profiles. We did not detect any variability in the NAL systems or in narrow components that are often located at the center of mini-BAL profiles. Variations in mini-BAL EWs are larger at longer time intervals, reminiscent of the trend seen in variable BALs. If we assume that the observed variations result from changes in the ionization state of the mini-BAL gas, we infer lower limits to the gas density ∼10{sup 3}-10{sup 5} cm{sup –3} and upper limits on the distance of the absorbers from the central engine of the order of a few kiloparsecs. Motivated by the observed variability properties, we suggest that mini-BALs can vary because of fluctuations of the ionizing continuum or changes in partial coverage while NALs can vary primarily because of changes in partial coverage.

  8. Radio Structures of Compact Quasars with Broad Absorption Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kunert-Bajraszewska, Magdalena; Gawroński, Marcin P.

    2010-05-01

    Broad absorption lines (BALs), seen in a small fraction of both the radio-quiet and radio-loud quasar populations, are probably caused by the outflow of gas with high velocities and are part of the accretion process. The presence of BALs is due to a geometrical effect and/or it is connected with the quasar evolution. Using the final release of FIRST survey combined with a catalog of BAL QSOs from SDSS/DR3, we have constructed a new sample of compact radio-loud BAL QSOs, which constitutes the majority of radio-loud BAL QSOs. The main goal of this project is to study the origin of BALs by analysis of the BAL QSOs radio morphology, orientation, and jet evolution using the European VLBI Network (EVN) at 1.6 GHz and the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) at 5 and 8.4 GHz.

  9. THE VIEWING ANGLES OF BROAD ABSORPTION LINE VERSUS UNABSORBED QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    DiPompeo, M. A.; Brotherton, M. S.; De Breuck, C.

    2012-06-10

    It was recently shown that there is a significant difference in the radio spectral index distributions of broad absorption line (BAL) quasars and unabsorbed quasars, with an overabundance of BAL quasars with steeper radio spectra. This result suggests that source orientation does play into the presence or absence of BAL features. In this paper, we provide more quantitative analysis of this result based on Monte Carlo simulations. While the relationship between viewing angle and spectral index does indeed contain a lot of scatter, the spectral index distributions are different enough to overcome that intrinsic variation. Utilizing two different models of the relationship between spectral index and viewing angle, the simulations indicate that the difference in spectral index distributions can be explained by allowing BAL quasar viewing angles to extend about 10 Degree-Sign farther from the radio jet axis than non-BAL sources, though both can be seen at small angles. These results show that orientation cannot be the only factor determining whether BAL features are present, but it does play a role.

  10. Extreme Variability in a Broad Absorption Line Quasar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stern, Daniel; Graham, Matthew; Arav, Nahum; Djorgovski, Stanislav G.; Chamberlain, Carter; Barth, Aaron J.; Donalek, Ciro; Drake, Andrew J.; Glikman, Eilat; Jun, Hyunsung David; Mahabal, Ashish A.; Steidel, Charles C.

    2016-01-01

    We report on extreme spectral variability seen in a broad absorption line quasar over the past decade, initially identified from the Catalina Real-time Transient Survey (CRTS). Photometrically, the source had a visual magnitude of V = 17.3 between 2002 and 2008. Then, over the following 5 years, the source slowly brightened by approximately one magnitude, to V = 16.2. A combination of archival and newly acquired spectra reveal the source to be an iron low-ionization broad absorption line (Fe-LoBAL) quasar with extreme changes in its absorption spectrum. Some absorption features completely disappear over the 9 years of optical spectra, while other features remain essentially unchanged. Absorption systems separated by several 1000 km/s in velocity show coordinated changes in the depths of their troughs, correlated with the flux changes. Therefore, we interpret the variability in the absorption troughs to be due to changes in photoionization, rather than due to motion of material into our line of sight. This source highlights the sort of rare transition objects that astronomy will now be finding through dedicated time domain surveys.

  11. The orientation and polarization of broad absorption line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DiPompeo, M. A.; Brotherton, M. S.; De Breuck, C.

    2013-01-01

    We present new spectropolarimetric observations of eight radio-loud broad absorption line (BAL) quasars, and combine these new data with our previous spectropolarimetric atlases (of both radio-loud and radio-quiet objects; DiPompeo et al. 2010, DiPompeo et al. 2011a) in order to investigate the polarization properties of BAL quasars as a group. The total (radio-selected) sample includes 36 (26) high-ionization and 22 (15) low-ionization BAL quasars (HiBALs and LoBALs, respectively). On average, we confirm that broad emission lines are polarized at a level similar to or less than the continuum and broad absorption troughs are more highly polarized, but we note that these properties are not true for all individual objects. Of the whole sample, 18 (31 per cent) have high (>2 per cent) continuum polarization, including 45 per cent of the LoBALs and 22 per cent of the HiBALs. We identify a few correlations between polarization and other quasar properties, as well as some interesting non-correlations. In particular, continuum polarization does not correlate with radio spectral index, which suggests that the polarization is not due to a standard geometry and preferred viewing angle to BAL quasars. The polarization also does not correlate with the amount of intrinsic dust reddening, indicating that the polarization is not solely due to direct light attenuation either. Polarization does appear to depend on the minimum BAL outflow velocity, confirming the results of previous studies and it may correlate with the maximum outflow velocity. We also find that continuum polarization anticorrelates with the polarization in the C iv broad emission and broad absorption. These results suggest that the polarization of BAL quasars cannot be described by one simple model, and that the scatterer location and geometry can vary significantly from object to object.

  12. Monitoring the Variability of Intrinsic Absorption Lines in Quasar Spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misawa, Toru; Charlton, Jane C.; Eracleous, Michael

    2014-09-01

    We have monitored 12 intrinsic narrow absorption lines (NALs) in five quasars and seven mini-broad absorption lines (mini-BALs) in six quasars for a period of 4-12 yr (1-3.5 yr in the quasar rest-frame). We present the observational data and the conclusions that follow immediately from them, as a prelude to a more detailed analysis. We found clear variability in the equivalent widths (EWs) of the mini-BAL systems but no easily discernible changes in their profiles. We did not detect any variability in the NAL systems or in narrow components that are often located at the center of mini-BAL profiles. Variations in mini-BAL EWs are larger at longer time intervals, reminiscent of the trend seen in variable BALs. If we assume that the observed variations result from changes in the ionization state of the mini-BAL gas, we infer lower limits to the gas density ~103-105 cm-3 and upper limits on the distance of the absorbers from the central engine of the order of a few kiloparsecs. Motivated by the observed variability properties, we suggest that mini-BALs can vary because of fluctuations of the ionizing continuum or changes in partial coverage while NALs can vary primarily because of changes in partial coverage. Based on data collected at Subaru telescope, which is operated by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan. Based on observations obtained at the European Southern Observatory at La Silla, Chile in programs 65.O-0063(B), 65.O-0474(A), 67.A-0078(A), 68.A-0461(A), 69.A-0204(A), 70.B-0522(A), 072.A-0346(A), 076.A-0860(A), 079.B-0469(A), and 166.A-0106(A).

  13. Outflow and hot dust emission in broad absorption line quasars

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Shaohua; Zhou, Hongyan; Wang, Huiyuan; Wang, Tinggui; Xing, Feijun; Jiang, Peng; Zhang, Kai E-mail: whywang@mail.ustc.edu.cn

    2014-05-01

    We have investigated a sample of 2099 broad absorption line (BAL) quasars with z = 1.7-2.2 built from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release Seven and the Wide-field Infrared Survey. This sample is collected from two BAL quasar samples in the literature and is refined by our new algorithm. Correlations of outflow velocity and strength with a hot dust indicator (β{sub NIR}) and other quasar physical parameters—such as an Eddington ratio, luminosity, and a UV continuum slope—are explored in order to figure out which parameters drive outflows. Here β{sub NIR} is the near-infrared continuum slope, which is a good indicator of the amount of hot dust emission relative to the accretion disk emission. We confirm previous findings that outflow properties moderately or weakly depend on the Eddington ratio, UV slope, and luminosity. For the first time, we report moderate and significant correlations of outflow strength and velocity with β{sub NIR} in BAL quasars. It is consistent with the behavior of blueshifted broad emission lines in non-BAL quasars. The statistical analysis and composite spectra study both reveal that outflow strength and velocity are more strongly correlated with β{sub NIR} than the Eddington ratio, luminosity, and UV slope. In particular, the composites show that the entire C IV absorption profile shifts blueward and broadens as β{sub NIR} increases, while the Eddington ratio and UV slope only affect the high and low velocity part of outflows, respectively. We discuss several potential processes and suggest that the dusty outflow scenario, i.e., that dust is intrinsic to outflows and may contribute to the outflow acceleration, is most likely.

  14. DISCOVERY OF THE TRANSITION OF A MINI-BROAD ABSORPTION LINE INTO A BROAD ABSORPTION LINE IN THE SDSS QUASAR J115122.14+020426.3

    SciTech Connect

    Hidalgo, Paola Rodriguez; Eracleous, Michael; Charlton, Jane; Hamann, Fred; Murphy, Michael T.; Nestor, Daniel

    2013-09-20

    We present the detection of a rare case of dramatic strengthening in the UV absorption profiles in the spectrum of the quasar J115122.14+020426.3 between observations {approx}2.86 yr apart in the quasar rest frame. A spectrum obtained in 2001 by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey shows a C IV ''mini-broad'' absorption line (FWHM = 1220 km s{sup -1}) with a maximum blueshift velocity of {approx}9520 km s{sup -1}, while a later spectrum from the Very Large Telescope shows a significantly broader and stronger absorption line, with a maximum blueshift velocity of {approx}12, 240 km s{sup -1} that qualifies as a broad absorption line. A similar variability pattern is observed in two additional systems at lower blueshifted velocities and in the Ly{alpha} and N V transitions as well. One of the absorption systems appears to be resolved and shows evidence for partial covering of the quasar continuum source (C{sub f} {approx} 0.65), indicating a transverse absorber size of, at least, {approx}6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 16} cm. In contrast, a cluster of narrower C IV lines appears to originate in gas that fully covers the continuum and broad emission line sources. There is no evidence for changes in the centroid velocity of the absorption troughs. This case suggests that at least some of the absorbers that produce ''mini-broad'' and broad absorption lines in quasar spectra do not belong to intrinsically separate classes. Here, the ''mini-broad'' absorption line is most likely interpreted as an intermediate phase before the appearance of a broad absorption line due to their similar velocities. While the current observations do not provide enough constraints to discern among the possible causes for this variability, future monitoring of multiple transitions at high resolution will help achieve this goal.

  15. The Hubble Space Telescope quasar absorption line key project. II - Data calibration and absorption-line selection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schneider, Donald P.; Hartig, George F.; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Kirhakos, Sofia; Saxe, David H.; Weymann, Ray J.; Bahcall, John N.; Bergeron, Jacqueline; Boksenberg, Alec; Sargent, W. L. W.

    1993-01-01

    We present the observational and data processing aspects of the Hubble Space Telescope Quasar Absorption Line Key Project. Topics discussed include the observational technique, calibration of the data, software that simulates the data, the automated procedure used to identify and characterize the absorption features, and the determination of the sensitivity limits of the survey.

  16. Reionisation and High-Redshift Galaxies: The View from Quasar Absorption Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becker, George D.; Bolton, James S.; Lidz, Adam

    2015-12-01

    Determining when and how the first galaxies reionised the intergalactic medium promises to shed light on both the nature of the first objects and the cosmic history of baryons. Towards this goal, quasar absorption lines play a unique role by probing the properties of diffuse gas on galactic and intergalactic scales. In this review, we examine the multiple ways in which absorption lines trace the connection between galaxies and the intergalactic medium near the reionisation epoch. We first describe how the Ly α forest is used to determine the intensity of the ionising ultraviolet background and the global ionising emissivity budget. Critically, these measurements reflect the escaping ionising radiation from all galaxies, including those too faint to detect directly. We then discuss insights from metal absorption lines into reionisation-era galaxies and their surroundings. Current observations suggest a buildup of metals in the circumgalactic environments of galaxies over z ~ 6 to 5, although changes in ionisation will also affect the evolution of metal line properties. A substantial fraction of metal absorbers at these redshifts may trace relatively low-mass galaxies. Finally, we review constraints from the Ly α forest and quasar near zones on the timing of reionisation. Along with other probes of the high-redshift Universe, absorption line data are consistent with a relatively late end to reionisation (5.5 ≲ z ≲ 7); however, the constraints are still fairly week. Significant progress is expected to come through improved analysis techniques, increases in the number of known high-redshift quasars from optical and infrared sky surveys, large gains in sensitivity from next-generation observing facilities, and synergies with other probes of the reionisation era.

  17. Broad absorption line variability in radio-loud quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welling, C. A.; Miller, B. P.; Brandt, W. N.; Capellupo, D. M.; Gibson, R. R.

    2014-05-01

    We investigate C IV broad absorption line (BAL) variability within a sample of 46 radio-loud quasars (RLQs), selected from Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS)/Faint Images of the Radio Sky at Twenty-Centimeters (FIRST) data to include both core-dominated (39) and lobe-dominated (7) objects. The sample consists primarily of high-ionization BAL quasars, and a substantial fraction have large BAL velocities or equivalent widths; their radio luminosities and radio-loudness values span ˜2.5 orders of magnitude. We have obtained 34 new Hobby-Eberly Telescope spectra of 28 BAL RLQs to compare to earlier SDSS data, and we also incorporate archival coverage (primarily dual-epoch SDSS) for a total set of 78 pairs of equivalent width measurements for 46 BAL RLQs, probing rest-frame time-scales of ˜80-6000 d (median 500 d). In general, only modest changes in the depths of segments of absorption troughs are observed, akin to those seen in prior studies of BAL radio-quiet quasars (RQQs). Also similar to previous findings for RQQs, the RLQs studied here are more likely to display BAL variability on longer rest-frame time-scales. However, typical values of |{Δ}EW| and |{Δ}EW|/ are ˜40 ± 20 per cent lower for BAL RLQs when compared with those of a time-scale-matched sample of BAL RQQs. Optical continuum variability is of similar amplitude in BAL RLQs and BAL RQQs; for both RLQs and RQQs, continuum variability tends to be stronger on longer time-scales. BAL variability in RLQs does not obviously depend upon their radio luminosities or radio-loudness values, but we do find tentative evidence for greater fractional BAL variability within lobe-dominated RLQs. Enhanced BAL variability within more edge-on (lobe-dominated) RLQs supports some geometrical dependence to the outflow structure.

  18. The intrinsic fraction of broad-absorption line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knigge, Christian; Scaringi, Simone; Goad, Michael R.; Cottis, Christopher E.

    2008-05-01

    We carefully reconsider the problem of classifying broad-absorption line quasars (BALQSOs) and derive a new, unbiased estimate of the intrinsic BALQSO fraction from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) DR3 quasi-stellar object (QSO) catalogue. We first show that the distribution of objects selected by the so-called `absorption index' (AI) is clearly bimodal in logAI, with only one mode corresponding to definite BALQSOs. The surprisingly high BALQSO fractions that have recently been inferred from AI-based samples are therefore likely to be overestimated. We then present two new approaches to the classification problem that are designed to be more robust than the AI, but also more complete than the traditional `balnicity index' (BI). Both approaches yield observed BALQSO fractions around 13.5 per cent, while a conservative third approach suggests an upper limit of 18.3 per cent. Finally, we discuss the selection biases that affect our observed BALQSO fraction. After correcting for these biases, we arrive at our final estimate of the intrinsic BALQSO fraction. This is fBALQSO = 0.17 +/- 0.01(stat) +/- 0.03(sys) with an upper limit of fBALQSO ~= 0.23. We conclude by pointing out that the bimodality of the logAI distribution may be evidence that the BAL-forming region has clearly delineated physical boundaries.

  19. Quasar Broad Absorption Line Variability on Multiyear Timescales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gibson, Robert R.; Brandt, W. N.; Schneider, Donald P.; Gallagher, S. C.

    2008-03-01

    We use quantitative metrics to characterize the variation of C IV λ1549 broad absorption lines (BALs) over 3-6 (rest-frame) years in a sample of 13 quasars at 1.7 <= z<= 2.8 and compare the results to previous studies of BAL variability on shorter timescales. The strong BALs in our study change in complex ways over 3-6 yr. Variation occurs in discrete regions only a few thousand kilometers per second wide, and the distribution of the change in absorption equivalent width broadens over time. We constrain the typical C IV BAL lifetime to be at least a few decades. While we do not find evidence to support a scenario in which the variation is primarily driven by photoionization on multiyear timescales, there is some indication that the variation is produced by changes in outflow geometry. We do not observe significant changes in the BAL onset velocity, indicating that the absorber is either far from the source or is being continually replenished and is azimuthally symmetric. It is not possible in a human lifetime to expand the timescales in our study by more than a factor of a few using optical spectroscopy. However, the strong variation we have observed in some BALs indicates that future studies of large numbers of BAL QSOs will be valuable to constrain BAL lifetimes and the physics of variation.

  20. The Physical Nature of Polar Broad Absorption Line Quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ghost, Kajal; Punsly, Brian

    2007-01-01

    It has been shown based on radio variability arguments that some BALQSOs (broad absorption line quasars) are viewed along the polar axis (o rthogonal to accretion disk) in the recent article of Zhou et a. Thes e arguments are based on the brightness temperature, T(sub b) exceedi ng 10(exp 12) K which leads to the well-known inverse Compton catastr ophe unless the radio jet is relativistic and is viewed along its axi s. In this letter, we expand the Zhou et al sample of polar BALQSOs u sing their techniques applied to SDSS DR5. In the process, we clarify a mistake in their calculation of brightness temperature. The expanded sample of high T(sub b) BALQSOS, has an inordinately large fraction of LoBALQSOs (low ionization BALQSOs). We consider this an important clue to understanding the nature of the polar BALQSOs. This is expec ted in the polar BALQSO analytical/numerical models of Punsly that pr edicted that LoBALQSOs occur when the line of sight is very close to the polar axis, where the outflow density is the highest.

  1. X-Ray Continua of Broad Absorption Line Quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mathur, S.

    1999-01-01

    The targets for this program, PG1416-129 and LBQS 2212-1759 were known to be Broad Absorption Line Quasars (BALQSOs). BALQSOs are highly absorbed in soft X-rays. Good high energy response of Rossi-XTE made them ideal targets for observation. We observed LBQS 2212-1759 with PCA. We have now analyzed the data and found that the source was not detected. Since our target was expected to be faint, reliable estimate of background was very important. With the release of new FTOOLS (version 4.1) we were able to do so. We also analyzed a well known bright object and verified our results with the published data. This gave us confidence in the non-detection of our target LBQS 2212-1759. We are currently investigating the implications of this non-detection. Due to some scheduling problems, our second target PG1416-129 was not observed in A01. It was observed on 06/26/98. This target was detected with RXTE. We are now working on the spectral analysis with XSPEC.

  2. The VLBI structure of radio-loud Broad Absorption Line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Y.; Jiang, D. R.; Gu, M.

    2016-02-01

    The nature and origin of Broad Absorption Line (BAL) quasars and their relationship to non-BAL quasars are an open question. The BAL quasars are probably normal quasars seen along a particular line of sight. Alternatively, they are young or recently refueled. The high resolution radio morphology of BAL quasars is very important to understand the radio properties of BAL quasars. We present VLBA observations at L and C bands for a sample of BAL quasars. The observations will help us to explore the VLBI radio properties, and distinguish the present models of explaining BAL phenomena.

  3. Time-Variable Complex Metal Absorption Lines in the Quasar HS 1603+3820

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misawa, Toru; Eracleous, Michael; Charlton, Jane C.; Tajitsu, Akito

    2005-08-01

    We present a new spectrum of the quasar HS 1603+3820 taken 1.28 yr (0.36 yr in the quasar rest frame) after a previous observation with Subaru+HDS. The new spectrum enables us to search for time variability as an identifier of intrinsic narrow absorption lines (NALs). This quasar shows a rich complex of C IV NALs within 60,000 km s-1 of the emission redshift. On the basis of covering factor analysis, Misawa et al. found that the C IV NAL system at zabs=2.42-2.45 (system A, at a shift velocity of vsh=8300-10,600 km s-1 relative to the quasar) was intrinsic to the quasar. With our new spectrum, we perform time variability analysis, as well as covering factor analysis, to separate intrinsic NALs from intervening NALs for eight C IV systems. Only system A, which was identified as an intrinsic system in the earlier paper by Misawa et al., shows a strong variation in line strength (Wobs~10.4-->19.1 Å). We speculate that a broad absorption line (BAL) could be forming in this quasar (i.e., many narrower lines will blend together to make a BAL profile). We illustrate the plausibility of this suggestion with the help of a simulation in which we vary the column densities and covering factors of the NAL complex. Under the assumption that a change of ionization state causes the variability, a lower limit can be placed on the electron density (ne>~3×104cm-3) and an upper limit on the distance from the continuum source (r<=6 kpc). On the other hand, if the motion of clumpy gas causes the variability (a more likely scenario), the crossing velocity and the distance from the continuum source are estimated to be vcross>8000 km s-1 and r<3 pc. In this case, the absorber does not intercept any flux from the broad emission line region, but only flux from the UV continuum source. If we adopt the dynamical model of Murray et al., we can obtain a much more strict constraint on the distance of the gas parcel from the continuum source, r<0.2 pc. Based on data collected at the Subaru

  4. Ca II AND Na I QUASAR ABSORPTION-LINE SYSTEMS IN AN EMISSION-SELECTED SAMPLE OF SDSS DR7 GALAXY/QUASAR PROJECTIONS. I. SAMPLE SELECTION

    SciTech Connect

    Cherinka, B.; Schulte-Ladbeck, R. E.

    2011-10-15

    The aim of this project is to identify low-redshift host galaxies of quasar absorption-line systems by selecting galaxies that are seen in projection onto quasar sightlines. To this end, we use the Seventh Data Release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey to construct a parent sample of 97,489 galaxy/quasar projections at impact parameters of up to 100 kpc to the foreground galaxy. We then search the quasar spectra for absorption-line systems of Ca II and Na I within {+-}500 km s{sup -1} of the galaxy's velocity. This yields 92 Ca II and 16 Na I absorption systems. We find that most of the Ca II and Na I systems are sightlines through the Galactic disk, through high-velocity cloud complexes in our halo, or Virgo Cluster sightlines. Placing constraints on the absorption line rest equivalent width significance ({>=}3.0{sigma}), the local standard of rest velocity along the sightline ({>=}345 km s{sup -1}), and the ratio of the impact parameter to the galaxy optical radius ({<=}5.0), we identify four absorption-line systems that are associated with low-redshift galaxies at high confidence, consisting of two Ca II systems (one of which also shows Na I) and two Na I systems. These four systems arise in blue, {approx}L*{sub r} galaxies. Tables of the 108 absorption systems are provided to facilitate future follow-up.

  5. Rest-frame optical properties of luminous, radio-selected broad absorption line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Runnoe, Jessie C.; Ganguly, R.; Brotherton, M. S.; DiPompeo, M. A.

    2013-08-01

    We have obtained Infrared Telescope Facility/SpeX spectra of eight moderate-redshift (z = 0.7-2.4), radio-selected (log R* ≈ 0.4-1.9) broad absorption line (BAL) quasars. The spectra cover the rest-frame optical band. We compare the optical properties of these quasars to those of canonically radio-quiet (log R* ≲ 1) BAL quasars at similar redshifts and to low-redshift quasars from the Palomar-Green catalogue. As with previous studies of BAL quasars, we find that [O III] λ5007 is weak, and optical Fe II emission is strong, a rare combination in canonically radio-loud (log R* ≳ 1) quasars. With our measurements of the optical properties, particularly the Balmer emission-line widths and the continuum luminosity, we have used empirical scaling relations to estimate black hole masses and Eddington ratios. These lie in the range (0.4-2.6) × 109 M⊙ and 0.1-0.9, respectively. Despite their comparatively extreme radio properties relative to most BAL quasars, their optical properties are quite consistent with those of radio-quiet BAL quasars and dissimilar to those of radio-loud non-BAL quasars. While BAL quasars generally appear to have low values of [O III] λ5007/Fe II an extreme of `Eigenvector 1', the Balmer line widths and Eddington ratios do not appear to significantly differ from those of unabsorbed quasars at similar redshifts and luminosities.

  6. Discovery of an X-ray Violently Variable Broad Absorption Line Quasar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ghosh, Kajal K.; Gutierrez, Carlos M.; Punsly, Brian; Chevallier, Loic; Goncalves, Anabela C.

    2006-01-01

    In this letter, we report on a quasar that is violently variable in the X-rays, XVV. It is also a broad absorption line quasar (BALQSO) that exhibits both high ionization and low ionization UV absorption lines (LoBALQSO). It is very luminous in the X-rays (approximately 10(exp 46) ergs s(sup -l) over the entire X-ray band). Surprisingly, this does not over ionize the LoBAL outflow. The X-rays vary by a factor of two within minutes in the quasar rest frame, which is shorter than 1/30 of the light travel time across a scale length equal to the black hole radius. We concluded that the X-rays are produced in a relativistic jet beamed toward earth in which variations in the Doppler enhancement produce the XVV behavior.

  7. Radiatively driven winds for different power law spectra. [for explaining narrow and broad quasar absorption lines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beltrametti, M.

    1980-01-01

    The analytic solutions for radiatively driven winds are given for the case in which the winds are driven by absorption of line and continuum radiation. The wind solutions are analytically estimated for different parameters of the central source and for different power law spectra. For flat spectra, three sonic points can exist; it is shown, however, that only one of these sonic points is physically realistic. Parameters of the central source are given which generate winds of further interest for explaining the narrow and broad absorption lines in quasars. For the quasar model presented here, winds which could give rise to the narrow absorption lines are generated by central sources with parameters which are not realistic for quasars.

  8. The far-infrared properties of broad absorption line quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pu, Xingting

    2015-05-01

    We present the results of a study which uses a sample of 320 Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) quasars with 1.68≤ z≤2.28 inside the Herschel Stripe 82 Survey (HerS) region to compare the mid-infrared (MIR) and far-infrared (FIR) properties of broad absorption line (BAL) and non-BAL quasars. The BAL quasar sample comprises 56 high-ionization BAL (HiBAL) quasars and two low-ionization BAL (LoBAL) quasars. The BAL and non-BAL samples have similar intrinsic absolute i magnitude. When combined with Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) MIR photometry, the BAL quasars are found to have MIR luminosities and MIR-to-optical luminosity ratios consistent with those of the non-BALs, in good agreement with the results of Gallagher et al. The FIR detection rates of BAL and non-BAL quasars are found to be consistent with each other. The BAL quasars are found to have FIR fluxes indistinguishable from that of non-BAL quasars using survival analysis methods. No evidence is found for a correlation between FIR flux and BAL strength, consistent with the recent results of Cao Orjales et al. The FIR properties of this sample appear to be at odds with the evolutionary model in which BALs are an early phase in the lives of quasars.

  9. AN INFRARED EXCESS IDENTIFIED IN RADIO-LOUD BROAD ABSORPTION LINE QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    DiPompeo, M. A.; Runnoe, J. C.; Brotherton, M. S.; Myers, A. D.

    2013-01-10

    If broad absorption line (BAL) quasars represent a high-covering-fraction evolutionary state (even if this is not the sole factor governing the presence of BALs), it is expected that they should show an excess of mid-infrared radiation compared to normal quasars. Some previous studies have suggested that this is not the case. We perform the first analysis of the IR properties of radio-loud BAL quasars, using IR data from WISE and optical (rest-frame ultraviolet) data from SDSS, and compare the BAL quasar sample with a well-matched sample of unabsorbed quasars. We find a statistically significant excess in the mid- to near-infrared luminosities of BAL quasars, particularly at rest-frame wavelengths of 1.5 and 4 {mu}m. Our sample was previously used to show that BALs are observed along many lines of sight toward quasars, but with an overabundance of more edge-on sources, suggesting that orientation factors into the appearance of BALs. The evidence here-of a difference in IR luminosities between BAL quasars and unabsorbed quasars-can be ascribed to evolution. This suggests that a merging of the current BAL paradigms is needed to fully describe the class.

  10. What Quasars Really Look Like: Unification of the Emission and Absorption Line Regions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Elvis, Martin

    2000-01-01

    We propose a simple unifying structure for the inner regions of quasars and AGN. This empirically derived model links together the broad absorption line (BALS), the narrow UV/X-ray ionized absorbers, the BELR, and the 5 Compton scattering/fluorescing regions into a single structure. The model also suggests an alternative origin for the large-scale bi-conical outflows. Some other potential implications of this structure are discussed.

  11. Discovery of Broad Soft X-ray Absorption Lines from the Quasar Wind in PDS 456

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reeves, J. N.; Braito, V.; Nardini, E.; Behar, E.; O’Brien, P. T.; Tombesi, F.; Turner, T. J.; Costa, M. T.

    2016-06-01

    High-resolution soft X-ray spectroscopy of the prototype accretion disk wind quasar, PDS 456, is presented. Here, the XMM-Newton reflection grating spectrometer spectra are analyzed from the large 2013–2014 XMM-Newton campaign, consisting of five observations of approximately 100 ks in length. During the last observation (OBS. E), the quasar is at a minimum flux level, and broad absorption line (BAL) profiles are revealed in the soft X-ray band, with typical velocity widths of {σ }{{v}}˜ {{10,000}} km s‑1. During a period of higher flux in the third and fourth observations (OBS. C and D, respectively), a very broad absorption trough is also present above 1 keV. From fitting the absorption lines with models of photoionized absorption spectra, the inferred outflow velocities lie in the range ˜ 0.1{--}0.2c. The absorption lines likely originate from He and H-like neon and L-shell iron at these energies. A comparison with earlier archival data of PDS 456 also reveals a similar absorption structure near 1 keV in a 40 ks observation in 2001, and generally the absorption lines appear most apparent when the spectrum is more absorbed overall. The presence of the soft X-ray BALs is also independently confirmed by an analysis of the XMM-Newton EPIC spectra below 2 keV. We suggest that the soft X-ray absorption profiles could be associated with a lower ionization and possibly clumpy phase of the accretion disk wind, where the latter is known to be present in this quasar from its well-studied iron K absorption profile and where the wind velocity reaches a typical value of 0.3c.

  12. BROAD ABSORPTION LINE DISAPPEARANCE ON MULTI-YEAR TIMESCALES IN A LARGE QUASAR SAMPLE

    SciTech Connect

    Filiz Ak, N.; Brandt, W. N.; Schneider, D. P.; Hall, P. B.; Anderson, S. F.; Gibson, R. R.; Lundgren, B. F.; Myers, A. D.; Petitjean, P.; Ross, Nicholas P.; Shen Yue; York, D. G.; Bizyaev, D.; Brinkmann, J.; Malanushenko, E.; Oravetz, D. J.; Pan, K.; Simmons, A. E.; Weaver, B. A.

    2012-10-01

    We present 21 examples of C IV broad absorption line (BAL) trough disappearance in 19 quasars selected from systematic multi-epoch observations of 582 bright BAL quasars (1.9 < z < 4.5) by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey-I/II (SDSS-I/II) and SDSS-III. The observations span 1.1-3.9 yr rest-frame timescales, longer than have been sampled in many previous BAL variability studies. On these timescales, Almost-Equal-To 2.3% of C IV BAL troughs disappear and Almost-Equal-To 3.3% of BAL quasars show a disappearing trough. These observed frequencies suggest that many C IV BAL absorbers spend on average at most a century along our line of sight to their quasar. Ten of the 19 BAL quasars showing C IV BAL disappearance have apparently transformed from BAL to non-BAL quasars; these are the first reported examples of such transformations. The BAL troughs that disappear tend to be those with small-to-moderate equivalent widths, relatively shallow depths, and high outflow velocities. Other non-disappearing C IV BALs in those nine objects having multiple troughs tend to weaken when one of them disappears, indicating a connection between the disappearing and non-disappearing troughs, even for velocity separations as large as 10,000-15,000 km s{sup -1}. We discuss possible origins of this connection including disk-wind rotation and changes in shielding gas.

  13. XMM-Newton Observations of the Radio-Loud Broad Absorption Line Quasar FBQS J131213.5+231958

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mathur, Smita; Dai, Xinyu

    2010-12-01

    We present XMM-Newton observations of the broad absorption line (BAL) quasar FBQS J131213.5+231958. The X-ray spectrum of the source can be well described by an absorbed power-law model in which the absorber is either ionized or only partially covers the continuum source. This can explain the apparent lack of absorption observed in the Chandra spectrum with low signal-to-noise ratio. While the power-law slope of the spectrum is similar to that of non-BAL radio-loud quasars, the Eddington luminosity ratio is likely to be significantly higher than the mean. This shows that in high-mass black holes (BHs), high Eddington accretion may not result in as steep of a spectrum as in lower-mass BHs. This provides important constraints for accretion disk models. It also provides support to the idea that BAL quasars, at least their radio-loud subclass, represent an early evolutionary stage of quasars.

  14. Erasing a false dichotomy: The complex nature of broad absorption line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DiPompeo, Michael A.

    The main goal of this thesis is to test the various models proposed to explain the important subclass of quasars known as broad absorption line (BAL) quasars. In particular, I focus on whether viewing angle alone can explain why only a fraction of quasars exhibit BALs in their optical/ultraviolet spectra, or if some other model or combination of models is more likely. Much of the work contained here focuses on radio-selected BAL quasars, a relatively poorly studied class to this point, and so a secondary goal is to provide a detailed analysis of their properties. Finally, I provide a large spectropolarimetric atlas of BAL quasars for use by the community. Using new multi-frequency radio observations of a large sample of BAL quasars, and a carefully selected, well-matched sample of unabsorbed quasars, I show that there does appear to be an overabundance of steep-spectrum BAL sources, though they cover a wide range of spectral slopes. Monte-Carlo modeling of these distributions show that BAL quasars are seen from a range of viewing angles, including all of the viewing angles that unabsorbed quasars are seen from. However, at the largest viewing angles, we will generally see BAL quasars. No other spectral features or quasar outflow properties correlate with viewing angle, suggesting that BAL winds in all directions are driven by the same mechanism. BAL quasars are indeed more likely to be polarized than non-BAL sources. However, this is not simply due to orientation or extinction of the direct un-polarized continuum light, as polarization does not correlate with viewing angle or dust extinction. It seems that there is much variation in the polarizing scattering material, both in its location and geometry, between individual sources. This makes it difficult to use polarization studies to constrain BAL quasar models, though it is likely useful for detailed study of individual objects. Simple explanations using only one parameter are clearly no longer sufficient, and we

  15. Radio line and continuum observations of quasar-galaxy pairs and the origin of low reshift quasar absorption line systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carilli, C. L.; Vangorkom, J. H.; Hauxthausen, E. M.; Stocke, J. T.; Salzer, J.

    1990-01-01

    There are a number of known quasars for which our line of sight to the high redshift quasar passes within a few Holmberg radii of a low redshift galaxy. In a few of these cases, spectra of the quasar reveal absorption by gas associated with the low redshift galaxy. A number of these pairs imply absorption by gas which lies well outside the optical disk of the associated galaxy, leading to models of galaxies with 'halos' or 'disks' of gas extending to large radii. The authors present observations of 4 such pairs. In three of the four cases, they find that the associated galaxy is highly disturbed, typically due to a gravitational interaction with a companion galaxy, while in the fourth case the absorption can be explained by clouds in the optical disk of the associated galaxy. They are led to an alternative hypothesis concerning the origin of the low redshift absorption line systems: the absorption is by gas clouds which have been gravitationally stripped from the associated galaxy. These galaxies are rapidly evolving, and should not be used as examples of absorption by clouds in halos of field spirals. The authors conclude by considering the role extended gas in interacting systems plays in the origin of higher redshift quasar absorption line systems.

  16. A variable P v broad absorption line and quasar outflow energetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capellupo, D. M.; Hamann, F.; Barlow, T. A.

    2014-10-01

    Broad absorption lines (BALs) in quasar spectra identify high-velocity outflows that might exist in all quasars and could play a major role in feedback to galaxy evolution. The viability of BAL outflows as a feedback mechanism depends on their kinetic energies, as derived from the outflow velocities, column densities, and distances from the central quasar. We estimate these quantities for the quasar, Q1413+1143 (redshift ze = 2.56), aided by the first detection of P V λλ1118, 1128 BAL variability in a quasar. In particular, P V absorption at velocities where the C IV trough does not reach zero intensity implies that the C IV BAL is saturated and the absorber only partially covers the background continuum source (with characteristic size <0.01 pc). With the assumption of solar abundances, we estimate that the total column density in the BAL outflow is log NH ≳ 22.3 cm-2. Variability in the P V and saturated C IV BALs strongly disfavours changes in the ionization as the cause of the BAL variability, but supports models with high column density BAL clouds moving across our lines of sight. The observed variability time of 1.6 yr in the quasar rest frame indicates crossing speeds >750 km s-1 and a radial distance from the central black hole of ≲ 3.5 pc, if the crossing speeds are Keplerian. The total outflow mass is ˜4100 M⊙, the kinetic energy ˜4 × 1054 erg, and the ratio of the outflow kinetic energy luminosity to the quasar bolometric luminosity is ˜0.02 (at the minimum column density and maximum distance), which might be sufficient for important feedback to the quasar's host galaxy.

  17. VLBI survey of compact broad absorption line quasars with balnicity index BI = 0

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cegłowski, M.; Kunert-Bajraszewska, M.; Roskowiński, C.

    2015-06-01

    We present high-resolution observations, using both the European VLBI Network (EVN) at 1.7 GHz and the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) at 5 and 8.4 GHz, to image radio structures of 14 compact sources classified as broad absorption line (BAL) quasars based on the absorption index (AI). All sources but one were resolved, with the majority showing core-jet morphology typical for radio-loud quasars. We discuss in detail the most interesting cases. The high radio luminosities and small linear sizes of the observed objects indicate they are strong young active galactic nuclei. Nevertheless, the distribution of the radio-loudness parameter, log RI, of a larger sample of AI quasars shows that the objects observed by us constitute the most luminous, small subgroup of the AI population. Additionally, we report that for the radio-loudness parameter, the distribution of AI quasars and that for those selected using the traditional balnicity index differ significantly. Strong absorption is connected with lower log RI and thus probably larger viewing angles. Since the AI quasars have on average larger log RI, the orientation can mean that we see them less absorbed. However, we suggest that the orientation is not the only parameter that affects the detected absorption. That the strong absorption is associated with the weak radio emission is equally important and worth exploring.

  18. Probing the Inner Structure of Polar Broad Absorption-Line Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghosh, Kajal

    2008-10-01

    We have discovered a sample of polar broad absorption-line quasars (BALQSOs). We know their inclination angles with reasonable certainty. Thus, these are the ideal objects to probe their inner structure through the X-ray studies. However, to date, we do not have a reasonably good signal-to-noise ratio X-ray spectrum of any of these objects. Here, we propose deep XMM-Newton observations of four polar BALQSOs to study the physical processes responsible for the X-ray emission, distribution of BAL clouds, wind driven mechanism, jet entrainment, etc. Finally, all these results will be used to constrain our time-dependent hydrodynamical simulations.

  19. THE PITTSBURGH SLOAN DIGITAL SKY SURVEY Mg II QUASAR ABSORPTION-LINE SURVEY CATALOG

    SciTech Connect

    Quider, Anna M.; Nestor, Daniel B.; Turnshek, David A.; Rao, Sandhya M.; Weyant, Anja N.; Monier, Eric M.; Busche, Joseph R.

    2011-04-15

    We present a catalog of intervening Mg II quasar absorption-line systems in the redshift interval 0.36 {<=} z {<=} 2.28. The catalog was built from Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release Four (SDSS DR4) quasar spectra. Currently, the catalog contains {approx}17, 000 measured Mg II doublets. We also present data on the {approx}44, 600 quasar spectra which were searched to construct the catalog, including redshift and magnitude information, continuum-normalized spectra, and corresponding arrays of redshift-dependent minimum rest equivalent widths detectable at our confidence threshold. The catalog is available online. A careful second search of 500 random spectra indicated that, for every 100 spectra searched, approximately one significant Mg II system was accidentally rejected. Current plans to expand the catalog beyond DR4 quasars are discussed. Many Mg II absorbers are known to be associated with galaxies. Therefore, the combination of large size and well understood statistics makes this catalog ideal for precision studies of the low-ionization and neutral gas regions associated with galaxies at low to moderate redshift. An analysis of the statistics of Mg II absorbers using this catalog will be presented in a subsequent paper.

  20. Surprises from a Deep ASCA Spectrum of the Broad Absorption Line Quasar PHL 5200

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mathur, Smita; Matt, G.; Green, P. J.; Elvis, M.; Singh, K. P.

    2002-01-01

    We present a deep (approx. 85 ks) ASCA observation of the prototype broad absorption line quasar (BALQSO) PHL 5200. This is the best X-ray spectrum of a BALQSO yet. We find the following: (1) The source is not intrinsically X-ray weak. (2) The line-of-sight absorption is very strong, with N(sub H) = 5 x 10(exp 23)/sq cm. (3) The absorber does not cover the source completely; the covering fraction is approx. 90%. This is consistent with the large optical polarization observed in this source, implying multiple lines of sight. The most surprising result of this observation is that (4) the spectrum of this BALQSO is not exactly similar to other radio-quiet quasars. The hard X-ray spectrum of PHL 5200 is steep, with the power-law spectral index alpha approx. 1.5. This is similar to the steepest hard X-ray slopes observed so far. At low redshifts, such steep slopes are observed in narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLS1) galaxies, believed to be accreting at a high Eddington rate. This observation strengthens the analogy between BALQSOs and NLS1 galaxies and supports the hypothesis that BALQSOs represent an early evolutionary state of quasars. It is well accepted that the orientation to the line of sight determines the appearance of a quasar: age seems to play a significant role as well.

  1. C IV Broad Absorption Line Acceleration in Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grier, C. J.; Brandt, W. N.; Hall, P. B.; Trump, J. R.; Filiz Ak, N.; Anderson, S. F.; Green, Paul J.; Schneider, D. P.; Sun, M.; Vivek, M.; Beatty, T. G.; Brownstein, Joel R.; Roman-Lopes, Alexandre

    2016-06-01

    We present results from the largest systematic investigation of broad absorption line (BAL) acceleration to date. We use spectra of 140 quasars from three Sloan Digital Sky Survey programs to search for global velocity offsets in BALs over timescales of ≈2.5–5.5 years in the quasar rest frame. We carefully select acceleration candidates by requiring monolithic velocity shifts over the entire BAL trough, avoiding BALs with velocity shifts that might be caused by profile variability. The C iv BALs of two quasars show velocity shifts consistent with the expected signatures of BAL acceleration, and the BAL of one quasar shows a velocity-shift signature of deceleration. In our two acceleration candidates, we see evidence that the magnitude of the acceleration is not constant over time; the magnitudes of the change in acceleration for both acceleration candidates are difficult to produce with a standard disk-wind model or via geometric projection effects. We measure upper limits to acceleration and deceleration for 76 additional BAL troughs and find that the majority of BALs are stable to within about 3% of their mean velocities. The lack of widespread acceleration/deceleration could indicate that the gas producing most BALs is located at large radii from the central black hole and/or is not currently strongly interacting with ambient material within the host galaxy along our line of sight.

  2. The Pittsburgh Sloan Digital Sky Survey Mg II Quasar Absorption-line Survey Catalog

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quider, Anna M.; Nestor, Daniel B.; Turnshek, David A.; Rao, Sandhya M.; Monier, Eric M.; Weyant, Anja N.; Busche, Joseph R.

    2011-04-01

    We present a catalog of intervening Mg II quasar absorption-line systems in the redshift interval 0.36 <= z <= 2.28. The catalog was built from Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release Four (SDSS DR4) quasar spectra. Currently, the catalog contains ~17, 000 measured Mg II doublets. We also present data on the ~44, 600 quasar spectra which were searched to construct the catalog, including redshift and magnitude information, continuum-normalized spectra, and corresponding arrays of redshift-dependent minimum rest equivalent widths detectable at our confidence threshold. The catalog is available online. A careful second search of 500 random spectra indicated that, for every 100 spectra searched, approximately one significant Mg II system was accidentally rejected. Current plans to expand the catalog beyond DR4 quasars are discussed. Many Mg II absorbers are known to be associated with galaxies. Therefore, the combination of large size and well understood statistics makes this catalog ideal for precision studies of the low-ionization and neutral gas regions associated with galaxies at low to moderate redshift. An analysis of the statistics of Mg II absorbers using this catalog will be presented in a subsequent paper.

  3. High-Resolution Spectroscopy of Quasars and Quasar Absorption-Line Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shull, J. Michael

    1995-01-01

    Topic cover in this paper included new observations of QSO absorption lines by the Keck Telescope HIRES spectrometer and the Hubble Space Telescope. An overview of the major scientific issues in this field is followed by a brief summary of a panel discussion that addressed future instrumental possibilities that could answer some of these questions.

  4. Constraining the geometry, size scale and physical conditions of outflowing broad absorption line regions in quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woo, Sui Chi

    Quasars are known for generating luminosities of up to 1047 erg s--1 in volumes of scales smaller than 2 x 10 15 cm. The optical/UV continuum emission is generally believed to arise from a rotating accretion disk (AD) surrounding a supermassive black hole (SMBH) of ˜ 108 M⊙ . Such emission can be calculated by treating the AD as a multi-temperature blackbody. While the continuum emitting region is well defined, the properties, location and kinematics of the broad emission line regions (BELRs) and broad absorption line regions (BALRs) remain unclear. On one hand, the reverberation mapping technique can give constraints on the location of the BELRs, but not the kinematics. On the other hand, the line-of-sight kinematics of the BALRs is directly observable, but their locations are not well constrained, resulting in a large range of inferred distances, from 0.01 pc to tens of kpc. Therefore, I combined observational results to investigate the geometry, size, and physical conditions of the BELRs and BALRs. I verified that the Lyalpha and CIV BELRs are located at a similar distance. Using these findings, I was able to constrain the size of the Lyalpha BELR and place a lower limit on the size of the N V BALR. I built an empirical model with the optical/UV continuum emission from the AD, the BELR from the chromosphere of the AD, and the outflowing BALR. In the continuum region, I found that over 95 percent of the total flux comes from the region at ~ 125rg, where rg is the gravitational radius of the SMBH. For the BELRs, I computed a disk-wind model with relativistic effects to explain the often-observed single-peaked BEL profiles. However, I show that such a model cannot explain the observed blue asymmetries in the high-ionization BELs or their blueshifted peaks relative to low-ionization BELs. Using results on time variability of BALR gas, and assuming the variability is caused by the gas moving perpendicular across the line-of-sight over a time scale of about a year

  5. THE LONG-TERM X-RAY VARIABILITY OF BROAD ABSORPTION LINE QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    Saez, C.; Brandt, W. N.; Garmire, G. P.; Gallagher, S. C.; Bauer, F. E.

    2012-11-01

    We analyze the long-term (rest-frame 3-30 yr) X-ray variability of 11 broad absorption line (BAL) quasars, mainly to constrain the variation properties of the X-ray absorbing shielding gas that is thought to play a critical role in BAL wind launching. Our BAL quasar sample has coverage with multiple X-ray observatories including Chandra, XMM-Newton, BeppoSAX, ASCA, ROSAT, and Einstein; 3-11 observations are available for each source. For seven of the eleven sources we have obtained and analyzed new Chandra observations suitable for searching for any strong X-ray variability. We find highly significant X-ray variability in three sources (PG 1001+054, PG 1004+130, and PG 2112+059). The maximum observed amplitude of the 2-8 keV variability is a factor of 3.8 {+-} 1.3, 1.5 {+-} 0.2, and 9.9 {+-} 2.3 for PG 1001+054, PG 1004+130, and PG 2112+059, respectively, and these sources show detectable variability on rest-frame timescales down to 5.8, 1.4, and 0.5 yr. For PG 1004+130 and PG 2112+059 we also find significant X-ray spectral variability associated with the flux variability. Considering our sample as a whole, we do not find that BAL quasars exhibit exceptional long-term X-ray variability when compared to the quasar population in general. We do not find evidence for common strong changes in the shielding gas owing to physical rearrangement or accretion-disk rotation, although some changes are found; this has implications for modeling observed ultraviolet BAL variability. Finally, we report for the first time an X-ray detection of the highly polarized and well-studied BAL quasar IRAS 14026+4341 in its new Chandra observation.

  6. The compact structure of radio-loud broad absorption line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Y.; Jiang, D. R.; Wang, T. G.; Xie, F. G.

    2008-11-01

    We present the results of EVN+MERLIN very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) polarization observations of eight broad absorption line (BAL) quasars at 1.6 GHz, including four low-ionization BAL quasars (LoBALs) and four high-ionization BAL quasars (HiBALs) with either steep or flat spectra on Very Large Array (VLA) scales. Only one steep-spectrum source, J1122+3124, shows two-sided structure on the scale of 2 kpc. The other four steep-spectrum sources and three flat-spectrum sources display either an unresolved image or a core-jet structure on scales of less than 300 pc. In all cases, the marginally resolved core is the dominant radio component. Linear polarization in the cores has been detected in the range of a few to 10 per cent. Polarization, together with high brightness temperatures (from 2 × 109 to 5 × 1010K), suggests a synchrotron origin for the radio emission. There is no apparent difference in the radio morphologies or polarization between low-ionization and high-ionization BAL quasi-stellar objects (QSOs) or between flat- and steep-spectrum sources. We discuss the orientation of BAL QSOs with both flat and steep spectra, and consider a possible evolutionary scenario for BAL QSOs. In this scenario, BAL QSOs are probably a young population of radio sources that are compact steep spectrum or GHz peaked radio source analogues at the low end of radio power.

  7. BROAD ABSORPTION LINE VARIABILITY ON MULTI-YEAR TIMESCALES IN A LARGE QUASAR SAMPLE

    SciTech Connect

    Filiz Ak, N.; Brandt, W. N.; Schneider, D. P.; Hall, P. B.; Anderson, S. F.; Hamann, F.; Lundgren, B. F.; Myers, Adam D.; Pâris, I.; Petitjean, P.; Ross, Nicholas P.; Shen, Yue; York, Don

    2013-11-10

    We present a detailed investigation of the variability of 428 C IV and 235 Si IV broad absorption line (BAL) troughs identified in multi-epoch observations of 291 quasars by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey-I/II/III. These observations primarily sample rest-frame timescales of 1-3.7 yr over which significant rearrangement of the BAL wind is expected. We derive a number of observational results on, e.g., the frequency of BAL variability, the velocity range over which BAL variability occurs, the primary observed form of BAL-trough variability, the dependence of BAL variability upon timescale, the frequency of BAL strengthening versus weakening, correlations between BAL variability and BAL-trough profiles, relations between C IV and Si IV BAL variability, coordinated multi-trough variability, and BAL variations as a function of quasar properties. We assess implications of these observational results for quasar winds. Our results support models where most BAL absorption is formed within an order-of-magnitude of the wind-launching radius, although a significant minority of BAL troughs may arise on larger scales. We estimate an average lifetime for a BAL trough along our line-of-sight of a few thousand years. BAL disappearance and emergence events appear to be extremes of general BAL variability, rather than being qualitatively distinct phenomena. We derive the parameters of a random-walk model for BAL EW variability, finding that this model can acceptably describe some key aspects of EW variability. The coordinated trough variability of BAL quasars with multiple troughs suggests that changes in 'shielding gas' may play a significant role in driving general BAL variability.

  8. A strong redshift dependence of the broad absorption line quasar fraction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, James T.; Hewett, Paul C.; Maddox, Natasha; Richards, Gordon T.; Belokurov, Vasily

    2011-01-01

    We describe the application of non-negative matrix factorization to generate compact reconstructions of quasar spectra from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), with particular reference to broad absorption line quasars (BALQSOs). BAL properties are measured for Si IVλ1400, C IVλ1550, Al IIIλ1860 and Mg IIλ2800, resulting in a catalogue of 3547 BALQSOs. Two corrections, based on extensive testing of synthetic BALQSO spectra, are applied in order to estimate the intrinsic fraction of C IV BALQSOs. First, the probability of an observed BALQSO spectrum being identified as such by our algorithm is calculated as a function of redshift, signal-to-noise ratio and BAL properties. Secondly, the different completenesses of the SDSS target selection algorithm for BALQSOs and non-BAL quasars are quantified. Combining the detection probabilities with an intrinsic E(B-V) distribution capable of reproducing the observed increase in mean E(B-V) with increasing redshift, the intrinsic C IV BALQSO fraction is 41 ± 5 per cent. Our analysis of the selection effects allows us to measure the dependence of the intrinsic C IV BALQSO fraction on luminosity and redshift. We find a factor of 3.5 ± 0.4 decrease in the intrinsic fraction from the highest redshifts, z≃ 4.0, down to z≃ 2.0. The redshift dependence implies that an orientation effect alone is not sufficient to explain the presence of BAL troughs in some but not all quasar spectra. Our results are consistent with the intrinsic BALQSO fraction having no strong luminosity dependence, although with 3σ limits on the rate of change of the intrinsic fraction with luminosity of -6.9 and 7.0 per cent dex-1 we are unable to rule out such a dependence.

  9. Quasar broad absorption line variability measurements using reconstructions of unabsorbed spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wildy, C.; Goad, M. R.; Allen, J. T.

    2014-01-01

    We present a two-epoch Sloan Digital Sky Survey and Gemini/GMOS+William Herschel Telescope/ISIS variability study of 50 broad absorption line (BAL) quasars of redshift range 1.9 < z < 4.2, containing 38 Si IV and 59 C IV BALs and spanning rest-frame time intervals of ≈10 months to 3.7 years. We find that 35/50 quasars exhibit one or more variable BALs, with 58 per cent of Si IV and 46 per cent of C IV BALs showing variability across the entire sample. On average, Si IV BALs show larger fractional change in BAL pseudo-equivalent width than C IV BALs, as referenced to an unabsorbed continuum+emission line spectrum constructed using non-negative matrix factorization. No correlation is found between BAL variability and quasar luminosity, suggesting that ionizing continuum changes do not play a significant role in BAL variability (assuming the gas is in photoionization equilibrium with the ionizing continuum). A subset of 14 quasars have one variable BAL from each of Si IV and C IV with significant overlap in velocity space and for which variations are in the same sense (strengthening or weakening) and which appear to be correlated (98 per cent confidence). We find examples of both appearing and disappearing BALs in weaker/shallower lines with disappearance rates of 2.3 per cent for C IV and 5.3 per cent for Si IV, suggesting average lifetimes of 142 and 43 years, respectively. We identify five objects in which the BAL is coincident with the broad emission line, but appears to cover only the continuum source. Assuming a clumpy inhomogeneous absorber model and a typical size for the continuum source, we infer a maximum cloud radius of 1013 to 1014 cm, assuming Eddington limited accretion.

  10. THE PHYSICAL CONDITIONS OF THE INTRINSIC N V NARROW ABSORPTION LINE SYSTEMS OF THREE QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    Wu Jian; Charlton, Jane C.; Misawa, Toru; Eracleous, Michael; Ganguly, Rajib E-mail: misawatr@shinshu-u.ac.j

    2010-10-20

    We employ detailed photoionization models to infer the physical conditions of intrinsic narrow absorption line systems found in high-resolution spectra of three quasars at z = 2.6-3.0. We focus on a family of intrinsic absorbers characterized by N V lines that are strong relative to the Ly{alpha} lines. The inferred physical conditions are similar for the three intrinsic N V absorbers, with metallicities greater than 10 times the solar value (assuming a solar abundance pattern), and with high ionization parameters (log U {approx} 0). Thus, we conclude that the unusual strength of the N V lines results from a combination of partial coverage, a high ionization state, and high metallicity. We consider whether dilution of the absorption lines by flux from the broad emission line region can lead us to overestimate the metallicities and we find that this is an unlikely possibility. The high abundances that we infer are not surprising in the context of scenarios in which metal enrichment takes place very early on in massive galaxies. We estimate that the mass outflow rate in the absorbing gas (which is likely to have a filamentary structure) is less than a few M{sub sun} yr{sup -1} under the most optimistic assumptions, although it may be embedded in a much hotter, more massive outflow.

  11. Multi-Sightline Observation of Narrow Absorption Lines in Lensed Quasar SDSS J1029+2623

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misawa, Toru; Saez, Cristian; Charlton, Jane C.; Eracleous, Michael; Chartas, George; Bauer, Franz E.; Inada, Naohisa; Uchiyama, Hisakazu

    2016-07-01

    We exploit the widely separated images of the lensed quasar SDSS J1029+2623 ({z}{em} = 2.197, θ = 22.″5) to observe its outflowing wind through two different sightlines. We present an analysis of three observations, including two with the Subaru telescope in 2010 February and 2014 April, separated by four years, and one with the Very Large Telescope, separated from the second Subaru observation by ∼2 months. We detect 66 narrow absorption lines (NALs), of which 24 are classified as intrinsic NALs that are physically associated with the quasar based on partial coverage analysis. The velocities of intrinsic NALs appear to cluster around values of {v}{ej} ∼ 59,000, 43,000, and 29,000 km s‑1, which is reminiscent of filamentary structures obtained by numerical simulations. There are no common intrinsic NALs at the same redshift along the two sightlines, implying that the transverse size of the NAL absorbers should be smaller than the sightline distance between two lensed images. In addition to the NALs with large ejection velocities of {v}{ej} > 1000 km s‑1, we also detect broader proximity absorption lines (PALs) at {z}{abs} ∼ {z}{em}. The PALs are likely to arise in outflowing gas at a distance of r ≤ 620 pc from the central black hole with an electron density of n e ≥8.7 × 103 cm‑3. These limits are based on the assumption that the variability of the lines is due to recombination. We discuss the implications of these results on the three-dimensional structure of the outflow.

  12. The Hubble Space Telescope Quasar Absorption Line Key Project: The Unusual Absorption-Line System in the Spectrum of PG 2302+029--Ejected or Intervening?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jannuzi, B. T.; Hartig, G. F.; Kirhakos, S.; Sargent, W. L. W.; Turnshek, D. A.; Weymann, R. J.; Bahcall, J. N.; Bergeron, J.; Boksenberg, A.; Savage, B. D.; Schneider, D. P.; Wolfe, A. M.

    1996-01-01

    We report the discovery of a high-ionization broad absorption line system at a redshift of z(sub abs) = 0.695 in the spectrum of the z(sub em) = 1.052 radio-quiet quasar PG 2302+029. Broad absorption with FWHM from 3000 to 5000 km/s is detected from C iv, N v, and O vi in Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Faint Object Spectrograph spectra of the quasar. A narrow-line system (FWHM approx. 250 km/s) at z(sub abs) = 0.7016 is resolved from the broad blend and includes absorption by Ly alpha and the C iv, N v, and O vi doublets. No absorption by low-ionization metal species (e.g., Si II and Mg II) is detected in the HST or ground-based spectra for either the broad or the narrow system. The centroids of the broad system lines are displaced by approx. 56,000 km/s to the blue of the quasar's broad emission lines. The reddest extent of the broad-line absorption is more than 50,000 km/s from the quasar. The properties of this system are unprecedented, whether it is an intervening or an ejected system.

  13. Time variations of narrow absorption lines in high resolution quasar spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boissé, P.; Bergeron, J.; Prochaska, J. X.; Péroux, C.; York, D. G.

    2015-09-01

    Aims: We have searched for temporal variations of narrow absorption lines in high resolution quasar spectra. A sample of five distant sources were assembled, for which two spectra are available, either VLT/UVES or Keck/HIRES, which were taken several years apart. Methods: We first investigate under which conditions variations in absorption line profiles can be detected reliably from high resolution spectra and discuss the implications of changes in terms of small-scale structure within the intervening gas or intrinsic origin. The targets selected allow us to investigate the time behaviour of a broad variety of absorption line systems by sampling diverse environments: the vicinity of active nuclei, galaxy halos, molecular-rich galaxy disks associated with damped Lyα systems, as well as neutral gas within our own Galaxy. Results: Intervening absorption lines from Mg ii, Fe ii, or proxy species with lines of lower opacity tracing the same kind of (moderately ionised) gas appear in general to be remarkably stable (1σ upper limits as low as 10% for some components on scales in the range 10-100 au), even for systems at zabs ≈ ze. Marginal variations are observed for Mg ii lines towards PKS 1229-021 at zabs = 0.83032; however, we detect no systems that display any change as large as those reported in low resolution SDSS spectra. The lack of clear variations for low β Mg ii systems does not support the existence of a specific population of absorbers made of swept-up gas towards blazars. In neutral or diffuse molecular media, clear changes are seen for Galactic Na i lines towards PKS 1229-02 (decrease in N by a factor of four for one of the five components over 9.7 yr), corresponding to structure on a scale of about 35 au, in good agreement with known properties of the Galactic interstellar medium. Tentative variations are detected for H2J = 3 lines towards FBQS J2340-0053 at zabs = 2.05454 (≃35% change in column density, N, over 0.7 yr in the rest frame), suggesting

  14. Fast outflows in broad absorption line quasars and their connection with CSS/GPS sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruni , G.; Mack, K.-H.; Montenegro-Montes, F. M.; Brienza, M.; González-Serrano, J. I.

    2016-02-01

    Broad absorption line quasars are among the objects presenting the fastest outflows. The launching mechanism itself is not completely understood. Models in which they could be launched from the accretion disk, and then curved and accelerated by the effect of the radiation pressure, have been presented. We conducted an extensive observational campaign, from radio to optical band, to collect information about their nature and test the models present in the literature, the main dichotomy being between a young scenario and an orientation one. We found a variety of possible orientations, morphologies, and radio ages, not converging to a particular explanation for the BAL phenomenon. From our latest observations in the m- and mm-band, we obtained an indication of a lower dust abundance with respect to normal quasars, thus suggesting a possible feedback process on the host galaxy. Also, in the low-frequency regime we confirmed the presence of CSS components, sometime in conjunction with a GPS one already detected at higher frequencies. Following this, about 70 % of our sample turns out to be in a GPS or CSS+GPS phase. We conclude that fast outflows, responsible for the BAL features, can be more easily present among objects going through a restarting or just-started radio phase, where radiation pressure can substantially contribute to their acceleration.

  15. Constraining the variation of the fine-structure constant with observations of narrow quasar absorption lines

    SciTech Connect

    Songaila, A.; Cowie, L. L.

    2014-10-01

    The unequivocal demonstration of temporal or spatial variability in a fundamental constant of nature would be of enormous significance. Recent attempts to measure the variability of the fine-structure constant α over cosmological time, using high-resolution spectra of high-redshift quasars observed with 10 m class telescopes, have produced conflicting results. We use the many multiplet (MM) method with Mg II and Fe II lines on very high signal-to-noise, high-resolution (R = 72, 000) Keck HIRES spectra of eight narrow quasar absorption systems. We consider both systematic uncertainties in spectrograph wavelength calibration and also velocity offsets introduced by complex velocity structure in even apparently simple and weak narrow lines and analyze their effect on claimed variations in α. We find no significant change in α, Δα/α = (0.43 ± 0.34) × 10{sup –5}, in the redshift range z = 0.7-1.5, where this includes both statistical and systematic errors. We also show that the scatter in measurements of Δα/α arising from absorption line structure can be considerably larger than assigned statistical errors even for apparently simple and narrow absorption systems. We find a null result of Δα/α = (– 0.59 ± 0.55) × 10{sup –5} in a system at z = 1.7382 using lines of Cr II, Zn II, and Mn II, whereas using Cr II and Zn II lines in a system at z = 1.6614 we find a systematic velocity trend that, if interpreted as a shift in α, would correspond to Δα/α = (1.88 ± 0.47) × 10{sup –5}, where both results include both statistical and systematic errors. This latter result is almost certainly caused by varying ionic abundances in subcomponents of the line: using Mn II, Ni II, and Cr II in the analysis changes the result to Δα/α = (– 0.47 ± 0.53) × 10{sup –5}. Combining the Mg II and Fe II results with estimates based on Mn II, Ni II, and Cr II gives Δα/α = (– 0.01 ± 0.26) × 10{sup –5}. We conclude that spectroscopic measurements of

  16. Constraining the Variation of the Fine-structure Constant with Observations of Narrow Quasar Absorption Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Songaila, A.; Cowie, L. L.

    2014-10-01

    The unequivocal demonstration of temporal or spatial variability in a fundamental constant of nature would be of enormous significance. Recent attempts to measure the variability of the fine-structure constant α over cosmological time, using high-resolution spectra of high-redshift quasars observed with 10 m class telescopes, have produced conflicting results. We use the many multiplet (MM) method with Mg II and Fe II lines on very high signal-to-noise, high-resolution (R = 72, 000) Keck HIRES spectra of eight narrow quasar absorption systems. We consider both systematic uncertainties in spectrograph wavelength calibration and also velocity offsets introduced by complex velocity structure in even apparently simple and weak narrow lines and analyze their effect on claimed variations in α. We find no significant change in α, Δα/α = (0.43 ± 0.34) × 10-5, in the redshift range z = 0.7-1.5, where this includes both statistical and systematic errors. We also show that the scatter in measurements of Δα/α arising from absorption line structure can be considerably larger than assigned statistical errors even for apparently simple and narrow absorption systems. We find a null result of Δα/α = (- 0.59 ± 0.55) × 10-5 in a system at z = 1.7382 using lines of Cr II, Zn II, and Mn II, whereas using Cr II and Zn II lines in a system at z = 1.6614 we find a systematic velocity trend that, if interpreted as a shift in α, would correspond to Δα/α = (1.88 ± 0.47) × 10-5, where both results include both statistical and systematic errors. This latter result is almost certainly caused by varying ionic abundances in subcomponents of the line: using Mn II, Ni II, and Cr II in the analysis changes the result to Δα/α = (- 0.47 ± 0.53) × 10-5. Combining the Mg II and Fe II results with estimates based on Mn II, Ni II, and Cr II gives Δα/α = (- 0.01 ± 0.26) × 10-5. We conclude that spectroscopic measurements of quasar absorption lines are not yet capable of

  17. Evidence for two spatially separated UV continuum emitting regions in the Cloverleaf broad absorption line quasar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sluse, D.; Hutsemékers, D.; Anguita, T.; Braibant, L.; Riaud, P.

    2015-10-01

    Testing the standard Shakura-Sunyaev model of accretion is a challenging task because the central region of quasars where accretion takes place is unresolved with telescopes. The analysis of microlensing in gravitationally lensed quasars is one of the few techniques that can test this model, yielding to the measurement of the size and of temperature profile of the accretion disc. We present spectroscopic observations of the gravitationally lensed broad absorption line quasar H1413+117, which reveal partial microlensing of the continuum emission that appears to originate from two separated regions: a microlensed region, corresponding the compact accretion disc; and a non-microlensed region, more extended and contributing to at least 30% of the total UV-continuum flux. Because this extended continuum is occulted by the broad absorption line clouds, it is not associated with the host galaxy, but rather with light scattered in the neighbourhood of the central engine. We measure the amplitude of microlensing of the compact continuum over the rest-frame wavelength range 1000-7000 Å. Following a Bayesian scheme, we confront our measurements to microlensing simulations of an accretion disc with a temperature varying as T ∝ R-1/ν. We find a most likely source half-light radius of R1/2 = 0.61 × 1016cm (i.e., 0.002 pc) at 0.18 μm, and a most-likely index of ν = 0.4. The standard disc (ν = 4/3) model is not ruled out by our data, and is found within the 95% confidence interval associated with our measurements. We demonstrate that, for H1413+117, the existence of an extended continuum in addition to the disc emission only has a small impact on the inferred disc parameters, and is unlikely to solve the tension between the microlensing source size and standard disc sizes, as previously reported in the literature. Based on observations made with ESO Telescopes at the Paranal Observatory (Chile). ESO program ID: 386.B-0337.Appendices A and B are available in electronic form

  18. On the origins of C IV absorption profile diversity in broad absorption line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baskin, Alexei; Laor, Ari; Hamann, Fred

    2015-05-01

    There is a large diversity in the C IV broad absorption line (BAL) profile among BAL quasars (BALQs). We quantify this diversity by exploring the distribution of the C IV BAL properties, full width at half-maximum (FWHM), maximum depth of absorption and its velocity shift (vmd), using the Sloan Digital Sky Survey DR7 quasar catalogue. We find the following: (i) Although the median C IV BAL profile in the quasar rest-frame becomes broader and shallower as the UV continuum slope (αUV at 1700-3000 Å) gets bluer, the median individual profile in the absorber rest-frame remains identical, and is narrow (FWHM = 3500 km s-1) and deep. Only 4 per cent of BALs have FWHM > 10 000 km s-1. (ii) As the He II emission equivalent width (EW) decreases, the distributions of FWHM and vmd extend to larger values, and the median maximum depth increases. These trends are consistent with theoretical models in which softer ionizing continua reduce overionization, and allow radiative acceleration of faster BAL outflows. (iii) As αUV becomes bluer, the distribution of vmd extends to larger values. This trend may imply faster outflows at higher latitudes above the accretion disc plane. (iv) For non-BALQs, the C IV emission line decreases with decreasing He II EW, and becomes more asymmetric and blueshifted. This suggests an increasing relative contribution of emission from the BAL outflow to the C IV emission line as the ionizing spectral energy distribution (SED) gets softer, which is consistent with the increasing fraction of BALQs as the ionizing SED gets softer.

  19. Unusual high-redshift radio broad absorption-line quasar 1624+3758

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benn, C. R.; Carballo, R.; Holt, J.; Vigotti, M.; González-Serrano, J. I.; Mack, K.-H.; Perley, R. A.

    2005-07-01

    We present observations of the most radio-luminous broad absorption-line (BAL) quasar known, 1624+3758, at redshift z= 3.377. The quasar has several unusual properties. (1) The FeII UV191 1787-Åemission line is very prominent. (2) The BAL trough (BALnicity index 2990 km s-1) is detached by 21000 km s-1 and extends to velocity v=-29000 km s-1. There are additional intrinsic absorbers at -1900 and -2800 km s-1. (3) The radio rotation measure of the quasar, 18350 rad m-2, is the second highest known. The radio luminosity is P1.4GHz= 4.3 × 1027 W Hz-1 (H0= 50 km s-1 Mpc-1, q0= 0.5) and the radio loudness is R*= 260. The radio source is compact and the radio spectrum is GHz-peaked, consistent with it being relatively young. The width of the CIV emission line, in conjunction with the total optical luminosity, implies a black hole mass MBH~ 109Msolar, L/LEddington~ 2. The high Eddington ratio and the radio-loudness place this quasar in one corner of Boroson's two-component scheme for the classification of active galactic nuclei, implying a very high accretion rate, and this may account for some of the unusual observed properties. The v=-1900km s-1 absorber is a possible Lyman-limit system, with N(HI) = 4 × 1018 cm-2, and a covering factor of 0.7. A complex mini-BAL absorber at v=-2200 to -3400 km s-1 is detected in each of CIV, NV and OVI. The blue and red components of the CIV doublet happen to be unblended, allowing both the covering factor and optical depth to be determined as a function of velocity. Variation of the covering factor with velocity dominates the form of the mini-BAL, with the absorption being saturated (e-τ~ 0) over most of the velocity range. The velocity dependence of the covering factor and the large velocity width imply that the mini-BAL is intrinsic to the quasar. There is some evidence of line-locking between velocity components in the CIV mini-BAL, suggesting that radiation pressure plays a role in accelerating the outflow.

  20. Dramatically Variable C IV Mini-Broad Absorption Line System in the Quasar HS 1603+3820

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misawa, T.; Eracleous, M.; Charlton, J. C.; Chartas, G.; Kashikawa, N.

    2008-10-01

    We observed the quasar HS 1603+3820 (z_{em} = 2.542, first discovered by Dobrzycki et al. 1996) six times over an interval of 4.2 yrs (1.2 yrs in the quasar rest frame) using the High Dispersion Spectrograph on Subaru telescope. The purpose was to study the mini-broad absorption line (mini-BAL; FWHM ˜ 1,000 km s^{-1}) that is blue-shifted from the quasar by ˜ 9,500 km s^{-1}. We found significant time variability, which supported the physical association of the mini-BAL gas with an outflow from the quasar. We have narrowed down the cause of the variability to two possible scenarios. We also used archival Chandra x-ray data to study the x-ray properties of this quasar. The results constrain the location of the absorbing gas relative to the overall outflow.

  1. Is there a connection between broad absorption line quasars and narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxies?

    SciTech Connect

    Grupe, Dirk; Nousek, John A.

    2015-02-01

    We consider whether broad absorption line quasars (BAL QSOs) and narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxies (NLS1s) are similar, as suggested by Brandt and Gallagher and Boroson. For this purpose, we constructed a sample of 11 BAL QSOs from existing Chandra and Swift observations. We found that BAL QSOs and NLS1s both operate at high Eddington ratios L/L{sub Edd}, although BAL QSOs have slightly lower L/L{sub Edd}. BAL QSOs and NLS1s in general have high Fe ii/Hβ and low [O iii]/Hβ ratios following the classic “Boroson and Green” eigenvector 1 relation. We also found that the mass accretion rates M-dot of BAL QSOs and NLS1s are more similar than previously thought, although some BAL QSOs exhibit extreme mass accretion rates of more than 10 M{sub ⊙} yr{sup −1}. These extreme mass accretion rates may suggest that the black holes in BAL QSOs are relativistically spinning. Black hole masses in BAL QSOs are a factor of 100 larger than NLS1s. From their location on a M−σ plot, we find that BAL QSOs contain fully developed black holes. Applying a principal component analysis to our sample, we find eigenvector 1 to correspond to the Eddington ratio L/L{sub Edd}, and eigenvector 2 to black hole mass.

  2. Is There a Connection between Broad Absorption Line Quasars and Narrow-Line Seyfert 1 Galaxies?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grupe, Dirk; Nousek, John. A.

    2015-02-01

    We consider whether broad absorption line quasars (BAL QSOs) and narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxies (NLS1s) are similar, as suggested by Brandt & Gallagher and Boroson. For this purpose, we constructed a sample of 11 BAL QSOs from existing Chandra and Swift observations. We found that BAL QSOs and NLS1s both operate at high Eddington ratios L/{{L}Edd}, although BAL QSOs have slightly lower L/{{L}Edd}. BAL QSOs and NLS1s in general have high Fe ii/Hβ and low [O iii]/Hβ ratios following the classic “Boroson & Green” eigenvector 1 relation. We also found that the mass accretion rates \\dot{M} of BAL QSOs and NLS1s are more similar than previously thought, although some BAL QSOs exhibit extreme mass accretion rates of more than 10 {{M}⊙ } yr-1. These extreme mass accretion rates may suggest that the black holes in BAL QSOs are relativistically spinning. Black hole masses in BAL QSOs are a factor of 100 larger than NLS1s. From their location on a M-σ plot, we find that BAL QSOs contain fully developed black holes. Applying a principal component analysis to our sample, we find eigenvector 1 to correspond to the Eddington ratio L/{{L}Edd}, and eigenvector 2 to black hole mass.

  3. The Hubble Space Telescope quasar absorption line key project. III - First observational results on Milky Way gas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Savage, Blair D.; Lu, Limin; Bahcall, John N.; Bergeron, Jacqueline; Boksenberg, Alec; Hartig, George F.; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Kirhakos, Sofia; Lockman, Felix J.; Sargent, W. L. W.

    1993-01-01

    Absorption lines found near zero redshift due to Milky Way disk and halo gas in the spectra of 15 quasars observed with the Faint Object Spectrograph (FOS) of the HST at a resolution of about 230 km/s are reported. Results show that Milky Way absorption lines comprise about 44 percent of all absorption lines seen in the first group of Key Project FOS spectra. Milky Way lines were observed for 3C 273 and H1821 + 643. Limits to the Mg-to-H abundance ratio obtained for very high velocity Mg II absorption detections imply gas-phase Mg abundances for the very high velocity gas ranging from more than 0.059 to more than 0.32 times the solar abundance. In all cases where high-velocity H I emission is seen, corresponding high-velocity metal-line absorption is observed.

  4. Subaru High-Resolution Spectroscopy of Complex Metal Absorption Lines of the Quasar HS 1603+3820

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misawa, Toru; Yamada, Toru; Takada-Hidai, Masahide; Wang, Yiping; Kashikawa, Nobunari; Iye, Masanori; Tanaka, Ichi

    2003-03-01

    We present a high-resolution spectrum of the quasar HS 1603+3820 (zem=2.542), observed with the High Dispersion Spectrograph on the Subaru Telescope. This quasar, first discovered in the Hamburg/CfA Quasar Survey, has 11 C IV lines at 1.962.29 and resolves some of them into multiple narrow components with b<25 km s-1 because of the high spectral resolution R=45,000, while other lines show broad profiles (b>65 km s-1). We use three properties of C IV lines, specifically, time variability, covering factor, and absorption-line profile, to classify them into quasar intrinsic absorption lines (QIALs) and spatially intervening absorption lines (SIALs). The C IV lines at 2.42quasar. Perhaps they are produced by gas clouds ejected from the quasar with velocity vej=8000-10,000 km s-1. On the other hand, three C IV lines at 2.48quasar. We, however, cannot rule out QIALs for the two lines at zabs~2.54 and 2.55, because their velocity shifts, 430 km s-1 blueward and 950 km s-1 redward of the quasar, are very small. The C IV line at zabs~2.48 consists of many narrow components and also has corresponding low-ionization metal lines (Al II, Si II, and Fe II). The velocity distribution of these low-ionization ions is concentrated at the center of the system compared with that of the high-ionization C IV ion. Therefore we ascribe this system of absorption lines to an intervening galaxy. Based on data collected at the Subaru Telescope, which is operated by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan.

  5. Catalog of Narrow C IV Absorption Lines in BOSS. II. For Quasars with Z em > 2.4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Zhi-Fu; Qin, Yi-Ping; Qin, Ming; Pan, Cai-Juan; Pan, Da-Sheng

    2014-11-01

    As the second work in a series of papers aiming to detect absorption systems in the quasar spectra of the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey, we continue the analysis of Paper I by expanding the quasar sample to those quasars with z em > 2.4. This yields a sample of 21,963 appropriate quasars to search for narrow C IV λλ1548, 1551 absorptions with Wr >= 0.2 Å for both lines. There are 9708 quasars with at least one appropriate absorption system imprinted on their spectra. From these spectra, we detect 13,919 narrow C IV absorption systems whose absorption redshifts cover a range of z abs = 1.8784-4.3704. In this paper and Paper I, we have selected 37,241 appropriate quasars with median S/N >= 4 and 1.54 <~ z em <~ 5.16 to visually analyze narrow C IV λλ1548, 1551 absorption doublets one by one. A total of 15,999 quasars are found to have at least one appropriate absorption system imprinted on their spectra. From these 15,999 quasar spectra, we have detected 23,336 appropriate C IV λλ1548, 1551 absorption systems with Wr >= 0.2 Å whose absorption redshifts cover a range of z abs = 1.4544-4.3704. The largest values of Wr are 3.19 Å for the λ1548 absorption line and 2.93 Å for the λ1551 absorption line, respectively. We find that only a few absorbers show large values of Wr . About 1.1% of the total absorbers have Wr λ1548 >= 2.0 Å.

  6. The Hubble Space Telescope Quasar Absorption Line Key Project. 10: Galactic H I 21 centimeter emission toward 143 quasars and active Galactic nuclei

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lockman, Felix J.; Savage, Blair D.

    1995-01-01

    Sensitive H I 21 cm emission line spectra have been measured for the directions to 143 quasars and active galactic nuclei (AGNs) chosen from the observing lists for the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Quasar Absorption Line Key Project. Narrow-band and wide-band data were obtained with the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) 43 m radio telescope for each object. The narrow-band data have a velocity resolution of 1 km/s, extend from -220 to +170 km/s, and are corrected for stray 21 cm radiation. The wide-band data have a resolution of 4 km/s and extend from -1000 to +1000 km/s. The data are important for the interpretation of ultraviolet absorption lines near zero redshift in Key Project spectra. Twenty-two percent of the quasars lie behind Galactic high-velocity H I clouds with absolute value of V(sub LSR) greater than 100 km/s whose presence can increase the equivalent width of interstellar absorption lines significantly. This paper contains the emission spectra and measures of the H I velocities and column densities along the sight line to each quasar. We discuss how the measurements can be used to estimate the visual and ultraviolet extinction toward each quasar and to predict the approximate strength of the strong ultraviolet resonance lines of neutral gas species in the HST Key Project spectra.

  7. Dependence of the Broad Absorption Line Quasar Fraction on Radio Luminosity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shankar, Francesco; Dai, Xinyu; Sivakoff, Gregory R.

    2008-11-01

    We find that the fraction of classical broad absorption line quasars (BALQSOs) among the FIRST radio sources in the Sloan Data Release 3, is 20.5+ 7.3-5.9% at the faintest radio powers detected (L1.4 GHz ~ 1032 erg s-1), and rapidly drops to lesssim8% at L1.4 GHz ~ 3 × 1033 erg s-1. Similarly, adopting the broader absorption index (AI) definition of Trump et al., we find the fraction of radio BALQSOs to be 44+ 8.1-7.8%, reducing to 23.1+ 7.3-6.1% at high luminosities. While the high fraction at low radio power is consistent with the recent near-IR estimates by Dai et al., the lower fraction at high radio powers is intriguing and confirms previous claims based on smaller samples. The trend is independent of the redshift range, the optical and radio flux selection limits, or the exact definition of a radio match. We also find that at fixed optical magnitude, the highest bins of radio luminosity are preferentially populated by non-BALQSOs, consistent with the overall trend. We do find, however, that those quasars identified as AI-BALQSOs but not under the classical definition do not show a significant drop in their fraction as a function of radio power, further supporting independent claims that these sources, characterized by lower equivalent width, may represent an independent class from the classical BALQSOs. We find the balnicity index, a measure of the absorption trough in BALQSOs, and the mean maximum wind velocity to be roughly constant at all radio powers. We discuss several plausible physical models which may explain the observed fast drop in the fraction of the classical BALQSOs with increasing radio power, although none is entirely satisfactory. A strictly evolutionary model for the BALQSO and radio emission phases requires a strong fine-tuning to work, while a simple geometric model, although still not capable of explaining polar BALQSOs and the paucity of FRII BALQSOs, is statistically successful in matching the data if part of the apparent radio

  8. Classifying broad absorption line quasars: metrics, issues and a new catalogue constructed from SDSS DR5

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scaringi, S.; Cottis, C. E.; Knigge, C.; Goad, M. R.

    2009-11-01

    We apply a recently developed method for classifying broad absorption line quasars (BALQSOs) to the latest quasi-stellar object (QSO) catalogue constructed from Data Release 5 of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. Our new hybrid classification scheme combines the power of simple metrics, supervised neural networks and visual inspection. In our view, the resulting BALQSO catalogue is both more complete and more robust than all previous BALQSO catalogues, containing 3552 sources selected from a parent sample of 28421 QSOs in the redshift range 1.7 < z < 4.2. This equates to a raw BALQSO fraction of 12.5 per cent. In the process of constructing a robust catalogue, we shed light on the main problems encountered when dealing with BALQSO classification, many of which arise due to the lack of a proper physical definition of what constitutes a BAL. This introduces some subjectivity in what is meant by the term BALQSO, and because of this, we also provide all of the meta-data used in constructing our catalogue, for every object in the parent QSO sample. This makes it easy to quickly isolate and explore subsamples constructed with different metrics and techniques. By constructing composite QSO spectra from subsamples classified according to the meta-data, we show that no single existing metric produces clean and robust BALQSO classifications. Rather, we demonstrate that a variety of complementary metrics are required at the moment to accomplish this task. Along the way, we confirm the finding that BALQSOs are redder than non-BALQSOs and that the raw BALQSO fraction displays an apparent trend with signal-to-noise ratio steadily increasing from 9 per cent in low signal-to-noise ratio data up to 15 per cent.

  9. Investigating the radio-loud phase of broad absorption line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruni, G.; González-Serrano, J. I.; Pedani, M.; Benn, C. R.; Mack, K.-H.; Holt, J.; Montenegro-Montes, F. M.; Jiménez-Luján, F.

    2014-09-01

    Context. Broad absorption lines (BALs) are present in the spectra of ~20% of quasars (QSOs); this indicates fast outflows (up to 0.2c) that intercept the observer's line of sight. These QSOs can be distinguished again into radio-loud (RL) BAL QSOs and radio-quiet (RQ) BAL QSOs. The first are very rare, even four times less common than RQ BAL QSOs. The reason for this is still unclear and leaves open questions about the nature of the BAL-producing outflows and their connection with the radio jet. Aims: We explored the spectroscopic characteristics of RL and RQ BAL QSOs with the aim to find a possible explanation for the rarity of RL BAL QSOs. Methods: We identified two samples of genuine BAL QSOs from SDSS optical spectra, one RL and one RQ, in a suitable redshift interval (2.5 < z < 3.5) that allowed us to observe the Mg ii and Hβ emission lines in the adjacent near-infrared (NIR) band. We collected NIR spectra of the two samples using the Telescopio Nazionale Galileo (TNG, Canary Islands). By using relations known in the literature, we estimated the black-hole mass, the broad-line region radius, and the Eddington ratio of our objects and compared the two samples. Results: We found no statistically significant differences from comparing the distributions of the cited physical quantities. This indicates that they have similar geometries, accretion rates, and central black-hole masses, regardless of whether the radio-emitting jet is present or not. Conclusions: These results show that the central engine of BAL QSOs has the same physical properties with and without a radio jet. The reasons for the rarity of RL BAL QSOs must reside in different environmental or evolutionary variables. Figure 3 is available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.org

  10. X-RAYS FROM A RADIO-LOUD COMPACT BROAD ABSORPTION LINE QUASAR 1045+352 AND THE NATURE OF OUTFLOWS IN RADIO-LOUD BROAD ABSORPTION LINE QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    Kunert-Bajraszewska, Magdalena; Katarzynski, Krzysztof; Siemiginowska, Aneta; Janiuk, Agnieszka

    2009-11-10

    We present new results on X-ray properties of radio-loud broad absorption line (BAL) quasars and focus on broadband spectral properties of a high-ionization BAL (HiBAL) compact steep spectrum (CSS) radio-loud quasar 1045+352. This HiBAL quasar has a very complex radio morphology indicating either strong interactions between a radio jet and the surrounding interstellar medium or a possible re-start of the jet activity. We detected 1045+352 quasar in a short 5 ksec Chandra ACIS-S observation. We applied theoretical models to explain spectral energy distribution of 1045+352 and argue that non-thermal, inverse-Compton (IC) emission from the innermost parts of the radio jet can account for a large fraction of the observed X-ray emission. In our analysis, we also consider a scenario in which the observed X-ray emission from radio-loud BAL quasars can be a sum of IC jet X-ray emission and optically thin corona X-ray emission. We compiled a sample of radio-loud BAL quasars that were observed in X-rays to date and report no correlation between their X-ray and radio luminosity. However, the radio-loud BAL quasars show a large range of X-ray luminosities and absorption columns. This is consistent with the results obtained earlier for radio-quiet BAL quasars and may indicate an orientation effect in BAL quasars or more complex dependence between X-ray emission, radio emission, and an orientation based on the radio morphology.

  11. Quasar Absorption Lines in the Extreme Ultraviolet: The Smoking Guns of Cosmic Feedback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tripp, Todd

    2011-01-01

    Three years ago at the winter AAS meeting I presented a talk entitled, perhaps somewhat pretentiously, "Terra Incognita: Probing The IGM-Galaxy Interface With COS." Now that the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) has been successfully installed on the Hubble Space Telescope, this instrument is delivering data that even exceed my hopes and predictions from three years ago. This talk will demonstrate that COS is enabling investigations of aspects of the Universe that have never been seen before. Specific examples will include the following: (1) Detections of absorption lines of Ne VIII and Mg X, which probe highly-ionized and low-density plasmas that can exist at temperatures in excess of 106 K. Due to the low density of galaxy halos and the IGM, X-ray emission from these plasmas is entirely undetectable with current or future missions. (2) Detections of remarkably strong O VI absorbers spanning velocity ranges in excess of hundreds of km/s, probably arising in galactic winds. While such outflows can be seen from the ground, the extreme ultraviolet provides a much richer suite of physical conditions diagnostics. (3) Detection of molecular hydrogen in unexpected places. An unifying thems of these examples is cosmic feedback and accretion -- these observations provide important new constraints on how galaxies interact with their surroundings.

  12. The parsec-scale structure of radio-loud broad absorption line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruni, G.; Dallacasa, D.; Mack, K.-H.; Montenegro-Montes, F. M.; González-Serrano, J. I.; Holt, J.; Jiménez-Luján, F.

    2013-06-01

    Context. Broad absorption line quasars (BAL QSOs) belong to a class of objects not well-understood as yet. Their UV spectra show BALs in the blue wings of the UV resonance lines, owing to ionized gas with outflow velocities up to 0.2 c. They can have radio emission that is difficult to characterize and that needs to be studied at various wavelengths and resolutions. Aims: We aim to study the pc-scale properties of their synchrotron emission and, in particular, to determine their core properties. Methods: We performed observations in the Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) technique, using both the European VLBI Network (EVN) at 5 GHz, and the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) at 5 and 8.4 GHz to map the pc-scale structure of the brightest radio-loud objects of our sample, allowing a proper morphological interpretation. Results: A variety of morphologies have been found: 9 BAL QSOs on a total of 11 observed sources have a resolved structure. Core-jet, double, and symmetric objects are present, suggesting different orientations. In some cases the sources can be young GPS or CSS. The projected linear size of the sources, also considering observations from our previous work for the same objects, can vary from tens of pc to hundreds of kpc. In some cases, a diffuse emission can be supposed from the missing flux-density with respect to previous lower resolution observations. Finally, the magnetic field strength does not significantly differ from the values found in the literature for radio sources with similar sizes. Conclusions: These results are not easily interpreted with the youth scenario for BAL QSOs, in which they are generally compact objects still expelling a dust cocoon. The variety of orientations, morphologies, and extensions found are presumably related to different possible angles for the BAL producing outflows, with respect to the jet axis. Moreover, the phenomenon could be present in various phases of the QSO evolution. Table 3 is available in

  13. Hubble Space Telescope Faint Object Spectrograph and ground-based observations of the broad absorption line quasar 0226-1024

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Korista, Kirk T.; Weymann, Ray J.; Morris, Simon L.; Kopko, Michael, Jr.; Turnshek, David A.; Hartig, George F.; Foltz, Craig B.; Burbidge, E. M.; Junkkarinen, Vesa T.

    1992-01-01

    Faint Object Spectrograph data from the Hubble Space Telescope of the broad absorption line quasar 0226-1024 have revealed the presence of 8-10 absorbing ions between 680 and 1000 A (restframe): C III, N III, N IV, O III, O IV, O VI, S V, S VI, possibly Ne VIII, and possibly O V* arising from a metastable excited state. We also present ground-based optical observations of the broad line troughs for the following ions: H I, C IV, N V, Si IV, and possibly Fe III, S IV, P V, and C III* (also arising from a metastable excited state). The results of this fit are used to estimate the absorbing ionic column densities. There is evidence that the broad absorption line clouds are optically thick and either do not completely cover the continuum source or narrow unresolved lines are present.

  14. Quasars as the formation sites of high-redshift ellipticals: a signature in the `associated' absorption-line systems?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franceschini, A.; Gratton, R.

    1997-03-01

    Published data on the average metallicities and abundance ratios for absorption-line systems in high-redshift quasars suggest that a dichotomy may exist between the chemical composition of damped Lyman alpha (Lyalpha) systems (interpreted as intervening galaxies in the QSO line of sight) and the z_abs~=z_em absorption- line systems associated with the quasar. Intervening systems have smaller than solar metallicities, whereas associated absorbers have solar or greater than solar metallicities and small N/C ratios. While these results have to be confirmed by more precise abundance determinations, we argue that they may be explained by an early phase of efficient metal enrichment occurring only in the close environment of high-z QSOs, and characterized by an excess type-II supernova (SNII) activity. This is reminiscent of the SNII phase required to explain the abundance ratios (favouring alpha- over Fe-group elements) observed in the intracluster (IC) medium of local galaxy clusters. We explore the following scenario, to be tested by forthcoming observations of QSO absorption lines using very large optical telescopes. (a) Well-studied damped- Lyalpha, Lyalpha and metal lines in intervening systems trace only part of the history of metal production in the Universe - the one concerning slowly star-forming discs or dwarf irregulars. (b) The complementary class of early-type and bulge-dominated galaxies formed quickly (at z>~4-5) through a huge episode of star formation favouring high-mass stars. (c) The nucleus of the latter is the site of the subsequent formation of a quasar, which partly hides from view the dimmer host galaxy. (d) The products of a galactic wind, following the violent episode of star formation in the host galaxy and metal pollution of the IC medium in the forming cluster, could be directly observable in the z_abs~=z_em associated absorption systems on the QSO line of sight.

  15. Weak Hard X-Ray Emission from Broad Absorption Line Quasars: Evidence for Intrinsic X-Ray Weakness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, B.; Brandt, W. N.; Alexander, D. M.; Stern, D.; Teng, S. H.; Arévalo, P.; Bauer, F. E.; Boggs, S. E.; Christensen, F. E.; Comastri, A.; Craig, W. W.; Farrah, D.; Gandhi, P.; Hailey, C. J.; Harrison, F. A.; Koss, M.; Ogle, P.; Puccetti, S.; Saez, C.; Scott, A. E.; Walton, D. J.; Zhang, W. W.

    2014-10-01

    We report NuSTAR observations of a sample of six X-ray weak broad absorption line (BAL) quasars. These targets, at z = 0.148-1.223, are among the optically brightest and most luminous BAL quasars known at z < 1.3. However, their rest-frame ≈2 keV luminosities are 14 to >330 times weaker than expected for typical quasars. Our results from a pilot NuSTAR study of two low-redshift BAL quasars, a Chandra stacking analysis of a sample of high-redshift BAL quasars, and a NuSTAR spectral analysis of the local BAL quasar Mrk 231 have already suggested the existence of intrinsically X-ray weak BAL quasars, i.e., quasars not emitting X-rays at the level expected from their optical/UV emission. The aim of the current program is to extend the search for such extraordinary objects. Three of the six new targets are weakly detected by NuSTAR with <~ 45 counts in the 3-24 keV band, and the other three are not detected. The hard X-ray (8-24 keV) weakness observed by NuSTAR requires Compton-thick absorption if these objects have nominal underlying X-ray emission. However, a soft stacked effective photon index (Γeff ≈ 1.8) for this sample disfavors Compton-thick absorption in general. The uniform hard X-ray weakness observed by NuSTAR for this and the pilot samples selected with <10 keV weakness also suggests that the X-ray weakness is intrinsic in at least some of the targets. We conclude that the NuSTAR observations have likely discovered a significant population (gsim 33%) of intrinsically X-ray weak objects among the BAL quasars with significantly weak <10 keV emission. We suggest that intrinsically X-ray weak quasars might be preferentially observed as BAL quasars.

  16. Weak hard X-ray emission from broad absorption line quasars: evidence for intrinsic X-ray weakness

    SciTech Connect

    Luo, B.; Brandt, W. N.; Scott, A. E.; Alexander, D. M.; Gandhi, P.; Stern, D.; Teng, S. H.; Arévalo, P.; Bauer, F. E.; Boggs, S. E.; Craig, W. W.; Christensen, F. E.; Comastri, A.; Farrah, D.; Hailey, C. J.; Harrison, F. A.; Koss, M.; Ogle, P.; Puccetti, S.; Saez, C.; and others

    2014-10-10

    We report NuSTAR observations of a sample of six X-ray weak broad absorption line (BAL) quasars. These targets, at z = 0.148-1.223, are among the optically brightest and most luminous BAL quasars known at z < 1.3. However, their rest-frame ≈2 keV luminosities are 14 to >330 times weaker than expected for typical quasars. Our results from a pilot NuSTAR study of two low-redshift BAL quasars, a Chandra stacking analysis of a sample of high-redshift BAL quasars, and a NuSTAR spectral analysis of the local BAL quasar Mrk 231 have already suggested the existence of intrinsically X-ray weak BAL quasars, i.e., quasars not emitting X-rays at the level expected from their optical/UV emission. The aim of the current program is to extend the search for such extraordinary objects. Three of the six new targets are weakly detected by NuSTAR with ≲ 45 counts in the 3-24 keV band, and the other three are not detected. The hard X-ray (8-24 keV) weakness observed by NuSTAR requires Compton-thick absorption if these objects have nominal underlying X-ray emission. However, a soft stacked effective photon index (Γ{sub eff} ≈ 1.8) for this sample disfavors Compton-thick absorption in general. The uniform hard X-ray weakness observed by NuSTAR for this and the pilot samples selected with <10 keV weakness also suggests that the X-ray weakness is intrinsic in at least some of the targets. We conclude that the NuSTAR observations have likely discovered a significant population (≳ 33%) of intrinsically X-ray weak objects among the BAL quasars with significantly weak <10 keV emission. We suggest that intrinsically X-ray weak quasars might be preferentially observed as BAL quasars.

  17. Weak Hard X-Ray Emission from Two Broad Absorption Line Quasars Observed with NuStar: Compton-Thick Absorption or Intrinsic X-Ray Weakness?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Luo, B.; Brandt, W. N.; Alexander, D. M.; Harrison, F. A.; Stern, D.; Bauer, F. E.; Boggs, S. E.; Christensen, F. E.; Comastri, A.; Craig, W. W..; Fabian, A. C.; Farrah, D.; Fiore, F.; Fuerst, F.; Grefenstette, B. W.; Hailey, C. J.; Hickox, R.; Madsen, K. K.; Matt, G.; Ogle, P.; Risaliti, G.; Saez, C.; Teng, S. H.; Walton, D. J.; Zhang, W. W.

    2013-01-01

    We present Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) hard X-ray observations of two X-ray weak broad absorption line (BAL) quasars, PG 1004+130 (radio loud) and PG 1700+518 (radio quiet). Many BAL quasars appear X-ray weak, probably due to absorption by the shielding gas between the nucleus and the accretion-disk wind. The two targets are among the optically brightest BAL quasars, yet they are known to be significantly X-ray weak at rest-frame 2-10 keV (16-120 times fainter than typical quasars). We would expect to obtain approx. or equal to 400-600 hard X-ray (is greater than or equal to 10 keV) photons with NuSTAR, provided that these photons are not significantly absorbed N(sub H) is less than or equal to 10(exp24) cm(exp-2). However, both BAL quasars are only detected in the softer NuSTAR bands (e.g., 4-20 keV) but not in its harder bands (e.g., 20-30 keV), suggesting that either the shielding gas is highly Compton-thick or the two targets are intrinsically X-ray weak. We constrain the column densities for both to be N(sub H) 7 × 10(exp 24) cm(exp-2) if the weak hard X-ray emission is caused by obscuration from the shielding gas. We discuss a few possibilities for how PG 1004+130 could have Compton-thick shielding gas without strong Fe Ka line emission; dilution from jet-linked X-ray emission is one likely explanation. We also discuss the intrinsic X-ray weakness scenario based on a coronal-quenching model relevant to the shielding gas and disk wind of BAL quasars. Motivated by our NuSTAR results, we perform a Chandra stacking analysis with the Large Bright Quasar Survey BAL quasar sample and place statistical constraints upon the fraction of intrinsically X-ray weak BAL quasars; this fraction is likely 17%-40%.

  18. WEAK HARD X-RAY EMISSION FROM TWO BROAD ABSORPTION LINE QUASARS OBSERVED WITH NuSTAR: COMPTON-THICK ABSORPTION OR INTRINSIC X-RAY WEAKNESS?

    SciTech Connect

    Luo, B.; Brandt, W. N.; Alexander, D. M.; Hickox, R.; Harrison, F. A.; Fuerst, F.; Grefenstette, B. W.; Madsen, K. K.; Stern, D.; Bauer, F. E.; Boggs, S. E.; Craig, W. W.; Christensen, F. E.; Comastri, A.; Fabian, A. C.; Farrah, D.; Fiore, F.; Hailey, C. J.; Matt, G.; Ogle, P.; and others

    2013-08-01

    We present Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) hard X-ray observations of two X-ray weak broad absorption line (BAL) quasars, PG 1004+130 (radio loud) and PG 1700+518 (radio quiet). Many BAL quasars appear X-ray weak, probably due to absorption by the shielding gas between the nucleus and the accretion-disk wind. The two targets are among the optically brightest BAL quasars, yet they are known to be significantly X-ray weak at rest-frame 2-10 keV (16-120 times fainter than typical quasars). We would expect to obtain Almost-Equal-To 400-600 hard X-ray ({approx}> 10 keV) photons with NuSTAR, provided that these photons are not significantly absorbed (N{sub H} {approx}< 10{sup 24} cm{sup -2}). However, both BAL quasars are only detected in the softer NuSTAR bands (e.g., 4-20 keV) but not in its harder bands (e.g., 20-30 keV), suggesting that either the shielding gas is highly Compton-thick or the two targets are intrinsically X-ray weak. We constrain the column densities for both to be N{sub H} Almost-Equal-To 7 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 24} cm{sup -2} if the weak hard X-ray emission is caused by obscuration from the shielding gas. We discuss a few possibilities for how PG 1004+130 could have Compton-thick shielding gas without strong Fe K{alpha} line emission; dilution from jet-linked X-ray emission is one likely explanation. We also discuss the intrinsic X-ray weakness scenario based on a coronal-quenching model relevant to the shielding gas and disk wind of BAL quasars. Motivated by our NuSTAR results, we perform a Chandra stacking analysis with the Large Bright Quasar Survey BAL quasar sample and place statistical constraints upon the fraction of intrinsically X-ray weak BAL quasars; this fraction is likely 17%-40%.

  19. H{beta} LINE WIDTHS AS AN ORIENTATION INDICATOR FOR LOW-IONIZATION BROAD ABSORPTION LINE QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    Punsly, Brian; Zhang Shaohua E-mail: brian.punsly@comdev-usa.co

    2010-12-20

    There is evidence from radio-loud quasars to suggest that the distribution of the H{beta} broad emission line (BEL) gas is arranged in a predominantly planar orientation, and this result may well also apply to radio-quiet quasars. This would imply that the observed FWHM of the H{beta} BELs is dependent on the orientation of the line of sight to the gas. If this view is correct then we propose that the FWHM can be used as a surrogate, in large samples, to determine the line of sight to the H{beta} BELs in broad absorption line quasars (BALQSOs). The existence of broad UV absorption lines (BALs) means that the line of sight to BALQSOs must also pass through the BAL out-flowing gas. It is determined that there is a statistically significant excess of narrow-line profiles in the SDSS DR7 archival spectra of low-ionization broad absorption line quasars (LoBALQSOs), indicating that BAL gas flowing close to the equatorial plane does not commonly occur in these sources. We also find that the data is not well represented by random lines of sight to the BAL gas. Our best fit indicates two classes of LoBALQSOs, the majority ({approx}2/3) are polar outflows that are responsible for the enhanced frequency of narrow-line profiles, and the remainder are equatorial outflows. We further motivated the line of sight explanation of the narrow-line excess in LoBALQSOs by considering the notion that the skewed distribution of line profiles is driven by an elevated Eddington ratio in BALQSOs. We constructed a variety of control samples comprised of non-LoBALQSOs matched to a de-reddened LoBALQSO sample in redshift, luminosity, black hole mass, and Eddington ratio. It is demonstrated that the excess of narrow profiles persists within the LoBALQSO sample relative to each of the control samples with no reduction of the statistical significance. Thus, we eliminate the possibility that the excess narrow lines seen in the LoBALQSOs arise from an enhanced Eddington ratio.

  20. A Bayesian Method For Finding Galaxies That Cause Quasar Absorption Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shoemaker, Emileigh Suzanne; Laubner, David Andrew; Scott, Jennifer E.

    2016-01-01

    We present a study of candidate absorber-galaxy pairs for 39 low redshift quasar sightlines (0.06 < z < 0.85) using a statistical approach to match absorbers with galaxies near the quasar lines of sight. Of the 75 quasars observed with HST/Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) and archived on the Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST), 39 overlap with the footprint of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). We downloaded the COS linelists for these quasar spectra from MAST and queried the SDSS DR12 database for photometric data on all galaxies within 1 Mpc of each of these quasar lines of sight. We calculated photometric redshifts for all the SDSS galaxies using the Bayesian Photometric Redshift code. We used all these absorber and galaxy data as input into an absorber-galaxy matching code which also employs a Bayesian scheme, along with known statistics of the intergalactic medium and circumgalactic media of galaxies, for finding the most probable galaxy match for each absorber. We compare our candidate absorber-galaxy matches to existing studies in the literature and explore trends in the absorber and galaxy properties among the matched and non-matched populations. This method of matching absorbers and galaxies can be used to find targets for follow up spectroscopic studies.

  1. Probing low-redshift galaxies using quasar absorption lines with an emphasis on Ca II absorption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sardane, Gendith M.

    We searched for intervening CaII absorption in nearly 95,000 quasar spectra with i≤20 from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey(SDSS) data releases DR7+DR9. Our identification of >400 CaII systems is the largest compilation of CaII absorbers in a blind search. (Abstract shortened by ProQuest.).

  2. Multifrequency VLBI Observations of the Broad Absorption Line Quasar J1020+4320: Recently Restarted Jet Activity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doi, Akihiro; Murata, Yasuhiro; Mochizuki, Nanako; Takeuchi, Hiroshi; Asada, Keiichi; Hayashi, Takayuki J.; Nagai, Hiroshi; Shibata, Katsunori M.; Oyama, Tomoaki; Jike, Takaaki; Fujisawa, Kenta; Sugiyama, Koichiro; Ogawa, Hideo; Kimura, Kimihiro; Honma, Mareki; Kobayashi, Hideyuki; Koyama, Shoko

    2013-06-01

    This paper reports on very-long-baseline interferometry observations of the radio-loud broad absorption line (BAL) quasar J1020+4320 at 1.7, 2.3, 6.7, and 8.4 GHz using the Japanese VLBI network (JVN) and European VLBI network (EVN). The radio morphology is compact with a size of ˜10 pc. The convex radio spectrum has been stable over the last decade; an observed peak frequency of 3.2 GHz is equivalent to 9.5 GHz in the rest frame, suggesting an age on the order of ˜100 years as a radio source, according to an observed correlation between the linear size and the peak frequency of compact steep spectrum (CSS) and giga-hertz peaked spectrum (GPS) radio sources. A low-frequency radio excess suggests a relic of past jet activity. J1020+4320 may be one of the quasars with recurrent and short-lived jet activity during a BAL-outflowing phase.

  3. A new analysis of fine-structure constant measurements and modelling errors from quasar absorption lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilczynska, Michael R.; Webb, John K.; King, Julian A.; Murphy, Michael T.; Bainbridge, Matthew B.; Flambaum, Victor V.

    2015-12-01

    We present an analysis of 23 absorption systems along the lines of sight towards 18 quasars in the redshift range of 0.4 ≤ zabs ≤ 2.3 observed on the Very Large Telescope (VLT) using the Ultraviolet and Visual Echelle Spectrograph (UVES). Considering both statistical and systematic error contributions we find a robust estimate of the weighted mean deviation of the fine-structure constant from its current, laboratory value of Δα/α = (0.22 ± 0.23) × 10-5, consistent with the dipole variation reported in Webb et al. and King et al. This paper also examines modelling methodologies and systematic effects. In particular, we focus on the consequences of fitting quasar absorption systems with too few absorbing components and of selectively fitting only the stronger components in an absorption complex. We show that using insufficient continuum regions around an absorption complex causes a significant increase in the scatter of a sample of Δα/α measurements, thus unnecessarily reducing the overall precision. We further show that fitting absorption systems with too few velocity components also results in a significant increase in the scatter of Δα/α measurements, and in addition causes Δα/α error estimates to be systematically underestimated. These results thus identify some of the potential pitfalls in analysis techniques and provide a guide for future analyses.

  4. The Hubble Space Telescope quasar absorption line key project. 6: Properties of the metal-rich systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bergeron, Jacqueline; Petitjean, Patrick; Sargent, W. L. W.; Bahcall, John N.; Boksenberg, Alec; Hartig, George F.; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Kirhakos, Sofia; Savage, Blair D.; Schneider, Donald P.

    1994-01-01

    We present an analysis of the properties of a sample of 18 metal-rich, low-redshift z(sub abs) much less than z(sub em) absorbers seen in low- and medium-resolution spectra obtained for the Quasar Absorption Line Key Project with the Hubble Space Telescope Faint Object Spectrograph (HST/FOS). For most of the C IV and Lyman-limit systems, observations in the optical wavelength range of the expected associated Mg II absorption are available. As at high redshift (z approximately 2), there are two subclasses of absorbers which are characterized by the presence or absence of MG II absorption. However, some low-redshift Mg II and Fe absorptions originate from regions optically thin to UV ionizing photons and thus, at low redshift, the low-ionization systems do not always trace high opacities, as is the case at high redshift. This implies that the mean ionization state of metal-rich, optically thin absorbing clouds falls with decreasing redshift, which is consistent with the hypothesis that the gas is photoionized by the metagalactic UV background radiation field. Two main constraints are derived from the analysis of the Lyman-limit sample, assuming photoionization models are valid. First, a low opacity to ionizing photons (tau(sub LL) approximately less than 1), as observed for several Mg II-Fe II systems at z approximately 0.5, sets limits on the ionization level of hydrogen, thus on the total hydrogen column density and the heavy element abundances, (Z/H) approximately -0.5 to -0.3. Second, the dimensions of individual Mg II clouds are smaller than at high redshift by a factor 3-10. At z approximately greater than 0.6, the O VI absorption doublet is detected in four of the five z(sub abs) much less than z(sub em) systems for which the O VI wavelength range has been observed, whereas the associated N V doublet is detected in only two cases. This suggests that the presence of a high-ionization O VI phase is a general property of z approximately 0.6-1 absorption systems

  5. Unveiling the intrinsic X-ray properties of broad absorption line quasars with a relatively unbiased sample

    SciTech Connect

    Morabito, Leah K.; Dai, Xinyu; Leighly, Karen M.; Sivakoff, Gregory R.; Shankar, Francesco

    2014-05-01

    There is growing evidence of a higher intrinsic fraction of broad absorption line quasars (BALQSOs) than that obtained in optical surveys, on which most previous X-ray studies of BALQSOs have focused. Here we present Chandra observations of 18 BALQSOs at z ∼ 2, selected from a near-infrared (Two Micron All Sky Survey) sample, where the BALQSO fraction is likely to be close to the intrinsic fraction. We measure photon indices using the stacked spectra of the optically faint (i – K{sub s} ≥ 2.3 mag) and optically bright (i – K{sub s} < 2.3 mag) samples to be Γ ≅ 1.5-2.1. We constrain their intrinsic column density by modeling the X-ray fractional hardness ratio, finding a mean column density of 3.5 × 10{sup 22} cm{sup –2} assuming neutral absorption. We incorporate Sloan Digital Sky Survey optical measurements (rest frame UV) to study the broadband spectral index between the X-ray and UV bands, and compare this to a large sample of normal quasars. We estimate that the optically faint BALQSOs are X-ray weaker than the optically bright ones, and the entire sample of BALQSOs are intrinsically X-ray weak when compared to normal active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Correcting for magnification of X-ray emission via gravitational lensing by the central black hole viewed at large inclination angles makes these BALQSOs even more intrinsically X-ray weak. Finally, we estimate AGN kinetic feedback efficiencies of a few percent for an X-ray wind of 0.3c in high-ionization BALQSOs. Combined with energy carried by low-ionization BALQSOs and UV winds, the total kinetic energy in BALQSOs can be sufficient to provide AGN kinetic feedback required to explain the co-evolution between black holes and host galaxies.

  6. Unveiling the Intrinsic X-Ray Properties of Broad Absorption Line Quasars with a Relatively Unbiased Sample

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morabito, Leah K.; Dai, Xinyu; Leighly, Karen M.; Sivakoff, Gregory R.; Shankar, Francesco

    2014-05-01

    There is growing evidence of a higher intrinsic fraction of broad absorption line quasars (BALQSOs) than that obtained in optical surveys, on which most previous X-ray studies of BALQSOs have focused. Here we present Chandra observations of 18 BALQSOs at z ~ 2, selected from a near-infrared (Two Micron All Sky Survey) sample, where the BALQSO fraction is likely to be close to the intrinsic fraction. We measure photon indices using the stacked spectra of the optically faint (i - Ks >= 2.3 mag) and optically bright (i - Ks < 2.3 mag) samples to be Γ ~= 1.5-2.1. We constrain their intrinsic column density by modeling the X-ray fractional hardness ratio, finding a mean column density of 3.5 × 1022 cm-2 assuming neutral absorption. We incorporate Sloan Digital Sky Survey optical measurements (rest frame UV) to study the broadband spectral index between the X-ray and UV bands, and compare this to a large sample of normal quasars. We estimate that the optically faint BALQSOs are X-ray weaker than the optically bright ones, and the entire sample of BALQSOs are intrinsically X-ray weak when compared to normal active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Correcting for magnification of X-ray emission via gravitational lensing by the central black hole viewed at large inclination angles makes these BALQSOs even more intrinsically X-ray weak. Finally, we estimate AGN kinetic feedback efficiencies of a few percent for an X-ray wind of 0.3c in high-ionization BALQSOs. Combined with energy carried by low-ionization BALQSOs and UV winds, the total kinetic energy in BALQSOs can be sufficient to provide AGN kinetic feedback required to explain the co-evolution between black holes and host galaxies.

  7. Nustar Reveals an Intrinsically X-ray Weak Broad Absorption Line Quasar in the Ultraluminous Infrared Galaxy Markarian 231

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Teng, Stacy H.; Brandt. W. N.; Harrison, F. A.; Luo, B.; Alexander, D. M.; Bauer, F. E.; Boggs, S. E.; Christensen, F. E.; Comastri, A.; Craig, W. W.; Fabian, A. C.; Farrah, D.; Fiore, F.; Gandhi, P.; Grefenstette, B. W.; Hailey, C. J.; Hickox, R. C.; Madsen, K. K.; Ptak, A. F.; Rigby, Jane Rebecca; Risaliti, G.; Saz, C.; Stern, D.; Veilleux, S.; Walton, D. J.; Wik, D. R.; Zhang, W. W.

    2014-01-01

    We present high-energy (3-30 keV) NuSTAR observations of the nearest quasar, the ultraluminous infrared galaxy (ULIRG) Markarian 231 (Mrk 231), supplemented with new and simultaneous low-energy (0.5-8 keV) data from Chandra. The source was detected, though at much fainter levels than previously reported, likely due to contamination in the large apertures of previous non-focusing hard X-ray telescopes. The full band (0.5-30 keV) X-ray spectrum suggests the active galactic nucleus (AGN) in Mrk 231 is absorbed by a patchy and Compton-thin N(sub H) approx. 1.2(sup +0.3) sub-0.3) x 10(exp 23) / sq cm) column. The intrinsic X-ray luminosity L(sub 0.5-30 Kev) approx. 1.0 x 10(exp 43) erg /s) is extremely weak relative to the bolometric luminosity where the 2-10 keV to bolometric luminosity ratio is approx. 0.03% compared to the typical values of 2-15%. Additionally, Mrk 231 has a low X-ray-to-optical power law slope alpha(sub 0X) approx. -1.7. It is a local example of a low-ionization broad absorption line (LoBAL) quasar that is intrinsically X-ray weak. The weak ionizing continuum may explain the lack of mid-infrared [O IV], [Ne V], and [Ne VI] fine-structure emission lines which are present in sources with otherwise similar AGN properties. We argue that the intrinsic X-ray weakness may be a result of the super-Eddington accretion occurring in the nucleus of this ULIRG, and may also be naturally related to the powerful wind event seen in Mrk 231, a merger remnant escaping from its dusty cocoon.

  8. Searching for variations in the fine-structure constant and the proton-to-electron mass ratio using quasar absorption lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, Julian A.

    2012-02-01

    (abridged) Quasar absorption lines provide a precise test of the assumed constancy of the fundamental constants of physics. We have investigated potential changes in the fine-structure constant, alpha, and the proton-to-electron mass ratio, mu. The many-multiplet method allows one to use optical fine-structure transitions to constrain (Delta alpha)/alpha at better than the 10^(-5) level. We present a new analysis of 154 quasar absorbers with 0.2 < z <3.7 in VLT/UVES spectra. From these absorbers we find 2.2 sigma evidence for angular variations in alpha under a dipole+monopole model. Combined with previous Keck/HIRES observations, we find 4.1 sigma evidence for angular (and therefore spatial) variations in alpha, with maximal increase of alpha occurring in the direction RA=(17.3 +/- 1.0) hr, dec=(-61 +/- 10) deg. Under a model where the observed effect is proportional to the lookback-time distance the significance increases to 4.2 sigma. Dipole models fitted to the VLT and Keck samples and models fitted to z<1.6 and z>1.6 sub-samples independently yield consistent estimates of the dipole direction, which suggests that the effect is not caused by telescope systematics. We consider a number of systematic effects and show that they are unable to explain the observed dipole effect. We have used spectra of the quasars Q0405-443, Q0347-383 and Q0528-250 from VLT/UVES to investigate the absorbers at z=2.595, 3.025 and 2.811 in these spectra respectively. We find that (Delta mu)/mu=(10.1 +/- 6.6) x 10^(-6), (8.2 +/- 7.5) x 10^(-6) and (-1.4 +/- 3.9) x 10^(-6) in these absorbers respectively. A second spectrum of Q0528-250 provides an additional constraint of (Delta mu)/mu=(0.2 +/- 3.2_stat +/- 1.9_sys) x 10^(-6). The weighted mean of these values yields (Delta mu)/mu=(1.7 +/- 2.4) x 10^(-6), the most precise constraint on evolution in mu at z>1.

  9. Weak Hard X-ray Emission from Broad Absorption Line Quasars Observed with NuSTAR: Evidence for Intrinsic X-ray Weakness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Bin; Brandt, W. Niel; Alexander, David M; Stern, Daniel; Teng, Stacy H.; Arevalo, Patricia; Bauer, Franz E.; Boggs, Steven E.; Christensen, Finn; Comastri, Andrea; Craig, William W.; Farrah, Duncan; Gandhi, Poshak; Hailey, Charles James; Harrison, Fiona; Koss, Michael; Ogle, Patrick M.; Puccetti, Simonetta; Saez, Cristian; Scott, Amy; Walton, Dom; Zhang, William

    2014-08-01

    We report NuSTAR observations of a sample of six X-ray weak broad absorption line (BAL) quasars. These targets, at z=0.148-1.223, are among the optically brightest and most luminous BAL quasars known at z<1.3. However, their rest-frame 2 keV luminosities are 14 to >330 times weaker than expected for typical quasars. Our results from a pilot NuSTAR study of two low-redshift BAL quasars, a Chandra stacking analysis of a sample of high-redshift BAL quasars, and a NuSTAR spectral analysis of the local BAL quasar Mrk 231 have already suggested the existence of intrinsically X-ray weak BAL quasars, i.e., quasars not emitting X-rays at the level expected from their optical/UV emission. The aim of the current program is to extend the search for such extraordinary objects. Three of the six new targets are weakly detected by NuSTAR with <45 counts in the 3-24 keV band, and the other three are not detected. The hard X-ray (8-24 keV) weakness observed by NuSTAR requires Compton-thick absorption if these objects have nominal underlying X-ray emission. However, a soft stacked effective photon index (Γ 1.8) for this sample disfavors Compton-thick absorption in general. The uniform hard X-ray weakness observed by NuSTAR for this and the pilot samples selected with <10 keV weakness also suggests that the X-ray weakness is intrinsic in at least some of the targets. We conclude that the NuSTAR observations have likely discovered a significant population (>33%) of intrinsically X-ray weak objects among the BAL quasars with significantly weak <10 keV emission. We suggest that intrinsically X-ray weak quasars might be preferentially observed as BAL quasars.

  10. The Evolution of Quasar C IV and Si IV Broad Absorption Lines over Multi-year Timescales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gibson, Robert R.; Brandt, W. N.; Gallagher, S. C.; Hewett, Paul C.; Schneider, Donald P.

    2010-04-01

    We investigate the variability of C IV λ1549 broad absorption line (BAL) troughs over rest-frame timescales of up to ≈7 yr in 14 quasars at redshifts z >~ 2.1. For nine sources at sufficiently high redshift, we also compare the C IV and Si IV λ1400 absorption variation. We compare shorter and longer term variability using spectra from up to four different epochs per source and find complex patterns of variation in the sample overall. The scatter in the change of absorption equivalent width (EW), ΔEW, increases with the time between observations. BALs do not, in general, strengthen or weaken monotonically, and variation observed over shorter (lsimmonths) timescales is not predictive of multi-year variation. We find no evidence for asymmetry in the distribution of ΔEW that would indicate that BALs form and decay on different timescales, and we constrain the typical BAL lifetime to be gsim30 yr. The BAL absorption for one source, LBQS 0022+0150, has weakened and may now be classified as a mini-BAL. Another source, 1235+1453, shows evidence of variable, blue continuum emission that is relatively unabsorbed by the BAL outflow. C IV and Si IV BAL shape changes are related in at least some sources. Given their high velocities, BAL outflows apparently traverse large spatial regions and may interact with parsec-scale structures such as an obscuring torus. Assuming BAL outflows are launched from a rotating accretion disk, notable azimuthal symmetry is required in the outflow to explain the relatively small changes observed in velocity structure over times up to 7 yr.

  11. The Hubble Space Telescope Quasar Absorption Line Key Project. XIV. The Evolution of Lyα Absorption Lines in the Redshift Interval z = 0-1.5

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weymann, Ray J.; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Lu, Limin; Bahcall, John N.; Bergeron, Jacqueline; Boksenberg, Alec; Hartig, George F.; Kirhakos, Sofia; Sargent, W. L. W.; Savage, Blair D.; Schneider, Donald P.; Turnshek, David A.; Wolfe, Arthur M.

    1998-10-01

    We present the results of an analysis of the rate of evolution of the Lyα absorption lines in the redshift interval 0.0 to ~1.5 based upon a sample of 987 Lyα absorption lines identified in the spectra of 63 QSOs obtained with the Faint Object Spectrograph (FOS) of the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). These spectra were obtained as part of the QSO Absorption Line Survey, an HST Key Project during the first four years of observations with the telescope. Fits to the evolution of the number of absorbers per unit redshift (dN/dz) of the form dN/dz = A × (1 + z)γ continue to yield values of γ in the range 0.1-0.3, decidedly flatter than results from ground-based data pertaining to the redshift range z > 1.7. These results are consistent with our previous results based on a much smaller sample of lines, but the uncertainties in the fit have been greatly reduced. The combination of the HST and ground-based data suggest a marked transition in the rate of evolution of the Lyα lines at a redshift of about 1.7. The 19 Lyα lines from an additional higher redshift QSO from our sample for which tentative line identifications are available (UM 18; zem = 1.89) support the suggestion of a rapid increase at around this redshift. We derive the cumulative distribution of the full sample of Lyα lines and show that the distribution in redshift can indeed be well represented by a power law of the form (1 + z)γ. For this same sample, the distribution of equivalent widths of the Lyα absorbers above a rest equivalent width of 0.1 Å is fit quite well by an exponential. Comparing samples of Lyα lines, one set of which has redshifts the same as, or very near to, the redshifts of ions from heavy elements and another set in which no ions from heavy elements have been identified, we find that the Lyα systems with heavy element detections have a much steeper slope than the high rest equivalent width portion of the Lyman-only sample. We argue that this result is not likely to be due to

  12. UNSHIFTED METASTABLE He I* MINI-BROAD ABSORPTION LINE SYSTEM IN THE NARROW-LINE TYPE 1 QUASAR SDSS J080248.18+551328.9

    SciTech Connect

    Ji, Tuo; Zhou, Hongyan; Jiang, Peng; Wang, Tinggui; Wang, Huiyuan; Liu, Wenjuan; Yang, Chenwei; Ge, Jian; Hamann, Fred; Komossa, S.; Yuan, Weimin; Zuther, Jens; Lu, Honglin; Zuo, Wenwen

    2015-02-10

    We report the identification of an unusual absorption-line system in the quasar SDSS J080248.18+551328.9 and present a detailed study of the system, incorporating follow-up optical and near-IR spectroscopy. A few tens of absorption lines are detected, including He I*, Fe II*, and Ni II*, which arise from metastable or excited levels, as well as resonant lines in Mg I, Mg II, Fe II, Mn II, and Ca II. All of the isolated absorption lines show the same profile of width Δv ∼ 1500 km s{sup –1} centered at a common redshift as that of the quasar emission lines, such as [O II], [S II], and hydrogen Paschen and Balmer series. With narrow Balmer lines, strong optical Fe II multiplets, and weak [O III] doublets, its emission-line spectrum is typical for that of a narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxy (NLS1). We have derived reliable measurements of the gas-phase column densities of the absorbing ions/levels. Photoionization modeling indicates that the absorber has a density of n {sub H} ∼ (1.0-2.5) × 10{sup 5} cm{sup –3} and a column density of N {sub H} ∼ (1.0-3.2) × 10{sup 21} cm{sup –2} and is located at R ∼100-250 pc from the central supermassive black hole. The location of the absorber, the symmetric profile of the absorption lines, and the coincidence of the absorption- and emission-line centroid jointly suggest that the absorption gas originates from the host galaxy and is plausibly accelerated by stellar processes, such as stellar winds and/or supernova explosions. The implications for the detection of such a peculiar absorption-line system in an NLS1 are discussed in the context of coevolution between supermassive black hole growth and host galaxy buildup.

  13. High Dust Depletion in two Intervening Quasar Absorption Line Systems with the 2175 Å Extinction Bump at z ~ 1.4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Peng; Ge, Jian; Prochaska, J. Xavier; Wang, Junfeng; Zhou, Hongyan; Wang, Tinggui

    2010-12-01

    We present the column densities of heavy elements and dust depletion studies in two strong Mg II absorption systems at z ~ 1.4 displaying the 2175 Å dust extinction feature. Column densities are measured from low-ionization absorption lines using an Apparent Optical Depth Method on the Keck/ESI spectra. We find that the dust depletion patterns resemble that of cold diffuse clouds in the Milky Way (MW). The values, [Fe/Zn] ≈-1.5 and [Si/Zn]<-0.67, are among the highest dust depletion measured for quasar absorption line systems. In another 2175 Å absorber at z = 1.64 toward the quasar SDSS J160457.50+220300.5, Noterdaeme et al. reported a similar dust depletion measurement ([Fe/Zn] = -1.47 and [Si/Zn] = -1.07) and detected C I and CO absorption lines on its VLT/UVES spectrum. We conclude that heavy dust depletion (i.e., a characteristic of cold dense clouds in MW) is required to produce a pronounced 2175 Å extinction bump. The data presented herein were obtained at the W. M. Keck Observatory, which is operated as a scientific partnership among the California Institute of Technology, the University of California, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The Observatory was made possible by the generous financial support of the W. M. Keck Foundation.

  14. Results of Monitoring the Dramatically Variable C IV Mini-Broad Absorption Line System in the Quasar HS 1603+3820

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misawa, Toru; Eracleous, Michael; Charlton, Jane C.; Kashikawa, Nobunari

    2007-05-01

    We present six new and two previously published high-resolution spectra of the quasar HS 1603+3820 (zem=2.542) taken over an interval of 4.2 yr (1.2 yr in the quasar rest frame). The observations were made with the High Dispersion Spectrograph on the Subaru telescope and the Medium Resolution Spectrograph on the Hobby-Eberly Telescope. The purpose was to study the narrow absorption lines (NALs). We use time variability and coverage fraction analysis to separate intrinsic absorption lines, which are physically related to the quasar, from intervening absorption lines. By fitting models to the line profiles, we derive the parameters of the respective absorbers as a function of time. Only the mini-BAL system at zabs~2.43 (vshift~9500 km s-1) shows both partial coverage and time variability, although two NAL systems possibly show evidence of partial coverage. We find that all the troughs of the mini-BAL system vary in concert and its total equivalent width variations resemble those of the coverage fraction. However, no other correlations are seen between the variations of different model parameters. Thus, the observed variations cannot be reproduced by a simple change of ionization state or by motion of a homogeneous parcel of gas across the cylinder of sight. We propose that the observed variations are a result of rapid continuum fluctuations, coupled with coverage fraction fluctuations caused by a clumpy screen of variable optical depth located between the continuum source and the mini-BAL gas. An alternative explanation is that the observed partial coverage signature is the result of scattering of continuum photons around the absorber, thus the equivalent width of the mini-BAL can vary as the intensity of the scattered continuum changes. Based on data collected at the Subaru telescope, which is operated by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan.

  15. The HST quasar absorption line key project. 4: HST faint-object spectrograph and ground-based observations of the unusual low-redshift broad absorption-line quasi-stellar object PG 0043+039

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Turnshek, David A.; Espey, Brian R.; Kopko, Michael, Jr.; Rauch, Michael; Weymann, Ray J.; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Boksenberg, Alec; Bergeron, Jacqueline; Hartig, George F.; Sargent, W. L. W.

    1994-01-01

    Hubble Space Telescope Faint Object Spectrograph (HST FOS) observations have shown that the spectrum of the low-redshift (z(sub em) approximately equal to 0.384) QSO PG 0043+039 exhibits weak broad absorption lines (BALs). The BALs were discovered during the course of UV spectrophotometry made for the HST Quasar Absorption Line Key Project. The HST data are analyzed along with ground-based optical and IUE spectrophotometry. The object is found to have a number of atypical properties relative to normal non-BAL QSOs. The observed continuum is atypical in the sense that it is much weaker than that of a normal optically selected QSO at rest wavelengths approximately less than 2200 A. Intrinsic reddening of E(B-V) approximately equal to 0.11 mag by dust similar to that found in the SMC at the redshift of PG 0043+039 conservatively accounts for the observed continuum shape moderately well. These observed characteristics are typical of low-ionization BAL QSOs, but convincing evidence for BALs due to low-ionization transitions of Mg II, Al III, Al II, or C II does not exist. Therefore, this object may be a misaligned BAL QSO having many of the characteristics of low-ionization BAL QSOs with the sight line passing through a putative dusty region, but evidently missing clouds of high enough column density to produce observable low-ionization BALs. If the intrinsic dust-extinction model is correct, the observations suggest that the dust is not confined to the presumably higher density, low-ionization BAL clouds, but that it has drifted to nearby high-ionization BAL regions. We also consider other possible mechanisms for producing the shape of the continuous energy distribution which cannot be ruled out. We compare the Fe II emission in PG 0043+039 with that in another Key Project QSO, NGC 2841-UB 3, which has optical Fe II emission comparable in strength to that in PG 0043+039, but has anomalously weak UV Fe II emission. In addition, from an analysis of UV and optical

  16. Precise limits on cosmological variability of the fine-structure constant with zinc and chromium quasar absorption lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, Michael T.; Malec, Adrian L.; Prochaska, J. Xavier

    2016-09-01

    The strongest transitions of Zn and Cr II are the most sensitive to relative variations in the fine-structure constant (Δα/α) among the transitions commonly observed in quasar absorption spectra. They also lie within just 40 Å of each other (rest frame), so they are resistant to the main systematic error affecting most previous measurements of Δα/α: long-range distortions of the wavelength calibration. While Zn and Cr II absorption is normally very weak in quasar spectra, we obtained high signal-to-noise, high-resolution echelle spectra from the Keck and Very Large Telescopes of nine rare systems where it is strong enough to constrain Δα/α from these species alone. These provide 12 independent measurements (three quasars were observed with both telescopes) at redshifts 1.0-2.4, 11 of which pass stringent reliability criteria. These 11 are all consistent with Δα/α = 0 within their individual uncertainties of 3.5-13 parts per million (ppm), with a weighted mean Δα/α = 0.4 ± 1.4stat ± 0.9sys ppm (1σ statistical and systematic uncertainties), indicating no significant cosmological variations in α. This is the first statistical sample of absorbers that is resistant to long-range calibration distortions (at the <1 ppm level), with a precision comparable to previous large samples of ˜150 (distortion-affected) absorbers. Our systematic error budget is instead dominated by much shorter range distortions repeated across echelle orders of individual spectra.

  17. A multi-epoch spectroscopic study of the BAL quasar APM 08279+5255. II. Emission- and absorption-line variability time lags

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saturni, F. G.; Trevese, D.; Vagnetti, F.; Perna, M.; Dadina, M.

    2016-03-01

    Context. The study of high-redshift bright quasars is crucial to gather information about the history of galaxy assembly and evolution. Variability analyses can provide useful data on the physics of quasar processes and their relation with the host galaxy. Aims: In this study, we aim to measure the black hole mass of the bright lensed BAL QSO APM 08279+5255 at z = 3.911 through reverberation mapping, and to update and extend the monitoring of its C IV absorption line variability. Methods: We perform the first reverberation mapping of the Si IV and C IV emission lines for a high-luminosity quasar at high redshift with the use of 138 R-band photometric data and 30 spectra available over 16 years of observations. We also cross-correlate the C IV absorption equivalent width variations with the continuum light curve to estimate the recombination time lags of the various absorbers and infer the physical conditions of the ionised gas. Results: We find a reverberation-mapping time lag of ~900 rest-frame days for both Si IV and C IV emission lines. This is consistent with an extension of the BLR size-to-luminosity relation for active galactic nuclei up to a luminosity of ~1048 erg s-1, and implies a black hole mass of 1010 M⊙. Additionally, we measure a recombination time lag of ~160 days in the rest frame for the C IV narrow absorption system, which implies an electron density of the absorbing gas of ~2.5 × 104 cm-3. Conclusions: The measured black hole mass of APM 08279+5255 indicates that the quasar resides in an under-massive host-galaxy bulge with Mbulge ~ 7.5MBH, and that the lens magnification is lower than ~8. Finally, the inferred electron density of the narrow-line absorber implies a distance of the order of 10 kpc of the absorbing gas from the quasar, placing it within the host galaxy.

  18. Ultraviolet/X-ray Variability and the Extended X-ray Emission of the Radio-loud Broad Absorption Line Quasar PG 1004+130

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott, A. E.; Brandt, W. N.; Miller, B. P.; Luo, B.; Gallagher, S. C.

    2015-06-01

    We present the results of recent Chandra, XMM-Newton, and Hubble Space Telescope observations of the radio-loud (RL), broad absorption line (BAL) quasar PG 1004+130. We compare our new observations to archival X-ray and UV data, creating the most comprehensive, high signal-to-noise, multi-epoch, spectral monitoring campaign of a RL BAL quasar to date. We probe for variability of the X-ray absorption, the UV BAL, and the X-ray jet, on month-year timescales. The X-ray absorber has a low column density of {N}H=8× {10}20-4× {10}21 {{cm}}-2 when it is assumed to be fully covering the X-ray emitting region, and its properties do not vary significantly between the four observations. This suggests that the observed absorption is not related to the typical “shielding gas” commonly invoked in BAL quasar models, but is likely due to material further from the central black hole. In contrast, the C iv BAL shows strong variability. The equivalent width (EW) in 2014 is {EW}=11.24+/- 0.56 \\AA, showing a fractional increase of Δ {EW}/< {EW}> =1.16+/- 0.11 from the 2003 observation, 3183 days earlier in the rest-frame. This places PG 1004+130 among the most highly variable BAL quasars. By combining Chandra observations we create an exposure that is 2.5 times deeper than studied previously, with which to investigate the nature of the X-ray jet and extended diffuse X-ray emission. An X-ray knot, likely with a synchrotron origin, is detected in the radio jet ˜ 8\\prime\\prime (30 kpc) from the central X-ray source with a spatial extent of ˜ 4\\prime\\prime (15 kpc). No similar X-ray counterpart to the counterjet is detected. Asymmetric, non-thermal diffuse X-ray emission, likely due to inverse Compton scattering of Cosmic Microwave Background photons, is also detected.

  19. NuSTAR reveals an intrinsically X-ray weak broad absorption line quasar in the ultraluminous infrared galaxy Markarian 231

    SciTech Connect

    Teng, Stacy H.; Rigby, J. R.; Brandt, W. N.; Luo, B.; Harrison, F. A.; Grefenstette, B. W.; Madsen, K. K.; Alexander, D. M.; Gandhi, P.; Bauer, F. E.; Boggs, S. E.; Craig, W. W.; Christensen, F. E.; Comastri, A.; Fabian, A. C.; Farrah, D.; Fiore, F.; Hailey, C. J.; Hickox, R. C.; Ptak, A. F.; and others

    2014-04-10

    We present high-energy (3-30 keV) NuSTAR observations of the nearest quasar, the ultraluminous infrared galaxy (ULIRG) Markarian 231 (Mrk 231), supplemented with new and simultaneous low-energy (0.5-8 keV) data from Chandra. The source was detected, though at much fainter levels than previously reported, likely due to contamination in the large apertures of previous non-focusing hard X-ray telescopes. The full band (0.5-30 keV) X-ray spectrum suggests the active galactic nucleus (AGN) in Mrk 231 is absorbed by a patchy and Compton-thin (N{sub H}∼1.2{sub −0.3}{sup +0.3}×10{sup 23} cm{sup –2}) column. The intrinsic X-ray luminosity (L {sub 0.5–30} {sub keV} ∼ 1.0 × 10{sup 43} erg s{sup –1}) is extremely weak relative to the bolometric luminosity where the 2-10 keV to bolometric luminosity ratio is ∼0.03% compared to the typical values of 2%-15%. Additionally, Mrk 231 has a low X-ray-to-optical power law slope (α{sub OX} ∼ –1.7). It is a local example of a low-ionization broad absorption line quasar that is intrinsically X-ray weak. The weak ionizing continuum may explain the lack of mid-infrared [O IV], [Ne V], and [Ne VI] fine-structure emission lines which are present in sources with otherwise similar AGN properties. We argue that the intrinsic X-ray weakness may be a result of the super-Eddington accretion occurring in the nucleus of this ULIRG, and may also be naturally related to the powerful wind event seen in Mrk 231, a merger remnant escaping from its dusty cocoon.

  20. Joint Lyman α emitters - quasars reionization constraints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baek, S.; Ferrara, A.; Semelin, B.

    2012-06-01

    We present a novel method to investigate c reionization, using joint spectral information on high-redshift Lyman α emitters (LAEs) and quasi-stellar objects (QSOs). Although LAEs have been proposed as reionization probes, their use is hampered by the fact their Lyα line is damped not only by intergalactic H I but also internally by dust. Our method allows us to overcome such degeneracy. First, we carefully calibrate a reionization simulation with QSO absorption line experiments. Then we identify LAEs (? and equivalent width >20 Å) in two simulation boxes at z= 5.7 and 6.6 and we build synthetic images/spectra of a prototypical LAE. The surface brightness maps show the presence of a scattering halo extending up to 150 kpc from the galaxye. For each LAE we then select a small box of (10 h-1 Mpc)3 around it and derive the optical depth τ along three viewing axes. At redshift 5.7, we find that the Lyα transmissivity ?, almost independent of the halo mass. This constancy arises from the conspiracy of two effects: (i) the intrinsic Lyα line width and (ii) the infall peculiar velocity. At higher redshift, z= 6.6, where ? the transmissivity is instead largely set by the local H I abundance and ? consequently increases with halo mass, Mh, from 0.15 to 0.3. Although outflows are present, they are efficiently pressure confined by infall in a small region around the LAE; hence they only marginally affect transmissivity. Finally, we cast line of sight originating from background QSOs passing through foreground LAEs at different impact parameters, and compute the quasar transmissivity (?). At small impact parameters, d < 1 cMpc, a positive correlation between ? and Mh is found at z= 5.7, which tends to become less pronounced (i.e. flatter) at larger distances. Quantitatively, a roughly 10× increase (from 5 × 10-3 to 6 × 10-2) of ? is observed in the range log Mh= (10.4-11.6). This correlation becomes even stronger at z= 6.6. By cross-correlating ? and ?, we can obtain a

  1. High-redshift quasars and the supermassive black hole mass budget: constraints on quasar formation models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bromley, J. M.; Somerville, R. S.; Fabian, A. C.

    2004-05-01

    We investigate the constraints on models of supermassive black hole (SMBH) and quasar formation obtainable from two recent observational developments: the discovery of luminous quasars at z~ 6, and estimates of the local mass density of SMBHs. If ~90 per cent of this mass was accreted at redshifts z<~ 3, as suggested by the observed quasar luminosity functions, these joint constraints pose a challenge for models, which must account for the observed luminous quasar population at z~ 6 within a very limited `mass budget'. We investigate a class of models based within the hierarchical structure formation scenario, in which major mergers lead to black hole formation and fuelling, and the resulting quasars shine at their Eddington-limited rate until their fuel is exhausted. We show that the simplest such model, in which a constant fraction of the gas within the halo is accreted in each major merger, cannot satisfy both constraints simultaneously. When this model is normalized to reproduce the number density of luminous quasars at z~ 6, the mass budget is grossly exceeded owing to an overabundance of lower-mass SMBHs. We explore a range of modifications to the simple model designed to overcome this problem. We show that both constraints can be satisfied if the gas accretion fraction scales as a function of the halo virial velocity. Similar scalings have been proposed in order to reproduce the local M•-σ relation. Successful models can also be constructed by restricting the formation of seed black holes to redshifts above zcrit~ 11.5 or to haloes above a velocity threshold vcrit~ 55 km s-1, or assuming that only a fraction of major mergers result in formation of a seed SMBH. We also briefly discuss the issue of trying to assume a `universal M•-σ relation' within the framework of simple Press-Schechter models, and further show that a fixed universal relation between SMBH mass and host halo mass is unlikely.

  2. Active Galactic Nuclei Probed by QSO Absorption Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misawa, Toru

    2007-07-01

    Quasars are the extremely bright nuclei found in about 10% of galaxies. A variety of absorption features (known collectively as quasar absorption lines) are detected in the rest-frame UV spectra of these objects. While absorption lines that have very broad widths originate in gas that is probably physocally related to the quasars, narrow absorption lines (NALs) were thought to arise in galaxies and/or in the intter-alacttic medium between the quasars and us. Using high-resolution spectra of quasars, it is found that a substantial fraction of NALs arise in gas in the immediate vicinity of the quasars. A dramatically variable, moderately-broad absorption line in the spectrum of the quasar HS 1603+3820l is also found. The variability of this line is monitored in a campaign with Subaru telescope. These observational results are compared to models for outflows from the quasars, specifically, models for accretion disk winds and evaporating obscuring tori. It is quite important to determine the mechanism of outflow because of its cosmological implications. The outflow could expel angular momentum from the accretion disk and enable quasars to accrete and shine. In addition, the outflow may also regulate star formation in the early stages of the assembly of the host galaxy and enrich the interstellar and intergalactic medium with metals.

  3. The dependence of C IV broad absorption line properties on accompanying Si IV and Al III absorption: relating quasar-wind ionization levels, kinematics, and column densities

    SciTech Connect

    Filiz Ak, N.; Brandt, W. N.; Schneider, D. P.; Trump, J. R.; Hall, P. B.; Anderson, S. F.; Hamann, F.; Myers, Adam D.; Pâris, I.; Petitjean, P.; Ross, Nicholas P.; Shen, Yue; York, Don

    2014-08-20

    We consider how the profile and multi-year variability properties of a large sample of C IV Broad Absorption Line (BAL) troughs change when BALs from Si IV and/or Al III are present at corresponding velocities, indicating that the line of sight intercepts at least some lower ionization gas. We derive a number of observational results for C IV BALs separated according to the presence or absence of accompanying lower ionization transitions, including measurements of composite profile shapes, equivalent width (EW), characteristic velocities, composite variation profiles, and EW variability. We also measure the correlations between EW and fractional-EW variability for C IV, Si IV, and Al III. Our measurements reveal the basic correlated changes between ionization level, kinematics, and column density expected in accretion-disk wind models; e.g., lines of sight including lower ionization material generally show deeper and broader C IV troughs that have smaller minimum velocities and that are less variable. Many C IV BALs with no accompanying Si IV or Al III BALs may have only mild or no saturation.

  4. High Signal-to-Noise Echelle Spectroscopy of Quasar Absorption-Line Systems in the Direction of HS 1946+7658

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tripp, Todd M.; Lu, Limin; Savage, Blair D.

    1996-02-01

    We have obtained a high signal-to-noise (40 <= S/N <= 80) high- resolution (FWHM = 20 km s^-1^) spectrum of the radio-quiet QSO HS 1946+7658 (z_em_ = 3.051) with the echelle spectrograph on the KPNO 4 m telescope. We detect 11 metal systems in the direction of this QSO, including two Mg II systems, five C IV systems, two damped Lyα systems, and two associated systems. We use the apparent column density technique and profile fitting to measure the heavy element column densities and to assess the effects of absorption-line saturation. Profile fitting indicates that three of the C IV systems are narrow with b < 8 km s^-1^. This implies that T < 50,000 K, and therefore these systems are probably photoionized. The abundance patterns in the damped Lyα systems are strikingly similar to those observed in low- metallicity Milky Way stars and suggest that these absorption lines are due to galaxies in early stages of chemical enrichment (see Lu et al.). The prominent associated system at z_abs_ = 3.0496,3.0504 is detected in H I, C II, CIV, SiII, Si III, Si IV, A1 II, Al III, and N V. The high ion column density ratios in this associated system imply that the gas is more highly ionized than the Galactic halo. The high degree of ionization is not surprising given the extraordinary luminosity of the QSO (Hagen et al.). To study ionization and abundances in this associated system, we compare the observed column densities to a series of CLOUDY models in which photoionization by the QSO is the dominant ionization mechanism. For the input radiation field, we have used the various spectral energy distributions of HS 1946+7658 observed by Kuhn et al. The model that best fits the observed column densities of singly and doubly ionized species has solar relative and absolute abundances, but models with absolute metallicities a few times greater than solar fit comparably well. None of the models produce enough Si IV and C IV, but the QSO flux near the ionization potentials of these

  5. Unveiling the X-ray/UV properties of disk winds in active galactic nuclei using broad and mini-broad absorption line quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giustini, M.

    2016-05-01

    We present the results of the uniform analysis of 46 XMM-Newton observations of six BAL and seven mini-BAL QSOs belonging to the Palomar-Green Quasar catalogue. Moderate-quality X-ray spectroscopy was performed with the EPIC-pn, and allowed to characterise the general source spectral shape to be complex, significantly deviating from a power law emission. A simple power law analysis in different energy bands strongly suggests absorption to be more significant than reflection in shaping the spectra. If allowing for the absorbing gas to be either partially covering the continuum emission source or to be ionised, large column densities of the order of 1022-1024 cm-2 are inferred. When the statistics was high enough, virtually every source was found to vary in spectral shape on various time scales, from years to hours. All in all these observational results are compatible with radiation driven accretion disk winds shaping the spectra of these intriguing cosmic sources.

  6. High Signal-to-Noise Echelle Spectroscopy of Quasar Absorption Line Systems with Metals in the Direction of HS 1700+6416

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tripp, Todd M.; Lu, Limin; Savage, Blair D.

    We have obtained a high signal-to-noise (30 <= S/N <= 70), high-resolution (FWHM = 20 km s-1) spectrum of the radio-quiet QSO HS 1700+6416 (zem = 2.72) with the echelle spectrograph on the Kitt Peak National Observatory 4 m telescope. We detect 13 metal systems in the optical spectrum of this QSO, including six systems with associated optically thin Lyman limit absorption in the HST spectrum obtained by Reimers et al. We use the apparent column density technique and profile fitting to measure the heavy-element column densities and to evaluate the impact of unresolved absorption saturation. Profile fitting indicates that four of the C IV systems are narrow, with b < 8 km s-1, which implies that these absorbers are relatively cool and are probably photoionized. The dense cluster of C IV doublets at 2.432 < zabs < 2.441 shows the weak line of one C IV absorber apparently aligned with the strong line of a different C IV doublet, i.e., line locked, for two pairs of C IV absorbers. Line locking has been detected previously in zabs ~ zem absorbers, where radiation pressure is likely to play a role, but is surprising in this case since this C IV complex is displaced by ~24,000 km s-1 from the QSO emission redshift. This may be the remnant (or precursor) of a broad absorption line (BAL) outflow. However, it is possible that these alignments are chance alignments rather than true line locking. The high-ion column density ratios in the multicomponent Lyman limit absorber at zabs = 2.3150 suggest that the ionization conditions in this absorber differ significantly from the conditions in the gaseous halo of the Milky Way. From photoionization models we derive [Si/H] >= -0.95 and [Al/H] >= -0.96 for the strongest component of this absorber. These are conservative lower limits derived from lower ionization stages only; photoionization models in agreement with the observed low and high ionization stages require [M/H] ~ -0.45. In contrast, Vogel & Reimers derived [N/H] < -1.04 and

  7. Constraints on the temperature inhomogeneity in quasar accretion discs from the ultraviolet-optical spectral variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kokubo, Mitsuru

    2015-05-01

    The physical mechanisms of the quasar ultraviolet (UV)-optical variability are not well understood despite the long history of observations. Recently, Dexter & Agol presented a model of quasar UV-optical variability, which assumes large local temperature fluctuations in the quasar accretion discs. This inhomogeneous accretion disc model is claimed to describe not only the single-band variability amplitude, but also microlensing size constraints and the quasar composite spectral shape. In this work, we examine the validity of the inhomogeneous accretion disc model in the light of quasar UV-optical spectral variability by using five-band multi-epoch light curves for nearly 9 000 quasars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Stripe 82 region. By comparing the values of the intrinsic scatter σint of the two-band magnitude-magnitude plots for the SDSS quasar light curves and for the simulated light curves, we show that Dexter & Agol's inhomogeneous accretion disc model cannot explain the tight inter-band correlation often observed in the SDSS quasar light curves. This result leads us to conclude that the local temperature fluctuations in the accretion discs are not the main driver of the several years' UV-optical variability of quasars, and consequently, that the assumption that the quasar accretion discs have large localized temperature fluctuations is not preferred from the viewpoint of the UV-optical spectral variability.

  8. QUASARS PROBING QUASARS. IV. JOINT CONSTRAINTS ON THE CIRCUMGALACTIC MEDIUM FROM ABSORPTION AND EMISSION

    SciTech Connect

    Hennawi, Joseph F.; Prochaska, J. Xavier

    2013-03-20

    We have constructed a sample of 29 close projected quasar pairs where the background quasar spectrum reveals absorption from optically thick H I gas associated with the foreground quasar. These unique sightlines allow us to study the quasar circumgalactic medium (CGM) in absorption and emission simultaneously, because the background quasar pinpoints large concentrations of gas where Ly{alpha} emission, resulting from quasar-powered fluorescence, resonant Ly{alpha} scattering, and/or cooling radiation, is expected. A sensitive search (1{sigma} surface-brightness limits of SB{sub Ly{alpha}}{approx_equal}3 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -18} erg s{sup -1} cm{sup -2} arcsec{sup -2}) for diffuse Ly{alpha} emission in the environments of the foreground (predominantly radio-quiet) quasars is conducted using Gemini/GMOS and Keck/LRIS slit spectroscopy. We fail to detect large-scale {approx}100 kpc Ly{alpha} emission, either at the location of the optically thick absorbers or in the foreground quasar halos, in all cases except a single system. We interpret these non-detections as evidence that the gas detected in absorption is shadowed from the quasar UV radiation due to obscuration effects, which are frequently invoked in unified models of active galactic nuclei. Small-scale R {approx}< 50 kpc extended Ly{alpha} nebulosities are detected in 34% of our sample, which are likely the high-redshift analogs of the extended emission-line regions (EELRs) commonly observed around low-redshift (z < 0.5) quasars. This may be fluorescent recombination radiation from a population of very dense clouds with a low covering fraction illuminated by the quasar. We also detect a compact high rest-frame equivalent width (W{sub Ly{alpha}} > 50 A) Ly{alpha}-emitter with luminosity L{sub Ly{alpha}} = 2.1 {+-} 0.32 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 41} erg s{sup -1} at small impact parameter R = 134 kpc from one foreground quasar, and argue that it is more likely to result from quasar-powered fluorescence

  9. A Constraint on Quasar Clustering at z = 5 from a Binary Quasar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGreer, Ian D.; Eftekharzadeh, Sarah; Myers, Adam D.; Fan, Xiaohui

    2016-03-01

    We report the discovery of a quasar pair at z = 5 separated by 21″. Both objects were identified as quasar candidates using simple color selection techniques applied to photometric catalogs from the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT) Legacy Survey (CFHTLS). Spectra obtained with the MMT present no discernible offset in redshift between the two objects; on the other hand, there are clear differences in the emission line profiles and in the multiwavelength spectral energy distributions that strongly disfavor the hypothesis that they are gravitationally lensed images of a single quasar. Both quasars are surprisingly bright given their proximity (a projected separation of ˜135 kpc), with i = 19.4 and i = 21.4. Previous measurements of the luminosity function demonstrate that luminous quasars are extremely rare at z = 5 the existence of this pair suggests that quasars have strong small-scale clustering at high redshift. Assuming a real-space correlation function of the form ξ(r) ∝ (r/r0)-2, this discovery implies a correlation length of r0 ≳ 20h-1 Mpc, consistent with a rapid strengthening of quasar clustering at high redshift as seen in previous observations and predicted by theoretical models where feedback effects are inefficient at shutting down black hole growth at high redshift. Observations reported here were obtained at the MMT Observatory, a joint facility of the Smithsonian Institution and the University of Arizona.

  10. Atlas of Infrared Absorption Lines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Park, J. H.

    1977-01-01

    This atlas of infrared absorption line contains absorption line parameters (line strength vs. wavenumber) from 500 to 7000 cm(exp-1) for 15 gases: H2O, CO2, O3, N2O, CO, CH4, O2, SO2, NO, NO2, NH3, HCl, HF, HNO3 and CH3Cl.

  11. DEEP ABSORPTION LINE STUDIES OF QUIESCENT GALAXIES AT z {approx} 2: THE DYNAMICAL-MASS-SIZE RELATION AND FIRST CONSTRAINTS ON THE FUNDAMENTAL PLANE

    SciTech Connect

    Toft, S.; Gallazzi, A.; Zirm, A.; Wold, M.; Zibetti, S.; Grillo, C.; Man, A.

    2012-07-20

    We present dynamical and structural scaling relations of quiescent galaxies at z = 2, including the dynamical-mass-size relation and the first constraints on the fundamental plane (FP). The backbone of the analysis is a new, very deep Very Large Telescope/X-shooter spectrum of a massive, compact, quiescent galaxy at z = 2.0389. We detect the continuum between 3700 and 22,000 A and several strong absorption features (Balmer series, Ca H+K, G band) from which we derive a stellar velocity dispersion of 318 {+-} 53 km s{sup -1}. We perform detailed modeling of the continuum emission and line indices and derive strong simultaneous constraints on the age, metallicity, and stellar mass. The galaxy is a dusty (A{sub V} = 0.77{sup +0.36}{sub -0.32}) solar metallicity (log(Z/Z{sub Sun }) = 0.02{sup +0.20}{sub -0.41}) post-starburst galaxy, with a mean-luminosity-weighted log(age/yr) of 8.9 {+-} 0.1. The galaxy formed the majority of its stars at z > 3 and currently has little or no ongoing star formation. We compile a sample of three other z {approx} 2 quiescent galaxies with measured velocity dispersions, two of which are also post-starburst like. Their dynamical-mass-size relation is offset significantly less than the stellar-mass-size relation from the local early-type relations, which we attribute to a lower central dark matter fraction. Recent cosmological merger simulations agree qualitatively with the data, but cannot fully account for the evolution in the dark matter fraction. The z {approx} 2 FP requires additional evolution beyond passive stellar aging to be in agreement with the local FP. The structural evolution predicted by the cosmological simulations is insufficient, suggesting that additional, possibly non-homologous, structural evolution is needed.

  12. CONSTRAINTS ON THE FAINT END OF THE QUASAR LUMINOSITY FUNCTION AT z {approx} 5 IN THE COSMOS FIELD

    SciTech Connect

    Ikeda, H.; Matsuoka, K.; Kajisawa, M.; Nagao, T.; Taniguchi, Y.; Shioya, Y.; Enoki, M.; Capak, P.; Masters, D.; Scoville, N. Z.; Civano, F.; Koekemoer, A. M.; Morokuma, T.; Salvato, M.; Schinnerer, E.

    2012-09-10

    We present the result of our low-luminosity quasar survey in the redshift range of 4.5 {approx}< z {approx}< 5.5 in the COSMOS field. Using the COSMOS photometric catalog, we selected 15 quasar candidates with 22 < i' < 24 at z {approx} 5 that are {approx}3 mag fainter than the Sloan Digital Sky Survey quasars in the same redshift range. We obtained optical spectra for 14 of the 15 candidates using FOCAS on the Subaru Telescope and did not identify any low-luminosity type-1 quasars at z {approx} 5, while a low-luminosity type-2 quasar at z {approx} 5.07 was discovered. In order to constrain the faint end of the quasar luminosity function at z {approx} 5, we calculated the 1{sigma} confidence upper limits of the space density of type-1 quasars. As a result, the 1{sigma} confidence upper limits on the quasar space density are {Phi} < 1.33 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -7} Mpc{sup -3} mag{sup -1} for -24.52 < M{sub 1450} < -23.52 and {Phi} < 2.88 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -7} Mpc{sup -3} mag{sup -1} for -23.52 < M{sub 1450} < -22.52. The inferred 1{sigma} confidence upper limits of the space density are then used to provide constraints on the faint-end slope and the break absolute magnitude of the quasar luminosity function at z {approx} 5. We find that the quasar space density decreases gradually as a function of redshift at low luminosity (M{sub 1450} {approx} -23), being similar to the trend found for quasars with high luminosity (M{sub 1450} < -26). This result is consistent with the so-called downsizing evolution of quasars seen at lower redshifts.

  13. Absorption Line Analysis to Interprete and Constrain Cosmological Simulations of Galaxy Evolution with Feedback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Churchill, Christopher

    2011-10-01

    The mammoth challenge for contemporary studies of galaxy formation and evolution are to establish detailed models in the cosmological context in which both the few parsec scale physics within galaxies are self-consistently unified and made consistent with the observed universe of galaxies. They key diagnostics reside with the gas physics, which dictate virtually every aspect of galaxy formation and evolution. The small scale physics includes stellar feedback, gas cooling, heating, and advection and the multiphase interstellar medium; the large scale physics includes intergalactic accretion, local merging, effects of supernovae driven winds, and the development of extended metal-enriched gas halos.Absorption line data have historically proven to be {and shall in the future} virtually the most powerful tool for understanding gas physics on all spatial scales over the majority of the age of the universe- the key to success. Simply stated, absorption lines are one of astronomy's most powerful observational windows on the universe {galaxy formation, galaxy winds, IGM metal enrichment, etc.}. The high quality and vast numbers of absorption line data {obtained with HST and FUSE} probe a broad range of gas structures {ISM, HVCs, halos, IGM} over the full cosmic span when galaxies are actively evolving.We propose to use LCDM hydrodynamic cosmological simulations employing a Eulerian Gasdynamics plus N-body Adaptive Refinement Tree {ART} code to develop and refine our understanding of stellar feedback physics and its role in governing the gas physics that regulates the evolution of galaxies and the IGM. We aim to substantially progress our understanding of all possible gas phases embedded within and extending far from galaxies. Our methodology is to apply a series of quantitative observational constraints from absorption line systems to better understand extended galaxy halos and the influence of the cosmological environment of the simulated galaxies: {1} galaxy halos

  14. A Snapshot Survey for Gravitational Lenses among z>=4.0 Quasars. II. Constraints on the 4.0Quasar Population

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, Gordon T.; Haiman, Zoltán; Pindor, Bartosz; Strauss, Michael A.; Fan, Xiaohui; Eisenstein, Daniel; Schneider, Donald P.; Bahcall, Neta A.; Brinkmann, J.; Fukugita, Masataka

    2006-01-01

    We report on i-band snapshot observations of 157 Sloan Digital Sky Survey quasars at 4.0quasars appear to be strongly lensed and multiply imaged at the angular resolution (~0.1") and sensitivity of HST. The nondetection of strong lensing in these systems constrains the z=4-5 luminosity function to an intrinsic slope of β>-3.8 (3 σ), assuming a break in the quasar luminosity function at M*1450~-24.5. This constraint is considerably stronger than the limit of β>-4.63 obtained from the absence of lensing in four z>5.7 quasars. Such constraints are important to our understanding of the true space density of high-redshift quasars and the ionization state of the early universe. Based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS5-26555. These observations are associated with program 9472.

  15. Constraints on Primordial Non-Gaussianity from 800 000 Photometric Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leistedt, Boris; Peiris, Hiranya V.; Roth, Nina

    2014-11-01

    We derive robust constraints on primordial non-Gaussianity (PNG) using the clustering of 800 000 photometric quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey in the redshift range 0.5 quasar halo bias at the largest scales, while discarding as little as possible of the data. The standard local-type PNG parameters fNL and gNL both imprint a k-2 scale-dependent effect in the bias. Constraining these individually, we obtain -49 constraints lead to -105 quasar clustering to the underlying dark matter. These are the strongest constraints obtained to date on PNG using a single population of large-scale structure tracers, and are already at the level of pre-Planck constraints from the cosmic microwave background. A conservative forecast for a Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST)-like survey incorporating mode projection yields σ (fNL)˜5 —competitive with the Planck result—highlighting the power of upcoming large scale structure surveys to probe the initial conditions of the Universe.

  16. Constraints on Primordial Non-Gaussianity from 800 000 Photometric Quasars.

    PubMed

    Leistedt, Boris; Peiris, Hiranya V; Roth, Nina

    2014-11-28

    We derive robust constraints on primordial non-Gaussianity (PNG) using the clustering of 800 000 photometric quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey in the redshift range 0.5quasar halo bias at the largest scales, while discarding as little as possible of the data. The standard local-type PNG parameters f_{NL} and g_{NL} both imprint a k^{-2} scale-dependent effect in the bias. Constraining these individually, we obtain -49constraints lead to -105quasar clustering to the underlying dark matter. These are the strongest constraints obtained to date on PNG using a single population of large-scale structure tracers, and are already at the level of pre-Planck constraints from the cosmic microwave background. A conservative forecast for a Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST)-like survey incorporating mode projection yields σ(f_{NL})∼5-competitive with the Planck result-highlighting the power of upcoming large scale structure surveys to probe the initial conditions of the Universe. PMID:25494066

  17. The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasar Lens Search. III Constraints on Dark Energy From The Third Data Release Quasar Lens Catalog

    SciTech Connect

    Oguri, M; Inada, N; Strauss, M A; Kochanek, C S; Richards, G T; Schneider, D P; Becker, R H; Fukugita, M; Gregg, M D; Hall, P B; Hennawi, J F; Johnston, D E; Kayo, I; Keeton, C R; Pindor, B; Shin, M; Turner, E; White, R L; York, D G; Anderson, S F; Bahcall, N A; Brunner, R J; Burles, S; Castander, F J; Chiu, K; Clocchiatti, A; Einsenstein, D; Frieman, J; Kawano, Y; Lupton, R; Morokuma, T; Rix, H; Scranton, R; Sheldon, E S

    2007-09-12

    We present cosmological results from the statistics of lensed quasars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Quasar Lens Search. By taking proper account of the selection function, we compute the expected number of quasars lensed by early-type galaxies and their image separation distribution assuming a flat universe, which is then compared with 7 lenses found in the SDSS Data Release 3 to derive constraints on dark energy under strictly controlled criteria. For a cosmological constant model (w = -1) we obtain {Omega}{sub {Lambda}} = 0.74{sub -0.15}{sup +0.11}(stat.){sub -0.06}{sup +0.13}(syst.). Allowing w to be a free parameter we find {Omega}{sub M} = 0.26{sub -0.06}{sup +0.07}(stat.){sub -0.05}{sup +0.03}(syst.) and w = -1.1 {+-} 0.6(stat.){sub -0.5}{sup +0.3}(syst.) when combined with the constraint from the measurement of baryon acoustic oscillations in the SDSS luminous red galaxy sample. Our results are in good agreement with earlier lensing constraints obtained using radio lenses, and provide additional confirmation of the presence of dark energy consistent with a cosmological constant, derived independently of type Ia supernovae.

  18. Evidence for Active Galactic Nucleus Feedback in the Broad Absorption Lines and Reddening of Mrk 231

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leighly, Karen M.; Terndrup, Donald M.; Baron, Eddie; Lucy, Adrian B.; Dietrich, Matthias; Gallagher, Sarah C.

    2014-06-01

    We present the first J-band spectrum of Mrk 231, which reveals a large He I* λ10830 broad absorption line with a profile similar to that of the well-known Na I broad absorption line. Combining this spectrum with optical and UV spectra from the literature, we show that the unusual reddening noted by Veilleux et al. is explained by a reddening curve like those previously used to explain low values of total-to-selective extinction in Type Ia supernovae. The nuclear starburst may be the origin and location of the dust. Spatially resolved emission in the broad absorption line trough suggests nearly full coverage of the continuum emission region. The broad absorption lines reveal higher velocities in the He I* lines (produced in the quasar-photoionized H II region) compared with the Na I and Ca II lines (produced in the corresponding partially ionized zone). Cloudy simulations show that a density increase is required between the H II and partially ionized zones to produce ionic column densities consistent with the optical and IR absorption line measurements and limits, and that the absorber lies ~100 pc from the central engine. These results suggest that the He I* lines are produced in an ordinary quasar BAL wind that impacts upon, compresses, and accelerates the nuclear starburst's dusty effluent (feedback in action), and the Ca II and Na I lines are produced in this dusty accelerated gas. This unusual circumstance explains the rarity of Na I absorption lines; without the compression along our line of sight, Mrk 231 would appear as an ordinary iron low-ionization, broad absorption line quasar.

  19. Do Atoms Really "Emit" Absorption Lines?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brecher, Kenneth

    1991-01-01

    Presents three absorption line sources that enhance student understanding of the phenomena associated with the interaction of light with matter and help dispel the misconception that atoms "emit" absorption lines. Sources include neodymium, food coloring and other common household liquids, and fluorescent materials. (MDH)

  20. Combined constraints on intergalactic dust from quasar colours and the soft X-ray background

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johansson, Joel; Mörtsell, Edvard

    2012-11-01

    Unless properly corrected for, the existence of intergalactic dust will introduce a redshift-dependent magnitude offset to standard candle sources. This would lead to overestimated luminosity distances compared to a dust-free universe and bias the cosmological parameter estimation as derived from, e.g., Type Ia supernova observations. In this paper, we model the optical extinction and X-ray scattering properties of intergalactic dust grains to constrain the intergalactic opacity using a combined analysis of observed quasar colours and the soft X-ray background. Quasar colours effectively constrain the amount of intergalactic dust grains smaller than ˜0.2 μm, to the point where we expect the corresponding systematic error in the Type Ia supernova magnitude-redshift relation to be sub-dominant. Soft X-ray background observations are helpful in improving the constraints on very large dust grains for which the amount of optical reddening is very small and therefore is more difficult to correct for. Our current upper limit corresponds to ˜0.25 mag dimming at optical wavelengths for a source at redshift z = 1, which is too small to alleviate the need for dark energy but large in terms of relative error. However, we expect it to be possible to lower this bound considerably with an improved understanding of the possible sources of the X-ray background, in combination with observations of compact X-ray sources such as active galactic nuclei.

  1. The Geometry of Quasar Outflows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ganguly, Rajib

    2012-10-01

    Quasar outflows are important for understanding the accretion and growth processes of the central black hole, but also potentially play a role in feedback to the galaxy, halting star formation and infall of gas. A big uncertainty lies in the geometry and density of these outflows, especially as a function of ionization and velocity. We aim to tackle this using the archival COS M grating spectra of 266 quasars. We separate the geometry of outflows into two parts: the solid angle subtended around the black hole, and the distance of the outflow from the central engine. Large numbers of quasars with high resolution spectra are required for each aspect of this statistical investigation. First, we will determine which/how many absorption-line systems are intrinsic through both partial covering methods and statistical assessments. Second, we will consider the incidence of intrinsic absorbers as a function of quasar property {e.g., radio-loudness, SED shape, black hole mass, bolometric luminosity}. This will reveal what determines the solid angle. This can only be done at moderate redshifts where quasars with a larger range of properties are observable, and hence requires HST/COS. Third, we will use the wide range of diagnostic lines to constrain the physical conditions of the absorbers. We will target the CIII*1175 complex and apply photoionization models to constrain the densities and ionization parameters. This will provide the largest set yet of intrinsic absorbers with systematic distance constraints. In tandem with the solid angles, this work will inform models regarding the geometry of quasar outflows.

  2. The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Reverberation Mapping Project: Rapid CIV Broad Absorption Line Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grier, C. J.; Hall, P. B.; Brandt, W. N.; Trump, J. R.; Shen, Yue; Vivek, M.; Filiz Ak, N.; Chen, Yuguang; Dawson, K. S.; Denney, K. D.; Green, Paul J.; Jiang, Linhua; Kochanek, C. S.; McGreer, Ian D.; Pâris, I.; Peterson, B. M.; Schneider, D. P.; Tao, Charling; Wood-Vasey, W. M.; Bizyaev, Dmitry; Ge, Jian; Kinemuchi, Karen; Oravetz, Daniel; Pan, Kaike; Simmons, Audrey

    2015-06-01

    We report the discovery of rapid variations of a high-velocity C iv broad absorption line trough in the quasar SDSS J141007.74+541203.3. This object was intensively observed in 2014 as a part of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Reverberation Mapping Project, during which 32 epochs of spectroscopy were obtained with the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey spectrograph. We observe significant (>4σ) variability in the equivalent width (EW) of the broad (˜4000 km s-1 wide) C iv trough on rest-frame timescales as short as 1.20 days (˜29 hr), the shortest broad absorption line variability timescale yet reported. The EW varied by ˜10% on these short timescales, and by about a factor of two over the duration of the campaign. We evaluate several potential causes of the variability, concluding that the most likely cause is a rapid response to changes in the incident ionizing continuum. If the outflow is at a radius where the recombination rate is higher than the ionization rate, the timescale of variability places a lower limit on the density of the absorbing gas of ne ≳ 3.9 × 105 cm-3. The broad absorption line variability characteristics of this quasar are consistent with those observed in previous studies of quasars, indicating that such short-term variability may in fact be common and thus can be used to learn about outflow characteristics and contributions to quasar/host-galaxy feedback scenarios.

  3. MISALIGNMENT OF THE JET AND THE NORMAL TO THE DUSTY TORUS IN THE BROAD ABSORPTION LINE QSO FIRST J155633.8+351758

    SciTech Connect

    Reynolds, Cormac; Punsly, Brian; O'Dea, Christopher P. E-mail: brian.punsly@comdev-usa.com

    2013-08-10

    We performed Very Long Baseline Array observations of the broad absorption line quasar FIRST J155633.8+351758, ''the first radio loud BALQSO''. Our observations at 15.3 GHz partially resolved a secondary component at position angle (P.A.) Almost-Equal-To 35 Degree-Sign . We combine this determination of the radio jet projection on the sky plane, with the constraint that the jet is viewed within 14. Degree-Sign 3 of the line of sight (as implied by the high variability brightness temperature) and with the P.A. of the optical/UV continuum polarization in order to study the quasar geometry. Within the context of the standard model, the data indicates a ''dusty torus'' (scattering surface) with a symmetry axis tilted relative to the accretion disk normal and a polar broad absorption line outflow aligned with the accretion disk normal. We compare this geometry to that indicated by the higher resolution radio data, brightness temperature, and optical/UV continuum polarization P.A. of a similar high optical polarization BALQSO, Mrk 231. A qualitatively similar geometry is found in these two polar BALQSOs; the continuum polarization is determined primarily by the tilt of the dusty torus.

  4. A Study of PG Quasar-Driven Outflows with COS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamann, Frederick

    2013-10-01

    Quasar outflows are an important part of the quasar phenomenon, but many questions remain about their energetics, physical properties and the role they might play in providing feedback to host galaxy evolution. We searched our own COS far-UV observations from the QUEST survey and other large COS programs to find a sample of 6 bright PG quasars with broad {FWHM > 400 km/s} high velocity {v > 1000 km/s} absorption lines that clearly form in quasar-driven winds. These quasars can fill an important gap in our understanding between local Seyferts with low-speed winds and high-redshift quasars with extreme BAL outflows. They are also well-studied at other wavelengths, with some evidence for the quasars driving galaxy-scale blowouts and shutting down star formation. But almost nothing is known about the quasar outflows themselves. We propose a detailed study of these 6 outflow quasars using new COS FUV observations to 1} expand the existing wavelength coverage across critical lines that are diagnostic of the outflow physical conditions, kinetic energies, and metallicities, and 2} check for line variability as an indicator of the outflow structure and locations. This quasar sample includes unusual cases with many low-abundance {PV 1118,1128 and SIV 1063} and excited-state lines {SIV 1073*, CIII* 1175, CII* 1335} that will provide unprecedented constraints on the outflow properties, plus the first known OVI-only mini-BAL outflow {no lower ions detected} for which we will cover NeVIII 770,780 to probe the highest ionization gas. The high FUV sensitivity of COS is uniquely able to measure this wide range of outflow lines in low-redshift quasars with no Lya forest contamination.

  5. High Redshift Quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Elvis, Martin S.

    1996-01-01

    The report for this period includes three papers: 'Associated Absorption at Low and High Redshift'; 'Strong X-ray Absorption in a Broad Absorption Line Quasar: PHL5200'; and 'ASCA and ROSAT X-ray Spectra of High-Redshift Radio-Loud Quasars'. The first gives examples from both low and high redshift for combining information on absorbing material in active galactic nuclei from both x-ray and the UV. The second presents ASCA observations of the z = 1.98 prototype broad absorption line quasar (BALQSO): PHL 5200, detected with both the solid-state imaging spectrometers and the gas imaging spectometers. The third paper presents results on the x-ray properties of 9 high-redshift radio-loud quasars observed by ASCA and ROSAT, including ASCA observations of S5 0014+81 (z = 3.38) and S5 0836+71 (z = 2.17) and ROSAT observations of PKS 2126-158.

  6. THE QUASAR-GALAXY CROSS SDSS J1320+1644: A PROBABLE LARGE-SEPARATION LENSED QUASAR

    SciTech Connect

    Rusu, Cristian E.; Iye, Masanori; Oguri, Masamune; Inada, Naohisa; Kayo, Issha; Shin, Min-Su; Sluse, Dominique; Strauss, Michael A.

    2013-03-10

    We report the discovery of a pair of quasars at z = 1.487, with a separation of 8.''585 {+-} 0.''002. Subaru Telescope infrared imaging reveals the presence of an elliptical and a disk-like galaxy located almost symmetrically between the quasars, in a cross-like configuration. Based on absorption lines in the quasar spectra and the colors of the galaxies, we estimate that both galaxies are located at redshift z = 0.899. This, as well as the similarity of the quasar spectra, suggests that the system is a single quasar multiply imaged by a galaxy group or cluster acting as a gravitational lens, although the possibility of a binary quasar cannot be fully excluded. We show that the gravitational lensing hypothesis implies that these galaxies are not isolated, but must be embedded in a dark matter halo of virial mass {approx}4 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 14} h {sup -1}{sub 70} M{sub Sun} assuming a Navarro-Frenk-White model with a concentration parameter of c{sub vir} = 6, or a singular isothermal sphere profile with a velocity dispersion of {approx}670 km s{sup -1}. We place constraints on the location of the dark matter halo, as well as the velocity dispersions of the galaxies. In addition, we discuss the influence of differential reddening, microlensing, and intrinsic variability on the quasar spectra and broadband photometry.

  7. The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasar Lens Search. VI. Constraints on Dark Energy and the Evolution of Massive Galaxies

    SciTech Connect

    Oguri, Masamune; et al.

    2012-05-01

    We present a statistical analysis of the final lens sample from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasar Lens Search (SQLS). The number distribution of a complete subsample of 19 lensed quasars selected from 50,836 source quasars is compared with theoretical expectations, with particular attention to the selection function. Assuming that the velocity function of galaxies does not evolve with redshift, the SQLS sample constrains the cosmological constant to \\Omega_\\Lambda=0.79^{+0.06}_{-0.07}(stat.)^{+0.06}_{-0.06}(syst.) for a flat universe. The dark energy equation of state is found to be consistent with w=-1 when the SQLS is combined with constraints from baryon acoustic oscillation (BAO) measurements or results from the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP). We also obtain simultaneous constraints on cosmological parameters and redshift evolution of the galaxy velocity function, finding no evidence for redshift evolution at z<1 in any combinations of constraints. For instance, number density evolution quantified as \

  8. VizieR Online Data Catalog: QSOs narrow absorption line variability (Hacker+, 2013)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hacker, T. L.; Brunner, R. J.; Lundgren, B. F.; York, D. G.

    2013-06-01

    Catalogues of 2,522 QAL systems and 33 variable NAL systems detected in SDSS DR7 quasars with repeat observations. The object identifiers, position coordinates, and plate-MJD-fibre designations are taken from the SpecObjAll table in the SDSS Catalogue Archive Server (CAS) while the quasar redshifts (zqso) are from Hewett & Wild (2010, Cat. J/MNRAS/405/2302). The absorption system redshift (zabs), system grade, and detected lines are outputs of the York et al. (2013, in. prep.) QAL detection pipeline. Some absorption lines are flagged based on alternate identifications (a), proximity of masked pixels (b), or questionable continuum fits (c). (3 data files).

  9. THE SLOAN DIGITAL SKY SURVEY QUASAR LENS SEARCH. VI. CONSTRAINTS ON DARK ENERGY AND THE EVOLUTION OF MASSIVE GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Oguri, Masamune; Kayo, Issha; Fukugita, Masataka; Inada, Naohisa; Strauss, Michael A.; Shin, Min-Su; Bahcall, Neta A.; Kochanek, Christopher S.; Morokuma, Tomoki; Richards, Gordon T.; Rusu, Cristian E.; Frieman, Joshua A.; Schneider, Donald P.; York, Donald G.; White, Richard L.

    2012-05-15

    We present a statistical analysis of the final lens sample from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasar Lens Search (SQLS). The number distribution of a complete subsample of 19 lensed quasars selected from 50,836 source quasars is compared with theoretical expectations, with particular attention given to the selection function. Assuming that the velocity function of galaxies does not evolve with redshift, the SQLS sample constrains the cosmological constant to {Omega}{sub {Lambda}} = 0.79{sup +0.06}{sub -0.07}(stat.){sup +0.06}{sub -0.06}(syst.) for a flat universe. The dark energy equation of state is found to be consistent with w = -1 when the SQLS is combined with constraints from baryon acoustic oscillation (BAO) measurements or results from the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP). We also obtain simultaneous constraints on cosmological parameters and redshift evolution of the galaxy velocity function, finding no evidence for redshift evolution at z {approx}< 1 in any combinations of constraints. For instance, number density evolution quantified as {nu}{sub n} {identical_to} dln {phi}{sub *}/dln (1 + z) and the velocity dispersion evolution {nu}{sub {sigma}} {identical_to} dln {sigma}{sub *}/dln (1 + z) are constrained to {nu}{sub n} = 1.06{sup +1.36}{sub -1.39}(stat.){sup +0.33}{sub -0.64}(syst.) and {nu}{sub {sigma}} = -0.05{sup +0.19}{sub -0.16}(stat.){sup +0.03}{sub -0.03}(syst.), respectively, when the SQLS result is combined with BAO and WMAP for flat models with a cosmological constant. We find that a significant amount of dark energy is preferred even after fully marginalizing over the galaxy evolution parameters. Thus, the statistics of lensed quasars robustly confirm the accelerated cosmic expansion.

  10. VERY LARGE TELESCOPE SPECTROPOLARIMETRY OF BROAD ABSORPTION LINE QSOs

    SciTech Connect

    DiPompeo, M. A.; Brotherton, M. S.; De Breuck, C.

    2011-03-15

    We present spectropolarimetry of 19 confirmed and four possible bright, southern broad absorption line (BAL) quasars from the European Southern Observatory Very Large Telescope. A wide range of redshifts is covered in the sample (from 0.9 to 3.4), and both low- and high-ionization quasars are represented, as well as radio-loud and radio-quiet BALQSOs. We continue to confirm previously established spectropolarimetric properties of BALQSOs, including the generally rising continuum polarization with shorter wavelengths and comparatively large fraction with high broadband polarization (6 of 19 with polarizations >2%). Emission lines are polarized less than or similar to the continuum, except in a few unusual cases, and absorption troughs tend to have higher polarizations. A search for correlations between polarization properties has been done, identifying two significant or marginally significant correlations. These are an increase in continuum polarization with decreasing optical luminosity (increasing absolute B magnitude) and decreasing C IV emission-line polarization with increased continuum polarization.

  11. Hawaii 167: A compact absorption-line object at z = 2.35

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cowie, L. L.; Songaila, A.; Hu, E. M.; Egami, E.; Huang, J.-S.; Pickles, A. J.; Ridgway, S. E.; Wainscoat, R. J.; Weymann, R. J.

    1994-01-01

    During the course of the Hawaii K-band (2.1 micrometer) survey we have detected a compact object, Hawaii 167, lying at a redshift of 2.33, in which are seen both low- and high-ionization absorption lines. In the near-infrared we see broad H alpha emission at a redshift of 2.35 but do not detect the other Balmer lines, (O II) lambda 3727, or (O III) lambda 5007. The absence of strong Mg II or C IV emission in the rest ultraviolet suggests that, at these wavelengths, we may be seeing a poststarburst galaxy rather than a quasar. Indeed, this class of object may be common enough to represent a major episode of galaxy formation, possibly the formation of the spheroids. However, Q0059-2735, the most extreme member of the class of Mg II absorbing broad absorption line quasars, is very similar to the present object, and there may be an evolutionary sequence or some other close connection between Hawaii 167 and the broad absorption line quasars.

  12. Constraints of flat spectrum radio quasars in the hadronic model: the case of 3C 273

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petropoulou, M.; Dimitrakoudis, S.

    2015-09-01

    We present a method of constraining the properties of the γ-ray emitting region in flat spectrum radio quasars in the one-zone proton synchrotron model, where the γ-rays are produced by synchrotron radiation of relativistic protons. We show that for low enough values of the Doppler factor δ, the emission from the electromagnetic (EM) cascade which is initiated by the internal absorption of high-energy photons from photohadronic interactions may exceed the observed ˜GeV flux. We use that effect to derive an absolute lower limit of δ; first, an analytical one, in the asymptotic limit where the external radiation from the broad-line region (BLR) is negligible, and then a numerical one in the more general case that includes BLR radiation. As its energy density in the emission region depends on δ and the region's distance from the galactic centre, we use the EM cascade to determine a minimum distance for each value of δ. We complement the EM cascade constraint with one derived from variability arguments and apply our method to the FSRQ 3C 273. We find that δ ≳ 18-20 for B ≲ 30 G and ˜day time-scale variability; the emission region is located outside the BLR, namely at r ≳ 10RBLR ˜ 3 pc; the model requires at pc-scale distances stronger magnetic fields than those inferred from core shift observations; while the jet power exceeds by at least one order of magnitude the accretion power. In short, our results disfavour the proton synchrotron model for the FSRQ 3C 273.

  13. Evidence for active galactic nucleus feedback in the broad absorption lines and reddening of MRK 231 {sup ,}

    SciTech Connect

    Leighly, Karen M.; Baron, Eddie; Lucy, Adrian B.; Terndrup, Donald M.; Dietrich, Matthias; Gallagher, Sarah C.

    2014-06-20

    We present the first J-band spectrum of Mrk 231, which reveals a large He I* λ10830 broad absorption line with a profile similar to that of the well-known Na I broad absorption line. Combining this spectrum with optical and UV spectra from the literature, we show that the unusual reddening noted by Veilleux et al. is explained by a reddening curve like those previously used to explain low values of total-to-selective extinction in Type Ia supernovae. The nuclear starburst may be the origin and location of the dust. Spatially resolved emission in the broad absorption line trough suggests nearly full coverage of the continuum emission region. The broad absorption lines reveal higher velocities in the He I* lines (produced in the quasar-photoionized H II region) compared with the Na I and Ca II lines (produced in the corresponding partially ionized zone). Cloudy simulations show that a density increase is required between the H II and partially ionized zones to produce ionic column densities consistent with the optical and IR absorption line measurements and limits, and that the absorber lies ∼100 pc from the central engine. These results suggest that the He I* lines are produced in an ordinary quasar BAL wind that impacts upon, compresses, and accelerates the nuclear starburst's dusty effluent (feedback in action), and the Ca II and Na I lines are produced in this dusty accelerated gas. This unusual circumstance explains the rarity of Na I absorption lines; without the compression along our line of sight, Mrk 231 would appear as an ordinary iron low-ionization, broad absorption line quasar.

  14. CONSTRAINTS ON QUASAR LIFETIMES AND BEAMING FROM THE He II Ly{alpha} FOREST

    SciTech Connect

    Furlanetto, Steven R.; Lidz, Adam

    2011-07-10

    We show that comparisons of He II Ly{alpha} forest lines of sight to nearby quasar populations can strongly constrain the lifetimes and emission geometry of quasars. By comparing the He II and H I Ly{alpha} forests along a particular line of sight, one can trace fluctuations in the hardness of the radiation field (which are driven by fluctuations in the He II ionization rate). Because this high-energy background is highly variable-thanks to the rarity of the bright quasars that dominate it and the relatively short attenuation lengths of these photons-it is straightforward to associate features in the radiation field with their source quasars. Here we quantify how finite lifetimes and beamed emission geometries affect these expectations. Finite lifetimes induce a time delay that displaces the observed radiation peak relative to the quasar. For beamed emission, geometry dictates that sources invisible to the observer can still create a peak in the radiation field. We show that both these models produce substantial populations of 'bare' peaks (without an associated quasar) for reasonable parameter values (lifetimes {approx}10{sup 6}-10{sup 8} yr and beaming angles {approx}< 90 deg.). A comparison to existing quasar surveys along two He II Ly{alpha} forest lines of sight rules out isotropic emission and infinite lifetime at high confidence; they can be accommodated either by moderate beaming or lifetimes {approx}10{sup 7}-10{sup 8} yr. We also show that the distribution of radial displacements between peaks and their quasars can unambiguously distinguish these two models, although larger statistical samples are needed.

  15. Low-redshift Lyman-alpha absorption lines and the dark matter halos of disk galaxies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maloney, Philip

    1992-01-01

    Ultraviolet observations of the low-redshift quasar 3C 273 using the Hubble Space Telescope have revealed many more Lyman-alpha absorption lines than would be expected from extrapolation of the absorption systems seen toward QSOs at z about 2. It is shown here that these absorption lines can plausibly be produced by gas at large radii in the disks of spiral and irregular galaxies; the gas is confined by the dark matter halos and ionized and heated by the extragalactic radiation field. This scenario does not require the extragalactic ionizing radiation field to decline as rapidly with decreasing z as the QSO emissivity. Observations of Ly-alpha absorption through the halos of known galaxies at low redshift will constrain both the extragalactic background and the properties of galactic halos.

  16. Intrinsic X-ray Weakness and the Launching of Powerful Quasar Winds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garmire, Gordon

    2014-09-01

    Recent NuSTAR observations suggest that a significant fraction of local Broad Absorption Line quasars (BALQSOs) are intrinsically X-ray weak, a result of considerable interest. However, the current measurements of this fraction suffer from large uncertainties. We therefore propose to improve significantly constraints upon the fraction of intrinsically X-ray weak high-ionization BALQSOs. This can be accomplished systematically and economically by re-observing six objects from the Gallagher et al. (2006) sample of well-studied z ~ 1.5-3 BALQSOs from the Large Bright Quasar Survey. The ultimate result will be improved understanding of the general importance of intrinsic X-ray weakness to the launching of powerful quasar winds.

  17. MICROLENSING OF QUASAR BROAD EMISSION LINES: CONSTRAINTS ON BROAD LINE REGION SIZE

    SciTech Connect

    Guerras, E.; Mediavilla, E.; Kochanek, C. S.; Munoz, J. A.; Falco, E.; Motta, V.

    2013-02-20

    We measure the differential microlensing of the broad emission lines between 18 quasar image pairs in 16 gravitational lenses. We find that the broad emission lines are in general weakly microlensed. The results show, at a modest level of confidence (1.8{sigma}), that high ionization lines such as C IV are more strongly microlensed than low ionization lines such as H{beta}, indicating that the high ionization line emission regions are more compact. If we statistically model the distribution of microlensing magnifications, we obtain estimates for the broad line region size of r{sub s} = 24{sup +22} {sub -15} and r{sub s} = 55{sup +150} {sub -35} lt-day (90% confidence) for the high and low ionization lines, respectively. When the samples are divided into higher and lower luminosity quasars, we find that the line emission regions of more luminous quasars are larger, with a slope consistent with the expected scaling from photoionization models. Our estimates also agree well with the results from local reveberation mapping studies.

  18. Non-Voigt Lyalpha Absorption Line Profiles.

    PubMed

    Outram; Carswell; Theuns

    2000-02-01

    Recent numerical simulations have lead to a paradigm shift in our understanding of the intergalactic medium and the loss of a physical justification for Voigt profile fitting of the Lyalpha forest. Many individual lines seen in simulated spectra have significant departures from the Voigt profile, yet could be well fitted by a blend of two or more such lines. We discuss the expected effect on the line profiles due to ongoing gravitational structure formation and Hubble expansion. We develop a method to detect departures from Voigt profiles of the absorption lines in a statistical way and apply this method to simulated Lyalpha forest spectra, confirming that the profiles seen do statistically differ from Voigt profiles. PMID:10622758

  19. Absorption lines in the spectrum of Q0248 + 4302 due to a foreground tidal tail

    SciTech Connect

    Sargent, W.L.W.; Steidel, C.C. California Univ., Berkeley )

    1990-08-01

    The strong absorption lines in the spectrum of the quasar Q0248 + 4302 are discussed. The absorption has been shown to be produced in a sinuous tidal tail which emanates from the nearby galaxy pair G0248 + 4302A,B. There is a velocity difference of about 260 km/s between the systemic redshift of the interacting galaxies and the redshift of the tidal tail at a galactocentric distance of about 11/h kpc. The large velocity spread observed in the tail gas is probably responsible for the unusual strength of the interstellar lines. 18 refs.

  20. Absorption-line measurements of AGN outflows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fields, Dale L.

    Investigations into the elemental abundances in two nearby active galaxies, the narrow-line Seyfert 1 Markarian 1044 and the Seyfert 1 Markarian 279, are reported. Spectra from three space-based observatories HST, FUSE, and CHANDRA, are used to measure absorption lines in material outflowing from the nucleus. I make multi-wavelength comparisons to better convert the ionic column densities into elemental column densities which can then be used to determine abundances (metallicities). Narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxies are known to have extreme values of a number of properties compared to active galactic nuclei (AGNs) as a class. In particular, emission-line studies have suggested that NLS1s are unusually metal-rich compared to broad-line AGNs of comparable luminosity. To test these suggestions I perform absorption-line studies on the NLS1 Markarian 1044, a nearby and bright AGN. I use lines of H I, C IV, N V, and O VI to properly make the photoionization correction through the software Cloudy and determine abundances of Carbon, Nitrogen and Oxygen. I find two results. The first is that Markarian 1044 has a bulk metallicity greater than five times solar. The second is that the N/C ratio in Markarian 1044 is consistent with a solar mixture. This is in direct contradiction of extrapolations from local H II regions which state N/ C should scale with bulk metallicity. This implies a different enrichment history in Markarian 1044 than in the Galactic disk. I also report discovery of three new low-redshift Lya forest lines with log N HI >= 12:77 in the spectrum of Markarian 1044. This number is consistent with the 2.6 expected Lya forest lines in the path length to Markarian 1044. I also investigate the CHANDRA X-ray spectrum of Markarian 279, a broad-line Seyfert 1. I use a new code, PHASE, to self-consistently model the entire absorption spectrum simultaneously. Using solely the X-ray spectrum I am able to determine the physical parameters of this absorber to a degree only

  1. Nebular UV Absorption Lines in Planetary Nebulae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinerstein, Harriet

    We propose to continue our Cycle 1 program of studying the Lyman and Werner bands of H_2, seen in absorption against the UV continua of planetary nebula central stars, which arise within neutral-molecular envelopes surrounding the ionized gas. These are the pump lines for a fluorescent cascade of near-infrared emission lines which are observed in many planetary nebulae. By observing the UV lines we can probe the chemical and thermal structure of the envelopes, as well as measure molecular column densities and clarify the excitation processes for the infrared lines. In Cycle 1 we were granted time for three targets, one of which was successfully observed shortly before submission of this proposal. Although the data were not yet available for examination, similar target observed by the project team revealed a rich set of H_2 circumstellar absorption features, demonstrating the feasibility of our program. FUSE spectra also include absorption features from atomic species such as O I and C II, which give rise to important far-infrared fine-structure cooling lines that likewise have been observed from planetary nebulae. In Cycle 2, we add as a secondary goal a search for nebular components of the O VI 032, 1038 AA absorption lines, which trace the presence of hot shocked gas, in nebulae with anomalously strong optical recombination lines of ions of oxygen and nitrogen. This will test a plausible hypothesis for the origin of this anomaly.

  2. Dust depletion of Ca and Ti in QSO absorption-line systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guber, C. R.; Richter, P.

    2016-06-01

    Aims: To explore the role of titanium- and calcium-dust depletion in gas in and around galaxies, we systematically study Ti/Ca abundance ratios in intervening absorption-line systems at low and high redshift. Methods: We investigate high-resolution optical spectra obtained by the UVES instrument at the Very Large Telescope (VLT) and spectroscopically analyze 34 absorption-line systems at z ≤ 0.5 to measure column densities (or limits) for Ca ii and Ti ii. We complement our UVES data set with previously published absorption-line data on Ti/Ca for redshifts up to z ~ 3.8. Our absorber sample contains 110 absorbers including damped Lyman α systems (DLAs), sub-DLAs, and Lyman-Limit systems (LLS). We compare our Ti/Ca findings with results from the Milky Way and the Magellanic Clouds and discuss the properties of Ti/Ca absorbers in the general context of quasar absorption-line systems. Results: Our analysis indicates that there are two distinct populations of absorbers with either high or low Ti/Ca ratios with a separation at [Ti/Ca] ≈ 1. While the calcium-dust depletion in most of the absorbers appears to be severe, the titanium depletions are mild in systems with high Ti/Ca ratios. The derived trend indicates that absorbers with high Ti/Ca ratios have dust-to-gas ratios that are substantially lower than in the Milky Way. We characterize the overall nature of the absorbers by correlating Ti/Ca with other observables (e.g., metallicity, velocity-component structure) and by modeling the ionization properties of singly-ionized Ca and Ti in different environments. Conclusions: We conclude that Ca ii and Ti ii bearing absorption-line systems trace predominantly neutral gas in the disks and inner halo regions of galaxies, where the abundance of Ca and Ti reflects the local metal and dust content of the gas. Our study suggests that the Ti/Ca ratio represents a useful measure for the gas-to-dust ratio and overall metallicity in intervening absorption-line systems.

  3. Abundances in 8 QSO Absorption Line Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lauroesch, James Thomas

    1995-01-01

    An analysis is given of high resolution observations of metal-absorption line systems in the spectra of 4 QSOs made with the echelle spectrograph on the Mayall 4-meter telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory. High spectral -resolution (9 to 18 km cdot s^{ -1}) observations were obtained for the QSOs S5 0014 + 813, H 0913 + 072, B2 1225 + 317, and HS 1946 + 7658; column densities were derived for the heavy element line systems. Abundances and/or abundance ratios have been determined for 8 systems and a variety of H I column densities in the redshift range 1-3.4 are probed. The systems studies are generally relatively poor in heavy elements, and appear to be similar in heavy element abundances to the gas out of which the Galactic halo stars of similar metallicity formed. Indications of the halo star-abundance sample include the observed ratios of (N/Si), (Al/Si), and (Mn/Fe). The existence of associated H II regions is inferred for a number of damped systems, and it is suggested that the possibly significant amount of gas in H II regions in damped Lyman-alpha systems can be constrained by the comparison of the column densities of O I, N I, N II, Si II, and S II in these systems. The ratio of N(Al II)/N(Al III) is shown to be a poor indicator of the amount of ionized gas in some cases. The abundances of Si as determined from N(Si II)/N(H I) suggest that there is a relatively rapid decrease in abundances in these systems at z _sp{ ~}> 2. Such a decrease in abundances is what would be expected if the galactic (thin) disks did not form before redshifts of z {~} 2. The use of Si II is important, since the weakness of the Zn II lines at low abundances (due to the low relative abundance of Zn compared to elements such as Si) will result in few detections, and in upper limits that are difficult to interpret. The observed drop in abundances is consistent with the decrease in number of heavy-element absorption systems at high redshifts, a result that is found in

  4. Heavily reddened z ˜ 2 Type 1 quasars - II. H α star formation constraints from SINFONI IFU observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alaghband-Zadeh, S.; Banerji, Manda; Hewett, Paul C.; McMahon, Richard G.

    2016-06-01

    We use near-infrared integral field unit spectroscopy to search for H α emission associated with star formation in a sample of 28 heavily reddened (E(B - V) ≃ 0.5-1.9), hyperluminous (log({{L}}_{bol}/erg s^{-1})≃ 47-48) broad-line quasars at z ≃ 1.4-2.7. 16 of the 28 quasars show evidence for star formation with an average extinction-corrected star formation rate (SFR) of 320 ± 70 M⊙ yr-1. A stacked spectrum of the detections shows weak [N II], consistent with star formation as the origin of the narrow H α emission. The star-forming regions are spatially unresolved in 11 of the 16 detections and constrained to lie within ˜6 kpc of the quasar emission. In the five resolved detections we find the star-forming regions are extended on scales of ˜8 kpc around the quasar emission. The prevalence of high SFRs is consistent with the identification of the heavily reddened quasar population as representing a transitional phase from apparent `starburst galaxies' to optically luminous quasars. Upper limits are determined for 10 quasars in which star formation is undetected. In two of the quasars the SFR is constrained to be relatively modest, <50 M⊙ yr-1, but significantly higher levels of star formation could be present in the other eight quasars. The combination of the 16 strong star formation detections and the eight high SFR limits means that high levels of star formation may be present in the majority of the sample. Higher spatial resolution data, of multiple emission lines, will allow us to better understand the interplay between star formation and active galactic nucleus activity in these transitioning quasars.

  5. Quasars in the COSMOS Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prescott, M. K. M.; Impey, C. D.; Cool, R. J.; Scoville, N. Z.

    2006-06-01

    We obtained medium-resolution spectra of 336 quasar candidates in the COSMOS HST Treasury field using the MMT 6.5 m telescope and the Hectospec multiobject spectrograph. Candidates were drawn from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) DR1 catalog using quasar flags set by the SDSS multicolor quasar target selection algorithm. In this paper we present our discovery spectra from 1.39 deg2 (69.5% of the COSMOS field) and a discussion of the selection method and yields. We confirmed 95 quasars, including at least two BAL quasars; 80 of these are new quasars that do not appear in previous quasar confirmation follow-up studies. The candidates additionally included 184 compact emission-line galaxies, a third of which are likely type 2 AGNs, and 12 stars. The quasars span a range in magnitude of 18.3quasar surface density from SDSS color selection of 102 deg-2 down to g=22.5 over the entire COSMOS field. This work is the first step toward the eventual goal of setting up a grid of quasar absorption line probes of the 2 deg2 field and of conducting a complete census of supermassive black holes in this well-studied survey region. The total quasar count at the conclusion of this study is 139, making COSMOS one of the most densely sampled regions of sky where a grid of quasar sight lines can be used to probe the intervening volume.

  6. Quasar candidates near 1057 + 01

    SciTech Connect

    Crampton, D.; Cartledge, S.; Cowley, A.P.; Hartwick, F.D.A. Arizona State Univ., Tempe Victoria Univ. )

    1991-04-01

    Positions and magnitudes are given for 143 quasar candidates and three white dwarf candidates discovered with the CFHT blue grens in a 2.7 square degree area in the direction 1057 + 01. The goal of this survey is to provide complete samples of quasars to study the large scale distribution of matter at moderate to high (z less than 3.4) redshifts. Part of the region surveyed in this paper was previously studied by Crampton and Parmar (1983), allowing a comparison of the search and measurements accuracies. Redshifts, derived from MMT spectroscopy, for 27 of the candidates are also presented. One quasar, 1058.1 + 0052, displays strong broad absorption lines characteristic of BAL quasars. 5 refs.

  7. The JHU-SDSS Metal Absorption Line Catalog: Redshift Evolution and Properties of Mg II Absorbers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Guangtun; Ménard, Brice

    2013-06-01

    We present a generic and fully automatic method aimed at detecting absorption lines in the spectra of astronomical objects. The algorithm estimates the source continuum flux using a dimensionality reduction technique and nonnegative matrix factorization, and then detects and identifies metal absorption lines. We apply it to a sample of ~105 quasar spectra from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and compile a sample of ~40,000 Mg II- and Fe II-absorber systems, spanning the redshift range 0.4 < z < 2.3. The corresponding catalog is publicly available. We study the statistical properties of these absorber systems and find that the rest equivalent width distribution of strong Mg II absorbers follows an exponential distribution at all redshifts, confirming previous studies. Combining our results with recent near-infrared observations of Mg II absorbers, we introduce a new parameterization that fully describes the incidence rate of these systems up to z ~ 5. We find the redshift evolution of strong Mg II absorbers to be remarkably similar to the cosmic star formation history over 0.4 < z < 5.5 (the entire redshift range covered by observations), suggesting a physical link between these two quantities.

  8. Measurability of Kinetic Temperature from Metal Absorption-Line Spectra Formed in Chaotic Media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levshakov, Sergei A.; Takahara, Fumio; Agafonova, Irina I.

    1999-06-01

    We present a new method for recovering the kinetic temperature of the intervening diffuse gas to an accuracy of 10%. The method is based on the comparison of unsaturated absorption-line profiles of two species with different atomic weights. The species are assumed to have the same temperature and bulk motion within the absorbing region. The computational technique involves the Fourier transform of the absorption profiles and the consequent entropy-regularized χ2-minimization (ERM) to estimate the model parameters. The procedure is tested using synthetic spectra of C+, Si+, and Fe+ ions. The comparison with the standard Voigt fitting analysis is performed, and it is shown that the Voigt deconvolution of the complex absorption-line profiles may result in estimated temperatures that are not physical. We also successfully analyze Keck telescope spectra of C II λ1334 and Si II λ1260 lines observed at the redshift z=3.572 toward the quasar Q1937-1009 by Tytler et al. Based in part on data obtained at the W. M. Keck Observatory, which is jointly operated by the University of California and the California Institute of Technology.

  9. THE JHU-SDSS METAL ABSORPTION LINE CATALOG: REDSHIFT EVOLUTION AND PROPERTIES OF Mg II ABSORBERS

    SciTech Connect

    Zhu Guangtun; Menard, Brice

    2013-06-20

    We present a generic and fully automatic method aimed at detecting absorption lines in the spectra of astronomical objects. The algorithm estimates the source continuum flux using a dimensionality reduction technique and nonnegative matrix factorization, and then detects and identifies metal absorption lines. We apply it to a sample of {approx}10{sup 5} quasar spectra from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and compile a sample of {approx}40,000 Mg II- and Fe II-absorber systems, spanning the redshift range 0.4 < z < 2.3. The corresponding catalog is publicly available. We study the statistical properties of these absorber systems and find that the rest equivalent width distribution of strong Mg II absorbers follows an exponential distribution at all redshifts, confirming previous studies. Combining our results with recent near-infrared observations of Mg II absorbers, we introduce a new parameterization that fully describes the incidence rate of these systems up to z {approx} 5. We find the redshift evolution of strong Mg II absorbers to be remarkably similar to the cosmic star formation history over 0.4 < z < 5.5 (the entire redshift range covered by observations), suggesting a physical link between these two quantities.

  10. Detectability of cold streams into high-redshift galaxies by absorption lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goerdt, Tobias; Dekel, Avishai; Sternberg, Amiel; Gnat, Orly; Ceverino, Daniel

    2012-08-01

    Cold gas streaming along the dark matter filaments of the cosmic web is predicted to be the major source of fuel for disc buildup, violent disc instability and star formation in massive galaxies at high redshift. We investigate to what extent such cold gas is detectable in the extended circumgalactic environment of galaxies via Lyα absorption and selected low-ionization metal absorption lines. We model the expected absorption signatures using high-resolution zoom-in adaptive mesh refinement cosmological simulations. In the post-processing, we distinguish between self-shielded gas and unshielded gas. In the self-shielded gas, which is optically thick to Lyman continuum radiation, we assume pure collisional ionization for species with an ionization potential greater than 13.6 eV. In the optically-thin, unshielded gas, these species are also photoionized by the metagalactic radiation. In addition to absorption of radiation from background quasars, we compute the absorption line profiles of radiation emitted by the galaxy at the centre of the same halo. We predict the strength of the absorption signal for individual galaxies without stacking. We find that the Lyα absorption profiles produced by the streams are consistent with observations of absorption and emission Lyα profiles in high-redshift galaxies. Due to the low metallicities in the streams, and their low covering factors, the metal absorption features are weak and difficult to detect.

  11. Studies of Quasar Outflows

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arav, Nahum

    2002-01-01

    The main aim of this research program is to determine the ionization equilibrium and abundances in quasar outflows. Especially in the broad absorption line QSO PG 0946+301. We find that the outflow's metalicity is consistent with being solar, while the abundance ratio of phosphorus to other metals is at least ten times solar. These findings are based on diagnostics that are not sensitive to saturation and partial covering effects in the BALs (Broad Adsorption Lines), which considerably weakened previous claims for enhanced metalicity. Ample evidence for these effects is seen in the spectrum.

  12. Absorption line CW EPR using an amplitude modulated longitudinal field.

    PubMed

    Fedin, Matvey; Gromov, Igor; Schweiger, Arthur

    2004-11-01

    In standard continuous wave electron paramagnetic resonance (CW-EPR) experiments, the first derivative of absorption lines is detected. This type of a line shape is caused by the magnetic field modulation and is usually an undesired feature, since the sensitivity of CW-EPR drastically decreases with increasing linewidth. A new approach is introduced, which allows for the measurement of absorption line EPR spectra in systems with broad inhomogeneous lines. The method makes use of multiple-photon transitions that are induced in spin systems when a transverse microwave and a longitudinal radio frequency field are simultaneously applied. The absorption lines are obtained by using amplitude modulation of the radio frequency field and slight saturation of the spectral lines. The basics of the new approach are discussed and experimental examples are given. PMID:15504685

  13. Temperature-insensitive laser frequency locking near absorption lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kostinski, Natalie; Olsen, Ben A.; Marsland, Robert; McGuyer, Bart H.; Happer, William

    2011-03-01

    Combined magnetically induced circular dichroism and Faraday rotation of an atomic vapor are used to develop a variant of the dichroic atomic vapor laser lock that eliminates lock sensitivity to temperature fluctuations of the cell. Operating conditions that eliminate first-order sensitivity to temperature fluctuations can be determined by low-frequency temperature modulation. This temperature-insensitive gyrotropic laser lock can be accurately understood with a simple model, that is in excellent agreement with observations in potassium vapor at laser frequencies in a 2 GHz range about the 770.1 nm absorption line. The methods can be readily adapted for other absorption lines.

  14. Temperature-insensitive laser frequency locking near absorption lines

    SciTech Connect

    Kostinski, Natalie; Olsen, Ben A.; Marsland, Robert III; McGuyer, Bart H.; Happer, William

    2011-03-15

    Combined magnetically induced circular dichroism and Faraday rotation of an atomic vapor are used to develop a variant of the dichroic atomic vapor laser lock that eliminates lock sensitivity to temperature fluctuations of the cell. Operating conditions that eliminate first-order sensitivity to temperature fluctuations can be determined by low-frequency temperature modulation. This temperature-insensitive gyrotropic laser lock can be accurately understood with a simple model, that is in excellent agreement with observations in potassium vapor at laser frequencies in a 2 GHz range about the 770.1 nm absorption line. The methods can be readily adapted for other absorption lines.

  15. TOWARD DETECTING THE 2175 A DUST FEATURE ASSOCIATED WITH STRONG HIGH-REDSHIFT Mg II ABSORPTION LINES

    SciTech Connect

    Jiang Peng; Zhou Hongyan; Wang Junxian; Wang Tinggui; Ge Jian

    2011-05-10

    We report detections of 39 2175 A dust extinction bump candidates associated with strong Mg II absorption lines at z{approx} 1-1.8 on quasar spectra in Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) DR3. These strong Mg II absorption line systems are detected among 2951 strong Mg II absorbers with a rest equivalent width W{sub r} {lambda}2796> 1.0 A at 1.0 < z < 1.86, which is part of a full sample of 7421 strong Mg II absorbers compiled by Prochter et al. The redshift range of the absorbers is chosen to allow the 2175 A extinction features to be completely covered within the SDSS spectrograph operation wavelength range. An upper limit of the background quasar emission redshift at z = 2.1 is set to prevent the Ly{alpha} forest lines from contaminating the sensitive spectral region for the 2175 A bump measurements. The FM90 parameterization is applied to model the optical/UV extinction curve in the rest frame of Mg II absorbers of the 2175 A bump candidates. The simulation technique developed by Jiang et al. is used to derive the statistical significance of the candidate 2175 A bumps. A total of 12 absorbers are detected with 2175 A bumps at a 5{sigma} level of statistical significance, 10 are detected at a 4{sigma} level, and 17 are detected at a 3{sigma} level. Most of the candidate bumps in this work are similar to the relatively weak 2175 A bumps observed in the Large Magellanic Cloud LMC2 supershell rather than the strong ones observed in the Milky Way. This sample has greatly increased the total number of 2175 A extinction bumps measured on SDSS quasar spectra. Follow-up observations may rule out some of the possible false detections and reveal the physical and chemical natures of 2175 A quasar absorbers.

  16. Extreme Red Quasars in SDSS-BOSS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamann, Fred; Zakamska, Nadia; Paris, Isabelle; Herbst, Hanna; Villforth, Carolin; Alexandroff, Rachael; Ross, Nicholas; Greene, Jenny; Strauss, Michael

    2015-08-01

    Red quasars are believed to mark a critical transition stage of massive galaxy evolution when a blowout of gas and dust truncates the initial starburst and provides our first visible views of a luminous central AGN. Red quasars could therefore have unusual properties associated with a young evolution stage, such as higher accretion rates, higher rates of mergers and interactions, and more common or more powerful outflows capable of driving a galaxy-wide blowout (e.g., compared to normal blue quasars in presumably more evolved galaxy hosts). The recently completed Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopy Survey (BOSS) of SDSS-III has discovered many more faint quasars with higher redshifts and redder colors than any previous large survey. We combine BOSS spectra with SDSS and Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) photometry of nearly 100,000 quasars to identify and characterize the red quasar population at redshifts >2. We find a number of strong trends with the amount of reddening/obscuration. For example, red quasars are 5 to 8 times more likely to have broad absorption lines and other "intrinsic" absorption lines that identify quasar-driven outflows. Perhaps most interesting is that extreme red quasars (ERQs), selected via rest-frame UV to near-IR colors similar to Dust Obscured Galaxies (DOGs), have uniquely exotic emission line properties that include extreme velocity shifts between lines and the broadest and most blueshifted [OIII] lines yet discovered (with FWHMs reaching >3000 km/s). We will discuss the implications of these results for models of the structure and evolution of quasars and their host galaxy environments.

  17. Intermediate-redshift galaxy halos - Results from QSO absorption lines

    SciTech Connect

    Lanzetta, K.M.; Bowen, D. Royal Greenwich Observatory, Cambridge )

    1990-07-01

    For a sample of Mg II-selected QSO absorption-line systems for which the absorbing galaxies have been successfully identified, the rest-frame equivalent widths of the Mg II 2796-A absorption lines are examined as a function of the known impact parameters between the background QSOs and the absorbing galaxies. There appears to exist a relationship between the equivalent widths and the impact parameters, in the sense that larger equivalent widths occur at smaller impact parameters. No trend of the doublet ratio is found with impact parameter, and neither the equivalent widths nor the doublet ratios are correlated with the absolute luminosities or redshifts of the absorbing galaxies. These results apparently indicate that the main factor that determines the equivalent width of a particular absorption system is the impact parameter between the background QSO and the absorbing galaxy. 32 refs.

  18. Interstellar absorption lines in the galaxy NGC 1705

    SciTech Connect

    York, D.G.; Caulet, A.; Rybski, P.M.; Gallagher, J.S.; Blades, J.C. Lowell Observatory, Flagstaff, AZ Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, MD )

    1990-03-01

    The possibility is considered, and shown to be plausible, that the strong C IV and Si IV absorption lines in low-resolution ultraviolet spectra of gas-rich dwarf galaxies are primarily interstellar, not stellar as has been supposed. The argument is based on analogies with H II regions in the Local Group, on low-resolution equivalent width measurements of gas-rich dwarf galaxies from the literature and on high-resolution UV spectra of NGC 1705. 48 refs.

  19. Interstellar absorption lines in the galaxy NGC 1705

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    York, Donald G.; Caulet, Adeline; Rybski, Paul M.; Gallagher, John S.; Blades, J. Chris

    1990-01-01

    The possibility is considered, and shown to be plausible, that the strong C IV and Si IV absorption lines in low-resolution ultraviolet spectra of gas-rich dwarf galaxies are primarily interstellar, not stellar as has been supposed. The argument is based on analogies with H II regions in the Local Group, on low-resolution equivalent width measurements of gas-rich dwarf galaxies from the literature and on high-resolution UV spectra of NGC 1705.

  20. The low-ion QSO absorption-line systems

    SciTech Connect

    Lanzetta, K.M.

    1988-01-01

    Various techniques are used to investigate the class of QSO absorption-line systems that exhibit low-ion absorption lines. Four separate investigations are conducted as follows: Spectroscopy of 32 QSOs at red wavelengths is presented and used to investigate intermediate-redshift MgII absorption. A total of 22 Mg II doublets are detected, from which properties of the Mg II absorbers are derived. Marginal evidence for intrinsic evolution of the number density of the Mg II absorbers with redshift is found. The data are combined with previous observations of C IV and C II seen in the same QSOs at blue wavelengths, and the properties of Mg II- and C IV-selected systems are compared. A sample is constructed of 129 QSOs for which are available published data suitable for detecting absorption-line systems that are optically thick to Lyman continuum radiation. A total of 53 such Lyman-limit systems are found, from which properties of the Lyman-limit systems are derived. It is found that the rate of incidence of the systems does not strongly evolved with redshift. This result is contrasted with the evolution found previously for systems selected on the basis of Mg II absorption. Spectroscopy at red wavelengths of eight QSOs with known damped Ly{alpha} absorption systems is presented. Spectroscopic and spectrophotometric observations aimed at detecting molecular hydrogen and dust in the z = 2.796 damped Ly{alpha} absorber toward Q1337 + 113 are presented.

  1. Multiple Absorption-line Spectroscopy of the Intergalactic Medium. I. Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Yangsen; Shull, J. Michael; Danforth, Charles W.; Keeney, Brian A.; Stocke, John T.

    2011-04-01

    We present a physically based absorption-line model for the spectroscopic study of the intergalactic medium (IGM). This model adopts results from Cloudy simulations and theoretical calculations by Gnat & Sternberg to examine the resulting observational signatures of the absorbing gas with the following ionization scenarios: collisional ionization equilibrium (CIE), photoionization equilibrium, hybrid (photo- plus collisional ionization), and non-equilibrium cooling. As a demonstration, we apply this model to new observations made with the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph aboard the Hubble Space Telescope of the IGM absorbers at z ~ 0.1877 along the 1ES 1553+113 sight line. We identify Lyα, C III, O VI, and N V absorption lines with two distinct velocity components (blue at zb = 0.18757; red at zr = 0.18772) separated by Δ(cz)/(1 + z) ≈ 38 km s-1. Joint analyses of these lines indicate that none of the examined ionization scenarios can be applied with confidence to the blue velocity component, although photoionization seems to play a dominant role. For the red component, CIE can be ruled out, but pure photoionization and hybrid scenarios (with T < 1.3 × 105 K) are more acceptable. The constrained ranges of hydrogen density and metallicity of the absorbing gas are n H = (1.9-2.3) × 10-5 cm-3 and Z = (0.43-0.67) Z sun. These constraints indicate O VI and H I ionization fractions, f O VI = 0.10-0.15 and f H I = (3.2-5.1) × 10-5, with total hydrogen column density N H = (0.7-1.2) × 1018 cm-2. This demonstration shows that the joint analysis of multiple absorption lines can constrain the ionization state of an absorber, and results used to estimate the baryonic matter contained in the absorber.

  2. Double troughs in broad absorption line quasars and Ly-alpha-N V line-locking

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Korista, Kirk T.; Voit, G. M.; Morris, Simon L.; Weymann, Ray J.

    1993-01-01

    It was investigated whether the double trough (DT) structure in the mean C IV BAL trough reported by Weymann et al. (1991) is real or due to statistical fluctuations of BAL troughs over random outflow velocities in a limited sample. A sample of 72 BAL QSOs with C IV BAL troughs was analyzed. It is found that only 22 percent of the sample explicitly exhibits the DT feature; when present the DTs are deep. A Monte Carlo simulation of the mean C IV BAL suggests that the DT feature is real at only the 95-98 percent level.

  3. AFGL atmospheric absorption line parameters compilation - 1982 edition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rothman, L. S.; Gamache, R. R.; Barbe, A.; Goldman, A.; Gillis, J. R.; Brown, L. R.; Toth, R. A.; Flaud, J.-M.; Camy-Peyret, C.

    1983-01-01

    The latest edition of the AFGL atmospheric absorption line parameters compilation for the seven most active infrared terrestrial absorbers is described. Major modifications to the atlas for this edition include updating of water-vapor parameters from 0 to 4300 per cm, improvements to line positions for carbon dioxide, substantial modifications to the ozone bands in the middle to far infrared, and improvements to the 7- and 2.3-micron bands of methane. The atlas now contains about 181,000 rotation and vibration-rotation transitions between 0 and 17,900 per cm. The sources of the absorption parameters are summarized.

  4. Characterizing Quasar Outflows I: Sample, Spectral Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ganguly, Rajib; Christenson, D. H.; Richmond, J. M.; Derseweh, J. A.; Robbins, J. M.; Townsend, S. L.; Stark, M. A.

    2012-05-01

    Galaxy evolution models have shown that quasars are a crucial ingredient in the evolution of massive galaxies. Outflows play a key role in the story of quasars and their host galaxies, by helping regulate the accretion process, the star-formation rate and mass of the host galaxy (i.e., feedback). The prescription for modeling outflows as a contributor to feedback requires knowledge of the outflow velocity, geometry, and column density. In particular, we need to understand how these depend on physical parameters and how much is determined stochastically (and with what distribution). For this purpose, we are examining a sample of 11000 z=1.7-2.0 quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. This redshift range permits the following from the SDSS spectra: (1) separation of objects that do and do not exhibit outflows; (2) classification/measurement of outflow properties (ionization, velocity, velocity width); and (3) measurements of UV emission line and continuum parameters. In this poster, we subjectively divide these quasars into four categories: broad absorption-line quasars (2700 objects), associated absorption-line quasars (1700 objects), reddened quasars (160 objects), and unabsorbed/unreddened quasars (6300 objects). We present measurements of the absorption (velocities, velocity widths, equivalent widths), composite spectral profiles of outflows as a function of velocity, as well as measurements of the continuum and CIV, MgII, and FeII emission-line properties. In accompanying posters, we add photometry from the rest-frame X-ray (ROSAT and Chandra), EUV (GALEX), optical (2MASS), and infrared (WISE) bands to complete the SED. The continuum and emission-line measurements from the SDSS spectra and accompanying photometry provides estimates on the black hole masses, bolometric luminsosities, and SED. We consider empirically how these affect the outflow properties. This material is based upon work supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under

  5. Oscillator strength measurements of atomic absorption lines from stellar spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lobel, Alex

    2011-05-01

    Herein we develop a new method to determine oscillator strength values of atomic absorption lines with state-of-the-art detailed spectral synthesis calculations of the optical spectrum of the Sun and of standard spectral reference stars. We update the log(gf) values of 911 neutral lines observed in the KPNO-FTS flux spectrum of the Sun and high-resolution echelle spectra (R = 80 000) of Procyon (F5 IV-V) and Eps Eri (K2 V) observed with large signal-to-noise (S/N) ratios of 2000 using the new Mercator-Hermes spectrograph at La Palma Observatory (Spain). We find for 483 Fe I, 85 Ni I, and 51 Si I absorption lines in the sample a systematic overestimation of the literature log(gf) values with central line depths below 15%. We employ a curve-of-growth analysis technique to test the accuracy of the new oscillator strength values and compare calculated equivalent line widths to the Moore, Minnaert, and Houtgast atlas of the Sun. The online SpectroWeb database at http://spectra.freeshell.org interactively displays the observed and synthetic spectra and provides the new log(gf) values together with important atomic line data. The graphical database is under development for stellar reference spectra of every spectral sub-class observed with large spectral resolution and S/N ratios.

  6. Constraint on the time variation of the fine-structure constant with the SDSS-III/BOSS DR12 quasar sample

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albareti, Franco D.; Comparat, Johan; Gutiérrez, Carlos M.; Prada, Francisco; Pâris, Isabelle; Schlegel, David; López-Corredoira, Martín; Schneider, Donald P.; Manchado, Arturo; García-Hernández, D. A.; Petitjean, Patrick; Ge, Jian

    2015-10-01

    From the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release 12, which covers the full Baryonic Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) footprint, we investigate the possible variation of the fine-structure constant over cosmological time-scales. We analyse the largest quasar sample considered so far in the literature, which contains 13 175 spectra (10 363 from SDSS-III/BOSS DR12 + 2812 from SDSS-II DR7) with redshift z < 1. We apply the emission-line method on the [O III] doublet (λλ 4960, 5008 Å) and obtain Δα/α = (0.9 ± 1.8) × 10-5 for the relative variation of the fine-structure constant. We also investigate the possible sources of systematics: misidentification of the lines, sky OH lines, H β and broad line contamination, Gaussian and Voigt fitting profiles, optimal wavelength range for the Gaussian fits, chosen polynomial order for the continuum spectrum, signal-to-noise ratio and good quality of the fits. The uncertainty of the measurement is dominated by the sky subtraction. The results presented in this work, being systematics limited, have sufficient statistics to constrain robustly the variation of the fine-structure constant in redshift bins (Δz ≈ 0.06) over the last 7.9 Gyr. In addition, we study the [Ne III] doublet (λλ 3869, 3968 Å) present in 462 quasar spectra and discuss the systematic effects on using these emission lines to constrain the fine-structure constant variation. Better constraints on Δα/α (< 10-6) using the emission-line method would be possible with high-resolution spectroscopy and large galaxy/qso surveys.

  7. Neutral hydrogen at the present epoch: A constraint on the evolution of high redshift systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rao, Sandhya; Briggs, Frank H.

    1993-01-01

    Damped Lyman-alpha and metal absorption lines in the spectra of quasars indicate the presence of intervening gas-rich systems at high redshift (z greater than 2). These systems have characteristic size scales, velocity dispersions, and neutral hydrogen column densities (N(H1)) similar to present day spirals and are thus thought to be their progenitors. Constraints on galaxy evolution can be derived by comparing the H1 properties of high redshift systems to the present galaxy population. Good observational statistics on high redshift absorbers specify the number of these systems along the line of sight as a function of N(H1), the column density of neutral hydrogen per absorber. Similar statistics for nearby (z = 0) galaxies of which spirals are the only gas-rich systems that provide a significant cross-section for the interception of light from quasars is derived.

  8. THE STELLAR INITIAL MASS FUNCTION IN EARLY-TYPE GALAXIES FROM ABSORPTION LINE SPECTROSCOPY. II. RESULTS

    SciTech Connect

    Conroy, Charlie; Van Dokkum, Pieter G.

    2012-11-20

    The spectral absorption lines in early-type galaxies contain a wealth of information regarding the detailed abundance pattern, star formation history, and stellar initial mass function (IMF) of the underlying stellar population. Using our new population synthesis model that accounts for the effect of variable abundance ratios of 11 elements, we analyze very high quality absorption line spectra of 38 early-type galaxies and the nuclear bulge of M31. These data extend to 1 {mu}m and they therefore include the IMF-sensitive spectral features Na I, Ca II, and FeH at 0.82 {mu}m, 0.86 {mu}m, and 0.99 {mu}m, respectively. The models fit the data well, with typical rms residuals {approx}< 1%. Strong constraints on the IMF and therefore the stellar mass-to-light ratio, (M/L){sub stars}, are derived for individual galaxies. We find that the IMF becomes increasingly bottom-heavy with increasing velocity dispersion and [Mg/Fe]. At the lowest dispersions and [Mg/Fe] values the derived IMF is consistent with the Milky Way (MW) IMF, while at the highest dispersions and [Mg/Fe] values the derived IMF contains more low-mass stars (is more bottom-heavy) than even a Salpeter IMF. Our best-fit (M/L){sub stars} values do not exceed dynamically based M/L values. We also apply our models to stacked spectra of four metal-rich globular clusters in M31 and find an (M/L){sub stars} that implies fewer low-mass stars than a MW IMF, again agreeing with dynamical constraints. We discuss other possible explanations for the observed trends and conclude that variation in the IMF is the simplest and most plausible.

  9. Variability of broad absorption lines in QSO SDSS J022844.09+000217.0 on multiyear time-scales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Zhi-Cheng; Bian, Wei-Hao; Jiang, Xiao-Lei; Wang, Yue-Feng

    2014-09-01

    The variability of broad absorption lines is investigated for a broad-absorption-line (BAL) quasar (QSO), SDSS J022844.09+000217.0 (z = 2.719), with 18 Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS)/Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) spectra covering 4128 d in the observed frame. Using the ratio of the root-mean-square (rms) spectrum to the mean spectrum, the relative flux change of the BAL trough is larger than that of the emission lines and the continuum. Fitting a power-law continuum and the emission-line profiles of C IV λ1549 and Si IVλ1399, we calculate the equivalent width (EW) for different epochs, as well as the continuum luminosity and the spectral index. It is found that there is a strong correlation between the BAL-trough EW and the spectral index and a weak negative correlation between the BAL-trough EW and the continuum luminosity. The strong correlation between the BAL-trough EW and the spectral index for this particular QSO suggests that dust is intrinsic to outflows. The weak correlation between the BAL variability and the continuum luminosity for this particular QSO implies that the BAL-trough variation is not dominated by photoionization.

  10. The Large Sky Area Multi-object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope Quasar Survey: Quasar Properties from the First Data Release

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ai, Y. L.; Wu, Xue-Bing; Yang, Jinyi; Yang, Qian; Wang, Feige; Guo, Rui; Zuo, Wenwen; Dong, Xiaoyi; Zhang, Y.-X.; Yuan, H.-L.; Song, Y.-H.; Wang, Jianguo; Dong, Xiaobo; Yang, M.; -Wu, H.; Shen, S.-Y.; Shi, J.-R.; He, B.-L.; Lei, Y.-J.; Li, Y.-B.; Luo, A.-L.; Zhao, Y.-H.; Zhang, H.-T.

    2016-02-01

    We present preliminary results of the quasar survey in the Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope (LAMOST) first data release (DR1), which includes the pilot survey and the first year of the regular survey. There are 3921 quasars reliably identified, among which 1180 are new quasars discovered in the survey. These quasars are at low to median redshifts, with a highest z of 4.83. We compile emission line measurements around the Hα, Hβ, Mg ii, and C iv regions for the new quasars. The continuum luminosities are inferred from SDSS photometric data with model fitting, as the spectra in DR1 are non-flux-calibrated. We also compile the virial black hole mass estimates, with flags indicating the selection methods, and broad absorption line quasars. The catalog and spectra for these quasars are also available. Of the 3921 quasars, 28% are independently selected with optical-infrared colors, indicating that the method is quite promising for the completeness of the quasar survey. LAMOST DR1 and the ongoing quasar survey will provide valuable data for studies of quasars.

  11. Ultraviolet observations of interstellar absorption lines toward SN 1987A

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Savage, Blair D.; Jenkins, Edward B.; Joseph, Charles L.; De Boer, Klass S.

    1989-01-01

    High-dispersion IUE echelle spectra of SN 1987A were averaged in order to obtain UV absorption-line profiles of the highest possible quality in the direction of SN 1987A. The profiles for Si IV and C IV are quite similar and have much less structure than the Al III profile. On relating column densities, while the C IV and Si IV ratio is relatively constant over the 0-100 km/s velocity range, the C IV to Al III and Si IV to Al III ratios vary by nearly a factor of 10. This suggests that the C IV and Si IV along this sight line in the Galaxy and its halo may have a common origin which differs from that for Al III.

  12. High-dispersion absorption-line spectroscopy of AE Aqr

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Echevarría, J.; Smith, Robert Connon; Costero, R.; Zharikov, S.; Michel, R.

    2008-07-01

    High-dispersion time-resolved spectroscopy of the unique magnetic cataclysmic variable AE Aqr is presented. A radial velocity analysis of the absorption lines yields K2 = 168.7 +/- 1kms-1. Substantial deviations of the radial velocity curve from a sinusoid are interpreted in terms of intensity variations over the secondary star's surface. A complex rotational velocity curve as a function of orbital phase is detected which has a modulation frequency of twice the orbital frequency, leading to an estimate of the binary inclination angle that is close to 70°. The minimum and maximum rotational velocities are used to indirectly derive a mass ratio of q = 0.6 and a radial velocity semi-amplitude of the white dwarf of K1 = 101 +/- 3kms-1. We present an atmospheric temperature indicator, based on the absorption-line ratio of FeI and CrI lines, whose variation indicates that the secondary star varies from K0 to K4 as a function of orbital phase. The ephemeris of the system has been revised, using more than 1000 radial velocity measurements, published over nearly five decades. From the derived radial velocity semi-amplitudes and the estimated inclination angle, we calculate that the masses of the stars are M1 = 0.63 +/- 0.05Msolar M2 = 0.37 +/- 0.04Msolar, and their separation is a = 2.33 +/- 0.02Rsolar. Our analysis indicates the presence of a late-type star whose radius is larger, by a factor of nearly 2, than the radius of a normal main-sequence star of the same mass. Finally, we discuss the possibility that the measured variations in the rotational velocity, temperature and spectral type of the secondary star as functions of orbital phase may, like the radial velocity variations, be attributable to regions of enhanced absorption on the star's surface.

  13. Constraints from the old quasar APM 08279+5255 on two classes of Λ( t)-cosmologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jesus, J. F.

    2008-04-01

    The viability of two different classes of Λ( t)CDM cosmologies is tested by using the APM 08279+5255, an old quasar at redshift z = 3.91. In the first class of models, the cosmological term scales as Λ( t) ~ R - n . The particular case n = 0 describes the standard ΛCDM model whereas n = 2 stands for the Chen and Wu model. For an estimated age of 2 Gyr, it is found that the power index has a lower limit n > 0.21, whereas for 3 Gyr the limit is n > 0.6. Since n can not be so large as ~ 0.81, the ΛCDM and Chen and Wu models are also ruled out by this analysis. The second class of models is the one recently proposed by Wang and Meng which describes several Λ( t)CDM cosmologies discussed in the literature. By assuming that the true age is 2 Gyr it is found that the ɛ parameter satisfies the lower bound ɛ > 0.11 , while for 3 Gyr, a lower limit of ɛ > 0.52 is obtained. Such limits are slightly modified when the baryonic component is included.

  14. Time-dependent excitation and ionization modelling of absorption-line variability due to GRB 080310

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vreeswijk, P. M.; Ledoux, C.; Raassen, A. J. J.; Smette, A.; De Cia, A.; Woźniak, P. R.; Fox, A. J.; Vestrand, W. T.; Jakobsson, P.

    2013-01-01

    We model the time-variable absorption of Fe II, Fe III, Si II, C II and Cr II detected in Ultraviolet and Visual Echelle Spectrograph (UVES) spectra of gamma-ray burst (GRB) 080310, with the afterglow radiation exciting and ionizing the interstellar medium in the host galaxy at a redshift of z = 2.42743. To estimate the rest-frame afterglow brightness as a function of time, we use a combination of the optical VRI photometry obtained by the RAPTOR-T telescope array, which is presented in this paper, and Swift's X-Ray Telescope (XRT) observations. Excitation alone, which has been successfully applied for a handful of other GRBs, fails to describe the observed column density evolution in the case of GRB 080310. Inclusion of ionization is required to explain the column density decrease of all observed Fe II levels (including the ground state 6D9/2) and increase of the Fe III 7S3 level. The large population of ions in this latter level (up to 10% of all Fe III) can only be explained through ionization of Fe II, as a large fraction of the ionized Fe II ions (we calculate 31% using the Flexible Atomic and Cowan codes) initially populate the 7S3 level of Fe III rather than the ground state. This channel for producing a significant Fe III 7S3 level population may be relevant for other objects in which absorption lines from this level, the UV34 triplet, are observed, such as broad absorption line (BAL) quasars and η Carinae. This provides conclusive evidence for time-variable ionization in the circumburst medium, which to date has not been convincingly detected. However, the best-fit distance of the neutral absorbing cloud to the GRB is 200-400 pc, i.e. similar to GRB-absorber distance estimates for GRBs without any evidence for ionization. We find that the presence of time-varying ionization in GRB 080310 is likely due to a combination of the super-solar iron abundance ([Fe/H] = +0.2) and the low H I column density (log N(H i) = 18.7) in the host of GRB 080310. Finally

  15. IMPROVED AND QUALITY-ASSESSED EMISSION AND ABSORPTION LINE MEASUREMENTS IN SLOAN DIGITAL SKY SURVEY GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Oh, Kyuseok; Yi, Sukyoung K.; Sarzi, Marc; Schawinski, Kevin

    2011-08-01

    We present a new database of absorption and emission-line measurements based on the entire spectral atlas from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) 7th data release of galaxies within a redshift of 0.2. Our work makes use of the publicly available penalized pixel-fitting (pPXF) and gas and absorption line fitting (gandalf) IDL codes, aiming to improve the existing measurements for stellar kinematics, the strength of various absorption-line features, and the flux and width of the emissions from different species of ionized gas. Our fit to the stellar continuum uses both standard stellar population models and empirical templates obtained by combining a large number of stellar spectra in order to fit a subsample of high-quality SDSS spectra for quiescent galaxies. Furthermore, our fit to the nebular spectrum includes an exhaustive list of both recombination and forbidden lines. Foreground Galactic extinction is implicitly treated in our models, whereas reddening in the SDSS galaxies is included in the form of a simple dust screen component affecting the entire spectrum that is accompanied by a second reddening component affecting only the ionized gas emission. In order to check for systematic departures from the rather standard set of assumptions that enters our models, we provide a quality assessment for our fit to the SDSS spectra in our sample, for both the stellar continuum and the nebular emissions and across different wavelength regions. This quality assessment also allows the identification of objects with either problematic data or peculiar features. We hope to foster the discovery potential of our database; therefore, our spectral fit is available to the community. For example, based on the quality assessment around the H{alpha} and [N II] {lambda}6584 lines, approximately 1% of the SDSS spectra classified as 'galaxies' by the SDSS pipeline do in fact require additional broad lines to be matched, even though they do not show a strong continuum from an active

  16. Improved and Quality-assessed Emission and Absorption Line Measurements in Sloan Digital Sky Survey Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oh, Kyuseok; Sarzi, Marc; Schawinski, Kevin; Yi, Sukyoung K.

    2011-08-01

    We present a new database of absorption and emission-line measurements based on the entire spectral atlas from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) 7th data release of galaxies within a redshift of 0.2. Our work makes use of the publicly available penalized pixel-fitting (pPXF) and gas and absorption line fitting (gandalf) IDL codes, aiming to improve the existing measurements for stellar kinematics, the strength of various absorption-line features, and the flux and width of the emissions from different species of ionized gas. Our fit to the stellar continuum uses both standard stellar population models and empirical templates obtained by combining a large number of stellar spectra in order to fit a subsample of high-quality SDSS spectra for quiescent galaxies. Furthermore, our fit to the nebular spectrum includes an exhaustive list of both recombination and forbidden lines. Foreground Galactic extinction is implicitly treated in our models, whereas reddening in the SDSS galaxies is included in the form of a simple dust screen component affecting the entire spectrum that is accompanied by a second reddening component affecting only the ionized gas emission. In order to check for systematic departures from the rather standard set of assumptions that enters our models, we provide a quality assessment for our fit to the SDSS spectra in our sample, for both the stellar continuum and the nebular emissions and across different wavelength regions. This quality assessment also allows the identification of objects with either problematic data or peculiar features. We hope to foster the discovery potential of our database; therefore, our spectral fit is available to the community. For example, based on the quality assessment around the Hα and [N II] λ6584 lines, approximately 1% of the SDSS spectra classified as "galaxies" by the SDSS pipeline do in fact require additional broad lines to be matched, even though they do not show a strong continuum from an active nucleus, as

  17. Probing the Luminosity Function of Young Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urrutia, Tanya; Glikman, E.; Lacy, M.

    2010-01-01

    In the last year, we have been using the Triple Spec Near-Infrared spectrograph on the Palomar Observatory to identify candidate dust-reddened quasars using the FIRST radio survey, the UKIDSS near-infrared survey and the SDSS optical survey. A previous campaign using the shallow near-infrared 2MASS survey, was very successful in finding dust obscured quasars by finding very red (R-K > 4, J-K > 1.7) radio sources (Glikman et al. 2007). Among them are many young, interacting galaxies (Urrutia, Lacy & Becker 2008) and a large fraction of Low Ionization Broad Absorption Line Quasars (Urrutia et al. 2009), implying that the red quasar population probes a young phase in the lifetime of an AGN. By using the same color criteria on the deeper UKIDSS survey, we are able to probe into higher redshifts and lower luminosity red quasars. This is a first step to build a luminosity function for dust-obscured quasars. We then will be able to answer the question if young quasars are more generally more luminous as their older counterparts, perhaps because of higher accretion efficiency.

  18. ON THE LINK BETWEEN ASSOCIATED Mg II ABSORBERS AND STAR FORMATION IN QUASAR HOSTS

    SciTech Connect

    Shen Yue; Menard, Brice E-mail: menard@pha.jhu.edu

    2012-04-01

    A few percent of quasars show strong associated Mg II absorption, with velocities (v{sub off}) lying within a few thousand km s{sup -1} from the quasar systemic redshift. These associated absorption line (AAL) systems are usually interpreted as absorbers that are either intrinsic to the quasar and its host, or arising from external galaxies clustering around the quasar. Using composite spectra of {approx}1800 Mg II AAL quasars selected from SDSS DR7 at 0.4 {approx}< z {approx}< 2, we show that quasars with AALs with v{sub off} < 1500 km s{sup -1} have a prominent excess in [O II] {lambda}3727 emission (detected at >7{sigma}) at rest relative to the quasar host, compared to unabsorbed quasars. We interpret this [O II] excess as due to enhanced star formation in the quasar host. Our results suggest that a significant fraction of AALs with v{sub off} < 1500 km s{sup -1} are physically associated with the quasar and its host. AAL quasars also have dust reddening lying between normal quasars and the so-called dust-reddened quasars. We suggest that the unique properties of AAL quasars can be explained if they are the transitional population from heavily dust-reddened quasars to normal quasars in the formation process of quasars and their hosts. This scenario predicts a larger fraction of young bulges, disturbed morphologies, and interactions of AAL quasar hosts compared to normal quasars. The intrinsic link between associated absorbers and quasar hosts opens a new window to probe massive galaxy formation and galactic-scale feedback processes, and provides a crucial test of the evolutionary picture of quasars.

  19. Search for partial systemic Lyman edges in nearby quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koratkar, A. P.; Kinney, A. L.; Bohlin, R. C.

    1992-01-01

    IUE archival spectra of nearby quasars with redshifts in the range 0.4-2.3 were searched for changes in the continuum at the systemic Lyman edge positions. Thirty-nine percent of the sample do not show any discontinuities. Twenty-nine percent of the sample show complete Lyman edges at redshifts less than the quasar redshift. These objects have associated narrow absorption lines; hence the intervening gas responsible for the absorption is extrinsic to the quasar and its environment. Twenty-two percent of the sample show Lyman edges at the quasar redshift with associated narrow absorption lines. In these objects the gas is associated with the AGN or its host galaxy. Ten percent of the sample have Lyman edges with no known associated absorption lines. If Lyman edge discontinuities are due to optically thick, geometrically thin accretion disks, which are randomly oriented to the line of sight, these results indicate that the Lyman edge discontinuity, either in emission or absorption, has to be not more than 15 percent in most quasars.

  20. Constraint on a varying proton-to-electron mass ratio from molecular hydrogen absorption towards quasar SDSS J123714.60+064759.5

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daprà, M.; Bagdonaite, J.; Murphy, M. T.; Ubachs, W.

    2015-11-01

    Molecular hydrogen transitions in the sub-damped Lyman α absorber at redshift zabs ≃ 2.69, towards the background quasar SDSS J123714.60+064759.5, were analysed in order to search for a possible variation of the proton-to-electron mass ratio μ over a cosmological time-scale. The system is composed of three absorbing clouds where 137 H2 and HD absorption features were detected. The observations were taken with the Very Large Telescope/Ultraviolet and Visual Echelle Spectrograph with a signal-to-noise ratio of 32 per 2.5 km s-1 pixel, covering the wavelengths from 356.6 to 409.5 nm. A comprehensive fitting method was used to fit all the absorption features at once. Systematic effects of distortions to the wavelength calibrations were analysed in detail from measurements of asteroid and `solar twin' spectra, and were corrected for. The final constraint on the relative variation in μ between the absorber and the current laboratory value is Δμ/μ = (-5.4 ± 6.3stat ± 4.0syst) × 10-6, consistent with no variation over a look-back time of 11.4 Gyr.

  1. Through BAL Quasars Brightly

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chartas, George

    2003-01-01

    We report on an observation of the broad absorption line (BAL) quasar PG 1115+080 performed with the XMM-Newton observatory. Spectral analysis reveals the second case of a relativistic X-ray-absorbing outflow in a BAL quasar. The first case was revealed in a recent observation of APM 08279+5255 with the Chandra X-Ray Observatory. As in the case of APM 08279+5255, the observed flux of PG 1115+080 is greatly magnified by gravitational lensing. The relatively high redshift (z=1.72) of the quasar places the redshifted energies of resonant absorption features in a sensitive portion of the XMM- Newton spectral response. The spectrum indicates the presence of complex low-energy absorption in the 0.2-0.6 keV observed energy band and high-energy absorption in the 2-5 keV observed energy band. The high-energy absorption is best modeled by two Gaussian absorption lines with rest-frame energies of 7.4 and 9.5 keV. Assuming that these two lines axe produced by resonant absorption due to Fe XXV, we infer that the X-ray absorbers are outflowing with velocities of approx. 0.10c and approx. 0.34c respectively. We have detected significant variability of the energies and widths of the X-ray BALs in PG 1115+080 and APM 08279+5255 over timescales of 19 and 1.8 weeks (proper time), respectively. The BAL variability observed from APM 08279+5255 supports our earlier conclusion that these absorbers are most likely launched at relatively small radii of less than 10(exp 16)(Mbh/M8)(sup 1/2) cm. A comparison of the ionization properties and column densities of the low-energy and high-energy absorbers indicates that these absorbers are likely distinct; however, higher spectral resolution is needed to confirm this result. Finally, we comment on prospects for constraining the kinematic and ionization properties of these X-ray BALs with the next generation of X-ray observatories.

  2. MULTIPLE ABSORPTION-LINE SPECTROSCOPY OF THE INTERGALACTIC MEDIUM. I. MODEL

    SciTech Connect

    Yao Yangsen; Michael Shull, J.; Danforth, Charles W.; Keeney, Brian A.; Stocke, John T.

    2011-04-01

    We present a physically based absorption-line model for the spectroscopic study of the intergalactic medium (IGM). This model adopts results from Cloudy simulations and theoretical calculations by Gnat and Sternberg to examine the resulting observational signatures of the absorbing gas with the following ionization scenarios: collisional ionization equilibrium (CIE), photoionization equilibrium, hybrid (photo- plus collisional ionization), and non-equilibrium cooling. As a demonstration, we apply this model to new observations made with the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph aboard the Hubble Space Telescope of the IGM absorbers at z {approx} 0.1877 along the 1ES 1553+113 sight line. We identify Ly{alpha}, C III, O VI, and N V absorption lines with two distinct velocity components (blue at z{sub b} = 0.18757; red at z{sub r} = 0.18772) separated by {Delta}(cz)/(1 + z) {approx} 38 km s{sup -1}. Joint analyses of these lines indicate that none of the examined ionization scenarios can be applied with confidence to the blue velocity component, although photoionization seems to play a dominant role. For the red component, CIE can be ruled out, but pure photoionization and hybrid scenarios (with T < 1.3 x 10{sup 5} K) are more acceptable. The constrained ranges of hydrogen density and metallicity of the absorbing gas are n{sub H} = (1.9-2.3) x 10{sup -5} cm{sup -3} and Z = (0.43-0.67) Z{sub sun}. These constraints indicate O VI and H I ionization fractions, f{sub OVI} = 0.10-0.15 and f{sub HI} = (3.2-5.1) x 10{sup -5}, with total hydrogen column density N{sub H} = (0.7-1.2) x 10{sup 18} cm{sup -2}. This demonstration shows that the joint analysis of multiple absorption lines can constrain the ionization state of an absorber, and results used to estimate the baryonic matter contained in the absorber.

  3. QSO Lyalpha Absorption Lines in Galaxy Superclusters and Voids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stocke, J. T.; Shull, J. M.; Penton, S.; Burks, G.; Donahue, M.

    1993-12-01

    We have used the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph (GHRS) to search for Lyalpha absorption clouds in nearby galaxy voids (cz <= 10,000 km s(-1) ). Thus far, we have obtained GHRS spectra (G160M, 1225 -- 1255 Angstroms, 0.25 Angstroms resolution) of three very bright Active Galactic Nuclei, Mrk 501, I Zw I, and Mrk 335, at V <= 14.5. We find 4 probable (4.0 sigma - 4.5 sigma ) and 4 definite (5 sigma - 16 sigma ) Lyalpha absorption lines, with equivalent widths W_λ = 50 - 200 m Angstroms, corresponding to column densities N(H I) = 10(13) -- 10(14) cm(-2) , assuming a typical Doppler parameter of b = 25 km s(-1) . Based on an updated version of the CfA redshift survey (Huchra and Clemens, private communication), most of these Lyalpha systems appear to be associated with supercluster - sized ``strings'' of galaxies similar to the ``Great Wall''. Toward Mrk 501, the nearest bright galaxy at the redshift of the strongest (200 m Angstroms) Lyalpha cloud lies 500 h75(-1) kpc off the line of sight. Models of H I disks exposed to the intergalactic ionizing radiation field (Dove & Shull 1994, ApJ, 423, in press) show that the N(H I) = 10(13) cm(-2) contour in a typical spiral galaxy is reached at 100 kpc radial extent. Thus, the Lyalpha absorbers associated with galaxy-string systems may be the result of H I in an extended halo, in dwarf satellite galaxies (M_B > -15), or in tidally-stripped gas. Most importantly for cosmological origins of baryons, one (4.3 sigma ) Lyalpha absorption line in the spectrum of Mrk 501 lies within the galaxy void in the foreground of the ``Great Wall''. The nearest bright galaxy, to a level M_B <= -18.5 for H_0 = 75 km s(-1) Mpc(-1) , is more than 5 Mpc away. A pencil-beam survey of faint galaxies to M_B = -16.0 finds no galaxy within 100 h75(-1) kpc of the line of sight, at or near the absorber redshift.

  4. Absorption Line Profiles for 39 Rapidly Rotating Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stoeckley, T. R.; Carroll, R. W.; Miller, R. D.

    1984-05-01

    Absorption lines of He II, HeI, MgII and other ions have been measured in 169 photographic coude spectra for 39 rapidly rotating B-type stars on the main sequence. All 1500 separate line profiles have been analysed with a procedure of differential corrections by least-squares to yield the following parameters and their error estimates: half-width, central depth, equivalent width and shape parameter. The shape parameter includes Voigt profiles and also `super-Gaussian' and `super-damping' profiles. Up to 15 separately measured line profiles in each star have been superimposed to yield better composite profiles with point scatter as small as 0.5 per cent. In addition, a preliminary value of V sin i is derived for each line of each star, and a mean value (including error bars) is derived for each star. Results are compared and discussed, with reference to forthcoming work incorporating stellar distortion, gravity darkening, and other second-order effects, which will allow determinations of axial inclination and differential rotation of individual stars, using the data sets presented here and elsewhere.

  5. A SIMPLE MODEL FOR QUASAR DEMOGRAPHICS

    SciTech Connect

    Conroy, Charlie; White, Martin

    2013-01-10

    We present a simple model for the relationship between quasars, galaxies, and dark matter halos from 0.5 < z < 6. In the model, black hole (BH) mass is linearly related to galaxy mass, and galaxies are connected to dark matter halos via empirically constrained relations. A simple 'scattered' light bulb model for quasars is adopted, wherein BHs shine at a fixed fraction of the Eddington luminosity during accretion episodes, and Eddington ratios are drawn from a lognormal distribution that is redshift independent. This model has two free, physically meaningful parameters at each redshift: the normalization of the M {sub BH}-M {sub gal} relation and the quasar duty cycle; these parameters are fit to the observed quasar luminosity function (LF) over the interval 0.5 < z < 6. This simple model provides an excellent fit to the LF at all epochs and also successfully predicts the observed projected two-point correlation of quasars from 0.5 < z < 2.5. It is significant that a single quasar duty cycle at each redshift is capable of reproducing the extant observations. The data are therefore consistent with a scenario wherein quasars are equally likely to exist in galaxies, and therefore dark matter halos, over a wide range in masses. The knee in the quasar LF is a reflection of the knee in the stellar-mass-halo-mass relation. Future constraints on the quasar LF and quasar clustering at high redshift will provide strong constraints on the model. In the model, the autocorrelation function of quasars becomes a strong function of luminosity only at the very highest luminosities and will be difficult to observe because such quasars are so rare. Cross-correlation techniques may provide useful constraints on the bias of such rare objects. The simplicity of the model allows for rapid generation of quasar mock catalogs from N-body simulations that match the observed LF and clustering to high redshift.

  6. What BOSS has taught us about Quasars.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ross, Nicholas; SDSS-III BOSS Quasar Science Working Group

    2015-01-01

    This talk presents science highlights from the SDSS-III BOSS Quasar Survey, which has obtained spectra for over 300,000 quasars, 200,000 of which are at redshift z>2. Using this dataset, new measurements of the luminosity function have been made, with the faint end of the luminosity function now measured to z~5. New clustering results from DR12 are presented, and the weak luminosity dependence of quasar clustering at z~0.5 is also discussed.New studies of the broad absorption line (BAL) quasar population have also been performed, with a sample of BAL quasars from the original SDSS being re-observed. These new data have shown the disappearance of CIV BAL troughs and indeed the transformation of BAL QSOs to non-BAL QSOs. BAL disappearance, and emergence, events appear to be extremes of general BAL variability, and have shed light on accretion-disk wind models.We highlight the discovery of new classes of quasars including: a population of broad-line Mg II emitters found in a passive galaxy sample; objects with extremely red optical-to-mid infrared colors; objects with very curious UV line (LyA:NV) ratios and potentially the long-sought after high-redshift Type 2 Quasar population.Finally, we describe two new dedicated programs, one focusing on reverberation mapping, the other on X-ray selected quasars.A full list of papers connected to the BOSS Quasar Survey is given at: http://www.sdss3.org/science/publications.php

  7. Interstellar MG II Absorption Lines from Low-Redshift Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowen, David V.; Blades, J. Chris; Pettini, Max

    1995-08-01

    We have used the GHRS aboard HST to search for interstellar Mg II 2796, 2803 absorption from the disks and halos of 17 low-redshift galaxies, using as probes QSOs and extragalactic supernovae whose sight lines pass close to, or through, intervening galaxies. The galaxies studied are of diverse morphological type, reside in different environments, and lie at separations of p' ≃ 2-113 h-1 kpc from a QSO line of sight. Ten of 11 galaxies at separations 31-113 h-1 kpc show no absorption to equivalent width limits of W(λ2796) <40-90 mÅ, which corresponds to N(Mg II) ≃1-4 × 1012 cm-2. Six galaxies lie at p' ≤ 9 kpc, and of these, four (NGC 4319, the LMC, M81, and the Milky Way) show absorption. Two early-type galaxies (NGC 1380 and Leo I) show no absorption at p' < 9 kpc: these nondetections are surprising because the separations are small and point to the possibility that the existence of extended absorbing halos may be a function of galaxy type. All of the galaxies which produce absorption are plausibly members of interacting systems. For absorbing galaxies probed below 9 kpc, the sight line passes within the optical radius of the galaxy, where the interstellar medium (ISM) is expected to have a high covering factor, and we do not attribute the absorption to the interactions. However, we do find that the environment of the absorbing galaxies affects the characteristics of the absorption detected the strength of lines, the complexity of line components, the ionization state of the gas and we warn of the dangers inherent in constructing models of generic halos based on statistical properties of QSO absorption-line surveys. Our data suggest that the covering factor of Mg II absorption is high for galaxies within ≍10 kpc, but very small beyond ≍30 h-1 kpc, a result consistent with the size found of Mg II halos deduced for galaxies at redshifts z > 0.2. The low-redshift galaxies observed in this study which show Mg II absorption are probably drawn from the same

  8. New Limit on the Spatial and Temporal Variations of the Fine-Structure Constant Using High Redshifts of Quasar Spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le, T. D.

    2015-03-01

    Highly precise measurements on the light from distant quasars can served as a powerful tool to test the possible spatial and temporal variations of the fine-structure constant α = e 2 /c during the evolution of the Universe. Here we set a limit on the possible cosmological space-time variations of α by comparing transitions in the absorption lines of the SiIV doublet observed in the early Universe with those mesured in the laboratory. The weighted mean value of the α-variation derived from our analysis over the redshift range 2.0 ≤ cps≤ 3.7 is Δα/α (-0.53 ± 0.72) ×10-5. This result improves the constraint on Δα/α by a factor of ~ seven compared to the published results in the literature.

  9. Tracing inflows and outflows with absorption lines in circumgalactic gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ford, Amanda Brady; Davé, Romeel; Oppenheimer, Benjamin D.; Katz, Neal; Kollmeier, Juna A.; Thompson, Robert; Weinberg, David H.

    2014-10-01

    We examine how H I and metal absorption lines within low-redshift galaxy haloes trace the dynamical state of circumgalactic gas, using cosmological hydrodynamic simulations that include a well-vetted heuristic model for galactic outflows. We categorize inflowing, outflowing, and ambient gas based on its history and fate as tracked in our simulation. Following our earlier work, showing that the ionization level of absorbers was a primary factor in determining the physical conditions of absorbing gas, we show here that it is also a governing factor for its dynamical state. Low-ionization metal absorbers (e.g. Mg II) tend to arise in gas that will fall on to galaxies within several Gyr, while high-ionization metal absorbers (e.g. O VI) generally trace material that was deposited by outflows many Gyr ago. Inflowing gas is dominated by enriched material that was previously ejected in an outflow; hence, accretion at low redshifts is typically substantially enriched. Recycling wind material is preferentially found closer to galaxies, and is more dominant in lower mass haloes since high-mass haloes have more hot gas that is able to support itself against infall. Low-mass haloes also tend to re-eject more of their accreted material, owing to our outflow prescription that employs higher mass loading factors for lower mass galaxies. Typical H I absorbers trace unenriched ambient material that is not participating in the baryon cycle, but stronger H I absorbers arise in cool, enriched inflowing gas. Instantaneous radial velocity measures of absorbers are generally poor at distinguishing between inflowing and outflowing gas, except in the case of very recent outflows. These results suggest that probing halo gas using a range of absorbers can provide detailed information about the amount and physical conditions of material that is participating in the baryon cycle.

  10. Gravitationally redshifted absorption lines in the X-ray burst spectra of a neutron star.

    PubMed

    Cottam, J; Paerels, F; Mendez, M

    2002-11-01

    The fundamental properties of neutron stars provide a direct test of the equation of state of cold nuclear matter, a relationship between pressure and density that is determined by the physics of the strong interactions between the particles that constitute the star. The most straightforward method of determining these properties is by measuring the gravitational redshift of spectral lines produced in the neutron star photosphere. The equation of state implies a mass-radius relation, while a measurement of the gravitational redshift at the surface of a neutron star provides a direct constraint on the mass-to-radius ratio. Here we report the discovery of significant absorption lines in the spectra of 28 bursts of the low-mass X-ray binary EXO0748-676. We identify the most significant features with the Fe XXVI and XXV n = 2-3 and O VIII n = 1-2 transitions, all with a redshift of z = 0.35, identical within small uncertainties for the respective transitions. For an astrophysically plausible range of masses (M approximately 1.3-2.0 solar masses; refs 2-5), this value is completely consistent with models of neutron stars composed of normal nuclear matter, while it excludes some models in which the neutron stars are made of more exotic matter. PMID:12422210

  11. Can quasars photoionize the intergalactic medium at high redshift?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meiksin, Avery; Madau, Piero

    1993-01-01

    The reionization of the intergalactic medium (IGM) by quasar sources at high redshift are discussed. The integrated UV background from observed QSO's, taking into account the hydrogen opacity associated with intervening Ly-alpha clouds and Lyman limit systems are computed. It is noted that the published data appear to indicate a significant underdensity of absorption systems in the Ly-alpha forest with column densities N(sub HI) greater than 10(exp 15) cm(sup -2). This deficit results in a reduction of the opacity of the universe by a factor of 1.5-3 at z = 3-5 relative to previous estimates. The QSO contribution to the metagalactic flux at the Lyman edge may be as large as J(sub 912)(z) is approximately 6((1 + z)/4.5)(sup 0.5) x 10(exp -22) erg cm(sup -2) s(sup -1) Hz(sup -1) sr(sup -1) for q(sup o) = O, and slightly lower for q(sub o) = 1/2. For a density of the diffuse component of the IGM of omega(sub D)(h(sub 50)(sup 2)) less than 0.025, QSO's could photoionize a smooth IGM sufficiently to satisfy the constraints imposed by the Gunn-Peterson effect. The epoch of reionization could be as recent as z is approximately greater than 5. As a result, neutral patches of IGM would be detectable in the spectra of high redshift quasars. The patches would appear as absorption line systems with typical column densities of 10(exp 19) - 10(exp 20) cm(sup -2), and velocity widths of 100 - 1000 km s(sup -1).

  12. Characterizing Quasar Outflows II: The Incidence of the Highest Velocity Outflows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stark, Michele A.; Ganguly, R.; Christenson, D. H.; Richmond, J. M.; Derseweh, J. A.; Robbins, J. M.; Townsend, S. L.

    2012-05-01

    Galaxy evolution models have shown that quasars are a crucial ingredient in the evolution of massive galaxies. Outflows play a key role in the story of quasars and their host galaxies, by helping regulate the accretion process, the star-formation rate and mass of the host galaxy (i.e., feedback). The prescription for modeling outflows as a contributor to feedback requires knowledge of the outflow velocity, geometry, and column density. In particular, we need to understand how these depend on physical parameters and how much is determined stochastically (and with what distribution). For this purpose, we are examining a sample of 11000 z=1.7-2.0 quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. This redshift range permits the following from the SDSS spectra: (1) separation of objects that do and do not exhibit outflows; (2) classification/measurement of outflow properties (ionization, velocity, velocity width); and (3) measurements of UV emission line and continuum parameters. In an accompanying poster, we subjectively divide these quasars into four categories (broad absorption-line quasars, associated absorption-line quasars, reddened quasars, and unabsorbed/unreddened quasars). This subjective scheme is limited with regard to classifying narrow absorption-line systems (NALs). With single epoch, low dispersion SDSS spectra, we cannot distinguish between cosmologically intervening NALs, and intrinsic NALs that appear at large velocity offsets. In this poster, we tackle this uncertainty statistically by considering the incidence of both CIV and MgII NALs as a function of velocity, and how this distribution changes with quasar properties. We expect that absorption by intervening structures should not vary with quasar property. Other accompanying posters add photometry from rest-frame X-ray through the infrared (WISE) to complete the SED, which we utilize in these efforts. This material is based upon work supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under

  13. Causes and effects of the first quasars.

    PubMed Central

    Rees, M J

    1993-01-01

    The light we observe from the most distant known quasars set out when the Universe was about 200 times denser than it is now and less than one-tenth of its present age. The existence of these objects implies that galaxy formation had already, at that early epoch, proceeded to the stage when massive (>10(8)M[symbol, see text]) objects had accumulated in the centers of at least some young galaxies. A specific model is presented to show that the evolution and luminosity function of quasars are compatible with the cold dark matter cosmogony. Most big galaxies probably passed through a quasar phase; the remnant black holes in nearby galaxies may reveal themselves via the flares that occur whenever a star passes too close to them and gets tidally disrupted. The rich absorption spectra of quasars serve as a probe of the intervening medium. The gas responsible for the Lyman alpha absorption lines may be due to primordial gas gravitationally confined in minihalos of dark matter--shallow potential wells whose evolution and relation to dwarf galaxies are briefly discussed. The patchy heat input into the intergalactic medium from early quasars could modulate the environment in which galaxies form, leading to large-scale spatial correlations in the galaxy distribution. This review concludes with general comments on the prospects for a fully quantitative understanding of galaxy formation. PMID:11607397

  14. Optical variability properties of mini-BAL and NAL quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horiuchi, Takashi; Misawa, Toru; Morokuma, Tomoki; Koyamada, Suzuka; Takahashi, Kazuma; Wada, Hisashi

    2016-05-01

    While narrow absorption lines (NALs) are relatively stable, broad absorption lines (BALs) and mini-BAL systems usually show violent time variability within a few years via a mechanism that is not yet understood. In this study, we examine the variable ionization state (VIS) scenario as a plausible mechanism, as previously suspected. Over three years, we performed photometric monitoring observations of four mini-BAL and five NAL quasars at zem ˜ 2.0-3.1 using the 105 cm Kiso Schmidt Telescope in u, g, and i bands. We also performed spectroscopic monitoring observation of one of our mini-BAL quasars (HS 1603+3820) using the 188 cm Okayama Telescope over the same period as the photometric observations. Our main results are as follows: (1) Structure function (SF) analysis revealed that the quasar UV flux variability over three years was not large enough to support the VIS scenario, unless the ionization condition of outflow gas is very low. (2) There was no crucial difference between the SFs of mini-BAL and NAL quasars. (3) The variability of the mini-BAL and quasar light curves was weakly synchronized with a small time delay for HS 1603+3820. These results suggest that the VIS scenario may need additional mechanisms such as variable shielding by X-ray warm absorbers.

  15. Optical variability properties of mini-BAL and NAL quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horiuchi, Takashi; Misawa, Toru; Morokuma, Tomoki; Koyamada, Suzuka; Takahashi, Kazuma; Wada, Hisashi

    2016-08-01

    While narrow absorption lines (NALs) are relatively stable, broad absorption lines (BALs) and mini-BAL systems usually show violent time variability within a few years via a mechanism that is not yet understood. In this study, we examine the variable ionization state (VIS) scenario as a plausible mechanism, as previously suspected. Over three years, we performed photometric monitoring observations of four mini-BAL and five NAL quasars at zem ˜ 2.0-3.1 using the 105 cm Kiso Schmidt Telescope in u, g, and i bands. We also performed spectroscopic monitoring observation of one of our mini-BAL quasars (HS 1603+3820) using the 188 cm Okayama Telescope over the same period as the photometric observations. Our main results are as follows: (1) Structure function (SF) analysis revealed that the quasar UV flux variability over three years was not large enough to support the VIS scenario, unless the ionization condition of outflow gas is very low. (2) There was no crucial difference between the SFs of mini-BAL and NAL quasars. (3) The variability of the mini-BAL and quasar light curves was weakly synchronized with a small time delay for HS 1603+3820. These results suggest that the VIS scenario may need additional mechanisms such as variable shielding by X-ray warm absorbers.

  16. Absorption lines from magnetically driven winds in X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakravorty, S.; Petrucci, P.-O.; Ferreira, J.; Henri, G.; Belmont, R.; Clavel, M.; Corbel, S.; Rodriguez, J.; Coriat, M.; Drappeau, S.; Malzac, J.

    2016-05-01

    Context. High resolution X-ray spectra of black hole X-ray binaries (BHBs) show blueshifted absorption lines suggesting the presence of outflowing winds. Furthermore, observations show that the disk winds are equatorial and they occur in the Softer (disk dominated) states of the outburst and are less prominent or absent in the Harder (power-law dominated) states. Aims: We want to test whether the self-similar magneto-hydrodynamic (MHD) accretion-ejection models can explain the observational results for accretion disk winds in BHBs. In our models, the density at the base of the outflow from the accretion disk is not a free parameter. This mass loading is determined by solving the full set of dynamical MHD equations without neglecting any physical term. Thus, the physical properties of the outflow depend on and are controlled by the global structure of the disk. Methods: We studied different MHD solutions characterized by different values of the disk aspect ratio (ɛ) and the ejection efficiency (p). We also generate two kinds of MHD solutions depending on the absence (cold solution) or presence (warm solution) of heating at the disk surface. Such heating could be either from dissipation of energy due to MHD turbulence in the disk or from illumination of the disk surface. Warm solutions can have large (>0.1) values of p, which would imply larger wind mass loading at the base of the outflow. We use each of these MHD solutions to predict the physical parameters (distance, density, velocity, magnetic field, etc.) of an outflow. Motivated by observational results, we have put limits on the ionization parameter (ξ), column density, and timescales. Further constraints were derived for the allowed values of ξ from thermodynamic instability considerations, particularly for the Hard SED. These physical constraints were imposed on each of these outflows to select regions within it, which are consistent with the observed winds. Results: The cold MHD solutions are found to be

  17. Mining for Dust in Type 1 Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krawczyk, Coleman M.; Richards, Gordon T.; Gallagher, S. C.; Leighly, Karen M.; Hewett, Paul C.; Ross, Nicholas P.; Hall, P. B.

    2015-06-01

    We explore the extinction/reddening of ˜35,000 uniformly selected quasars with 0\\lt z≤slant 5.3 in order to better understand their intrinsic optical/ultraviolet (UV) spectral energy distributions. Using rest-frame optical-UV photometry taken from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey’s (SDSS) 7th data release, cross-matched to WISE in the mid-infrared, 2MASS and UKIDSS in the near-infrared, and GALEX in the UV, we isolate outliers in the color distribution and find them well described by an SMC-like reddening law. A hierarchical Bayesian model with a Markov Chain Monte Carlo sampling method was used to find distributions of power law indices and E(B-V) consistent with both the broad absorption line (BAL) and non-BAL samples. We find that, of the ugriz color-selected type 1 quasars in SDSS, 2.5% (13%) of the non-BAL (BAL) sample are consistent with E(B-V)\\gt 0.1 and 0.1% (1.3%) with E(B-V)\\gt 0.2. Simulations show both populations of quasars are intrinsically bluer than the mean composite, with a mean spectral index ({{α }λ }) of -1.79 (-1.83). The emission and absorption-line properties of both samples reveal that quasars with intrinsically red continua have narrower Balmer lines and stronger high-ionization emission lines, the latter indicating a harder continuum in the extreme-UV and the former pointing to differences in black hole mass and/or orientation.

  18. High HI column density lyman limit absorption in z>4 quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Storrie-Lombardi, L. J.; McMahon, R. G.; Irwin, M. J.; Hazard, C.

    1992-12-01

    The high HI column density Lyman Limit absorption line systems (LLS) are the parent population from which absorbers that are selected on the basis of MgII absorption are drawn. At z=0.5--1.0 the MgII systems have been shown to be associated with the extended halos of bright galaxies (Bergeron & Boisse 1991). Recent work on LLS evolution by Sargent, Steidel & Boksenberg(1989) and Lanzetta(1991) disagree considerably in the form of evolution observed. Whilst SSB claim no evolution in number density up to z=3.5, Lanzetta reports evidence for strong evolution in the number density of LLS for z > 2.5. We shall present results of a low resolution absorption line study of z>4 quasars. The z>4 quasar sample is the ~ 20 brightest non-BAL quasars from the APM z>4 quasar survey. Our observations have been combined with HST observations in low redshift quasars to enable a new determination of the evolution of LLS over the redshift range 0.5 to 4.5. These observations extend absorption line studies to higher redshifts than have been possible before.

  19. Galaxies on Top of Quasars: Probing Dwarf Galaxies in the SDSS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Straka, Lorrie; York, D. G.; Noterdaeme, P.; Srianand, R.; Bowen, D. V.; Khare, P.; Bishof, M.; Whichard, Z.; Kulkarni, V. P.

    2013-07-01

    Absorption lines from galaxies at intervening redshifts in quasar spectra are sensitive probes of metals and gas that are otherwise invisible due to distance or low surface brightness. However, in order to determine the environments these absorption lines arise in, we must detect these galaxies in emission as well. Galaxies on top of quasars (GOTOQs) are low-z galaxies found intervening with background quasars in the SDSS. These galaxies have been flagged for their narrow galactic emission lines present in quasar spectra in the SDSS. Typically, the low-z nature of these galaxies allows them to be easily detected in SDSS imaging. However, a number of GOTOQs (about 10%), despite being detected in spectral emission, are NOT seen in SDSS imaging. This implies that these may be dark galaxies, dwarf galaxies, or similarly low surface brightness galaxies. Additionally, about 25% of those detected in imaging are dwarf galaxies according to their L* values. Dwarf galaxies have long been underrepresented in observations compared to theory and are known to have large extents in dark matter. Given their prevalence here in our sample we must ask what role they play in quasar absorption line systems (QSOALS). Recent detections of 21-cm galaxies with few stars imply that aborted star formation in dark matter sub halos may produce QSOALS. Thus, this sub sample of galaxies offers a unique technique for probing dark and dwarf galaxies. The sample and its properties will be discussed, including star formation rates and dust estimates, as well as prospects for the future.

  20. Vanishing absorption and blueshifted emission in FeLoBAL quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rafiee, Alireza; Pirkola, Patrik; Hall, Patrick B.; Galati, Natalee; Rogerson, Jesse; Ameri, Abtin

    2016-07-01

    We study the dramatic decrease in iron absorption strength in the iron low-ionization broad absorption line quasar SDSS J084133.15+200525.8. We report on the continued weakening of absorption in the prototype of this class of variable broad absorption line quasar, FBQS J140806.2+305448. We also report a third example of this class, SDSS J123103.70+392903.6; unlike the other two examples, it has undergone an increase in observed continuum brightness (at 3000 Å rest frame) as well as a decrease in iron absorption strength. These changes could be caused by absorber transverse motion or by ionization variability. We note that the Mg II and UV Fe II lines in several FeLoBAL quasars are blueshifted by thousands of km s-1 relative to the H β emission line peak. We suggest that such emission arises in the outflowing winds normally seen only in absorption.

  1. NuSTAR J033202-2746.8: Direct constraints on the Compton reflection in a heavily obscured quasar at z ≈ 2

    SciTech Connect

    Del Moro, A.; Mullaney, J. R.; Alexander, D. M.; Aird, J. A.; Gandhi, P.; Comastri, A.; Vignali, C.; Gilli, R.; Bauer, F. E.; Treister, E.; Stern, D.; Civano, F.; Ranalli, P.; Ballantyne, D. R.; Baloković, M.; Boggs, S. E.; Brandt, W. N.; Christensen, F. E.; Craig, W. W.; Hailey, C. J.; and others

    2014-05-01

    We report Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) observations of NuSTAR J033202-2746.8, a heavily obscured, radio-loud quasar detected in the Extended Chandra Deep Field-South, the deepest layer of the NuSTAR extragalactic survey (∼400 ks, at its deepest). NuSTAR J033202-2746.8 is reliably detected by NuSTAR only at E > 8 keV and has a very flat spectral slope in the NuSTAR energy band (Γ=0.55{sub −0.64}{sup +0.62}; 3-30 keV). Combining the NuSTAR data with extremely deep observations by Chandra and XMM-Newton (4 Ms and 3 Ms, respectively), we constrain the broad-band X-ray spectrum of NuSTAR J033202-2746.8, indicating that this source is a heavily obscured quasar (N{sub H}=5.6{sub −0.8}{sup +0.9}×10{sup 23} cm{sup –2}) with luminosity L {sub 10-40} {sub keV} ≈ 6.4 × 10{sup 44} erg s{sup –1}. Although existing optical and near-infrared (near-IR) data, as well as follow-up spectroscopy with the Keck and VLT telescopes, failed to provide a secure redshift identification for NuSTAR J033202-2746.8, we reliably constrain the redshift z = 2.00 ± 0.04 from the X-ray spectral features (primarily from the iron K edge). The NuSTAR spectrum shows a significant reflection component (R=0.55{sub −0.37}{sup +0.44}), which was not constrained by previous analyses of Chandra and XMM-Newton data alone. The measured reflection fraction is higher than the R ∼ 0 typically observed in bright radio-loud quasars such as NuSTAR J033202-2746.8, which has L {sub 1.4} {sub GHz} ≈ 10{sup 27} W Hz{sup –1}. Constraining the spectral shape of active galactic nuclei (AGNs), including bright quasars, is very important for understanding the AGN population, and can have a strong impact on the modeling of the X-ray background. Our results show the importance of NuSTAR in investigating the broad-band spectral properties of quasars out to high redshift.

  2. NuSTAR J033202-2746.8: Direct Constraints on the Compton Reflection in a Heavily Obscured Quasar at z ≈ 2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Del Moro, A.; Mullaney, J. R.; Alexander, D. M.; Comastri, A.; Bauer, F. E.; Treister, E.; Stern, D.; Civano, F.; Ranalli, P.; Vignali, C.; Aird, J. A.; Ballantyne, D. R.; Baloković, M.; Boggs, S. E.; Brandt, W. N.; Christensen, F. E.; Craig, W. W.; Gandhi, P.; Gilli, R.; Hailey, C. J.; Harrison, F. A.; Hickox, R. C.; LaMassa, S. M.; Lansbury, G. B.; Luo, B.; Puccetti, S.; Urry, M.; Zhang, W. W.

    2014-05-01

    We report Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) observations of NuSTAR J033202-2746.8, a heavily obscured, radio-loud quasar detected in the Extended Chandra Deep Field-South, the deepest layer of the NuSTAR extragalactic survey (~400 ks, at its deepest). NuSTAR J033202-2746.8 is reliably detected by NuSTAR only at E > 8 keV and has a very flat spectral slope in the NuSTAR energy band (\\Gamma =0.55^{+0.62}_{-0.64}; 3-30 keV). Combining the NuSTAR data with extremely deep observations by Chandra and XMM-Newton (4 Ms and 3 Ms, respectively), we constrain the broad-band X-ray spectrum of NuSTAR J033202-2746.8, indicating that this source is a heavily obscured quasar (N_H=5.6^{+0.9}_{-0.8}\\times 10^{23} cm-2) with luminosity L 10-40 keV ≈ 6.4 × 1044 erg s-1. Although existing optical and near-infrared (near-IR) data, as well as follow-up spectroscopy with the Keck and VLT telescopes, failed to provide a secure redshift identification for NuSTAR J033202-2746.8, we reliably constrain the redshift z = 2.00 ± 0.04 from the X-ray spectral features (primarily from the iron K edge). The NuSTAR spectrum shows a significant reflection component (R=0.55^{+0.44}_{-0.37}), which was not constrained by previous analyses of Chandra and XMM-Newton data alone. The measured reflection fraction is higher than the R ~ 0 typically observed in bright radio-loud quasars such as NuSTAR J033202-2746.8, which has L 1.4 GHz ≈ 1027 W Hz-1. Constraining the spectral shape of active galactic nuclei (AGNs), including bright quasars, is very important for understanding the AGN population, and can have a strong impact on the modeling of the X-ray background. Our results show the importance of NuSTAR in investigating the broad-band spectral properties of quasars out to high redshift.

  3. High Velocity Outflows in Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamann, Fred; Rodriguez Hidalgo, Paola; Nestor, Daniel

    2006-02-01

    High velocity (HV) outflows are important components of SMBH growth and evolution. The ability of SMBHs to accrete matter and light up as AGN probably requires that outflows are present to carry away angular momentum. Outflows during the luminous AGN phase might also play a critical role in ``unveiling" young dust-enshrouded AGN and in ``polluting" the intergalactic medium with metals at high redshifts. Nonetheless, AGN outflows remain poorly understood. We have begun a program to study a nearly unexplored realm of AGN outflow parameter space: HV winds with v> 10,000 km/s up to v~ 0.2c but small velocity dispersions (narrow absorption lines), such that v/(Delta) v ≫ 1. These extreme outflows have been detected so far in just a few quasars, but they might be ubiquitous if, as expected, the flows subtend a small solid angle as seen from the central engine. Narrow-line HV flows merit specific attention because they pose unique challenges for theoretical models of the wind acceleration, mass loss rates, launch radii, etc. They might also comprise a significant fraction of absorbers previously attributed to unrelated (interveinng) gas or galaxies. We have compiled a list of bright quasars with candidate HV outflow lines (CIV 1550 A) in existing SDSS spectra. We now propose to observe ~50 of these candidates with the 2.1m GoldCam to i) identify/confirm some of the true outflow systems (based on line variability), ii) place a firm lower limit on the fraction of quasars with narrow-line HV outflows, iii) compile a short list of confirmed HV outflow sources for future study, and iv) use the combined SDSS and GoldCam data to measure or constrain basic outflow properties, such as the kinematics, locations, and physical conditions.

  4. Rapid CIV BAL Variability in an SDSS-RM Quasar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grier, Catherine; Hall, Patrick B.; Brandt, W. Niel; Trump, Jonathan; Shen, Yue; Vivek, M.

    2015-01-01

    The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Reverberation Mapping Project (SDSS-RM) recently completed its first round of spectroscopic observations of a sample of ~850 quasars with the SDSS-III BOSS spectrograph. From 2014 January-July, more than 30 epochs of spectroscopy were obtained for this quasar sample, and supporting observations were carried out at the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope and the Steward Observatory Bok telescope. A number of quasars observed as a part of this project have broad absorption line (BAL) features in their spectra; we here report on observations of one such target that displays very rapid BAL variability --- the CIV trough is variable on rest frame timescales shorter than a few days. We will discuss the observed short-timescale variability of this BAL and the implications for the physical environment and physics regulating BALs in active galactic nuclei.

  5. Variable Reddening and Broad Absorption Lines in the Narrow-line Seyfert 1 Galaxy WPVS 007: An Origin in the Torus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leighly, Karen M.; Cooper, Erin; Grupe, Dirk; Terndrup, Donald M.; Komossa, S.

    2015-08-01

    We report the discovery of an occultation event in the low-luminosity narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxy WPVS 007 in 2015 February and March. In concert with longer timescale variability, these observations place strong constraints on the nature and location of the absorbing material. Swift monitoring has revealed a secular decrease since ∼2010 accompanied by flattening of the optical and UV photometry that suggests variable reddening. Analysis of four Hubble Space Telescope COS observations since 2010, including a Director’s Discretionary time observation during the occultation, shows that the broad-absorption-line velocity offset and the C iv emission-line width both decrease as the reddening increases. The occultation dynamical timescale, the BAL variability dynamical timescale, and the density of the BAL gas show that both the reddening material and the broad-absorption-line gas are consistent with an origin in the torus. These observations can be explained by a scenario in which the torus is clumpy with variable scale height, and the BAL gas is blown from the torus material like spray from the crest of a wave. As the obscuring material passes into our line of sight, we alternately see high-velocity broad absorption lines and a clear view to the central engine, or low-velocity broad absorption lines and strong reddening. WPVS 007 has a small black hole mass, and correspondingly short timescales, and so we may be observing behavior that is common in BALQSOs, but is not typically observable. Based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. These observations are associated with programs 11733, 13015, and 14058.

  6. Characterizing Quasar Outflows III: SEDs, and Bolometric Luminosity Estimates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richmond, Joseph; Robbins, J. M.; Ganguly, R.; Stark, M. A.; Christenson, D. H.; Derseweh, J. A.; Townsend, S. L.

    2012-05-01

    Galaxy evolution models have shown that quasars are a crucial ingredient in the evolution of massive galaxies. Outflows play a key role in the story of quasars and their host galaxies, by helping regulate the accretion process, the star-formation rate and mass of the host galaxy (i.e., feedback). The prescription for modeling outflows as a contributor to feedback requires knowledge of the outflow velocity, geometry, and column density. In particular, we need to understand how these depend on physical parameters and how much is determined stochastically (and with what distribution). For this purpose, we are examining a sample of 11000 z=1.7-2.0 quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. This redshift range permits the following from the SDSS spectra: (1) separation of objects that do and do not exhibit outflows; (2) classification/measurement of outflow properties (ionization, velocity, velocity width); and (3) measurements of UV emission line and continuum parameters. In this poster, we add photometry from both the Two Micron All-Sky Survey (2MASS) and from the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE). 2MASS photometry covers the rest-frame optical regime of these qusars, while the WISE W1, W2, and W3 bands cover the rest-frame wavelength ranges 0.9-1.27 micron, 1.35-1.75 micron, and 2.52-5.51 micron, respectively. The preliminary release of WISE data cover 3800 of our quasars. In an accompnying poster, we have subjectively divided these quasars into four categories: broad absorption-line quasars (2700 objects), associated absorption-line quasars (1700 objects), reddened quasars (160 objects), and unabsorbed/unreddened quasars (6300 objects). Here, we present average SEDs for these subsamples, estimates of bolometric luminosity, and explore changes in SED based on both outflow properties and quasar physical properties. This material is based upon work supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under Grant No. 09-ADP09-0016 issued through the

  7. Detecting the Warm-Hot Intergalactic Medium through X-Ray Absorption Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Yangsen; Shull, J. Michael; Wang, Q. Daniel; Cash, Webster

    2012-02-01

    The warm-hot intergalactic medium (WHIM) at temperatures 105-107 K is believed to contain 30%-50% of the baryons in the local universe. However, all current X-ray detections of the WHIM at redshifts z > 0 are of low statistical significance (lsim 3σ) and/or controversial. In this work, we aim to establish the detection limits of current X-ray observatories and explore requirements for next-generation X-ray telescopes for studying the WHIM through X-ray absorption lines. We analyze all available grating observations of Mrk 421 and obtain spectra with signal-to-noise ratios (S/Ns) of ~90 and 190 per 50 mÅ spectral bin from Chandra and XMM-Newton observations, respectively. Although these spectra are two of the best ever collected with Chandra and XMM-Newton, we cannot confirm the two WHIM systems reported by Nicastro et al. in 2005. Our bootstrap simulations indicate that spectra with such high S/N cannot constrain the WHIM with O VII column densities N_{O VII}≈ 10^{15} cm^{-2} (corresponding to an equivalent width of 2.5 mÅ for a Doppler velocity of 50 km s-1) at >~ 3σ significance level. The simulation results also suggest that it would take >60 Ms for Chandra and 140 Ms for XMM-Newton to measure the N_{OVII} at >=4σ from a spectrum of a background QSO with flux of ~0.2 mCrab (1 Crab = 2 × 10-8 erg s-1 cm-2 at 0.5-2 keV). Future X-ray spectrographs need to be equipped with spectral resolution R ~ 4000 and effective area A >= 100 cm2 to accomplish the similar constraints with an exposure time of ~2 Ms and would require ~11 Ms to survey the 15 QSOs with flux >~ 0.2 mCrab along which clear intergalactic O VI absorbers have been detected.

  8. The quasar mass-luminosity plane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinhardt, Charles Louis

    2010-11-01

    This thesis investigates the quasar mass-luminosity plane, as a new tool to explore the relationship between black hole mass and quasar luminosity over time. Previous techniques used quasar luminosity function and mass functions, which are one-dimensional projections of the mass-luminosity plane. The M --- L plane contains information that cannot be seen in these projections. We use 62,185 quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey DR5 sample to develop several new constraints on quasar accretion. Black hole masses, based on the widths of their Hbeta, Mg II, and C IV lines and adjacent continuum luminosities, were used assuming using standard virial mass estimate scaling laws. In each redshift interval over the range 0.2 < z < 4.0, low-mass quasars reach at their Eddington luminosity, but high-mass quasars fall short, even by a factor of ten or more at 0.2 < z < 0.6. We examine several potential sources of measurement uncertainty or bias and show that none of them can account for this effect. We also show the statistical uncertainty in virial mass estimation to have an upper bound of ˜ 0.2 dex, smaller than the 0.4 dex previously reported. The maximum mass of quasars at each redshift is sharp and evolving. High-mass black holes turn off their luminous accretion at higher redshift than lower-mass black holes. Further, turnoff for quasars at any given mass is synchronized to within 0.7--3 Gyr, tighter than would be expected given the dynamics of their host galaxies. We find potential signatures of the quasar turnoff mechanism, including a dearth of high-mass quasars at low Eddington ratio, low CIV/MgII emission line ratio, and a red spectral tilt. Finally, we use these new constraints to analyze models for the evolution of individual quasars over time. We find a restricted family of tracks that lie within the M --- L plane at all redshifts, suggesting that a single, constant feedback mechanism between all supermassive black holes and their host galaxies might apply

  9. Studying Velocity Turbulence from Doppler-broadened Absorption Lines: Statistics of Optical Depth Fluctuations

    SciTech Connect

    Lazarian, A.; Pogosyan, D.

    2008-10-10

    We continue our work on developing techniques for studying turbulence with spectroscopic data. We show that Doppler-broadened absorption spectral lines, in particular, saturated absorption lines, can be used within the framework of the previously introduced technique termed the velocity coordinate spectrum (VCS). The VCS relates the statistics of fluctuations along the velocity coordinate to the statistics of turbulence; thus, it does not require spatial coverage by sampling directions in the plane of the sky. We consider lines with different degree of absorption and show that for lines of optical depth less than one, our earlier treatment of the VCS developed for spectral emission lines is applicable, if the optical depth is used instead of intensity. This amounts to correlating the logarithms of absorbed intensities. For larger optical depths and saturated absorption lines, we show that only wings of the line are available for the analysis. In terms of the VCS formalism, this results in introducing an additional window, whose size decreases with the increase of the optical depth. As a result, strongly saturated absorption lines only carry the information about the small-scale turbulence. Nevertheless, the contrast of the fluctuations corresponding to the small-scale turbulence increases with the increase of the optical depth, which provides advantages for studying turbulence by combining lines with different optical depths. By combining different absorption lines one can develop a tomography of the turbulence in the interstellar gas in all its complexity.

  10. HI Absorption Lines Detected from the Arecibo Legacy Fast ALFA Survey Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhong-zu, Wu; Martha P, Haynes; Riccardo, Giovanelli; Ming, Zhu; Ru-rong, Chen

    2015-10-01

    We present some preliminary results of an on-going study of HI 21-cm absorption lines based on the 40% survey data released by the Arecibo Legacy Fast Arecibo L-band Feed Array (ALFALFA). (1) Ten HI candidate absorbers have been detected. Five of them are previously published in the literature, and the rest of them are new detections that need further confirmation. (2) For those sources with no detected absorptions, we have calculated the upper limit of their foreground HI column density NHI. The statistical result of the NHI distribution indicates that the ratio Ts/f between the averaged spin temperature and coverage factor for DLAs (the damped Lyα systems) might be larger than 500 K. The radio frequency interference (RFI) and standing wave are the main factors affecting the detection of HI absorption lines, which have been analyzed and discussed as well in order to find a method of solution. Our study can serve as a pathfinder for the future large-scale search of HI 21-cm absorption lines using the Five-Hundred-Meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (FAST), which is an Arecibo-type radio telescope currently under construction in China with greatly increased sensitivity, bandwidth, and observational sky area. As prospects, we have discussed two types of observational studies of HI absorption lines toward extragalactic sources using the FAST telescope.

  11. Multiple Velocity Components in the C IV Absorption Line of NGC 5548

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mathur, Smita; Elvis, Martin; Wilkes, Belinda

    1999-01-01

    We have observed the much-studied Seyfert 1 galaxy NGC 5548 with the Goddard High-Resolution Spectrograph (GHRS) on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). Our 14 ks observation covers the C IV emission line at a resolution of greater than 20,000. Our purpose was to study the absorption line found at lower resolution by IUE and the HST Faint Object Spectrograph. We found that the C IV absorption line resolves into six separate doublets with equivalent widths of 0.07-0.38 Angstrom. The absorption lines have blueshifts relative to the systemic velocity of the galaxy of 380-1250 km s(exp -1), except for one, which has a redshift of 250 km s(exp -1), suggesting both inflow and outflow. The inflowing component may be related to the accretion flow into the nuclear black hole. All the doublet lines are resolved by the GHRS. Three doublets are narrow, with FWHM greater than or approximately 100 km s(exp -1), and three are broad, FWHM approximately 160-290 km s(exp -1). We find evidence of partial covering by the narrow absorption lines. Either (but not both) of the two strongest broad doublets could be from the same material that produces the X-ray ionized absorber seen in soft X-rays. The remaining five systems must be at least 10 times less ionized (and so of lower total column density) to remain consistent with the X-ray spectra.

  12. Intrinsic Absorption in Quasars (AAL & BAL) and its Relation to Outflows, BH Mass, Accretion Rate, Spin, Orientation, and Radio Properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stone, Robert Bernard; Richards, Gordon T.

    2016-01-01

    Despite the fact that quasars are fueled by matter falling into supermassive black holes, this process spews out considerable mass and energy. We investigate the nature of these outflows in the form of both broad and narrow absorption lines using data taken as part of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). Although these outflows are seen to have ejection speeds of up to 60,000 km/s, it is still unclear how they affect the quasar's host-galaxy and its evolution. We look for correlations of these outflows with the radio properties of the quasars, which can potentially reveal a physical connection between the quasar's accretion physics and its outflows. We also investigate how relaxing the traditional criteria for defining both radio loud and broad absorption line quasars impacts our understanding of these classes and quasars in general. Our ultimate goal is to understand how outflows from quasars change as a function of line-of-sight orientation, mass, accretion, and spin of the black holes that fuel them.

  13. THE FIRST HIGH-REDSHIFT QUASAR FROM Pan-STARRS

    SciTech Connect

    Morganson, Eric; De Rosa, Gisella; Decarli, Roberto; Walter, Fabian; Rix, Hans-Walter; Chambers, Ken; Burgett, William; Flewelling, Heather; Hodapp, Klaus; Kaiser, Nick; Magnier, Eugene; Sweeney, Bill; Waters, Christopher; McGreer, Ian; Fan, Xiaohui; Greiner, Jochen; Price, Paul

    2012-06-15

    We present the discovery of the first high-redshift (z > 5.7) quasar from the Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System 1 (Pan-STARRS1 or PS1). This quasar was initially detected as an i{sub P1} dropout in PS1, confirmed photometrically with the SAO Wide-field InfraRed Camera at Arizona's Multiple Mirror Telescope (MMT) and the Gamma-Ray Burst Optical/Near-Infrared Detector at the MPG 2.2 m telescope in La Silla. The quasar was verified spectroscopically with the MMT Spectrograph, Red Channel and the Cassegrain Twin Spectrograph at the Calar Alto 3.5 m telescope. Its near-infrared spectrum was taken at the Large Binocular Telescope Observatory (LBT) with the LBT Near-Infrared Spectroscopic Utility with Camera and Integral Field Unit for Extragalactic Research. It has a redshift of 5.73, an AB z{sub P1} magnitude of 19.4, a luminosity of 3.8 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 47} erg s{sup -1}, and a black hole mass of 6.9 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 9} M{sub Sun }. It is a broad absorption line quasar with a prominent Ly{beta} peak and a very blue continuum spectrum. This quasar is the first result from the PS1 high-redshift quasar search that is projected to discover more than 100 i{sub P1} dropout quasars and could potentially find more than 10 z{sub P1} dropout (z > 6.8) quasars.

  14. Absorption-line profiles in a companion spectrum of a mass-losing cool supergiant

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rodrigues, Liliya L.; Boehm-Vitense, Erika

    1992-01-01

    Cool star winds can best be observed in resonance absorption lines seen in the spectrum of a hot companion, due to the wind passing in front of the blue star. We calculated absorption line profiles that would be seen in the ultraviolet part of the blue companion spectrum. Line profiles are derived for different radial dependences of the cool star wind and for different orbital phases of the binary. Bowen and Wilson find theoretically that stellar pulsations drive mass loss. We therefore apply our calculations to the Cepheid binary S Muscae which has a B5V companion. We find an upper limit for the Cepheid mass loss of M less than or equal to 7 x 10 (exp -10) solar mass per year provided that the stellar wind of the companion does not influence the Cepheid wind at large distances.

  15. Absorption line profiles in a companion spectrum of a mass losing cool supergiant

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rodrigues, Liliya L.; Boehm-Vitense, Erika

    1990-01-01

    Cool star winds can best be observed in resonance absorption lines seen in the spectrum of a hot companion, due to the wind passing in front of the blue star. We calculated absorption line profiles that would be seen in the ultraviolet part of the blue companion spectrum. Line profiles are derived for different radial dependences of the cool star wind and for different orbital phases of the binary. Bowen and Wilson find theoretically that stellar pulsations drive mass loss. We therefore apply our calculations to the Cepheid binary S Muscae which has a B5V companion. We find an upper limit for the Cepheid mass loss of M less than or equal to 7 x 10(exp -10) solar mass per year provided that the stellar wind of the companion does not influence the Cepheid wind at large distances.

  16. Observational limitations of the Doppler theory of quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narlikar, J. V.; Subramanian, K.

    1982-09-01

    The viability of the hypothesis that the redshift of a quasar is due entirely to the Doppler effect which arises from its high ejection speed in a nearby center of explosion is examined in light of data on the aligned triplets of quasars discovered by Arp and Hazard (1980). In view of a physical association of the quasars in a triplet, the computation of the various parameters of the Doppler problem is illustrated and constraints are placed on quasar ejection scenarios in order to critically examine Holyle's recent (1980) hypothesis that quasars emit the bulk of their radiation in a specified backward cone. It is found that the four triplets provide prima facie evidence for such a hypothesis, and further checks on the Doppler model are suggested. A very small, but nonzero fraction of blueshifted quasars is predicted by the model.

  17. The Hubble Space Telescope quasar absorption line key project. v. redshift evolution of lyman limit absorption in the spectra of a large sample of quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stengler-Larrea, Erik A.; Boksenberg, Alec; Steidel, Charles C.; Sargent, W. L. W.; Bahcall, John N.; Bergeron, Jacqueline; Hartig, George F.; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Kirhakos, Sofia; Savage, Blair D.; Schneider, Donald P.; Turnshek, David A.; Weymann, Ray J.

    1995-05-01

    Using a sample of 119 QSOs, containing objects we have selected having previously available high quality ground-based and IUE spectral observations, together with Hubble Space Telescope (HST) observations of 26 QSOs from Bahcall et al. (1993, 1995) and Impey et al. (1995) and new optical observations of 41 objects by Steidel & Sargent (1995), we study the redshift evolution of Lyman limit absorption systems (LLSs; tau greater than 1.0) over the reshift range 0.32 less than or equal to zLLS less than or equal to 4.11. The HST observations significantly improve the determination of the low redshift (0.4 less than or equal to zLLS less than or equal to 1.4) distribution. We find the effect which may have been responsible for the apparent strong evolution at aLLS greater than or equal to 2.5 found by Lanzetta (1991), which led him to consider a broken, not single power law as a better description of the redshift distribution of LLSs. After removing objects which may bias our sample, leaving a total of 169 QSOs, we find the distribution is well described by a single power law, and obtain for the number density as a function of redshift the form N(z) = N0(1 + z)gamma with gamma = 1.50 =/- 0.39 and N0 = 0.25-0.10+0.17, consistent with a constant comoving density of absorbers in a Firedmann universe with q0 = 0 but indicating evolution if q0 = 1/2.

  18. The Hubble Space Telescope quasar absorption line key project. v. redshift evolution of lyman limit absorption in the spectra of a large sample of quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stengler-Larrea, Erik A.; Boksenberg, Alec; Steidel, Charles, C.; Sargent, W. L. W.; Bacall, John N.; Bergeron, Jacqueline; Hartig, George F.; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Kirhakos, Sofia; Savage, Blair D.

    1995-01-01

    Using a sample of 119 QSOs, containing objects we have selected having previously available high quality ground-based and IUE spectral observations, together with Hubble Space Telescope (HST) observations of 26 QSOs from Bahcall et al. (1993, 1995) and Impey et al. (1995) and new optical observations of 41 objects by Steidel & Sargent (1995), we study the redshift evolution of Lyman limit absorption systems (LLSs; tau greater than 1.0) over the reshift range 0.32 less than or equal to z(sub LLS) less than or equal to 4.11. The HST observations significantly improve the determination of the low redshift (0.4 less than or equal to z(sub LLS) less than or equal to 1.4) distribution. We find the effect which may have been responsible for the apparent strong evolution at a(sub LLS) greater than or equal to 2.5 found by Lanzetta (1991), which led him to consider a broken, not single power law as a better description of the redshift distribution of LLSs. After removing objects which may bias our sample, leaving a total of 169 QSOs, we find the distribution is well described by a single power law, and obtain for the number density as a function of redshift the form N(z) = N(sub 0)(1 + z)(exp gamma) with gamma = 1.50 =/- 0.39 and N(sub 0) = 0.25(sup -0.10)(sub +0.17), consistent with a constant comoving density of absorbers in a Firedmann universe with q(sub 0) = 0 but indicating evolution if q(sub 0) = 1/2.

  19. Common lines in the rest-frame absorption-line spectra of QSOs?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Varshni, Y. P.; Singh, D.

    1985-02-01

    Libby et al. (1984) have studied the absorption-line data for 13 QSOs in the rest-frames of the QSOs. It is shown that the number of groups in which 5 lines or more lie within a wavelength interval of 1.0 Å found by these authors is insignificantly different from that that would be expected from chance coincidences. Consequently, there is no evidence that the rest-frame wavelengths at which these groups occur have any special significance.

  20. PG 1700 + 518 - a low-redshift, broad absorption line QSO

    SciTech Connect

    Pettini, M.; Boksenberg, A.

    1985-07-01

    The first high-resolution optical spectra and lower resolution UV spectra of PG 1700 + 518, the only known broad-absorption-line (BAL) QSO at low emission redshift (0.288) are presented. The optical data were obtained with the Isaac Newton Telescope on the island of La Palma and the UV data with the International Ultraviolet Explorer satellite. The outstanding feature of the optical spectrum is a strong, broad Mg II absorption trough, detached from the Mg II emission line and indicative of ejection velocities of between 7000 and 18,000 km/s. Also detected were narrow (FWHM = 350 km/s) Mg II absorption lines at absolute z = 0.2698, which are probably related to the mass ejection phenomenon. It is concluded that the emission-line spectrum is similar to that of other low-redshift QSOs although there are some obvious differences from typical BAL QSOs, most notably in the unusually low level of ionization of both emission-line and broad absorption line gas. 21 references.

  1. Discovery of a z = 6.1 Radio-Loud Quasar in the NDWFS

    SciTech Connect

    McGreer, I D; Becker, R H; Helfand, D J; White, R L

    2006-07-24

    From examination of only 4 deg{sup 2} of sky in the NOAO Deep Wide-Field Survey (NDWFS) region, we have identified the first radio-loud quasar at a redshift z > 6. The object, FIRST J1427385+331241, was discovered by matching the FLAMEX IR survey to FIRST survey radio sources with NDWFS counterparts. One candidate z > 6 quasar was found, and spectroscopy with the Keck II telescope confirmed its identification, yielding a redshift z = 6.12. The object is a Broad Absorption Line (BAL) quasar with an optical luminosity of M{sub B} {approx} -26.9 and a radio-to-optical flux ratio {approx} 60. Two Mg II absorptions systems are present at redshifts of z = 2.18 and z = 2.20. We briefly discuss the implications of this discovery for the high-redshift quasar population.

  2. Catalog of Narrow Mg II Absorption Lines in the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Zhi-Fu; Gu, Qiu-Sheng; Chen, Yan-Mei

    2015-12-01

    Using the Data Release 9 Quasar spectra from the Baryonic Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey, which does not include quasar spectra from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 7, we detect narrow Mg ii λλ2796, 2803 absorption doublets in the spectral data redward of 1250 Å (quasar rest frame) until the red wing of the Mg ii λ2800 emission line. Our survey is limited to quasar spectra with a median signal-to-noise ratio < {{S}}/{{N}}> ≥slant 4 pixel-1 in the surveyed spectral region, resulting in a sample that contains 43,260 quasars. We have detected a total of 18,598 Mg ii absorption doublets with 0.2933 ≤ zabs ≤ 2.6529. About 75% of absorbers have an equivalent width at rest frame of {W}rλ 2796≥slant 1 \\mathringA . About 75% of absorbers have doublet ratios ({DR}={W}rλ 2796/{W}rλ 2803) in the range of 1 ≤ DR ≤ 2, and about 3.2% lie outside the range of 1 - σDR ≤ DR ≤ 2 + σDR. We characterize the detection false positives/negatives by the frequency of detected Mg ii absorption doublets in the limits of the S/N of the spectral data. The S/N = 4.5 limit is assigned a completeness fraction of 53% and tends to be complete when the S/N is greater than 4.5. The redshift number densities of all of the detected Mg ii absorbers moderately increase from z ≈ 0.4 to z ≈ 1.5, which parallels the evolution of the cosmic star formation rate density. Limiting our investigation to those quasars whose emission redshift can be determined from narrow emission lines, the relative velocities (β) of Mg ii absorbers have a complex distribution which probably consists of three classes of Mg ii absorbers: (1) cosmologically intervening absorbers; (2) environmental absorbers that reside within the quasar host galaxies or galaxy clusters; (3) quasar outflow absorbers. After subtracting contributions from cosmologically intervening absorbers and environmental absorbers, the β distribution of the Mg iiabsorbers might mainly be contributed by the quasar outflow

  3. Quasars, Redshifts and Controversies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arp, Halton C.

    1988-09-01

    Introduction; 1. Distance of quasars; 2. The battle over statistics; 3. Galaxies visibly connected to quasars; 4. Certain galaxies with many quasars; 5. Distribution of quasars in space; 6. Galaxies with excess redshift; 7. Small excess redshifts, the local group of galaxies, and quantization of redshifts; 8. Correcting intrinsic redshifts and identifying hydrogen clouds within nearby groups of galaxies; 9. Ejection from galaxies; 10. The sociology of the controversy; 11. Interpretations; Glossary; Index.

  4. Extreme Bal quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

    SciTech Connect

    Patrick B. Hall et al.

    2002-10-11

    The Sloan Digital Sky Survey has discovered a population of broad absorption line quasars with various extreme properties. Many show absorption from metastable states of Fe II with varying excitations; several objects are almost completely absorbed bluewards of Mg II; at least one shows stronger absorption from Fe III than Fe II, indicating temperatures T > 35000 K in the absorbing region; and one object even seems to have broad H{beta} absorption. Many of these extreme BALs are also heavily reddened, though ''normal'' BALs (particularly LoBALs) from SDSS also show evidence for internal reddening.

  5. XMM-Newton/Reflection Grating Spectrometer detection of the missing interstellar O VII Kα absorption line in the spectrum of Cyg X-2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cabot, Samuel H. C.; Wang, Q. Daniel; Yao, Yangsen

    2013-05-01

    The hot interstellar medium is an important part of the Galactic ecosystem and can be effectively characterized through X-ray absorption line spectroscopy. However, in a study of the hot medium using the accreting neutron star X-ray binary, Cyg X-2, as a background light source, a mystery came about when the putatively strong O VII Kα line was not detected in Chandra grating observations, while other normally weaker lines such as O VII Kβ as well as O VI and O VIII Kα are clearly present. We have investigated the grating spectra of Cyg X-2 from 10 XMM-Newton observations, in search of the missing line. We detect it consistently in nine of these observations, but the line is absent in the remaining one observation or is inconsistent with the detection in others at a ˜4σ confidence level. This absence of the line resembles that seen in the Chandra observations. Similarly, the O VI Kα line is found to disappear occasionally, but not in concert with the variation of the O VII Kα line. All these variations are most likely due to the presence of changing O VII and O VI Kα emission lines of Cyg X-2, which are blurred together with the absorption ones in the X-ray spectra. A re-examination of the Chandra grating data indeed shows evidence for a narrow emission line slightly off the O VI Kα absorption line. We further show that narrow N V emission lines with varying centroids and fluxes are present in far-ultraviolet spectra from the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph aboard the Hubble Space Telescope. These results provide new constraints on the accretion around the neutron star and on the X-ray-heating of the stellar companion. The understanding of these physical processes is also important to the fidelity of using such local X-ray binaries for interstellar absorption line spectroscopy.

  6. New Quasar Studies Keep Fundamental Physical Constant Constant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2004-03-01

    a function of the redshift and the corresponding look-back time. The open circle is the measurement from the Oklo natural reactor. The horizontal long dashed lines show the area of the previous claim of variation of the fine structure constant. Clearly, the new UVES data are inconsistent with this range. A team of astronomers [1], led by Patrick Petitjean (Institut d'Astrophysique de Paris and Observatoire de Paris, France) and Raghunathan Srianand (IUCAA Pune, India) very carefully studied a homogeneous sample of 50 absorption systems observed with UVES and Kueyen along 18 distant quasars lines of sight. They recorded the spectra of quasars over a total of 34 nights to achieve the highest possible spectral resolution and the best signal-to-noise ratio. Sophisticated automatic procedures specially designed for this programme were applied. In addition, the astronomers used extensive simulations to show that they can correctly model the line profiles to recover a possible variation of alpha. The result of this extensive study is that over the last 10,000 million years, the relative variation of alpha must be less than 0.6 part per million. This is the strongest constraint from quasar absorption lines studies to date. More importantly, this new result does not support previous claims of a statistically significant change of alpha with time. Interestingly, this result is supported by another - less extensive - analysis, also conducted with the UVES spectrometer on the VLT [2]. Even though those observations were only concerned with one of the brightest known quasar HE 0515-4414, this independent study lends further support to the hypothesis of no variation of alpha. Even though these new results represent a significant improvement in our knowledge of the possible (non-) variation of one of the fundamental physical constants, the present set of data would in principle still allow variations that are comparatively large compared to those resulting from the measurements

  7. Herschel-ATLAS: the far-infrared properties and star formation rates of broad absorption line quasi-stellar objects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cao Orjales, J. M.; Stevens, J. A.; Jarvis, M. J.; Smith, D. J. B.; Hardcastle, M. J.; Auld, R.; Baes, M.; Cava, A.; Clements, D. L.; Cooray, A.; Coppin, K.; Dariush, A.; De Zotti, G.; Dunne, L.; Dye, S.; Eales, S.; Hopwood, R.; Hoyos, C.; Ibar, E.; Ivison, R. J.; Maddox, S.; Page, M. J.; Valiante, E.

    2012-12-01

    We have used data from the Herschel Astrophysical Terahertz Large-Area Survey (H-ATLAS) at 250, 350 and 500 μm to determine the far-infrared (FIR) properties of 50 broad absorption line quasars (BAL QSOs). Our sample contains 49 high-ionization BAL QSOs (HiBALs) and one low-ionization BAL QSO (LoBAL) which are compared against a sample of 329 non-BAL QSOs. These samples are matched over the redshift range 1.5 ≤ z < 2.3 and in absolute i-band magnitude over the range -28 ≤ Mi ≤ -24. Of these, three BAL QSOs (HiBALs) and 27 non-BAL QSOs are detected at the >5 σ level. We calculate star formation rates (SFRs) for our individually detected HiBAL QSOs and the non-detected LoBAL QSO as well as average SFRs for the BAL and non-BAL QSO samples based on stacking the Herschel data. We find no difference between the HiBAL and non-BAL QSO samples in the FIR, even when separated based on differing BAL QSO classifications. Using Mrk 231 as a template, the weighted mean SFR is estimated to be ≈240 ± 21 M⊙ yr-1 for the full sample, although this figure should be treated as an upper limit if active galactic nucleus (AGN)-heated dust makes a contribution to the FIR emission. Despite tentative claims in the literature, we do not find a dependence of C IV equivalent width on FIR emission, suggesting that the strength of any outflow in these objects is not linked to their FIR output. These results strongly suggest that BAL QSOs (more specifically HiBALs) can be accommodated within a simple AGN unified scheme in which our line of sight to the nucleus intersects outflowing material. Models in which HiBALs are caught towards the end of a period of enhanced spheroid and black hole growth, during which a wind terminates the star formation activity, are not supported by the observed FIR properties. The Herschel-ATLAS is a project with Herschel, which is an ESA space observatory with science instruments provided by European-led Principal Investigator consortia and with important

  8. THE 2dF REDSHIFT SURVEY. I. PHYSICAL ASSOCIATION AND PERIODICITY IN QUASAR FAMILIES

    SciTech Connect

    Fulton, C. C.; Arp, H. C. E-mail: arp@mpa-garching.mpg.de

    2012-08-01

    We have tested for physical association of candidate companion quasars with putative parent galaxies by virtue of Karlsson periodicity in quasar redshifts. We examined galaxies from the 2dF Galaxy Redshift Survey (2dFGRS) and quasars from the 2dF Quasar Redshift Survey (2QZ) in the two declination strips (at declinations 0 Degree-Sign and -30 Degree-Sign ) covered by the 2QZ, first filtering out galaxies and quasars using the respective survey masks and observation qualities as described, and using only quasars with z {>=} 0.5 to avoid the redshift region of mixed galaxies and quasars. Around each galaxy, quasars are detected as physically associated with a putative parent galaxy if their respective redshifts conform to empirically derived constraints based on an ejection hypothesis. We ran Monte Carlo control trials against the pure physical associations by replacing the actual redshifts of the candidate companion quasars with quasar redshifts drawn randomly from each respective right ascension hour. The constraints are grouping of quasar redshifts and Karlsson periodicity of quasar redshifts.

  9. The Sloan Digital Sky Survey quasar catalog: tenth data release

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pâris, Isabelle; Petitjean, Patrick; Aubourg, Éric; Ross, Nicholas P.; Myers, Adam D.; Streblyanska, Alina; Bailey, Stephen; Hall, Patrick B.; Strauss, Michael A.; Anderson, Scott F.; Bizyaev, Dmitry; Borde, Arnaud; Brinkmann, J.; Bovy, Jo; Brandt, William N.; Brewington, Howard; Brownstein, Joel R.; Cook, Benjamin A.; Ebelke, Garrett; Fan, Xiaohui; Filiz Ak, Nurten; Finley, Hayley; Font-Ribera, Andreu; Ge, Jian; Hamann, Fred; Ho, Shirley; Jiang, Linhua; Kinemuchi, Karen; Malanushenko, Elena; Malanushenko, Viktor; Marchante, Moses; McGreer, Ian D.; McMahon, Richard G.; Miralda-Escudé, Jordi; Muna, Demitri; Noterdaeme, Pasquier; Oravetz, Daniel; Palanque-Delabrouille, Nathalie; Pan, Kaike; Perez-Fournon, Ismaël; Pieri, Matthew; Riffel, Rogério; Schlegel, David J.; Schneider, Donald P.; Simmons, Audrey; Viel, Matteo; Weaver, Benjamin A.; Wood-Vasey, W. Michael; Yèche, Christophe; York, Donald G.

    2014-03-01

    We present the Data Release 10 Quasar (DR10Q) catalog from the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey III. The catalog includes all BOSS objects that were targeted as quasar candidates during the first 2.5 years of the survey and that are confirmed as quasars via visual inspection of the spectra, have luminosities Mi[z = 2] <-20.5 (in a ΛCDM cosmology with H0 = 70 km s-1 Mpc-1, ΩM = 0.3, and ΩΛ = 0.7), and either display at least one emission line with a full width at half maximum (FWHM) larger than 500 km s-1 or, if not, have interesting/complex absorption features. The catalog also includes known quasars (mostly from SDSS-I and II) that were reobserved by BOSS. The catalog contains 166 583 quasars (74 454 are new discoveries since SDSS-DR9) detected over 6373 deg2 with robust identification and redshift measured by a combination of principal component eigenspectra. The number of quasars with z > 2.15 (117 668) is ~5 times greater than the number of z > 2.15 quasars known prior to BOSS. Redshifts and FWHMs are provided for the strongest emission lines (C iv, C iii, Mg ii). The catalog identifies 16 461 broad absorption line quasars and gives their characteristics. For each object, the catalog presents five-band (u, g, r, i, z) CCD-based photometry with typical accuracy of 0.03 mag and information on the optical morphology and selection method. The catalog also contains X-ray, ultraviolet, near-infrared, and radio emission properties of the quasars, when available, from other large-area surveys. The calibrated digital spectra cover the wavelength region 3600-10 500 Å at a spectral resolution in the range 1300 < R < 2500; the spectra can be retrieved from the SDSS Catalog Archive Server. We also provide a supplemental list of an additional 2376 quasars that have been identified among the galaxy targets of the SDSS-III/BOSS. Quasar catalog is only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (ftp

  10. Testing quasar unification: radiative transfer in clumpy winds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matthews, J. H.; Knigge, C.; Long, K. S.; Sim, S. A.; Higginbottom, N.; Mangham, S. W.

    2016-05-01

    Various unification schemes interpret the complex phenomenology of quasars and luminous active galactic nuclei (AGN) in terms of a simple picture involving a central black hole, an accretion disc and an associated outflow. Here, we continue our tests of this paradigm by comparing quasar spectra to synthetic spectra of biconical disc wind models, produced with our state-of-the-art Monte Carlo radiative transfer code. Previously, we have shown that we could produce synthetic spectra resembling those of observed broad absorption line (BAL) quasars, but only if the X-ray luminosity was limited to 1043 erg s-1. Here, we introduce a simple treatment of clumping, and find that a filling factor of ˜0.01 moderates the ionization state sufficiently for BAL features to form in the rest-frame UV at more realistic X-ray luminosities. Our fiducial model shows good agreement with AGN X-ray properties and the wind produces strong line emission in, e.g., Lyα and C IV 1550 Å at low inclinations. At high inclinations, the spectra possess prominent LoBAL features. Despite these successes, we cannot reproduce all emission lines seen in quasar spectra with the correct equivalent-width ratios, and we find an angular dependence of emission line equivalent width despite the similarities in the observed emission line properties of BAL and non-BAL quasars. Overall, our work suggests that biconical winds can reproduce much of the qualitative behaviour expected from a unified model, but we cannot yet provide quantitative matches with quasar properties at all viewing angles. Whether disc winds can successfully unify quasars is therefore still an open question.

  11. Narrow absorption lines with two observations from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Zhi-Fu; Gu, Qiu-Sheng; Chen, Yan-Mei; Cao, Yue

    2015-07-01

    We assemble 3524 quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) with repeated observations to search for variations of the narrow C IV λ λ 1548,1551 and Mg II λ λ 2796,2803 absorption doublets in spectral regions shortward of 7000 Å in the observed frame, which corresponds to time-scales of about 150-2643 d in the quasar rest frame. In these quasar spectra, we detect 3580 C IV absorption systems with zabs = 1.5188-3.5212 and 1809 Mg II absorption systems with zabs = 0.3948-1.7167. In term of the absorber velocity (β) distribution in the quasar rest frame, we find a substantial number of C IV absorbers with β < 0.06, which might be connected to absorption of quasar outflows. The outflow absorption peaks at υ ≈ 2000 km s^{-1} and drops rapidly below this peak value. Among 3580 C IV absorption systems, 52 systems (˜1.5 per cent) show obvious variations in equivalent widths in the absorber rest frame (Wr): 16 enhanced, 16 emerged, 12 weakened and 8 disappeared systems, respectively. We find that changes in Wrλ1548 are related neither to the time-scales of the two SDSS observations nor to absorber velocities in the quasar rest frame. Variable absorption in low-ionization species is important to constrain the physical conditions of the absorbing gas. There are two variable Mg II absorption systems measured from SDSS spectra detected by Hacker et al. However, in our Mg II absorption sample, we find that neither shows variable absorption with confident levels of >4σ for λ2796 lines and >3σ for λ2803 lines.

  12. Weak bump quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcdowell, Jonathan C.; Elvis, Martin; Wilkes, Belinda J.; Willner, Steven P.; Oey, M. S.

    1989-01-01

    The recent emphasis on big bumps dominating the UV continuum of quasars has obscured the facts that bump properties vary widely and that there are objects in which no such component is evident. As part of a survey of quasar continuum spectra, a class of quasars is identified in which the optical-UV continuum big bump feature appears to be weak or absent, relative to both IR and X-ray. These weak bump quasars are otherwise normal objects and constitute a few percent of the quasar population.

  13. DISENTANGLING THE CIRCUMNUCLEAR ENVIRONS OF CENTAURUS A. II. ON THE NATURE OF THE BROAD ABSORPTION LINE

    SciTech Connect

    Espada, D.; Matsushita, S.; Sakamoto, K.; Peck, A. B.; Henkel, C.; Iono, D.; Israel, F. P.; Muller, S.; Petitpas, G.; Pihlstroem, Y.; Taylor, G. B.; Trung, D. V.

    2010-09-01

    We report on atomic gas (H I) and molecular gas (as traced by CO(2-1)) redshifted absorption features toward the nuclear regions of the closest powerful radio galaxy, Centaurus A (NGC 5128). Our H I observations using the Very Long Baseline Array allow us to discern with unprecedented sub-parsec resolution H I absorption profiles toward different positions along the 21 cm continuum jet in the inner 0.''3 (or 5.4 pc). In addition, our CO(2-1) data obtained with the Submillimeter Array probe the bulk of the absorbing molecular gas with little contamination by emission, which was not possible with previous CO single-dish observations. We shed light on the physical properties of the gas in the line of sight with these data, emphasizing the still open debate about the nature of the gas that produces the broad absorption line ({approx}55 km s{sup -1}). First, the broad H I line is more prominent toward the central and brightest 21 cm continuum component than toward a region along the jet at a distance {approx}20 mas (or 0.4 pc) further from the nucleus. This indicates that the broad absorption line arises from gas located close to the nucleus, rather than from diffuse and more distant gas. Second, the different velocity components detected in the CO(2-1) absorption spectrum match well with other molecular lines, such as those of HCO{sup +}(1-0), except the broad absorption line that is detected in HCO{sup +}(1-0) (and most likely related to that of the H I). Dissociation of molecular hydrogen due to the active galactic nucleus seems to be efficient at distances r {approx}< 10 pc, which might contribute to the depth of the broad H I and molecular lines.

  14. Empirical calibrations of optical absorption-line indices based on the stellar library MILES

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johansson, Jonas; Thomas, Daniel; Maraston, Claudia

    2010-07-01

    Stellar population models of absorption-line indices are an important tool for the analysis of stellar population spectra. They are most accurately modelled through empirical calibrations of absorption-line indices with the stellar parameters such as effective temperature, metallicity and surface gravity, which are the so-called fitting functions. Here we present new empirical fitting functions for the 25 optical Lick absorption-line indices based on the new stellar library Medium resolution INT Library of Empirical Spectra (MILES). The major improvements with respect to the Lick/IDS library are the better sampling of stellar parameter space, a generally higher signal-to-noise ratio and a careful flux calibration. In fact, we find that errors on individual index measurements in MILES are considerably smaller than in Lick/IDS. Instead, we find the rms of the residuals between the final fitting functions and the data to be dominated by errors in the stellar parameters. We provide fitting functions for both Lick/IDS and MILES spectral resolutions and compare our results with other fitting functions in the literature. A FORTRAN 90 code is available online in order to simplify the implementation in stellar population models. We further calculate the offsets in index measurements between the Lick/IDS system to a flux-calibrated system. For this purpose, we use the three libraries MILES, ELODIE and STELIB. We find that offsets are negligible in some cases, most notably for the widely used indices Hβ, Mgb, Fe5270 and Fe5335. In a number of cases, however, the difference between the flux-calibrated library and Lick/IDS is significant with the offsets depending on index strengths. Interestingly, there is no general agreement between the three libraries for a large number of indices, which hampers the derivation of a universal offset between the Lick/IDS and flux-calibrated systems.

  15. Direct Insights Into Observational Absorption Line Analysis Methods of the Circumgalactic Medium Using Cosmological Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Churchill, Christopher W.; Vander Vliet, Jacob R.; Trujillo-Gomez, Sebastian; Kacprzak, Glenn G.; Klypin, Anatoly

    2015-03-01

    We study the circumgalactic medium (CGM) of a z = 0.54 simulated dwarf galaxy using hydroART simulations. We present our analysis methods, which emulate observations, including objective absorption line detection, apparent optical depth (AOD) measurements, Voigt profile (VP) decomposition, and ionization modeling. By comparing the inferred CGM gas properties from the absorption lines directly to the gas selected by low ionization H i and Mg ii, and by higher ionization C iv and O vi absorption, we examine how well observational analysis methods recover the “true” properties of CGM gas. In this dwarf galaxy, low ionization gas arises in sub-kiloparsec “cloud” structures, but high ionization gas arises in multiple extended structures spread over 100 kpc; due to complex velocity fields, highly separated structures give rise to absorption at similar velocities. We show that AOD and VP analysis fails to accurately characterize the spatial, kinematic, and thermal conditions of high ionization gas. We find that H i absorption selected gas and O vi absorption gas arise in totally distinct physical gas structures, calling into question current observational techniques employed to infer metallicities and the total mass of “warm-hot” CGM gas. We present a method to determine whether C iv and O vi absorbing gas is photo or collisionally ionized and whether the assumption of ionization equilibrium is sound. As we discuss, these and additional findings have strong implications for how accurately currently employed observational absorption line methods recover the true gas properties, and ultimately, our ability to understand the CGM and its role in galaxy evolution.

  16. Unlocking the secrets of absorption line complexes in the intergalactic medium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Shea, Brian

    2013-10-01

    It is well-established that the fraction of baryons in the Universe that are observable drops from nearly 100% at z 3 to less than 50% by z 0. Simulations predict that most of the missing baryons are located in the IGM at moderate densities and at temperatures of 10^5-10^7 K - gas that is generally in the filaments of the cosmic web and in circumgalactic regions. This gas is typically detected in the low-z Lyman alpha forest by measuring UV absorption lines of highly ionized metals, such as CIV and OVI. However, significant uncertainties exist relating to the physical conditions of the gas associated with these lines {such as temperature, metallicity, and ionization state}, which severely limits our ability to understand the physical environment of these absorbers. We propose to clarify the relationship between the multi-species absorption line complexes seen in QSO spectra and the physical conditions of the corresponding absorbing gas. We will do this using synthetic observing tools and the largest, most detailed simulations of the IGM to date, which include a new sophisticated treatment of non-equilibrium gas chemistry. We will create catalogs that enable conversion between specific combinations of observed absorption lines and the equivalent physical gas distribition, will calculate the total baryon content that is traceable with each ion, and will devise tests to distinguish between the circumgalactic and truly intergalactic medium. This work will be critical to the interpretation of previous and ongoing HST studies of the IGM - particularly those using the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph - and directly addresses the HST Cycle 21 Ultraviolet Initiative.

  17. Solving Quasars (Part 1)

    SciTech Connect

    Elvis, Martin

    2003-10-29

    Quasars are a frustratingly unsolved problem in astrophysics. For 40 years quasars and AGN have presented an ever-proliferating list of diverse and confusing phenomenology from optical to X-ray wavelengths. The result has been that despite being the most powerful objects in the universe, quasars have been increasingly sidelined in astrophysics. This is unfortunate, as quasars pose major physics, as well as astrophysics puzzles, and should be important in cosmology. The problem, I believe, is not that we do not know enough physics, but rather that we do not have the right geometry. I have proposed a simple geometric and kinematic model that allows all of the quasar diversity to be understood as part of a single structure, the 'Quasar Atmosphere'. This structure suggests a natural physical interpretation, that builds on our understanding of stars (the only fully solved problem in astrophysics), and offers the prospect that we can use quasars for cosmology at last.

  18. Exploring Redshifts of Galaxies in the Sightline Towards the z=0.223 Quasar PKS0312-770

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giandoni, S. S.; Kobulnicky, H. A.; Prochaska, J.; Hwang, S.; Kiminki, D. C.

    2003-12-01

    The study of quasars and the systems around them is one method of exploring how galaxies are formed and the overall large-scale structure of matter in the universe. Ultraviolet Hubble Space Telescope spectra taken toward the z=0.223 quasar PKS0312-770 have revealed intergalactic absorption lines at redshifts of z=0.2028, z=0.1983, z=1589, and z=0.1575. The purpose of this research was to measure the redshifts of a large number of galaxies in the sightline towards this quasar to search for clusters or groups of galaxies which are responsible for producing absorption lines at these specific redshifts. Redshifts were measured using data from 132 spectra that were taken with the Wide Field Reimaging CCD Camera on the 2.5 m Irènèe du Pont telescope at Las Campanas Observatory on October 30 through November 3, 2002. We detect an excess of galaxies at redshifts of z=0.15, z=0.19, and z=0.20 which may be responsible for the absorption line systems seen in the HST data and we identify probable galaxies associated with these intervening absorbers. We also identify an excess of galaxies near z=0.05 which may indicate a nearby cluster of galaxies which does not produce an absorption signature in the quasar's spectrum.

  19. Neutral atomic absorption lines and far-UV extinction: Possible implications for depletions and grain parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welty, Daniel E.

    1990-07-01

    Researchers examine nine lines of sight within the Galaxy and one in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) for which data on both neutral atomic absorption lines (Snow 1984; White 1986; Welty, Hobbs, and York 1989) and far UV extinction (Bless and Savage 1972; Jenkins, Savage, and Spitzer 1986) are available, in order to test the assumption that variations in gamma/alpha will cancel in taking ratios of the ionization balance equation, and to try to determine to what extent that assumption has affected the aforementioned studies of depletions and grain properties.

  20. The interstellar deuterium-to-hydrogen ratio - A reevaluation of Lyman absorption-line measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mccullough, Peter R.

    1992-01-01

    The D/H ratio in the local interstellar medium is evaluated based upon previously published measurements of Lyman absorption lines together with the hypothesis that the D/H ratio is constant. A unique value for the D/H ratio of 1.5 (+/- 0.2) x 10 exp -5 by number is shown to be consistent with all published determinations made with the Copernicus and the International Ultraviolet Explorer satellites. The possibility that the D/H ratio may vary substantially in the local interstellar medium is considered and found to be unnecessary.

  1. Atlas of absorption lines from 0 to 17 900 cm(-1)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Park, J. H.; Rothman, L. S.; Rinsland, C. P.; Smith, M. A. H.; Richardson, D. J.; Larsen, J. C.

    1981-01-01

    Plots of absorption line strength versus line position for wavenumbers from 0 to 17,900 cm(-1) are shown for 20 atmospheric gases (H2O, CO2, O3, N2O, CO, CH4, O2, NO, SO2, NO2, NH3, HNO3, OH, HF, HCl, HBr, HI, ClO, OCS, H2CO). Also shown are similar plots of lower-state energy values for adsorption lines for the strongly adsorbing atmospheric gases (H2O, CO2, O3, and CH4) for wavenumbers from 0 to 5000 cm(-1).

  2. X-ray Emission and Absorption Lines During the SSS Phase of RS Ophiuchi

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schönrich, R. A.; Ness, J.-U.

    2008-12-01

    The high-resolution X-ray spectra of the sixth outburst of RS Ophiuchi revealed P Cygni-like line profiles. We use the column densities of selected isolated absorption lines to derive the nitrogen-to-oxygen abundance ratio. We next discuss the origin of the emission lines, which may originate from the shock, and the absorption and emission lines may thus have a different formation history. Finally, we discuss the correlation of high-amplitude variability detected during the early SSS phase with variability in the hardness ratio that follows the same pattern but is shifted by 1000~sec.

  3. Neutral atomic absorption lines and far-UV extinction: Possible implications for depletions and grain parameters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Welty, Daniel E.

    1990-01-01

    Researchers examine nine lines of sight within the Galaxy and one in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) for which data on both neutral atomic absorption lines (Snow 1984; White 1986; Welty, Hobbs, and York 1989) and far UV extinction (Bless and Savage 1972; Jenkins, Savage, and Spitzer 1986) are available, in order to test the assumption that variations in gamma/alpha will cancel in taking ratios of the ionization balance equation, and to try to determine to what extent that assumption has affected the aforementioned studies of depletions and grain properties.

  4. Weak bump quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilkes, B. J.; Mcdowell, J.

    1994-01-01

    Research into the optical, ultraviolet and infrared continuum emission from quasars and their host galaxies was carried out. The main results were the discovery of quasars with unusually weak infrared emission and the construction of a quantitative estimate of the dispersion in quasar continuum properties. One of the major uncertainties in the measurement of quasar continuum strength is the contribution to the continuum of the quasar host galaxy as a function of wavelength. Continuum templates were constructed for different types of host galaxy and individual estimates made of the decomposed quasar and host continua based on existing observations of the target quasars. The results are that host galaxy contamination is worse than previously suspected, and some apparent weak bump quasars are really normal quasars with strong host galaxies. However, the existence of true weak bump quasars such as PHL 909 was confirmed. The study of the link between the bump strength and other wavebands was continued by comparing with IRAS data. There is evidence that excess far infrared radiation is correlated with weaker ultraviolet bumps. This argues against an orientation effect and implies a probable link with the host galaxy environment, for instance the presence of a luminous starburst. However, the evidence still favors the idea that reddening is not important in those objects with ultraviolet weak bumps. The same work has led to the discovery of a class of infrared weak quasars. Pushing another part of the envelope of quasar continuum parameter space, the IR-weak quasars have implications for understanding the effects of reddening internal to the quasars, the reality of ultraviolet turnovers, and may allow further tests of the Phinney dust model for the IR continuum. They will also be important objects for studying the claimed IR to x-ray continuum correlation.

  5. SDSS J0246-0825: A New Gravitationally Lensed Quasar from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

    SciTech Connect

    Inada, N; Burles, S; Gregg, M D; Becker, R H; Schechter, P L; Eisenstein, D J; Oguri, M; Castander, F J; Hall, P B; Johnston, D E; Pindor, B; Richards, G T; Schneider, D P; White, R L; Brinkmann, J; Szalay, A; York, D G

    2005-11-10

    We report the discovery of a new two-image gravitationally lensed quasar, SDSS J024634.11-082536.2 (SDSS J0246-0825). This object was selected as a lensed quasar candidate from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) by the same algorithm that was used to discover other SDSS lensed quasars (e.g., SDSS J0924+0219). Multicolor imaging with the Magellan Consortium's Walter Baade 6.5-m telescope and the spectroscopic observations using the W. M. Keck Observatory's Keck II telescope confirm that SDSS J0246-0825 consists of two lensed images ({Delta}{theta} = 1''.04) of a source quasar at z = 1.68. Imaging observations with the Keck telescope and the Hubble Space Telescope reveal an extended object between the two quasar components, which is likely to be a lensing galaxy of this system. From the absorption lines in the spectra of quasar components and the apparent magnitude of the galaxy, combined with the expected absolute magnitude from the Faber-Jackson relation, we estimate the redshift of the lensing galaxy to be z = 0.724. A highly distorted ring is visible in the Hubble Space Telescope images, which is likely to be the lensed host galaxy of the source quasar. Simple mass modeling predicts the possibility that there is a small (faint) lensing object near the primary lensing galaxy.

  6. Gravitational lensing size scales for quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chartas, G.; Rhea, C.; Kochanek, C.; Dai, X.; Morgan, C.; Blackburne, J.; Chen, B.; Mosquera, A.; MacLeod, C.

    2016-05-01

    We review results from our monitoring observations of several lensed quasars performed in the optical, UV, and X-ray bands. Modeling of the multi-wavelength light curves provides constraints on the extent of the optical, UV, and X-ray emission regions. One of the important results of our analysis is that the optical sizes as inferred from the microlensing analysis are significantly larger than those predicted by the theoretical-thin-disk estimate. In a few cases we also constrain the slope of the size-wavelength relation. Our size constraints of the soft and hard X-ray emission regions of quasars indicate that in some objects of our sample the hard X-ray emission region is more compact than the soft and in others the soft emission region is smaller. This difference may be the result of the relative strengths of the disk-reflected (harder and extended) versus corona-direct (softer and compact) components in the quasars of our sample. Finally, we present the analysis of several strong microlensing events where we detect an evolution of the relativistic Fe line profile as the magnification caustic traverses the accretion disk. These caustic crossings are used to provide constraints on the innermost stable circular orbit (ISCO) radius and the accretion disk inclination angle of the black hole in quasar RX J1131-1231.

  7. The Milky Way's Hot Gas Kinematics: Signatures in Current and Future OVII Absorption Line Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Matthew J.; Hodges-Kluck, Edmund J.; Bregman, Joel N.

    2016-02-01

    Detections of z ≈ 0 oxygen absorption and emission lines indicate the Milky Way hosts a hot (˜ {10}6 K), low-density plasma extending ≳ 50 {{kpc}} into the Mily Way’s halo. Current X-ray telescopes cannot resolve the line profiles, but the variation of their strengths on the sky constrains the radial gas distribution. Interpreting the O vii Kα absorption line strengths has several complications, including optical depth and line of sight velocity effects. Here, we present model absorption line profiles accounting for both of these effects to show the lines can exhibit asymmetric structures and be broader than the intrinsic Doppler width. The line profiles encode the hot gas rotation curve, the net inflow or outflow of hot gas, and the hot gas angular momentum profile. We show how line of sight velocity effects impact the conversion between equivalent width and the column density, and provide modified curves of growth accounting for these effects. As an example, we analyze the LMC sight line pulsar dispersion measure and O vii equivalent width to show the average gas metallicity is ≳ 0.6{Z}⊙ and b ≳ 100 km s-1. Determining these properties offers valuable insights into the dynamical state of the Milky Way’s hot gas, and improves the line strength interpretation. We discuss future strategies to observe these effects with an instrument that has a spectral resolution of about 3000, a goal that is technically possible today.

  8. Radiation Pressure-Driven Magnetic Disk Winds in Broad Absorption Line Quasi-Stellar Objects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DeKool, Martin; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    1995-01-01

    We explore a model in which QSO broad absorption lines (BALS) are formed in a radiation pressure-driven wind emerging from a magnetized accretion disk. The magnetic field threading the disk material is dragged by the flow and is compressed by the radiation pressure until it is dynamically important and strong enough to contribute to the confinement of the BAL clouds. We construct a simple self-similar model for such radiatively driven magnetized disk winds, in order to explore their properties. It is found that solutions exist for which the entire magnetized flow is confined to a thin wedge over the surface of the disk. For reasonable values of the mass-loss rate, a typical magnetic field strength such that the magnetic pressure is comparable to the inferred gas pressure in BAL clouds, and a moderate amount of internal soft X-ray absorption, we find that the opening angle of the flow is approximately 0.1 rad, in good agreement with the observed covering factor of the broad absorption line region.

  9. Low redshift Lyman alpha absorption lines and the dark matter halos of disk galaxies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maloney, Philip

    1993-01-01

    Recent observations using the Hubble Space Telescope of the z = 0.156 QSO 3C 273 have discovered a surprisingly large number of Ly-alpha absorption lines. In particular, Morris et al. found 9 certain and 7 possible Ly-alpha lines with equivalent widths above 25 mA. This is much larger (by a factor of 5-10) than the number expected from extrapolation of the high-redshift behavior of the Ly-alpha forest. Within the context of pressure-confined models for the Ly-alpha clouds, this behavior can be understood if the ionizing background declines sharply between z is approximately 2 and z is approximately 0. However, this requires that the ionizing photon flux drop as rapidly as the QSO volume emissivity; moreover, the absorbers must have a space density n(sub O) is approximately 2.6(N/10)h/((D/100 kpc)(sup 2)) Mpc(sup -3) where D is the present-day diameter of the absorbers. It is somewhat surprising that such necessarily fragile objects could have survived in such numbers to the present day. It is shown that it is plausible that the atomic hydrogen extents of spiral and irregular galaxies are large enough to produce the observed number of Ly-alpha absorption lines toward 3C 273, and that the neutral column densities and doppler b-values expected under these conditions fall in the range found by Morris et al. (1991).

  10. Spectro web: oscillator strength measurements of atomic absorption lines in the sun and procyon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lobel, A.

    2008-10-01

    We update the online SpectroWeb database of spectral standard reference stars with 1178 oscillator strength values of atomic absorption lines observed in the optical spectrum of the Sun and Procyon (α CMi A). The updated line oscillator strengths are measured with best fits to the disk-integrated KPNO-FTS spectrum of the Sun observed between 4000 Å and 6800 Å using state-of-the-art detailed spectral synthesis calculations. A subset of 660 line oscillator strengths is validated with synthetic spectrum calculations of Procyon observed with ESO-UVES between 4700 Å and 6800 Å. The new log(gf)-values in SpectroWeb are improvements upon the values offered in the online Vienna Atomic Line Database (VALD). We find for neutral iron-group elements, such as Fe I, Ni I, Cr I, and Ti I, a statistically significant over-estimation of the VALD log((gf)-values for weak absorption lines with normalized central line depths below 15 %. For abundant lighter elements (e.g. Mg I and Ca I) this trend is statistically not significantly detectable, with the exception of Si I for which the log(gf)-values of 60 weak and medium-strong lines are substantially decreased to best fit the observed spectra. The newly measured log(gf)-values are available in the SpectroWeb database at http://spectra.freeshell.org, which interactively displays the observed and computed stellar spectra, together with corresponding atomic line data.

  11. Cosmic Metallicity from ZnII-Selected QSO Absorption Line Systems Near Redshift z=1.2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monier, Eric

    2010-09-01

    We have searched nearly 15,000 strong intervening MgII systems in SDSS quasar spectra to measure spectral regions where weak, unsaturated metal lines are predicted to exist, with the aim of finding a representative sample of the strongest metal-line column density systems in the universe. These systems are clearly damped Lyman-alpha {DLA} systems, which track cosmologically intervening neutral gas regions that fall along the sightlines to background quasars. We propose STIS G230L spectroscopy of seven strong-ZnII-selected systems from this sample in order to measure their Lyman-alpha absorption profiles and derive their HI column densities. Since Zn is not depleted onto grains, measurement of N{HI} allows a direct measurement of the metal abundance in such systems. We expect the results to be representative of the upper envelope of the distribution of neutral-gas-phase metallicities near redshift z=1.2. If these systems are high-N{HI} DLAs {e.g., 6E21 atoms/cm^2} they will have metallicities typical of those normally found in DLAs {e.g., one-tenth solar}. However, if they are low-N{HI} DLAs {e.g., 2E20 atoms/cm(2) }, they will have supersolar metallicities. Since these DLAs are selected on the basis of their extreme metal-line properties, analysis of their metallicities and dust-to-gas ratios will lead to strong constraints on the range of properties exhibited by DLA systems.

  12. Quasar Rain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elvis, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Velocity resolved reverberation mapping (VRRM) has shown clear evidence for inflows in the broad emission line (BEL) region of active galactic nuclei: redshifted BELs at zero lag (AGNs, e.g. Arp 151, Bentz et al. 2010; Grier et al. 2013). While radiative transfer in rotating disks can give shorter red side lags than blue, a zero lag has to be along our line of sight, so it is hard to escape infall. The BEL region is normally considered to be rotating or in outflow so this result is a surprise. Infalling BEL gas cannot fall far without the need to lose angular momentum for accreting gas producing an accretion disk.I suggest that quasar continuum irradiation induced cooling instabilities (Chakravorty et al 2009; Krolik, McKee & Tarter 1981) lead to dense BEL clouds condensing out of the semi-ubiquitous warm absorber (WA) outflows found in AGNs and that these clouds may produce a VRRM inflow signature.Unlike WA gas, dense high column density BEL clouds are hard to accelerate with radiation pressure (Risaliti & Elvis 2010; Mushotzky, Solomon & Strittmatter 1972). BEL clouds will thus stall in the outflow and begin to fall back toward the central black hole after a dynamical time, 'raining out' of the WA medium. If these BEL clouds condense out before these outflows reach escape velocity [v(esc)] then this inflow can potentially produce the observed VRRM signature. As the clouds fall back in they will be moving on elliptical orbits supersonically through the WA gas with Mach number ~(2000 km/s)/(100km/s) ~20. This will produce comet-like structures with narrow opening angles, as seen in asymmetric X-ray absorbing 'eclipses' (Maiolino et al. 2010). They will survive only a few months, as required to avoid forming a disk. For this picture to work the condensation time must be less than the acceleration time to v(esc) and the destruction time must be longer than the dynamical time.

  13. A Hubble Diagram for Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Risaliti, G.; Lusso, E.

    2015-12-01

    We present a new method to test the ΛCDM cosmological model and to estimate cosmological parameters based on the nonlinear relation between the ultraviolet and X-ray luminosities of quasars. We built a data set of 1138 quasars by merging several samples from the literature with X-ray measurements at 2 keV and SDSS photometry, which was used to estimate the extinction-corrected 2500 Å flux. We obtained three main results: (1) we checked the nonlinear relation between X-ray and UV luminosities in small redshift bins up to z˜ 6, confirming that the relation holds at all redshifts with the same slope; (2) we built a Hubble diagram for quasars up to z˜ 6, which is well matched to that of supernovae in the common z = 0-1.4 redshift interval and extends the test of the cosmological model up to z˜ 6; and (3) we showed that this nonlinear relation is a powerful tool for estimating cosmological parameters. Using the present data and assuming a ΛCDM model, we obtain {{{Ω }}}M = 0.22{}-0.08+0.10 and {{{Ω }}}{{Λ }} = 0.92{}-0.30+0.18 ({{{Ω }}}M = 0.28 ± 0.04 and {{{Ω }}}{{Λ }} = 0.73 +/- 0.08 from a joint quasar-SNe fit). Much more precise measurements will be achieved with future surveys. A few thousand SDSS quasars already have serendipitous X-ray observations from Chandra or XMM-Newton, and at least 100,000 quasars with UV and X-ray data will be made available by the extended ROentgen Survey with an Imaging Telescope Array all-sky survey in a few years. The Euclid, Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, and Advanced Telescope for High ENergy Astrophysics surveys will further increase the sample size to at least several hundred thousand. Our simulations show that these samples will provide tight constraints on the cosmological parameters and will allow us to test for possible deviations from the standard model with higher precision than is possible today.

  14. Subaru High-z Exploration of Low-luminosity Quasars (SHELLQs). I. Discovery of 15 Quasars and Bright Galaxies at 5.7 z > 6.9

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsuoka, Yoshiki; Onoue, Masafusa; Kashikawa, Nobunari; Iwasawa, Kazushi; Strauss, Michael A.; Nagao, Tohru; Imanishi, Masatoshi; Niida, Mana; Toba, Yoshiki; Akiyama, Masayuki; Asami, Naoko; Bosch, James; Foucaud, Sébastien; Furusawa, Hisanori; Goto, Tomotsugu; Gunn, James E.; Harikane, Yuichi; Ikeda, Hiroyuki; Kawaguchi, Toshihiro; Kikuta, Satoshi; Komiyama, Yutaka; Lupton, Robert H.; Minezaki, Takeo; Miyazaki, Satoshi; Morokuma, Tomoki; Murayama, Hitoshi; Nishizawa, Atsushi J.; Ono, Yoshiaki; Ouchi, Masami; Price, Paul A.; Sameshima, Hiroaki; Silverman, John D.; Sugiyama, Naoshi; Tait, Philip J.; Takada, Masahiro; Takata, Tadafumi; Tanaka, Masayuki; Tang, Ji-Jia; Utsumi, Yousuke

    2016-09-01

    We report the discovery of 15 quasars and bright galaxies at 5.7 < z < 6.9. This is the initial result from the Subaru High-z Exploration of Low-Luminosity Quasars project, which exploits the exquisite multiband imaging data produced by the Subaru Hyper Suprime-Cam (HSC) Strategic Program survey. The candidate selection is performed by combining several photometric approaches including a Bayesian probabilistic algorithm to reject stars and dwarfs. The spectroscopic identification was carried out with the Gran Telescopio Canarias and the Subaru Telescope for the first 80 deg2 of the survey footprint. The success rate of our photometric selection is quite high, approaching 100% at the brighter magnitudes (z AB < 23.5 mag). Our selection also recovered all the known high-z quasars on the HSC images. Among the 15 discovered objects, six are likely quasars, while the other six with interstellar absorption lines and in some cases narrow emission lines are likely bright Lyman-break galaxies. The remaining three objects have weak continua and very strong and narrow Lyα lines, which may be excited by ultraviolet light from both young stars and quasars. These results indicate that we are starting to see the steep rise of the luminosity function of z ≥ 6 galaxies, compared with that of quasars, at magnitudes fainter than M 1450 ∼ ‑22 mag or z AB ∼ 24 mag. Follow-up studies of the discovered objects as well as further survey observations are ongoing.

  15. Subaru High-z Exploration of Low-luminosity Quasars (SHELLQs). I. Discovery of 15 Quasars and Bright Galaxies at 5.7 z > 6.9

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsuoka, Yoshiki; Onoue, Masafusa; Kashikawa, Nobunari; Iwasawa, Kazushi; Strauss, Michael A.; Nagao, Tohru; Imanishi, Masatoshi; Niida, Mana; Toba, Yoshiki; Akiyama, Masayuki; Asami, Naoko; Bosch, James; Foucaud, Sébastien; Furusawa, Hisanori; Goto, Tomotsugu; Gunn, James E.; Harikane, Yuichi; Ikeda, Hiroyuki; Kawaguchi, Toshihiro; Kikuta, Satoshi; Komiyama, Yutaka; Lupton, Robert H.; Minezaki, Takeo; Miyazaki, Satoshi; Morokuma, Tomoki; Murayama, Hitoshi; Nishizawa, Atsushi J.; Ono, Yoshiaki; Ouchi, Masami; Price, Paul A.; Sameshima, Hiroaki; Silverman, John D.; Sugiyama, Naoshi; Tait, Philip J.; Takada, Masahiro; Takata, Tadafumi; Tanaka, Masayuki; Tang, Ji-Jia; Utsumi, Yousuke

    2016-09-01

    We report the discovery of 15 quasars and bright galaxies at 5.7 < z < 6.9. This is the initial result from the Subaru High-z Exploration of Low-Luminosity Quasars project, which exploits the exquisite multiband imaging data produced by the Subaru Hyper Suprime-Cam (HSC) Strategic Program survey. The candidate selection is performed by combining several photometric approaches including a Bayesian probabilistic algorithm to reject stars and dwarfs. The spectroscopic identification was carried out with the Gran Telescopio Canarias and the Subaru Telescope for the first 80 deg2 of the survey footprint. The success rate of our photometric selection is quite high, approaching 100% at the brighter magnitudes (z AB < 23.5 mag). Our selection also recovered all the known high-z quasars on the HSC images. Among the 15 discovered objects, six are likely quasars, while the other six with interstellar absorption lines and in some cases narrow emission lines are likely bright Lyman-break galaxies. The remaining three objects have weak continua and very strong and narrow Lyα lines, which may be excited by ultraviolet light from both young stars and quasars. These results indicate that we are starting to see the steep rise of the luminosity function of z ≥ 6 galaxies, compared with that of quasars, at magnitudes fainter than M 1450 ˜ ‑22 mag or z AB ˜ 24 mag. Follow-up studies of the discovered objects as well as further survey observations are ongoing.

  16. Gravitationally Redshifted Absorption Lines in the Burst Spectra of the Neutron Star in the X-Ray Binary EXO 0748-676

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cottoam, J.; Paerels, F.; Mendez, M.; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The most straightforward manner of determining masses and radii of neutron stars is by measuring the gravitational redshift of spectral lines produced in the neutron star photosphere; such a measurement would provide direct constraints on the mass-to-radius ratio of the neutron star, and therefore on the equation of state for neutron star matter. Using data taken with the Reflection Grating Spectrometer on board the XMM-Newton observatory we identify, for the first time, significant absorption lines in the spectra of 28 bursts of the low-mass X-ray binary EXO 0748-676. The most significant features are consistent with the Fe XXVI and XXV n=2-3 and O VIII n=1-2 transitions, with a redshift of z=0.35, identical within small uncertainties for the different transitions. This constitutes the first direct and unambiguous measurement of the gravitational redshift in a neutron star.

  17. OUTFLOW AND HOT DUST EMISSION IN HIGH-REDSHIFT QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Huiyuan; Xing, Feijun; Wang, Tinggui; Zhou, Hongyan; Zhang, Kai; Zhang, Shaohua

    2013-10-10

    Correlations of hot dust emission with outflow properties are investigated, based on a large z ∼ 2 non-broad absorption line quasar sample built from the Wide-field Infrared Survey and the Sloan Digital Sky Survey data releases. We use the near-infrared slope and the infrared to UV luminosity ratio to indicate the hot dust emission relative to the emission from the accretion disk. In our luminous quasars, these hot dust emission indicators are almost independent of the fundamental parameters, such as luminosity, Eddington ratio and black hole mass, but moderately dependent on the blueshift and asymmetry index (BAI) and FWHM of C IV lines. Interestingly, the latter two correlations dramatically strengthen with increasing Eddington ratio. We suggest that, in high Eddington ratio quasars, C IV regions are dominated by outflows so the BAI and FWHM (C IV) can reliably reflect the general properties and velocity of outflows, respectively. In low Eddington ratio quasars, on the other hand, C IV lines are primarily emitted by virialized gas so the BAI and FWHM (C IV) become less sensitive to outflows. Therefore, the correlations for the highest Eddington ratio quasars are more likely to represent the true dependence of hot dust emission on outflows and the correlations for the entire sample are significantly diluted by the low Eddington ratio quasars. Our results show that an outflow with a large BAI or velocity can double the hot dust emission on average. We suggest that outflows either contain hot dust in themselves or interact with the dusty interstellar medium or torus.

  18. A Massive X-ray Outflow From The Quasar PDS 456

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reeves, J. N.; O'Brien, P. T.; Ward, M. J.

    2003-01-01

    We report on XMM-Newton spectroscopic observations of the luminous, radio-quiet quasar PDS 456. The hard X-ray spectrum of PDS 456 shows a deep absorption trough (constituting 50% of the continuum) at energies above 7 keV in the quasar rest frame, which can be attributed to a series of blue-shifted K-shell absorption edges due to highly ionized iron. The higher resolution soft X-ray grating RGS spectrum exhibits a broad absorption line feature near 1 keV, which can be modeled by a blend of L-shell transitions from highly ionized iron (Fe XVII - XXIV). An extreme outflow velocity of approx. 50000 km/s is required to model the K and L shell iron absorption present in the XMM-Newton data. Overall, a large column density (N(sub H) = 5 x 10(exp 23)/sq cm) of highly ionized gas (log xi = 2.5) is required in PDS 456. A large mass outflow rate of approx. 10 solar mass/year (assuming a conservative outflow covering factor of 0.1 steradian) is derived, which is of the same order as the overall mass accretion rate in PDS 456. This represents a substantial fraction (approx. 10%) of the quasar energy budget, whilst the large column and outflow velocity place PDS 456 towards the extreme end of the broad absorption line quasar population.

  19. The η Car Campaign with UVES at the ESO VLT II. Interstellar and circumstellar absorption lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weis, K.; Bomans, D. J.; Stahl, O.; Davidson, K.; Humphreys, R. M.; Gull, T. R.

    2005-09-01

    We monitored η Car and the Homunculus using the ESO VLT UVES spectrograph between 2002 and 2004 (see Weis et al., this proceedings). In these high dispersion spectra practically all interstellar absorption features known in the 3000 Å to 10000 Å regime are present (e.g. 4 Ti II lines, 3 Fe I lines, the Ca I line, both Na I doublets, the two K I doublets, and the Ca II doublets, several molecular lines, and a number of diffuse interstellar bands). Near-UV STIS spectra show many low ionization absorption lines (e.g. Gull et al., this proceedings), but there are several differences in the velocity structure and line strengths between these lines of sight, e.g. we do not detect multiple absorption components between -350 to -550 km s-1 in the UVES spectra. Changes over time are present in e.g. the Ca II lines, with small column density changes in the (probably interstellar) +80 km s-1 component and large changes in the -510 km s-1 component, which is most probably located in the outer shell of the Homunculus (see e.g. Nielsen et al., this proceedings). Similar changes in the Ti II 3384 Å component at -147 km s-1 are present, too. With the data set, we not only follow the temporal evolution of the circumstellar absorption components (presumably originating near η Car and in the Homunculus) before, during and after the event, but also search for changes along our long-slits centered on the star and on FOS4. Indeed, the -147 km s-1 component of the Ti II 3384 Å lines shows line strength variations over the southeast lobe of the Homunculus. A preliminary search for very high velocity absorption lines from the outer ejected using only one of our spectra already yielded a possible detection at -1500 km s-1. Clearly a detailed analysis of the absorption lines in the UVES data will provide many new insights into the structure and physics of η Car's ejecta.

  20. QSOs and Absorption-Line Systems surrounding the Hubble Deep Field

    SciTech Connect

    Vanden Berk, Daniel E.; Stoughton, Chris; Crotts, Arlin P. S.; Tytler, David; Kirkman, David

    2000-06-01

    We have imaged a 45' x 45' area centered on the Hubble Deep Field (HDF) in UBVRI passbands, down to the limiting magnitudes of approximately 21.5, 22.5, 22.2, 22.2, and 21.2, respectively. The principal goals of the survey are to identify quasi-stellar objects (QSOs) and to map structure traced by luminous galaxies and QSO absorption line systems in a wide volume containing the HDF. The area surveyed is 400 times as large as that of the HDF, and 40 times as large as that of the HDF Flanking Fields. We have selected QSO candidates from color space and identified four QSOs and two narrow emission line galaxies not yet discovered, bringing the total number of known QSOs in the area to 19. The bright z=1.305 QSO only 12' away from the HDF raises the northern HDF to nearly the same status as the southern Hubble Deep Field, which was selected to be proximate to a bright QSO. About half of the QSO candidates remain for spectroscopic verification. Absorption-line spectroscopy has been obtained for three bright QSOs in the field, using the 10 m Keck, 3.5 m ARC, and 2.4 m MDM telescopes. Five heavy-element absorption line systems have been identified, four of which overlap the well-explored redshift range covered by deep galaxy redshift surveys toward the HDF. The two absorbers at z=0.5565 and z=0.5621 occur at the same redshift as the secondmost populated redshift peak in the galaxy distribution, but each is more than 7 h-1 Mpc (comoving, {omega}{sub m} =1, {omega}{sub {lambda}} =0) away from the HDF line of sight in the transverse dimension. This supports more indirect evidence that the galaxy redshift peaks are contained within large sheetlike structures that traverse the HDF and may be precursors to large-scale ''pancake'' structures seen in the present-day galaxy distribution. (c) 2000 The American Astronomical Society.

  1. Infrared weak quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcdowell, J. C.; Elvis, M.; Wilkes, B. J.

    1992-01-01

    Examples of quasars with anomalously weak IR emission are presented, and the effects of starlight subtraction on estimates of the UV and IR component strengths are discussed. Inferred model parameters are very sensitive to the position of the peak of the UV energy distribution. In many low redshift objects the peak is not seen; even in those objects where the turnover is clear, the turnover may not be intrinsic but instead due to reddening within the quasar host galaxy. The small number of unusual quasars with weak IR emission will be of utility as a probe of the quasar phenomenon in the absence of dominant dust reprocessing.

  2. THE z = 5 QUASAR LUMINOSITY FUNCTION FROM SDSS STRIPE 82

    SciTech Connect

    McGreer, Ian D.; Fan Xiaohui; Jiang Linhua; Richards, Gordon T.; Strauss, Michael A.; Ross, Nicholas P.; White, Martin; Shen Yue; Schneider, Donald P.; Brandt, W. Niel; Myers, Adam D.; DeGraf, Colin; Glikman, Eilat; Ge Jian; Streblyanska, Alina

    2013-05-10

    We present a measurement of the Type I quasar luminosity function at z = 5 using a large sample of spectroscopically confirmed quasars selected from optical imaging data. We measure the bright end (M{sub 1450} < -26) with Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) data covering {approx}6000 deg{sup 2}, then extend to lower luminosities (M{sub 1450} < -24) with newly discovered, faint z {approx} 5 quasars selected from 235 deg{sup 2} of deep, coadded imaging in the SDSS Stripe 82 region (the celestial equator in the Southern Galactic Cap). The faint sample includes 14 quasars with spectra obtained as ancillary science targets in the SDSS-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey, and 59 quasars observed at the MMT and Magellan telescopes. We construct a well-defined sample of 4.7 < z < 5.1 quasars that is highly complete, with 73 spectroscopic identifications out of 92 candidates. Our color selection method is also highly efficient: of the 73 spectra obtained, 71 are high-redshift quasars. These observations reach below the break in the luminosity function (M{sub 1450}{sup *}{approx}-27). The bright-end slope is steep ({beta} {approx}< -4), with a constraint of {beta} < -3.1 at 95% confidence. The break luminosity appears to evolve strongly at high redshift, providing an explanation for the flattening of the bright-end slope reported previously. We find a factor of {approx}2 greater decrease in the number density of luminous quasars (M{sub 1450} < -26) from z = 5 to z = 6 than from z = 4 to z = 5, suggesting a more rapid decline in quasar activity at high redshift than found in previous surveys. Our model for the quasar luminosity function predicts that quasars generate {approx}30% of the ionizing photons required to keep hydrogen in the universe ionized at z = 5.

  3. Broad-band spectral energy distribution of 3000 Å break quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meusinger, H.; Schalldach, P.; Mirhosseini, A.; Pertermann, F.

    2016-03-01

    Context. In past decades, huge surveys have confirmed the existence of populations of exotic and hitherto unknown quasar types. The discovery and investigation of these rare peculiar objects is important because they may represent links to special evolutionary stages and hold clues to the evolution of quasars and galaxies. Aims: The Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) discovered the unusual quasars J010540.75-003313.9 and J220445.27+003141.8 and a small number of similar objects. Their spectra are characterised by a break in the continuum around 3000 Å that neither shows the typical structure of broad absorption line (BAL) troughs nor is explained by typical intrinsic dust reddening. The main aim of the present paper was twofold. First, a new target-oriented search was performed in the spectra database of the SDSS to construct a sizable sample of such 3000 Å break quasars. Second, their broad-band spectral energy distribution (SED) was compared with SEDs of BAL quasars. Methods: We used the method of Kohonen self-organising maps for data mining in the SDSS spectra archive to search for more quasars with properties comparable to the prototypes J010540.75-003313.9 and J220445.27+003141.8. We constructed a sample of 3000 Å break quasars and comparison samples of quasars with similar properties, to some extent, but also showing indications for typical BAL features. Particular attention was payed to a possible contamination by rare stellar spectral types, in particular DQ white dwarfs. We construct ensemble-averaged broad-band SEDs based on archival data from SDSS, GALEX, 2MASS, UKIDSS, WISE, and other surveys. The SEDs were corrected for dust absorption at the systemic redshifts of the quasars by the comparison with the average SED of normal quasars. Results: We compiled a list of 23 quasars classified as 3000 Å break quasars with properties similar to 010540.75-003313.9 and J220445.27+003141.8. Their de-reddened arithmetic median composite SED is indistinguishable

  4. High-Redshift Quasars Found in Sloan Digital Sky Survey Commissioning Data. II. The Spring Equatorial Stripe

    SciTech Connect

    Fan, Xiaohui; Strauss, Michael A.; Schneider, Donald P.; Gunn, James E.; Lupton, Robert H.; Anderson, Scott F.; Voges, Wolfgang; Margon, Bruce; Annis, James; Bahcall, Neta A.

    2000-01-01

    This is the second paper in a series aimed at finding high-redshift quasars from five-color (u{sup '} g{sup '} r{sup '} i{sup '} z{sup '}) imaging data taken along the Celestial Equator by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) during its commissioning phase. In this paper, we present 22 high-redshift quasars (z>3.6) discovered from {approx}250 deg2 of data in the spring Equatorial Stripe, plus photometry for two previously known high-redshift quasars in the same region of the sky. Our success rate in identifying high-redshift quasars is 68%. Five of the newly discovered quasars have redshifts higher than 4.6 (z=4.62, 4.69, 4.70, 4.92, and 5.03). All the quasars have i{sup *} <20.2 with absolute magnitude - 28.8quasars show unusual emission and absorption features in their spectra, including an object at z=4.62 without detectable emission lines, and a broad absorption line (BAL) quasar at z=4.92. (c) (c) 2000. The American Astronomical Society.

  5. Ultraviolet Fe VII absorption lines in planetary nebula nuclei, hot subdwarfs, and hot degenerate objects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Feibelman, Walter A.; Bruhweiler, Frederick C.

    1990-01-01

    Results are reported from a search for Fe VII absorption lines in data from high-dispersion IUE-SWP observations of PN nuclei (PNN), hot subdwarfs (HSDs), and hot white dwarfs (HWDs). The data-reduction techniques employed are outlined, and the results are presented in extensive tables and sample spectra and characterized in detail. Absorption in at least one of the four Fe VII lines above 120 nm wavelength is found in 22 of 51 PNN, and possibly in 10 HSDs, in the pulsating HWD PG 1159 - 035, and in the PNN K1 - 16. It is concluded that Fe VII is more common in WD progenitors such as PNN than previously predicted and is especially typical of the more luminous low-gravity stars.

  6. An absorption line in the ultraviolet spectrum of 40 Eridani B

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greenstein, J. L.

    1980-01-01

    Two excellent low-resolution spectra show an absorption line of equivalent width 3 A, near 1391 A, in the typical DA (hydrogen atmosphere) white dwarf 40 Eri B. The line is confirmed by a high-resolution spectrum and is the first seen in any DA star. Ultraviolet fluxes and the profile of Lyman-alpha confirm an effective temperature near 17,000 K. If the line is Si IV, it requires a temperature near 40,000 K. Unattractive possibilities are a hot circumstellar absorbing envelope dependent on accretion from companions, or formation at large optical depth in a transparent atmosphere with high Si/H. A suggestion that H2 should be considered leads to the possible interpretation as the (0, 5) transition of the Lyman band, formed at small optical depth. The band should be stronger in cooler DAs.

  7. Multi - Wavelength Analysis of Intermediate Class Absorption Line Galaxies in CFHTLS Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baburao Pandge, Mahadev

    2015-08-01

    We present optical and X-ray analysis of a sample of some absorption line galaxies (ALGs). These galaxies are lie in the redshift range 0.14 < z < 0.34 and have X-ray luminosities L{0.5-10keV} = 1041-1043 erg s-1. The distribution of log (fX/fO) imply that these objects are intermediate class objects, i.e. lie between normal and classical active galaxies. From X-ray analysis of two of the intermediate class galaxies, namely ALG2 and ALG3, exhibit extended nature, perhaps linked with their cluster environment. Thus, from the X-ray spectral and optical imaging analysis, it is likely that all the targeted ALGs studied here can be the group/cluster candidates. Hardness ratio of these 5 candidates is found to be -0.42 \\pm 0.10, consistent with that reported for galaxies.

  8. QSO absorption lines: The UV rest frame from 0

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Churchill, Christopher W.

    1997-05-01

    By charting the kinematic, chemical, and ionization conditions of galactic and intergalactic gas over the redshift range 0-4 with QSO absorption lines, the evolution of chemical abundances, the UV meta-galactic background, and the clustering dynamics of galactic gas can be studied. Keck/HIRES Mg II λ2796 profiles arising in z~1 galaxies are presented and the Mg II kinematic clustering function is given. The intriguing z=0.93 systems toward Q1206+459 are shown and compared to z~2 Keck/HIRES C IV profiles to illustrate how HST/STIS can be exploited for studies of the high ionization conditions in z<=1 Mg II selected systems. The scientific motives and plans for a large IR 2<=z<=4 Mg II survey with the Hobby-Eberly Telescope are presented.

  9. WAVELENGTH MEASUREMENTS OF K TRANSITIONS OF OXYGEN, NEON, AND MAGNESIUM WITH X-RAY ABSORPTION LINES

    SciTech Connect

    Liao Jinyuan; Zhang Shuangnan; Yao Yangsen

    2013-09-10

    Accurate atomic transition data are important in many astronomical research areas, especially for studies of line spectroscopy. Whereas transition data of He-like and H-like ions (i.e., ions in high-charge states) have been accurately calculated, the corresponding data of K transitions of neutral or low-ionized metal elements are still very uncertain. Spectroscopy of absorption lines produced in the interstellar medium (ISM) has been proven to be an effective way to measure the central wavelengths of these atomic transitions. In this work, we analyze 36 Chandra High Energy Transmission Grating observations to search for and measure the ISM absorption lines along sight lines to 11 low-mass X-ray binaries. We correct the Galactic rotation velocity to the rest frame for every observation and then use two different methods to merge all the corrected spectra to a co-added spectrum. However, the co-added spectra obtained by this method exhibit biases, toward to either observations with high counts or lines with high signal-to-noise ratios. We do a Bayesian analysis of several significantly detected lines to obtain the systematic uncertainty and the bias correction for other lines. Compared to previous studies, our results improve the wavelength accuracy by a factor of two to five and significantly reduce the systematic uncertainties and biases. Several weak transitions (e.g., 1s-2p of Mg IV and Mg V; 1s-3p of Mg III and Mg V) are also detected for the first time, albeit with low significance; future observations with improved accuracy are required to confirm these detections.

  10. A CATALOG OF QUASAR PROPERTIES FROM SLOAN DIGITAL SKY SURVEY DATA RELEASE 7

    SciTech Connect

    Shen Yue; Richards, Gordon T.; Strauss, Michael A.; Hall, Patrick B.; Schneider, Donald P.; Snedden, Stephanie; Bizyaev, Dmitry; Brewington, Howard; Malanushenko, Viktor; Malanushenko, Elena; Oravetz, Dan; Pan, Kaike; Simmons, Audrey

    2011-06-01

    We present a compilation of properties of the 105,783 quasars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 7 (DR7) quasar catalog. In this product, we compile continuum and emission line measurements around the H{alpha}, H{beta}, Mg II, and C IV regions, as well as other quantities such as radio properties, and flags indicating broad absorption line quasars, disk emitters, etc. We also compile virial black hole mass estimates based on various calibrations. For the fiducial virial mass estimates we use the Vestergaard and Peterson (VP06) calibrations for H{beta} and C IV, and our own calibration for Mg II which matches the VP06 H{beta} masses on average. We describe the construction of this catalog and discuss its limitations. The catalog and its future updates will be made publicly available online.

  11. Modeling the distribution of Mg II absorbers around galaxies using background galaxies and quasars

    SciTech Connect

    Bordoloi, R.; Lilly, S. J.; Kacprzak, G. G.; Churchill, C. W.

    2014-04-01

    We present joint constraints on the distribution of Mg II absorption around high redshift galaxies obtained by combining two orthogonal probes, the integrated Mg II absorption seen in stacked background galaxy spectra and the distribution of parent galaxies of individual strong Mg II systems as seen in the spectra of background quasars. We present a suite of models that can be used to predict, for different two- and three-dimensional distributions, how the projected Mg II absorption will depend on a galaxy's apparent inclination, the impact parameter b and the azimuthal angle between the projected vector to the line of sight and the projected minor axis. In general, we find that variations in the absorption strength with azimuthal angles provide much stronger constraints on the intrinsic geometry of the Mg II absorption than the dependence on the inclination of the galaxies. In addition to the clear azimuthal dependence in the integrated Mg II absorption that we reported earlier in Bordoloi et al., we show that strong equivalent width Mg II absorbers (W{sub r} (2796) ≥ 0.3 Å) are also asymmetrically distributed in azimuth around their host galaxies: 72% of the absorbers in Kacprzak et al., and 100% of the close-in absorbers within 35 kpc of the center of their host galaxies, are located within 50° of the host galaxy's projected semi minor axis. It is shown that either composite models consisting of a simple bipolar component plus a spherical or disk component, or a single highly softened bipolar distribution, can well represent the azimuthal dependencies observed in both the stacked spectrum and quasar absorption-line data sets within 40 kpc. Simultaneously fitting both data sets, we find that in the composite model the bipolar cone has an opening angle of ∼100° (i.e., confined to within 50° of the disk axis) and contains about two-thirds of the total Mg II absorption in the system. The single softened cone model has an exponential fall off with azimuthal

  12. The extreme ultraviolet spectrum of the kinetically dominated quasar 3C 270.1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Punsly, Brian; Marziani, Paola

    2015-10-01

    Only a handful of quasars have been identified as kinetically dominated, their long-term time-averaged jet power, overline{Q}, exceeds the bolometric thermal emission, Lbol, associated with the accretion flow. This Letter presents the first extreme ultraviolet (EUV) spectrum of a kinetically dominated quasar, 3C 270.1. The EUV continuum flux density of 3C 270.1 is very steep, F_{ν } ˜ ν ^{-α _{EUV}}, αEUV = 2.98 ± 0.15. This value is consistent with the correlation of overline{Q}/L_{bol} and αEUV found in previous studies of the EUV continuum of quasars, the EUV deficit of radio loud quasars. Curiously, although ultraviolet broad absorption line (BAL) troughs in quasar spectra are anticorrelated with overline{Q}, 3C 270.1 has been considered a BAL quasar based on an SDSS spectrum. This claim is examined in terms of the EUV spectrum of O VI and the highest resolution C IV spectrum in the archival data and the SDSS spectrum. First, from [O III]4959,5007 (IR) observations and the UV spectral lines, it is concluded that the correct redshift for 3C 270.1 is 1.5266. It is then found that the standard measure of broad absorption, BALnicity = 0, for Mg II 2800, C IV 1549 and O VI 1032 in all epochs.

  13. ANOMALOUSLY STEEP REDDENING LAW IN QUASARS: AN EXCEPTIONAL EXAMPLE OBSERVED IN IRAS 14026+4341

    SciTech Connect

    Jiang Peng; Zhou Hongyan; Ji Tuo; Shu Xinwen; Liu Wenjuan; Dong Xiaobo; Wang Huiyuan; Wang Tinggui; Wang Jianguo

    2013-06-15

    A fraction of the heavily reddened quasars require a reddening curve that is even steeper than that of the Small Magellanic Cloud. In this paper, we thoroughly characterize the anomalously steep reddening law in quasars via an exceptional example observed in IRAS 14026+4341. By comparing the observed spectrum to the quasar composite spectrum, we derive a reddening curve in the rest-frame wavelength range of 1200-10000 A. It has a steep rise at wavelengths shorter than 3000 A, but no significant reddening at longer wavelengths. The absence of dust reddening in the optical continuum is confirmed by the normal broad-line Balmer decrement (the H{alpha}/H{beta} ratio) in IRAS 14026+4341. The anomalous reddening curve can be satisfactorily reproduced with a dust model containing silicate grains in a power-law size distribution, dn(a)/da{proportional_to}a {sup -1.4}, truncated at a maximum size of a{sub max} = 70 nm. The unusual size distribution may be caused by the destruction of large 'stardust' grains by quasar activities or a different dust formation mechanism (i.e., the in situ formation of dust grains in quasar outflows). It is also possible that the analogies of the dust grains observed near the Galactic center are responsible for the steep reddening curve. In addition, we find that IRAS 14026+4341 is a weak emission-line quasar (i.e., PHL 1811 analogies) with heavy dust reddening and blueshifted broad absorption lines.

  14. Effect of a partial coverage of quasar broad-line regions by intervening -bearing clouds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ofengeim, D. D.; Balashev, S. A.; Ivanchik, A. V.; Kaminker, A. D.; Klimenko, V. V.

    2015-09-01

    We consider the effect of a partial coverage of quasar broad-line regions (QSO BLRs) by intervening -bearing clouds when a part of quasar (QSO) radiation passes by a cloud not taking part in absorption-line system formation of the QSO spectrum. That leads to modification of observable absorption line profiles and consequently to a bias in physical parameters derived from standard absorption line analysis. In application to the absorption systems the effect has been revealed in the analysis of absorption system in the spectrum of Q 1232+082 (see Ivanchik et al. in Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc. 404:1583, 2010, Balashev et al. in Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc. 418:357, 2011). We estimate a probability of the effect to be detected in QSO spectra. To do this we derive distribution of BLR sizes of high-z QSOs from Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release 9 (DR9) catalogue and assume different distributions of cloud sizes. We conclude that the low limit of the probability is about 11 %. The latest researches shows that about a fifth of observed absorption systems can be partially covered. Accounting of the effect may allow to revise significantly physical parameters of interstellar clouds obtained by the spectral analysis.

  15. IUE observations of the quasar 3C 273. [International Ultraviolet Explorer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boggess, A.; Daltabuit, E.; Torres-Peimbert, S.; Estabrook, F. B.; Wahlquist, H. D.; Lane, A. L.; Green, R.; Oke, J. B.; Schmidt, M.; Zimmerman, B.

    1979-01-01

    IUE observations indicate that the spectrum of 3C 273 is similar to that of other large-redshift quasars. There is a large excess of flux in the range 2400 A to 5300 A, which encompasses the Balmer jump region but which does not appear to be explainable by Balmer emission. The intensity ratio of Lyman-alpha to H-beta is 5.5, in agreement with other measures and a factor 6 smaller than the recombination value. The only absorption lines in the spectrum are due to our Galaxy. There is marginal evidence for a depression of the continuum shortward of the Lyman-alpha emission line, but the errors are too large to warrant any conclusion that 3C 273 has a rich absorption-line spectrum such as that seen in large-redshift quasars. The absence of emission and absorption lines of Fe II leads to the conclusion that resonance fluorescence probably produces the visual Fe II emission lines.

  16. UNIFICATION OF LUMINOUS TYPE 1 QUASARS THROUGH C IV EMISSION

    SciTech Connect

    Richards, Gordon T.; Kruczek, Nicholas E.; Deo, Rajesh P.; Kratzer, Rachael M.; Gallagher, S. C.; Hall, Patrick B.; Hewett, Paul C.; Leighly, Karen M.; Shen, Yue

    2011-05-15

    Using a sample of {approx}30,000 quasars from the 7th Data Release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, we explore the range of properties exhibited by high-ionization, broad emission lines, such as C IV {lambda}1549. Specifically, we investigate the anti-correlation between continuum luminosity and emission-line equivalent width (the Baldwin Effect (BEff)) and the 'blueshifting' of the high-ionization emission lines with respect to low-ionization emission lines. Employing improved redshift determinations from Hewett and Wild, the blueshift of the C IV emission line is found to be nearly ubiquitous, with a mean shift of {approx}810 km s{sup -1} for radio-quiet (RQ) quasars and {approx}360 km s{sup -1} for radio-loud (RL) quasars. The BEff is present in both RQ and RL samples. We consider these phenomena within the context of an accretion disk-wind model that is modulated by the nonlinear correlation between ultraviolet and X-ray continuum luminosity. Composite spectra are constructed as a function of C IV emission-line properties in an attempt to reveal empirical relationships between different line species and the continuum. Within a two-component disk+wind model of the broad emission-line region (BELR), where the wind filters the continuum seen by the disk component, we find that RL quasars are consistent with being dominated by the disk component, while broad absorption line quasars are consistent with being dominated by the wind component. Some RQ objects have emission-line features similar to RL quasars; they may simply have insufficient black hole (BH) spin to form radio jets. Our results suggest that there could be significant systematic errors in the determination of L{sub bol} and BH mass that make it difficult to place these findings in a more physical context. However, it is possible to classify quasars in a paradigm where the diversity of BELR parameters is due to differences in an accretion disk wind between quasars (and over time); these differences are

  17. MOSFIRE ABSORPTION LINE SPECTROSCOPY OF z > 2 QUIESCENT GALAXIES: PROBING A PERIOD OF RAPID SIZE GROWTH

    SciTech Connect

    Belli, Sirio; Ellis, Richard S.; Konidaris, Nick P.; Newman, Andrew B.

    2014-06-20

    Using the MOSFIRE near-infrared multi-slit spectrograph on the Keck 1 Telescope, we have secured high signal-to-noise ratio absorption line spectra for six massive galaxies with redshift 2 < z < 2.5. Five of these galaxies lie on the red sequence and show signatures of passive stellar populations in their rest-frame optical spectra. By fitting broadened spectral templates we have determined stellar velocity dispersions and, with broad-band Hubble Space Telescope and Spitzer photometry and imaging, stellar masses and effective radii. Using this enlarged sample of galaxies, we confirm earlier suggestions that quiescent galaxies at z > 2 have small sizes and large velocity dispersions compared to local galaxies of similar stellar mass. The dynamical masses are in very good agreement with stellar masses (log M {sub *}/M {sub dyn} = –0.02 ± 0.03), although the average stellar-to-dynamical mass ratio is larger than that found at lower redshift (–0.23 ± 0.05). By assuming evolution at fixed velocity dispersion, not only do we confirm a surprisingly rapid rate of size growth but we also consider the necessary evolutionary track on the mass-size plane and find a slope α = dlog R{sub e} /dlog M {sub *} ≳ 2 inconsistent with most numerical simulations of minor mergers. Both results suggest an additional mechanism may be required to explain the size growth of early galaxies.

  18. Variability of 188 broad absorption lines QSOs from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bian, Weihao

    2015-08-01

    The variability of broad absorption lines is investigated for a sample of 188 BAL QSOs (Z > 1.7) from the SDSS DR7, covering a timescale of about 0.001 - 3 years in the rest frame. 79 variable regions in the C iv BAL troughs are identified in 47 two-epoch different spectra. For 188 BAL QSOs with two-epoch spectra, it is found that there is no significant correlation between ∆L1500 and ∆α, and about half BAL QSOs appear redder during their brighter phases. It is consistent with the result for non-BAL QSOs by Bian et al. For a subsample of BAL QSOs with variable regions in BAL toughs, it is found that there is a mediate correlation between the ∆L1500 and ∆α, about 70% BAL QSOs appear bluer during their brighter phases. A larger proportion of BAL QSOs with variable BAL-trough regions show bluer during their brighter phases, which implies that the origin of variable BAL-trough regions is related to the central accretion processing. There is a weak correlation between ∆EW and ∆L1500. It suggests that the BAL-trough variation is not dominated by photoionization.

  19. The velocity distribution of interstellar gas observed in strong UV absorption lines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cowie, L. L.; York, D. G.

    1978-01-01

    Observations of three strong interstellar UV absorption lines of N I (1199 A), N II (1083 A), and Si III (1206 A) in 47 stars of widely varying distance and a variety of spectral types are analyzed to obtain a velocity distribution function for the interstellar gas. A technique based on the maximum and minimum velocities observed along a line of sight is adopted because of heavy line blending, and results are discussed for both power-law and exponential distribution functions. The expected distribution of radiative-phase supernova remnants (SNRs) in the interstellar medium is calculated as a function of SNR birthrate and of the interstellar density in which they evolve. The results are combined with observed distance estimates, and it is shown that an interstellar density in excess of 0.1 per cu cm would be required to keep the SNRs sufficiently confined so that their cross sections are consistent with the observed number of components. The alternative possibility is considered that SNRs do not enter the radiative phase before escaping from the Galaxy or colliding with neighboring remnants.

  20. Modeling the double-trough structure observed in broad absorption line QSOs using radiative acceleration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arav, Nahum; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    1994-01-01

    We present a model explaining the double trough, separated by delta v approximately = 5900 km/s, observed in the C IV lambda-1549 broad absorption line (BAL) in a number of BALQSOs. The model is based on radiative acceleration of the BAL outflow, and the troughs result from modulations in the radiative force. Specifically, where the strong flux from the Lyman-alpha lambda-1215 broad emission line is redshifted to the frequency of the N V lambda-1240 resonance line, in the rest frame of the accelerating N V ions, the acceleration increases and the absorption is reduced. At higher velocities the Lyman-alpha emission is redshifted out of the resonance and the N V ions experience a declining flux which causes the second absorption trough. A strongly nonlinear relationship between changes in the flux and the optical depth in the lines is shown to amplify the expected effect. This model produces double troughs for which the shallowest absorption between the two troughs occurs at v approximately = 5900 km/s. Indeed, we find that a substantial number of the observed objects show this feature. A prediction of the model is that all BALQSOs that show a double-trough signature will be found to have an intrinsic sharp drop in their spectra shortward of approximately 1200 A.

  1. Atlas of Absorption Lines from 0 to 17900 Cm (sup)-1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Park, J. H.; Rothman, L. S.; Rinsland, C. P.; Pickett, H. M.; Richardson, D. J.; Namkung, J. S.

    1987-01-01

    Plots of logarithm (base 10) of absorption line strength versus wavenumber from 0 to 17900/cm(sup)-1 are shown for the 28 atmospheric gases (H2O, CO2, O3, N2O, CO, CH4, O2, NO, SO2, NO2, NH3, HNO3, OH, HF, HCl, HBr, HI, ClO, OCS, H2CO, HOCl, N2, HCN, CH3Cl, H2O2, C2H2, C2H6, PH3), which appear in the 1986 Air Force Geophysics Laboratory high-resolution transmission molecular absorption data base (HITRAN) compilation, and for O(P-3), O-18 isotopic ozone, and HO2 from the 1984 JPL compilation in the 0- to 200/cm(sup)-1 region, and infrared solar CO lines at 4500 K. Also shown are plots of logarithm (base 10) of approximate infrared absorption cross sections of 11 heavy molecules versus wavenumber. The cross-section data cover 700 to 1800/cm(sup)-1 and are included as a separate data file in the 1986 HITRAN database.

  2. Absorption line metrology by optical feedback frequency-stabilized cavity ring-down spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burkart, Johannes; Kassi, Samir

    2015-04-01

    Optical feedback frequency-stabilized cavity ring-down spectroscopy (OFFS-CRDS) is a near-shot-noise-limited technique combining a sensitivity of with a highly linear frequency axis and sub-kHz resolution. Here, we give an in-depth review of the key elements of the experimental setup encompassing a highly stable V-shaped reference cavity, an integrated Mach-Zehnder modulator and a tightly locked ring-down cavity with a finesse of 450,000. Carrying out a detailed analysis of the spectrometer performance and its limitations, we revisit the photo-electron shot-noise limit in CRDS and discuss the impact of optical fringes. We demonstrate different active schemes for fringe cancelation by varying the phase of parasitic reflections. The proof-of-principle experiments reported here include a broadband high-resolution spectrum of carbon dioxide at 1.6 µm and an isolated line-shape measurement with a signal-to-noise ratio of 80,000. Beyond laboratory-based absorption line metrology for fundamental research, OFFS-CRDS holds a considerable potential for field laser measurements of trace gas concentrations and isotopic ratios by virtue of its small sample volume and footprint, the robust cavity-locking scheme and supreme precision.

  3. Correlation of QSO absorption lines in universes dominated by cold dark matter

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salmon, J.; Hogan, C.

    1986-01-01

    Theoretical predictions for the redshift correlations between QSO absorption-line systems are investigated in the context of 'cold dark matter' cosmological models. Particles in 'particle-mesh' N-body simulations are interpreted as absorbing clouds at epochs corresponding to mean redshifts, z, of 0.0, 1.25, and 3.0. The velocity correlation function for absorbing clouds is found by passing lines-of-sight through the systems and computing velocity differences for those particles which lie close to the lines. It depends strongly on z and Omega but only weakly, if at all, on the number density, diameter or mass of the clouds. Two interpretations are possible: (1) the heavy element absorption systems are associated with galaxies which are an unbiased sample of the mass distribution in an Omega(0) = 0.2 universe or (2) the Lyman-alpha absorbers are an unbiased sample of the mass in an Omega(0) = 1 universe and the heavy-element absorption systems, like galaxies, are more strongly clustered than the mass.

  4. Atlas of absorption lines from 0 to 17900 cm (sup)-1

    SciTech Connect

    Park, J.H.; Rothman, L.S.; Rinsland, C.P.; Pickett, H.M.; Richardson, D.J.; Namkung, J.S.

    1987-09-01

    Plots of logarithm (base 10) of absorption line strength versus wavenumber from 0 to 17900/cm(sup)-1 are shown for the 28 atmospheric gases (H/sub 2/O, CO/sub 2/, O/sub 3/, N/sub 2/O, CO, CH/sub 4/, O/sub 2/, NO, SO/sub 2/, NO/sub 2/, NH/sub 3/, HNO/sub 3/, OH, HF, HCl, HBr, HI, ClO, OCS, H/sub 2/CO, HOCl, N/sub 2/, HCN, CH/sub 3/Cl, H/sub 2/O/sub 2/, C/sub 2/H/sub 2/, C/sub 2/H/sub 6/, PH/sub 3/), which appear in the 1986 Air Force Geophysics Laboratory high-resolution transmission molecular absorption data base (HITRAN) compilation, and for O(P-3), O-18 isotopic ozone, and HO2 from the 1984 JPL compilation in the 0- to 200/cm(sup)-1 region, and infrared solar CO lines at 4500 K. Also shown are plots of logarithm (base 10) of approximate infrared absorption cross sections of 11 heavy molecules versus wavenumber. The cross-section data cover 700 to 1800/cm(sup)-1 and are included as a separate data file in the 1986 HITRAN database.

  5. On the Origin of the Wide HI Absorption Line Towards Sgr A *

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dwarakanath, K. S.; Goss, W. M.; Zhao, J. H.; Lang, C. C.

    2004-09-01

    We have imaged a region of ~5 extent surrounding Sgr A* in the HI 21 cm-line absorption using the Very Large Array. A Gaussian decomposition of the optical depth spectra at positions within ~2(~5 pcat 8.5 kpc) of Sgr A* detects a wide linw underlying the many narrow absorption lines. The wide line has a mean peak optical depth of 0.32 ± 0.12 centered at a mean velocity of Vlsr = -4 ± 15 km s-1. The mean full width half maximum is 119 ± 42 km s-1. Such a wide line is absent in the spectra at positions beyond ~2 from Sgr A*. The position-velocity diagrams do not reveal any diffuse feature which could be attributed to a large number of HI clouds along the line of sight to Sgr A*. Consequently, the wide line has no implications either to a global population of shocked HI clouds in the Galaxy or to the energetics of the interstellar medium as was earlier thought.

  6. SDSS J131339.98+515128.3: A new GravitationallyLensed Quasar Selected Based on Near-infrared Excess

    SciTech Connect

    Ofek, E.O.; Oguri, M.; Jackson, N.; Inada, N.; Kayo, I.

    2007-09-28

    We report the discovery of a new gravitationally lensed quasar, SDSS J131339.98+515128.3, at a redshift of 1:875 with an image separation of 1: 0024. The lensing galaxy is clearly detected in visible-light follow-up observations. We also identify three absorption-line doublets in the spectra of the lensed quasar images, from which we measure the lens redshift to be 0:194. Like several other known lenses, the lensed quasar images have different continuum slopes. This difference is probably the result of reddening and microlensing in the lensing galaxy. The lensed quasar was selected by correlating Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) spectroscopic quasars with Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS) sources and choosing quasars that show near-infrared (IR) excess. The near-IR excess can originate, for example, from the contribution of the lensing galaxy at near-IR wavelengths. We show that the near-IR excess technique is indeed an efficient method to identify lensed systems from a large sample of quasars.

  7. Laboratory atomic transition data for precise optical quasar absorption spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, Michael T.; Berengut, Julian C.

    2014-02-01

    Quasar spectra reveal a rich array of important astrophysical information about galaxies which intersect the quasar line of sight. They also enable tests of the variability of fundamental constants over cosmological time- and distance-scales. Key to these endeavours are the laboratory frequencies, isotopic and hyperfine structures of various metal-ion transitions. Here, we review and synthesize the existing information about these quantities for 43 transitions which are important for measuring possible changes in the fine-structure constant, α, using optical quasar spectra, i.e. those of Na, Mg, Al, Si, Ca, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni and Zn. We also summarize the information currently missing that precludes more transitions being used. We present an up-to-date set of coefficients, q, which define the sensitivity of these transitions to variations in α. New calculations of isotopic structures and q-coefficients are performed for Si II and Ti II, including Si II λ1808 and Ti IIλλ1910.6/1910.9 for the first time. Finally, simulated absorption-line spectra are used to illustrate the systematic errors expected if the isotopic/hyperfine structures are omitted from profile fitting analyses. To ensure transparency, repeatability and currency of the data and calculations, we supply a comprehensive data base as Supporting Information. This will be updated as new measurements and calculations are performed.

  8. Multi-wavelength Monitoring of Lensed Quasars: Deciphering Quasar Structure at Micro-arcseconds Scales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mosquera, Ana; Morgan, Christopher W.; Kochanek, Christopher S.; Dai, Xinyu; Chen, Bin; MacLeod, Chelsea Louise; Chartas, George

    2016-01-01

    Microlensing in multiply imaged gravitationally lensed quasars provides us with a unique tool to zoom in on the structure of AGN and explore their physics in more detail. Microlensing magnification, caused primarily by stars and white dwarfs close to the line of sight towards the lensed quasar images, is seen as uncorrelated flux variations due to the relative motions of the quasar, the lens, its stars, and the observer, and it depends on the structural and dynamical properties of the source and the lens. Since the magnification depends upon the size of the source, we can use microlensing to measure the size of quasar emission regions. In essence, the amplitude of the microlensing variability encodes the source size, with smaller sources showing larger variability amplitudes. Using state of the art microlensing techniques, our team has performed pioneering research in the field based on multi-wavelength space and ground-based observations. Among the most remarkable results, using Chandra observations we have set the first quantitative constraints on the sizes of the X-ray emission regions of quasars. In this work l briefly describe the methodology, the results from our previous multi-wavelength monitoring programs, and the next frontier of exploring the dependence of the structure of the X-ray emission regions on black hole mass and X-ray energy.

  9. BINARY QUASARS AT HIGH REDSHIFT. I. 24 NEW QUASAR PAIRS AT z {approx} 3-4

    SciTech Connect

    Hennawi, Joseph F.; Myers, Adam D.; Shen, Yue; Strauss, Michael A.; Djorgovski, S. G.; Glikman, Eilat; Mahabal, Ashish; Fan Xiaohui; Martin, Crystal L.; Richards, Gordon T.; Schneider, Donald P.; Shankar, Francesco

    2010-08-20

    The clustering of quasars on small scales yields fundamental constraints on models of quasar evolution and the buildup of supermassive black holes. This paper describes the first systematic survey to discover high-redshift binary quasars. Using color-selection and photometric redshift techniques, we searched 8142 deg{sup 2} of Sloan Digital Sky Survey imaging data for binary quasar candidates, and confirmed them with follow-up spectroscopy. Our sample of 27 high-redshift binaries (24 of them new discoveries) at redshifts 2.9 < z < 4.3 with proper transverse separations 10 kpc < R{sub perpendicular} < 650 kpc increases the number of such objects known by an order of magnitude. Eight members of this sample are very close pairs with R{sub perpendicular} < 100 kpc, and of these close systems four are at z>3.5. The completeness and efficiency of our well-defined selection algorithm are quantified using simulated photometry and we find that our sample is {approx}50% complete. Our companion paper uses this knowledge to make the first measurement of the small-scale clustering (R < 1 h {sup -1} Mpc comoving) of high-redshift quasars. High-redshift binaries constitute exponentially rare coincidences of two extreme (M {approx}> 10{sup 9} M {sub sun}) supermassive black holes. At z {approx} 4, there is about one close binary per 10 Gpc{sup 3}, thus these could be the highest sigma peaks, the analogs of superclusters, in the early universe.

  10. Characterizing Quasar Outflows IV: Regulating Outflows Through X-ray and EUV Absorption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Derseweh, Jeffrey; Ganguly, R.; Richmond, J. M.; Stark, M. A.; Christenson, D. H.; Robbins, J. M.; Townsend, S. L.

    2012-05-01

    Galaxy evolution models have shown that quasars are a crucial ingredient in the evolution of massive galaxies. Outflows play a key role in the story of quasars and their host galaxies, by helping regulate the accretion process, the star-formation rate and mass of the host galaxy (i.e., feedback). The prescription for modeling outflows as a contributor to feedback requires knowledge of the outflow velocity, geometry, and column density. In particular, we need to understand how these depend on physical parameters and how much is determined stochastically (and with what distribution). For this purpose, we are examining a sample of 11000 z=1.7-2.0 quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. This redshift range permits the following from the SDSS spectra: (1) separation of objects that do and do not exhibit outflows; (2) classification/measurement of outflow properties (ionization, velocity, velocity width); and (3) measurements of UV emission line and continuum parameters. In this poster, we add photometry from the GALEX All-sky imaging survey, as well as the Chandra and ROSAT archives. These provide coverage of the rest-frame extreme ultraviolet, and soft X-ray bands. In an accompanying poster, we have subjectively divided these quasars into four categories: broad absorption-line quasars (2700 objects), associated absorption-line quasars (1700 objects), reddened quasars (160 objects), and unabsorbed/unreddened quasars (6300 objects). We are interested in testing the radiative-driving hypothesis that requires a suppression of X-ray flux in order to transfer momentum efficiently to the UV-absorbing gas. Hence, we explore how absorption in both the extreme ultraviolet and the soft X-ray bands correlate with properties of the UV outflows, quasar property, and changes in SED shape. This material is based upon work supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under Grant No. 09-ADP09-0016 issued through the Astrophysics Data Analysis Program and by Chandra

  11. Cosmology with AGN: can we use quasars as standard candles?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Risaliti, G.

    2016-06-01

    The non-linear relation between X-ray and UV luminosity in quasars can be used to estimate their distance. Recently, we have shown that despite the large dispersion of the relation, a Hubble Diagram made of large samples of quasars can provide unique constraints on cosmology at high redshift. Furthermore, the dispersion of the relation is heavily affected by measurement errors: until now we have used serendipitous X-ray observations, but dedicated observations would significantly increase the precision of the distance estimates. I discuss the future role of XMM in this new field, showing (1) the fundamental contribution of the Serendipitous Source Catalogue and of large surveys, and (2) the breakthrough advancements we may achieve with the observation of a large number of SDSS quasars at high redshift: every 12-15 quasars observed at z~3 would be equivalent to discovering a supernova at that redshift.

  12. Astrometric and Photometric Variability in Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrei, A. H.; Bouquillon, S.; Penna, J. L.; Taris, F.; Anton, S.; Souchay, J.; Camargo, J. I. B.; da Silva Neto, D. N.; Vieira Martins, R.; Assafin, M.; Pinto, S. dos Reis Carvalho

    2010-05-01

    Quasars are the choicest objects to define a quasi-inertial reference frame. At the same time, they are active galactic nuclei powered by a massive black hole. As the astrometric precision of ground-based optical observations approaches the limit set by the forthcoming GAIA mission, astrometric stability can be investigated. Though the optical emission from the core region usually exceeds the other components by a factor of a hundred, the variability of those components must surely imply some measure of variability of the astrometric baricenter. Whether this is confirmed or not, it puts important constraints on the relationship of the quasar's central engine to the surrounding distribution of matter. To investigate the correlation between long-term optical variability and what is dubbed as the “random walk” of the astrometric center, a program is being pursued at the WFI/ESO 2.2m. The sample was selected from quasars known to undergo large-amplitude and long-term optical variations (Smith et al. 1993; Teerikorpi 2000). The observations are typically made every two months. The treatment is differential, comparing the quasar position and brightness against a sample of selected stars for which the average relative distances and magnitudes remain constant. The provisional results for four objects bring strong support to the hypothesis of a relationship between astrometric and photometric variability. A full account is provided by Andrei et al. (2009).

  13. A summary of transition probabilities for atomic absorption lines formed in low-density clouds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morton, D. C.; Smith, W. H.

    1973-01-01

    A table of wavelengths, statistical weights, and excitation energies is given for 944 atomic spectral lines in 221 multiplets whose lower energy levels lie below 0.275 eV. Oscillator strengths were adopted for 635 lines in 155 multiplets from the available experimental and theoretical determinations. Radiation damping constants also were derived for most of these lines. This table contains the lines most likely to be observed in absorption in interstellar clouds, circumstellar shells, and the clouds in the direction of quasars where neither the particle density nor the radiation density is high enough to populate the higher levels. All ions of all elements from hydrogen to zinc are included which have resonance lines longward of 912 A, although a number of weaker lines of neutrals and first ions have been omitted.

  14. Observed Quasar Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schild, Rudolph E.

    2011-05-01

    With the introduction of microlensing (nano-lensing) and reverberation analysis, understanding of the luminous structure surrounding quasars has gone from theoretical speculation to an observer's sport. Micro-lensing with day timescale has demonstrated that quasars have structure on scales of 1 R_G which we attribute to the inner edge of the accretion disc, at central distance 70 R_G in lo-hard state (radio loud) Q0957 quasar, indicated by reverberation. Reverberation of the dominant optical continuum has been detected in all 55 hi-soft quasars with brightness data, originating in the dusty torus observed in UV-optical and IR reverberation. Microlensing simulation compared to brightness monitoring shows that 2/3 of the UV-optical continuum originates in the outer torus. The observed color effects observed in the microlensing support the existence of inner and outer luminous structure.

  15. Quasars: A Progress Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weedman, Daniel

    1988-01-01

    Reports on some of the discoveries over the last quarter century regarding quasars including spectra and energy sources, formation and evolution, and cosmological probes. Describes some of the fundamental mysteries that remain. (CW)

  16. Finding Quasars with SNAP

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brondel, B. J.; Mufson, S. L.

    2005-12-01

    The Supernova / Acceleration Probe (SNAP) is a planned satellite observatory that will investigate the dark energy by producing imaging data over a large (several square-degree) field of sky that will rival or exceed the Hubble Ultra Deep Field in photometric quality and depth. As such, SNAP is ideally suited for deep surveys as auxiliary science. We discuss application of quasar science techniques to SNAP photometry. Based on a simple photometric quasar / Lyman forest model, we simulate the population of quasars that SNAP will observe and compare the resulting photometry with a population of model stellar photometry. We examine the effectiveness of identifying quasars based only on photometric data by a variety of techniques, most of which were first developed for use with Sloan Digital Sky Survey. Exclusion of the stellar locus in the style of Newberg & Yanni, statistical mapping, and machine learning with neural networks are among the techniques we explore. A photometric redshift calculus is also presented.

  17. Black hole constraints on varying fundamental constants.

    PubMed

    MacGibbon, Jane H

    2007-08-10

    We apply the generalized second law of thermodynamics and derive upper limits on the variation in the fundamental constants. The maximum variation in the electronic charge permitted for black holes accreting and emitting in the present cosmic microwave background corresponds to a variation in the fine-structure constant of Deltaalpha/alpha approximately 2 x 10(-23) per second. This value matches the variation measured by Webb et al. [Phys. Rev. Lett. 82, 884 (1999); Phys. Rev. Lett. 87, 091301 (2001)] using absorption lines in the spectra of distant quasars and suggests the variation mechanism may be a coupling between the electron and the cosmic photon background. PMID:17930813

  18. Sensitivity analysis of oxygen absorption lines in the 1.26-1.27 micron spectral band

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edwards, W. C.; Prasad, N.; Browell, E. V.

    2009-12-01

    In the Decadal Survey prepared by the National Research Council (Reference: Earth Science and Applications from Space: National Imperatives for the Next Decade and Beyond), the ASCENDS mission (Active Sensing of CO2 Emissions over Nights, Days and Seasons), requires simultaneous laser remote sensing of CO2 and O2 in order to convert CO2 atmospheric concentrations to mixing ratios. As the mission is envisioned, the CO2 mixing ratio needs to be measured to a precision of 0.5 percent of background or better (slightly less than 2 ppm) at 100-km horizontal length scale overland and at 200-km scale over open oceans. While the O2 measurement could be made at 0.765 µm (the oxygen A band), the absorption cross section is substantially higher and the scattering is lower in the 1.26-1.27 µm wavelength band, and as such it is anticipated that better accuracies could be accomplished. Hence, NASA Langley Research Center is developing oxygen lidar technology in the 1.26-1.27 micron band for surface pressure measurements. One or more wavelengths for differential absorption lidar operation have to be carefully chosen to eliminate ambient influences on them. The model optical depth calculation is very sensitive to knowledge of the transmitted wavelengths and to the choice of Voigt input parameters. Uncertainties in atmospheric profiles of temperature, pressure and relative humidity can cause ~0.5 % errors in model optical depths. In order to select candidate wavelengths in the 1.26 micron spectral band, wavelength uncertainties due to temperature and pressure have to be determined. Uncertainties at line center and offset wavelengths have to be known precisely to reduce uncertainties in oxygen concentration measurements from airborne and space based platforms. In this paper, based on HITRAN database and absorption line measurements, we evaluate systematic relative errors and their sources of pressure shift and atmospheric temperature influences for selected O2 lines suitable for

  19. SPECTRAL POLARIZATION OF THE REDSHIFTED 21 cm ABSORPTION LINE TOWARD 3C 286

    SciTech Connect

    Wolfe, Arthur M.; Jorgenson, Regina A.; Robishaw, Timothy; Heiles, Carl; Xavier Prochaska, J. E-mail: raj@ast.cam.ac.uk E-mail: heiles@astro.berkeley.edu

    2011-05-20

    A reanalysis of the Stokes-parameter spectra obtained of the z = 0.692 21 cm absorption line toward 3C 286 shows that our original claimed detection of Zeeman splitting by a line-of-sight magnetic field, B{sub los} = 87 {mu}G, is incorrect. Because of an insidious software error, what we reported as Stokes V is actually Stokes U: the revised Stokes V spectrum indicates a 3{sigma} upper limit of B{sub los}< 17 {mu}G. The correct analysis reveals an absorption feature in fractional polarization that is offset in velocity from the Stokes I spectrum by -1.9 km s{sup -1}. The polarization position-angle spectrum shows a dip that is also significantly offset from the Stokes I feature, but at a velocity that differs slightly from the absorption feature in fractional polarization. We model the absorption feature with three velocity components against the core-jet structure of 3C 286. Our {chi}{sup 2} minimization fitting results in components with differing (1) ratios of H I column density to spin temperature, (2) velocity centroids, and (3) velocity dispersions. The change in polarization position angle with frequency implies incomplete coverage of the background jet source by the absorber. It also implies a spatial variation of the polarization position angle across the jet source, which is observed at frequencies higher than the 839.4 MHz absorption frequency. The multi-component structure of the gas is best understood in terms of components with spatial scales of {approx}100 pc comprised of hundreds of low-temperature (T {<=} 200 K) clouds with linear dimensions of <<100 pc. We conclude that previous attempts to model the foreground gas with a single uniform cloud are incorrect.

  20. Fast calculation of the Voight profile absorption line of gas for the atmospheric transmission function determination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chayanova, Eleonora A.; Ivanovsky, A. I.; Borisov, Yury A.; Glazkov, V. N.; Bankova, T. V.

    2004-01-01

    A fast method is offered for calculation of Voight spectral absorption line contour. A line profile is represented by a sum of terms of an absolutely converging series, containing undimensioned parameters a and b, connected with a property of the absorbing molecule, atmospheric temperature and pressure. The value b changes in a large limit from zero at the line center to 1000 and more at far wing of the line. The value a, describing a ratio of the Lorenz and Doppler effects, changes from a value ~5 near the surface of the Earth to 10-5 in the stratosphere. Twenty terms of series ensure the high accuracy of the approximation for values b ranging from 0 to 5. The deviation from accurate Voight contour formula is less than 4*10-4 or 0.04%. However, a large b value implies increase the number of terms, and the computing time increases accordingly. Numerical integration of Voight formula by Gauss-Hermite quadrature is simple, fast and accurate calculation for a value b> 5. In this case the deviation from accurate Voight formula is less than 2*10-5 or 0.002%. Using the proposed approximation of the Voight profile line, the atmospheric transmission function was computed for the path Sun- satellite represented as a net of tangent heights relative to the Earth"s surface up to 100 km with 1 km step. The computation method involves 29 spectral channels of the water absorption region (933-959 nm) and 14 channels of the molecular oxygen absorption region (758-771 nm). The computations were performed for certain profiles of H2O, O2, temperature and pressure. The computations results were compared with experimental data.

  1. A new perspective on the interstellar cloud surrounding the Sun from UV absorption line results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gry, Cecile; Jenkins, Edward B.

    2015-01-01

    We offer a new, more inclusive, picture of the local interstellar medium, where it is composed of a single, monolithic cloud that surrounds the Sun in all directions. Our study of velocities based on Mg II and Fe II ultraviolet absorption lines indicates that the cloud has an average motion consistent with the velocity vector of gas impacting the heliosphere and does not behave like a rigid body: gas within the cloud is being differentially decelerated in the direction of motion, and the cloud is expanding in directions perpendicular to this flow, much like the squashing of a balloon. The outer boundary of the cloud is in average 10 pc away from us but is highly irregular, being only a few parsecs away in some directions, with possibly a few extensions up to 20 pc. Average H I volume densities vary between 0.03 and 0.1 cm3 over different sight lines. Metals appear to be significantly depleted onto grains, and there is a steady increase in this effect from the rear of the cloud to the apex of motion. There is no evidence that changes in the ionizing radiation influence the apparent abundances. Additional, secondary velocity components are detected in 60% of the sight lines. Almost all of them appear to be interior to the volume holding the gas that we identify with the main cloud. Half of the sight lines exhibit a secondary component moving at about - 7.2 km/s with respect to the main component, which may be the signature of an implosive shock propagating toward the cloud's interior.

  2. Is the Na D Absorption Line Useful For Integrated Light Stellar Population Studies In Galaxies?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergmann, Marcel; Milvang-Jensen, B.

    2009-01-01

    The Sodium Na D absorption line at 5895 Angstroms is one of the strongest absorption features in stellar photospheres, but has been rarely used in integrated light stellar population studies of galaxies. A principal reason why it has not been used is the suspicion that interstellar absorption within the galaxies may enhance or alter the absorption profile of the combined stellar light, thus giving an errant description of the stellar population. As a project undertaken during the National Virtual Observatory Summer School, we have investigated to what extent ISM absorption seems to alter the measurements. We use VO tools to create multiple galaxy samples: a sample expected to have little ISM (cluster galaxies, which are mainly ellipticals), and two samples with higher expected levels of ISM (HI-detected galaxies and morphologically late-type galaxies). After culling the samples to match the same distribution of (older) ages and (higher) metallicities, we find that the Na D vs. velocity dispersion correlation is not significantly different for the samples with and without ISM, and all have similar levels of scatter. Consequently, the Na D line seems like a promising tool for evolutionary studies comparing high and low redshift galaxy samples. Our continuing work focuses on the effects of possible ISM absorption on the line-of-sight velocity profile as derived from the Na D line compared to Mgb and Ca H & K absorption features. This research has made use of data obtained from and software provided by the US National Virtual Observatory, which is sponsored by the National Science Foundation. We thank the US-VO and the NSF for the partial funding they provided to attend this meeting.

  3. SDSS J133401.39+331534.3: A NEW SUBARCSECOND GRAVITATIONALLY LENSED QUASAR

    SciTech Connect

    Rusu, Cristian E.; Iye, Masanori; Oguri, Masamune; Inada, Naohisa; Kayo, Issha; Hayano, Yutaka; Oya, Shin; Hattori, Masayuki; Saito, Yoshihiko; Ito, Meguru; Minowa, Yosuke; Pyo, Tae-Soo; Terada, Hiroshi; Takami, Hideki; Watanabe, Makoto

    2011-09-01

    The quasar SDSS J133401.39+331534.3 at z = 2.426 is found to be a two-image gravitationally lensed quasar with an image separation of 0.''833. The object is first identified as a lensed quasar candidate in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasar Lens Search, and then confirmed as a lensed system from follow-up observations at the Subaru and University of Hawaii 2.2 m telescopes. We estimate the redshift of the lensing galaxy to be 0.557 based on absorption lines in the quasar spectra as well as the color of the galaxy. In particular, we observe the system with the Subaru Telescope AO188 adaptive optics with a laser guide star, in order to derive accurate astrometry, which well demonstrates the usefulness of the laser guide star adaptive optics imaging for studying strong lens systems. Our mass modeling with improved astrometry implies that a nearby bright galaxy {approx}4'' apart from the lensing galaxy is likely to affect the lens potential.

  4. Water-vapor absorption line measurements in the 940-nm band by using a Raman-shifted dye laser

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chu, Zhiping; Wilkerson, Thomas D.; Singh, Upendra N.

    1993-01-01

    We report water-vapor absorption line measurements that are made by using the first Stokes radiation (930-982 nm) with HWHM 0.015/cm generated by a narrow-linewidth, tunable dye laser. Forty-five absorption line strengths are measured with an uncertainty of 6 percent and among them are fourteen strong lines that are compared with previous measurements for the assessment of spectral purity of the light source. Thirty air-broadened linewidths are measured with 8 percent uncertainty at ambient atmospheric pressure with an average of 0.101/cm. The lines are selected for the purpose of temperature-sensitive or temperature-insensitive lidar measurements. Results for these line strengths and linewidths are corrected for broadband radiation and finite laser linewidth broadening effects and compared with the high-resolution transmission molecular absorption.

  5. The SDSS-IV Extended Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey: Quasar Target Selection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers, Adam D.; Palanque-Delabrouille, Nathalie; Prakash, Abhishek; Pâris, Isabelle; Yeche, Christophe; Dawson, Kyle S.; Bovy, Jo; Lang, Dustin; Schlegel, David J.; Newman, Jeffrey A.; Petitjean, Patrick; Kneib, Jean-Paul; Laurent, Pierre; Percival, Will J.; Ross, Ashley J.; Seo, Hee-Jong; Tinker, Jeremy L.; Armengaud, Eric; Brownstein, Joel; Burtin, Etienne; Cai, Zheng; Comparat, Johan; Kasliwal, Mansi; Kulkarni, Shrinivas R.; Laher, Russ; Levitan, David; McBride, Cameron K.; McGreer, Ian D.; Miller, Adam A.; Nugent, Peter; Ofek, Eran; Rossi, Graziano; Ruan, John; Schneider, Donald P.; Sesar, Branimir; Streblyanska, Alina; Surace, Jason

    2015-12-01

    As part of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) IV the extended Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (eBOSS) will improve measurements of the cosmological distance scale by applying the Baryon Acoustic Oscillation (BAO) method to quasar samples. eBOSS will adopt two approaches to target quasars over 7500 deg2. First, a “CORE” quasar sample will combine the optical selection in ugriz using a likelihood-based routine called XDQSOz, with a mid-IR-optical color cut. eBOSS CORE selection (to g < 22 or r < 22) should return ˜70 deg-2 quasars at redshifts 0.9 < z < 2.2 and ˜7 deg-2z > 2.1 quasars. Second, a selection based on variability in multi-epoch imaging from the Palomar Transient Factory should recover an additional ˜3-4 deg-2z > 2.1 quasars to g < 22.5. A linear model of how imaging systematics affect target density recovers the angular distribution of eBOSS CORE quasars over 96.7% (76.7%) of the SDSS north (south) Galactic Cap area. The eBOSS CORE quasar sample should thus be sufficiently dense and homogeneous over 0.9 < z < 2.2 to yield the first few-percent-level BAO constraint near \\bar{z}˜ 1.5.eBOSS quasars at z > 2.1 will be used to improve BAO measurements in the Lyα Forest. Beyond its key cosmological goals, eBOSS should be the next-generation quasar survey, comprising >500,000 new quasars and >500,000 uniformly selected spectroscopically confirmed 0.9 < z < 2.2 quasars. At the conclusion of eBOSS, the SDSS will have provided unique spectra for more than 800,000 quasars.

  6. Radio properties of the highly polarized, quiescent quasar OI 287

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ulvestad, James S.; Antonucci, Robert R. J.

    1988-01-01

    The highly polarized, quiescent quasar OI 287 has been observed with high resolution at 2 cm and 6 cm in an effort to determine the origin of some of the object's peculiar properties. The results seem to rule out the classification of OI 287 as a blazar. Extrapolation of the radio core spectrum to midinfrared wavelengths fails to predict the infrared flux by at least an order of magnitude. This supports the conclusion that the infrared emission and the radio emission do not originate in the same synchrotron-emitting component. The high optical polarization could be related to possible broad absorption lines in the unobserved UV regime, or it could be caused by reflection into the line of sight by scattering agents distributed in a thin disk.

  7. Formation of a Giant Galactic Gaseous Halo: Metal-Absorption Lines and High-Velocity Clouds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Fan

    1992-04-01

    A Galactic gaseous halo formed through the interstellar disk-halo connection is simulated by means of a two-dimensional axisymmetric hydrodynamic code based upon the chimney model of the interstellar medium, a new version of the galactic fountain. Galactic rotation, heating processes by diffuse UV flux, and radiative cooling processes are taken into account. The resulting gaseous halo can be divided into three categories, i.e., wind-type halo, bound-type halo, and cooled-type halo. In this way, we try to reproduce the column densities of C IV, N V, O VI, and Si IV in the observed absorption lines of halo stars. Assuming that the radiatively cooled halo gas condenses into clouds due to thermal instabilities, we can calculate their distribution and ballistic motions in the Galactic gravitational field. These correspond to the high- and intermediate-velocity clouds observed at high Galactic latitudes. We find that a cooled-type halo with a gas temperature between 5 X 10^5 and 10^6 K and a density between 10^-3 and 10^-2 cm^-3 at the disk-halo interface can reproduce the observational facts about our Galaxy. Supposing that the metal-absorption-line systems of QSOs arise from the halos of intervening galaxies formed by similar processes, we calculate features of the Ca II, Mg II, C IV, and Si IV absorption lines in various stages of galactic evolution. We conclude that C IV systems which are greater than 50 kpc in size correspond to the wind-type halo. On the other hand, Mg II and Ca II systems can only be detected in a very restricted region ( Metaxa, SMALL FAINT CLUSTERS IN THE LMC This is a short review of the main results of my Ph.D. thesis concerning some important problems on the dynamical properties of the LMC star clusters. The topic of this thesis was to find and study the dynamical paramters (tidal radius r_t core radius r_c concentration parameters log (r_t/r_c), and total mass M) for a large sample of small LMC clusters and to define their location in the

  8. The hydration dependence of CaCO3 absorption lines in the Far IR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Powell, Johnny; Emery, Logan P

    2014-06-01

    The far infrared (FIR) absorption lines of CaCO3 have been measured at a range of relative humidities (RH) between 33 and 92% RH using a Bruker 66v/S spectrometer. Hydration measurements on CaCO3 have been made in the mid-infrared (MIR) by [Al-Hosney, H.A. and Grassian, V.H., 2005, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 7, 1266], and astrophysically-motivated temperature-dependent FIR measurements of CaCO3 in vacuum have also been reported [Posch, T., et al., 2007, Ap. J., 668, 993]. The custom sample cell constructed for these hydrated-FIR spectra is required because the 66v/S bench is under vacuum (3 mbar) during typical measurements. Briefly, the sample cell consists of two Thalium Bromoiodide (KRS-5) windows, four O-rings, a plastic ring for separating the windows and providing a volume for the saturated atmosphere. CaCO3 was deposited on KRS-5 windows using doubly-distilled water as an intermediary. The KRS-5 window with sample and assembled sample cell were placed in a desiccator with the appropriated saturated salt solution [Washburn, E.W. (Ed.), International Critical Tables of Numerical Data, Physics Chemistry and Technology, Vol. 1, (McGraw-Hill, New York, 1926), p. 67-68] and allowed to hydrate for 23 hours. For spectroscopy the desiccator was quickly opened and the second KRS-5 window placed in the cell to seal the chamber. A spectrum was then taken of the sample at the appropriate RH. The spectra taken characterize the adsorption of water vapor and CaCO3 that might occur in circumstellar environments [Melnick, G.J., et al. 2001, Nature, 412, 160].The MIR and FIR reflectance spectra of calcite (CaCO3) have been thoroughly studied by [Hellwege, K.H., et al., 1970, Z. Physik, 232, 61]. Five Lorentzian curves were fit to our data in the range from 378-222 cm-1/SUP> and each was able to be assigned to a known mode of CaCO3. The data does not support the conclusion of a hydration effect on these modes of CaCO3, but it does suggest a possible broadening of three modes

  9. Outflows in infrared-luminous galaxies: Absorption-line spectroscopy of starbursts and AGN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rupke, David S.

    Large-scale galactic outflows, better known as superwinds, are driven by the powerful energy reservoirs in star forming and active galaxies. They play a significant role in galaxy formation, galaxy evolution, and the evolution of the intergalactic medium. We have performed a survey of over 100 infrared-luminous galaxies in order to address the exact frequency with which they occur in different galaxy types, the dependence of their properties on those of their host galaxies, and their properties in the most luminous starburst and active galaxies. Most of our sample consists of ultraluminous infrared galaxies (ULIRGs), and we use moderate- resolution spectroscopy of the Na I D interstellar absorption feature (which directly probes the neutral gas phase). We find superwinds in the majority of these galaxies at typical maximum, deprojected velocities of 500 700 km s-1. The detection rate increases with star formation rate (SFR) in starbursts, while the mass outflow rate appears constant with SFR, contrary to theoretical expectations. The resulting mass entrainment efficiencies in ULIRGs are quite low, of order a few percent of the star formation rate. There is some dependence of outflow velocity on host galaxy properties; the outflow velocities in LINERs are higher than those in H II galaxies, and the highest column density gas in each galaxy may have an upper envelope in velocity that increases with SFR. Outflows in most galaxies hosting a dominant AGN have very similar properties to those in starbursts, so discerning their power source is difficult. The velocities in Seyfert 2 outflows may be slightly higher than those in starbursts, and the fraction of neutral gas escaping Seyfert 2s is higher than that in starbursts (˜50% vs. ≲ 20%). The outflows in our Seyfert 1 galaxies have extreme velocities of up to ˜104 km s-1, and two of three Seyfert is with outflows possess broad absorption lines. Finally, we find that spectroscopy of a few galaxies at very high

  10. Insights into quasar UV spectra using unsupervised clustering analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tammour, A.; Gallagher, S. C.; Daley, M.; Richards, G. T.

    2016-06-01

    Machine learning techniques can provide powerful tools to detect patterns in multidimensional parameter space. We use K-means - a simple yet powerful unsupervised clustering algorithm which picks out structure in unlabelled data - to study a sample of quasar UV spectra from the Quasar Catalog of the 10th Data Release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS-DR10) of Paris et al. Detecting patterns in large data sets helps us gain insights into the physical conditions and processes giving rise to the observed properties of quasars. We use K-means to find clusters in the parameter space of the equivalent width (EW), the blue- and red-half-width at half-maximum (HWHM) of the Mg II 2800 Å line, the C IV 1549 Å line, and the C III] 1908 Å blend in samples of broad absorption line (BAL) and non-BAL quasars at redshift 1.6-2.1. Using this method, we successfully recover correlations well-known in the UV regime such as the anti-correlation between the EW and blueshift of the C IV emission line and the shape of the ionizing spectra energy distribution (SED) probed by the strength of He II and the Si III]/C III] ratio. We find this to be particularly evident when the properties of C III] are used to find the clusters, while those of Mg II proved to be less strongly correlated with the properties of the other lines in the spectra such as the width of C IV or the Si III]/C III] ratio. We conclude that unsupervised clustering methods (such as K-means) are powerful methods for finding `natural' binning boundaries in multidimensional data sets and discuss caveats and future work.

  11. Detection of harmonics and recovery of the absorption line profile using logarithmic-transformed wavelength modulation spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cong, Menglong; Sun, Dandan

    2016-07-01

    A versatile signal processing strategy for eliminating the residual amplitude modulation (RAM) and distortion in tunable diode laser wavelength modulation spectroscopy is theoretically demonstrated and experimentally validated. The strategy involves logarithmic transformation and differential detection, which are achieved using a homemade circuit. Through the logarithmic transformation, the optical intensity modulation of the laser, which performs as the source of RAM and distortion, is separated from the absorption-induced power attenuation and further balanced during the differential detection. The first harmonic, which is proportional to the first-order derivative of the absorption line profile in the case of a small modulation index, is extracted along with the second harmonic and is integrated for the recovery of the absorption line profile. The experiments are carried out for CH4 at its R(3) absorption line of the 2ν3 overtone for validation of the system, and the derived results are found to be in good agreement with the theoretical simulations. These promising results indicate the high potential of the strategy for absorption spectrum-based determination of gas properties.

  12. Quasar Absorption Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mushotzky, Richard (Technical Monitor); Elvis, Martin

    2004-01-01

    The aim of the proposal is to investigate the absorption properties of a sample of inter-mediate redshift quasars. The main goals of the project are: Measure the redshift and the column density of the X-ray absorbers; test the correlation between absorption and redshift suggested by ROSAT and ASCA data; constrain the absorber ionization status and metallicity; constrain the absorber dust content and composition through the comparison between the amount of X-ray absorption and optical dust extinction. Unanticipated low energy cut-offs where discovered in ROSAT spectra of quasars and confirmed by ASCA, BeppoSAX and Chandra. In most cases it was not possible to constrain adequately the redshift of the absorber from the X-ray data alone. Two possibilities remain open: a) absorption at the quasar redshift; and b) intervening absorption. The evidences in favour of intrinsic absorption are all indirect. Sensitive XMM observations can discriminate between these different scenarios. If the absorption is at the quasar redshift we can study whether the quasar environment evolves with the Cosmic time.

  13. A long-term space astrophysics research program: The evolution of the quasar continuum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Elvis, M.

    1993-01-01

    The research program supported by this grant now has great momentum. Numerous papers are in progress, and a strong multi-wavelength observing program is rapidly accumulating data on samples of high redshift quasars across the spectrum. ROSAT spectra of quasars continue to yield surprises. Of four z = 3 quasars with X-ray spectra, three show strong absorption. This contrasts strongly with the situation for luminous AGN at low redshifts where fewer than 1 in 20 show X-ray absorption. A new site for this absorption is probably needed, either around the quasar (e.g. in a cluster cooling flow) or along the line of sight (e.g. in a Damped Lyman-alpha system). The unabsorbed quasar allows limits on the physical conditions in a damped Lyman-alpha cloud to be calculated, and will allow a X-ray Gunn-Peterson test to be applied that will limit the fraction of the closure mass in an intergalactic medium. The X-ray spectral indices of these z = 3 quasars show no change from those of similar objects at low z, suggesting that 'short-lifetime' models apply. Eight other z = 3-4 quasars have been detected and their energy distributions from X-rays to Infrared (using new infrared spectrographs) have been compiled. These are now being compared with the low z continua from the 'Atlas of Quasar Energy Distributions' to search for evolutionary changes. The discovery of a likely warm absorber in 3C351 made recognition of another example simple. Also, modeling of the conditions in the absorber in 3C351 using the OVI absorption line from HST and the high ionization emission lines, suggests that the broad line region is indeed the origin of the warm absorber in this quasar, and by extension, others. Warm absorbers can now be used as a new diagnostic of this region. The X-ray spectrum of a 'Red Quasar', 3C212, has a cut-off spectrum, which could be fitted by an absorbed power-law, or more remarkably, by an unabsorbed black body. Using our quasi-simultaneous optical data and photoionization

  14. Einstein spectra of quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilkes, Belinda J.

    1988-01-01

    The results of the initial stage of the CfA survey of quasar energy distributions are reviewed. Einstein imaging proportional counter spectra of 33 quasars have been studied by fitting a single power law slope and absorption by an equivalent column density of neutral hydrogen. Comparison with the higher energy HEAO-A2 data leads to a two-component model for the X-ray spectrum. The X-ray column density is systematically lower than the 21-cm measured Galactic column density along the same line of sight.

  15. THE COLOR VARIABILITY OF QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    Schmidt, Kasper B.; Rix, Hans-Walter; Knecht, Matthias; Hogg, David W.; Shields, Joseph C.; Maoz, Dan; Bovy, Jo

    2012-01-10

    We quantify quasar color variability using an unprecedented variability database-ugriz photometry of 9093 quasars from Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Stripe 82, observed over 8 years at {approx}60 epochs each. We confirm previous reports that quasars become bluer when brightening. We find a redshift dependence of this blueing in a given set of bands (e.g., g and r), but show that it is the result of the flux contribution from less-variable or delayed emission lines in the different SDSS bands at different redshifts. After correcting for this effect, quasar color variability is remarkably uniform, and independent not only of redshift, but also of quasar luminosity and black hole mass. The color variations of individual quasars, as they vary in brightness on year timescales, are much more pronounced than the ranges in color seen in samples of quasars across many orders of magnitude in luminosity. This indicates distinct physical mechanisms behind quasar variability and the observed range of quasar luminosities at a given black hole mass-quasar variations cannot be explained by changes in the mean accretion rate. We do find some dependence of the color variability on the characteristics of the flux variations themselves, with fast, low-amplitude, brightness variations producing more color variability. The observed behavior could arise if quasar variability results from flares or ephemeral hot spots in an accretion disk.

  16. Studying low-redshift universe through observation of Damped Lyman-alpha quasar absorbers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gharanfoli, Soheila

    2009-06-01

    In recent years, an extremely successful method to study galaxy formation and evolution, has been provided by observation of quasar absorbers. Quasar absorbers are systems intercepting our line-of-sight to a given quasar and thus produce a feature in the quasar spectrum, the so-called absorption lines. The Damped Lyman-a (DLA) and sub-Damped Lyman-a (sub-DLA) absorption features in quasar spectra are believed to be produced by intervening galaxies. However, the connection of quasar absorbers to galaxies is not well-understood, since attempts to image the absorbing galaxies have often failed. DLAs and sub-DLAs were originally thought to be the precursors of present day disk galaxies, but there is evidence that they may be dominated by gas-rich, proto-dwarf galaxies representing the basic building blocks of hierarchical growth of structure. While most DLAs appear to be metal-poor, a population of metal-rich absorbers, mostly sub-DLAs, has been discovered in recent spectroscopic studies. It is of great interest to image these metal-rich absorbers, especially with high spatial resolution, to understand the connection between the stellar and interstellar content of the underlying galaxies. This dissertation consists of several projects designed to further our understanding of galaxies and galactic structures associated with intervening quasar absorption lines. Two projects were completed that involved the imaging of 13 DLA/sub-DLA galaxies at z < 1. High angular resolution near-infrared images were obtained, using the Hokupa'a Adaptive Optics system with the QUIRC near-infrared camera on the 8-m Gemini-North telescope, and the Laser Guide Star Adaptive Optics system on the 10-m Keck telescope. Detailed properties of the identified absorber galaxies are described. They are shown to be drawn from a variety of morphological types with a range of luminosities, sizes, and impact parameters. In the other set of projects, follow-up spectroscopy was performed to confirm the

  17. Metallicity and Quasar Outflows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Huiyuan; Zhou, Hongyan; Yuan, Weimin; Wang, Tinggui

    2012-06-01

    Correlations of the outflow strength of quasars, as measured by the blueshift and asymmetry index (BAI) of the C IV line, with intensities and ratios of broad emission lines, based on composite quasar spectra built from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, are investigated. We find that most of the line ratios of other ions to C IV increase prominently with BAI. These behaviors can be well understood in the context of increasing metallicity with BAI. The strength of the dominant coolant, C IV line, decreases, and weak collisionally excited lines increase with gas metallicity as a result of the competition between different line coolants. Using Si IV+O IV]/C IV as an indicator of gas metallicity, we present, for the first time, a strong correlation between the metallicity and the outflow strength of quasars over a wide range of 1.7-6.9 times solar abundance. Our result implies that metallicity plays an important role in the formation of quasar outflows, likely by affecting outflow acceleration. This effect may have a profound impact on galaxy evolution via momentum feedback and chemical enrichment.

  18. METALLICITY AND QUASAR OUTFLOWS

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Huiyuan; Zhou, Hongyan; Wang, Tinggui; Yuan, Weimin

    2012-06-01

    Correlations of the outflow strength of quasars, as measured by the blueshift and asymmetry index (BAI) of the C IV line, with intensities and ratios of broad emission lines, based on composite quasar spectra built from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, are investigated. We find that most of the line ratios of other ions to C IV increase prominently with BAI. These behaviors can be well understood in the context of increasing metallicity with BAI. The strength of the dominant coolant, C IV line, decreases, and weak collisionally excited lines increase with gas metallicity as a result of the competition between different line coolants. Using Si IV+O IV]/C IV as an indicator of gas metallicity, we present, for the first time, a strong correlation between the metallicity and the outflow strength of quasars over a wide range of 1.7-6.9 times solar abundance. Our result implies that metallicity plays an important role in the formation of quasar outflows, likely by affecting outflow acceleration. This effect may have a profound impact on galaxy evolution via momentum feedback and chemical enrichment.

  19. The luminosity function of quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pei, Yichuan C.

    1995-01-01

    We propose a new evolutionary model for the optical luminosity function of quasars. Our analytical model is derived from fits to the empirical luminosity function estimated by Hartwick and Schade and Warren, Hewett, and Osmer on the basis of more than 1200 quasars over the range of redshifts 0 approximately less than z approximately less than 4.5. We find that the evolution of quasars over this entire redshift range can be well fitted by a Gaussian distribution, while the shape of the luminosity function can be well fitted by either a double power law or an exponential L(exp 1/4) law. The predicted number counts of quasars, as a function of either apparent magnitude or redshift, are fully consistent with the observed ones. Our model indicates that the evolution of quasars reaches its maximum at z approximately = 2.8 and declines at higher redshifts. An extrapolation of the evolution to z approximately greater than 4.5 implies that quasars may have started their cosmic fireworks at z(sub f) approximately = 5.2-5.5. Forthcoming surveys of quasars at these redshifts will be critical to constrain the epoch of quasar formation. All the results we derived are based on observed quasars and are therefore subject to the bias of obscuration by dust in damped Ly alpha systems. Future surveys of these absorption systems at z approximately greater than 3 will also be important if the formation epoch of quasars is to be known unambiguously.

  20. ABSORPTION-LINE PROBES OF THE PREVALENCE AND PROPERTIES OF OUTFLOWS IN PRESENT-DAY STAR-FORMING GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Chen Yanmei; Kauffmann, Guinevere; Wang Jing; Tremonti, Christy A.; Heckman, Timothy M.; Weiner, Benjamin J.; Brinchmann, Jarle

    2010-08-15

    We analyze star-forming galaxies drawn from SDSS DR7 to show how the interstellar medium (ISM) Na I {lambda}{lambda}5890, 5896 (Na D) absorption lines depend on galaxy physical properties, and to look for evidence of galactic winds. We combine the spectra of galaxies with similar geometry/physical parameters to create composite spectra with signal-to-noise {approx}300. The stellar continuum is modeled using stellar population synthesis models, and the continuum-normalized spectrum is fit with two Na I absorption components. We find that (1) ISM Na D absorption lines with equivalent widths EW > 0.8 A are only prevalent in disk galaxies with specific properties-large extinction (A{sub V} ), high star formation rates (SFR), high SFR per unit area ({Sigma}{sub SFR}), or high stellar mass (M{sub *}); (2) the ISM Na D absorption lines can be separated into two components: a quiescent disk-like component at the galaxy systemic velocity and an outflow component; (3) the disk-like component is much stronger in the edge-on systems, and the outflow component covers a wide angle but is stronger within 60{sup 0} of the disk rotation axis; (4) the EW and covering factor of the disk component correlate strongly with dust attenuation, highlighting the importance that dust shielding may play in the survival of Na I; (5) the EW of the outflow component depends primarily on {Sigma}{sub SFR} and secondarily on A{sub V} ; and (6) the outflow velocity varies from {approx}120 to 160 km s{sup -1} but shows little hint of a correlation with galaxy physical properties over the modest dynamic range that our sample probes (1.2 dex in log {Sigma}{sub SFR} and 1 dex in log M{sub *}).

  1. The contribution of quasar outflows to cosmological structure formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arav, Nahum

    2011-10-01

    A vast new discovery space is opened up by the high sensitivity of COS in the far UV. These new capabilities are ushering a revolution in the study of AGN outflows. We now have the ability to obtain high quality data on objects up to a redshift of about 1, providing access to ten times more {and better} diagnostic absorption lines than was possible with STIS {which could only observe outflows at z<0.05 with sufficient S/N}. These diagnostics will allow us to quantify how much do quasar outflow contribute to AGN feedback. On the way to this lofty goal, we'll be able to resolve important questions in the study of these outflows: Where are they situated within the host galaxy? What is their ionization equilibrium and chemical abundances? Unlike ground-based observations, COS data can yield the answers to all these questions for the most ubiquitous outflows, and therefore connect them to our developing understanding of cosmological structure formation.Our analysis of recent archived COS observations gives a concrete example for the above claims; including the first determination of the distance from the central source for a high-ionization outflow. Here we propose an archive program to look through the 520 COS G130M and G160M orbits of AGN archive observations, identify quasar outflows and publish the analyses of the best cases.

  2. Interstellar Silicate Dust Grain Properties in Distant Galaxies Probed by Quasar Absorption Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aller, Monique C.; Kulkarni, Varsha P.; York, Donald G.; Welty, Daniel E.; Vladilo, Giovanni; Som, Debopam

    2015-01-01

    Dust grains are a fundamental component of the interstellar medium, and significantly impact many of the physical processes driving galaxy evolution, including star formation, and the heating, cooling and ionization of interstellar material. Using the absorption features produced by dust in the spectra of luminous background quasars, it is possible to study the properties of extragalactic interstellar dust grains. We will present results from an ongoing program utilizing existing Spitzer Space Telescope infrared quasar spectra to probe silicate dust grain properties in z<1.4 quasar absorption systems. In combination with complementary ground-based data on associated gas-phase metal absorption lines, we explore connections between the interstellar dust and gas in the quasar absorption systems. Our project yields clear detections of the 10 micron silicate dust absorption feature in the studied systems, as well as detections of the 18 micron silicate dust absorption feature in sources with adequate spectral coverage. Based on measured variations in the breath, peak wavelength, and substructure of the 10 micron absorption features, there appear to be differences in the silicate dust grain properties from system-to-system. We also show indications of trends between the gas-phase metal properties, such as metallicity and gas velocity spread, with the silicate dust grain absorption properties. Support for this work is provided by NASA through an award issued by JPL/Caltech and through NASA grant NNX14AG74G, and from National Science Foundation grants AST-0908890 and AST-1108830 to the University of South Carolina.

  3. Iron K Features in the Quasar E 1821+643: Evidence for Gravitationally Redshifted Absorption?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yaqoob, Tahir; Serlemitsos, Peter

    2005-01-01

    We report a Chandra high-energy grating detection of a narrow, redshifted absorption line superimposed on the red wing of a broad Fe K line in the z = 0.297 quasar E 1821+643. The absorption line is detected at a confidence level, estimated by two different methods, in the range approx. 2 - 3 sigma. Although the detection significance is not high enough to exclude a non-astrophysical origin, accounting for the absorption feature when modeling the X-ray spectrum implies that the Fe-K emission line is broad, and consistent with an origin in a relativistic accretion disk. Ignoring the apparent absorption feature leads to the conclusion that the Fe-K emission line is narrower, and also affects the inferred peak energy of the line (and hence the inferred ionization state of Fe). If the absorption line (at approx. 6.2 keV in the quasar frame) is real, we argue that it could be due to gravitationally redshifted Fe XXV or Fe XXVI resonance absorption within approx. 10 - 20 gravitational radii of the putative central black hole. The absorption line is not detected in earlier ASCA and Chandra low-energy grating observations, but the absorption line is not unequivocally ruled out by these data. The Chandra high-energy grating Fe-K emission line is consistent with an origin predominantly in Fe I-XVII or so. In an ASCA observation eight years earlier, the Fe-K line peaked at approx. 6.6 keV, closer to the energies of He-like Fe triplet lines. Further, in a Chandra low-energy grating observation the Fe-K line profile was double-peaked, one peak corresponding to Fe I-XVII or so, the other peak to Fe XXVI Ly alpha. Such a wide range in ionization state of Fe is not ruled out by the HEG and ASCA data either, and is suggestive of a complex structure for the line-emitter.

  4. Probing the interstellar medium of external galaxies using quasar absortion lines: The 3C 232/NGC 3067 system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stocke, John T.; Case, James; Donahue, Megan; Shull, J. Michael; Snow, Theodore P.

    1990-01-01

    Quasar absorption lines offer unique opportunities to probe the interstellar medium of external galaxies. Researchers present new optical and UV absorption line spectroscopy of the quasar 3C232 (z=0.55) revealing new detail in the foreground absorption system due to the bright, spiral galaxy NGC 3067 (cz=1420 km/s). Specifically, the spectra show evidence for two and possibly three separate absorption components in CaII and Na I spanning approx. 150 km/s. The original HI detection of Haschick and Burke (1975) corresponds to the strongest of these metal systems which exhibits doublet ratios consistent with saturation in both CaII and Na I. Due to the recent detection in HI emission of a tidal tail or finger of HI extending from the western edge of NGC 3067 through the position of 3C 232 (Carilli, van Gorkom and Stocke, 1989), the morphology of the HI absorber is now known and is not either a warped disk nor a spherical halo as had been proposed. New deep continuum and H alpha imaging provides a sensitive upper limit on the the ionizing continuum impinging upon this cloud (and thus a limit on the intensity of the extragalactic ionizing radiation field). Together with the observed UV spectrum of 3C 232, the optical emission line ratios and the deep H alpha imaging set a minimum distance between the quasar and the HI cloud disregarding redshift information. This limit strains the non-cosmological redshift interpretation for 3C 232 -- and this quasar is one of the original 5 3C quasars found to be too close to NGC galaxies as if by chance (Burbidge, Burbidge, Solomon and Strittmatter, 1972).

  5. Evidence for Fluorescent Fe II Emission from Extended Low Ionization Outflows in Obscured Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Tinggui; Ferland, Gary J.; Yang, Chenwei; Wang, Huiyuan; Zhang, Shaohua

    2016-06-01

    Recent studies have shown that outflows in at least some broad absorption line (BAL) quasars are extended well beyond the putative dusty torus. Such outflows should be detectable in obscured quasars. We present four WISE selected infrared red quasars with very strong and peculiar ultraviolet Fe ii emission lines: strong UV Fe ii UV arising from transitions to ground/low excitation levels, and very weak Fe ii at wavelengths longer than 2800 Å. The spectra of these quasars display strong resonant emission lines, such as C iv, Al iii and Mg ii but sometimes, a lack of non-resonant lines such as C iii], S iii and He ii. We interpret the Fe ii lines as resonantly scattered light from the extended outflows that are viewed nearly edge-on, so that the accretion disk and broad line region are obscured by the dusty torus, while the extended outflows are not. We show that dust free gas exposed to strong radiation longward of 912 Å produces Fe ii emission very similar to that observed. The gas is too cool to collisionally excite Fe ii lines, accounting for the lack of optical emission. The spectral energy distribution from the UV to the mid-infrared can be modeled as emission from a clumpy dusty torus, with UV emission being reflected/scattered light either by the dusty torus or the outflow. Within this scenario, we estimate a minimum covering factor of the outflows from a few to 20% for the Fe ii scattering region, suggesting that Fe ii BAL quasars are at a special stage of quasar evolution.

  6. Dusty Quasars at High Redshifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weedman, Daniel; Sargsyan, Lusine

    2016-09-01

    A population of quasars at z ˜ 2 is determined based on dust luminosities νL ν (7.8 μm) that includes unobscured, partially obscured, and obscured quasars. Quasars are classified by the ratio νL ν (0.25 μm)/νL ν (7.8 μm) = UV/IR, assumed to measure obscuration of UV luminosity by the dust that produces IR luminosity. Quasar counts at rest-frame 7.8 μm are determined for quasars in the Boötes field of the NOAO Deep Wide Field Survey using 24 μm sources with optical redshifts from the AGN and Galaxy Evolution Survey (AGES) or infrared redshifts from the Spitzer Infrared Spectrograph. Spectral energy distributions are extended to far-infrared wavelengths using observations from the Herschel Space Observatory Spectral and Photometric Imaging Receiver (SPIRE), and new SPIRE photometry is presented for 77 high-redshift quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. It is found that unobscured and obscured quasars have similar space densities at rest-frame 7.8 μm, but the ratio L ν (100 μm)/L ν (7.8 μm) is about three times higher for obscured quasars than for unobscured, so that far-infrared or submillimeter quasar detections are dominated by obscured quasars. We find that only ˜5% of high-redshift submillimeter sources are quasars and that existing 850 μm surveys or 2 mm surveys should already have detected sources at z ˜ 10 if quasar and starburst luminosity functions remain the same from z = 2 until z = 10.

  7. 1E 0104.2 + 3153 - A broad absorption-line QSO viewed through a giant elliptical galaxy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stocke, J. T.; Liebert, J.; Schild, R.; Gioia, I. M.; Maccacaro, T.

    1984-01-01

    The optical identification of the X-ray source 1E 0104.2 + 3153 is complicated by the close projection of a broad absorption-line (BAL) QSO (z = 2.027) 10 arcsec from a giant elliptical galaxy (z = 0.111) at the center of a compact group of galaxies. At only 1.2 de Vaucouleur radii (16 kpc for H sub 0 = 100 km/s Mpc) this QSO-galaxy projection is the closest yet discovered. Based upon current observations, the source of the X-ray emission cannot be conclusively determined. Present in the BAL QSO spectrum are extremely strong Ca II H and K absorption lines due to the intervening galaxy, the first optical detection of the cold interstellar medium in an elliptical galaxy. The strength of these lines (EW = 2 and 1 A) requires observation through several interstellar clouds in the line of sight to the QSO. By its proximity to the central regions of the elliptical galaxy and the relative distances of the galaxy and QSO, this QSO is a particularly good candidate for observing dramatic transient gravitational lensing phenomena due to halo stars in the foreground galaxy.

  8. Space Telescope and Optical Reverberation Mapping Project VI. Variations of the Intrinsic Absorption Lines in NGC 5548

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kriss, Gerard A.; Agn Storm Team

    2015-01-01

    The AGN STORM collaboration monitored the Seyfert 1 galaxy NGC 5548 over a six-month period, with observations spanning the hard X-ray to mid-infrared wavebands. The core of this campaign was an intensive HST COS program, which obtained 170 far-ultraviolet spectra at approximately daily intervals, with twice-per-day monitoring of the X-ray, near-UV, and optical bands during much of the same period using Swift. The broad UV absorption lines discovered by Kaastra et al. (2014) and associated with the new soft X-ray obscurer are continuously present in the STORM campaign COS spectra. Their strength varies with the degree of soft X-ray obscuration as revealed by the Swift X-ray spectra. The narrow associated absorption lines in the UV spectrum of NGC 5548 remain strong. The lower-ionization transitions that appeared concurrently with the soft X-ray obscuration vary in response to the changing UV flux on a daily basis. Their depths over the longer term, however, also respond to the strength of the soft X-ray obscuration, indicating that the soft X-ray obscurer has a significant influence on the ionizing UV continuum that is not directly tracked by the observable UV continuum itself.

  9. The intrinsic quasar luminosity function: Accounting for accretion disk anisotropy

    SciTech Connect

    DiPompeo, M. A.; Myers, A. D.; Brotherton, M. S.; Runnoe, J. C.; Green, R. F.

    2014-05-20

    Quasar luminosity functions are a fundamental probe of the growth and evolution of supermassive black holes. Measuring the intrinsic luminosity function is difficult in practice, due to a multitude of observational and systematic effects. As sample sizes increase and measurement errors drop, characterizing the systematic effects is becoming more important. It is well known that the continuum emission from the accretion disk of quasars is anisotropic—in part due to its disk-like structure—but current luminosity function calculations effectively assume isotropy over the range of unobscured lines of sight. Here, we provide the first steps in characterizing the effect of random quasar orientations and simple models of anisotropy on observed luminosity functions. We find that the effect of orientation is not insignificant and exceeds other potential corrections such as those from gravitational lensing of foreground structures. We argue that current observational constraints may overestimate the intrinsic luminosity function by as much as a factor of ∼2 on the bright end. This has implications for models of quasars and their role in the universe, such as quasars' contribution to cosmological backgrounds.

  10. Quasar optical variability: searching for interband time delays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bachev, R. S.

    2009-01-01

    Aims: The main purpose of this paper is to study time delays between the light variations in different wavebands for a sample of quasars. Measuring a reliable time delay for a large number of quasars may help constraint the models of their central engines. The standard accretion disk irradiation model predicts a delay of the longer wavelengths behind the shorter ones, a delay that depends on the fundamental quasar parameters. Since the black hole masses and the accretion rates are approximately known for the sample we use, one can compare the observed time delays with the expected ones. Methods: We applied the interpolation cross-correlation function (ICCF) method to the Giveon et al. sample of 42 quasars, monitored in two (B and R) colors, to find the time lags represented by the ICCF peaks. Different tests were performed to assess the influence of photometric errors, sampling, etc., on the final result. Results: We found that most of the objects show a delay in the red light curve behind the blue one (a positive lag), which on average for the sample is about +4 days (+3 for the median), although the scatter is significant. These results are broadly consistent with the reprocessing model, especially for the well-sampled objects. The normalized time-lag deviations do not seem to correlate significantly with other quasar properties, including optical, radio, or X-ray measurables. On the other hand, many objects show a clear negative lag, which, if real, may have important consequences for the variability models.

  11. Evidence for Large Temperature Fluctuations in Quasar Accretion Disks from Spectral Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruan, John J.; Anderson, Scott F.; Dexter, Jason; Agol, Eric

    2014-03-01

    The well-known bluer-when-brighter trend observed in quasar variability is a signature of the complex processes in the accretion disk and can be a probe of the quasar variability mechanism. Using a sample of 604 variable quasars with repeat spectra in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey-I/II (SDSS), we construct difference spectra to investigate the physical causes of this bluer-when-brighter trend. The continuum of our composite difference spectrum is well fit by a power law, with a spectral index in excellent agreement with previous results. We measure the spectral variability relative to the underlying spectra of the quasars, which is independent of any extinction, and compare to model predictions. We show that our SDSS spectral variability results cannot be produced by global accretion rate fluctuations in a thin disk alone. However, we find that a simple model of an inhomogeneous disk with localized temperature fluctuations will produce power-law spectral variability over optical wavelengths. We show that the inhomogeneous disk will provide good fits to our observed spectral variability if the disk has large temperature fluctuations in many independently varying zones, in excellent agreement with independent constraints from quasar microlensing disk sizes, their strong UV spectral continuum, and single-band variability amplitudes. Our results provide an independent constraint on quasar variability models and add to the mounting evidence that quasar accretion disks have large localized temperature fluctuations.

  12. Evidence for large temperature fluctuations in quasar accretion disks from spectral variability

    SciTech Connect

    Ruan, John J.; Anderson, Scott F.; Agol, Eric; Dexter, Jason

    2014-03-10

    The well-known bluer-when-brighter trend observed in quasar variability is a signature of the complex processes in the accretion disk and can be a probe of the quasar variability mechanism. Using a sample of 604 variable quasars with repeat spectra in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey-I/II (SDSS), we construct difference spectra to investigate the physical causes of this bluer-when-brighter trend. The continuum of our composite difference spectrum is well fit by a power law, with a spectral index in excellent agreement with previous results. We measure the spectral variability relative to the underlying spectra of the quasars, which is independent of any extinction, and compare to model predictions. We show that our SDSS spectral variability results cannot be produced by global accretion rate fluctuations in a thin disk alone. However, we find that a simple model of an inhomogeneous disk with localized temperature fluctuations will produce power-law spectral variability over optical wavelengths. We show that the inhomogeneous disk will provide good fits to our observed spectral variability if the disk has large temperature fluctuations in many independently varying zones, in excellent agreement with independent constraints from quasar microlensing disk sizes, their strong UV spectral continuum, and single-band variability amplitudes. Our results provide an independent constraint on quasar variability models and add to the mounting evidence that quasar accretion disks have large localized temperature fluctuations.

  13. Spectral study of quasars of the Second Byurakan Survey of the northern sky. I. The quasars SBS 0953 + 549, SBS 1116 + 603, and SBS 1138 + 584

    SciTech Connect

    Levshakov, S.A.; Varshalovich, D.A.; Nazarov, E.A.

    1987-05-01

    The 6-m telescope was used in conjunction with a scanner (IPCS) and the SP-124 spectrograph to make an investigation with resolution approx. 3.5 A of three new quasars: SBS 0953 + 549 (z/sub e/ = 2.580), SBS 1116 + 603 (z/sub e/ = 2.628), and SBS 1138 + 584 (z/sub e/ = 1.699). The spectra of these quasars are analyzed. The emission line L/sub approx./ in the quasar SBS 1116 + 603 may have a two-component structure: a narrow peak (FWHM a 3000 km/sec) and a broad pedestal (FWHM a 19,400 km/sec). In the quasar SBS 0953 + 549, the profile of the emission line L/sub approx./ recalls the profiles of P Cyg type lines, which are observed in the spectra of stars with expanding shells; two strong (tau approx. 1) and broad (FWHM approx. 1700 and 1000 km/sec) absorption lines with z/sub a/ = 2.451 and 2.503 have been found and identified as L/sub approx./ lines. The symmetric profiles of these lines correspond to N(HI) approx. 10/sup 20/ cm/sup -2/ for the cloud with z/sub a/ = 2.541 and 5 x 10/sup 19/ cm/sup -2/ for the cloud with z/sub a/ = 2.503. The authors have also estimated the line-of-sight densities of heavy elements found at z/sub a/ = 0.3800 (SBS 0953 + 549) and z/sub a/ = 1.4082 (SBS 1138 + 584). The densities of the absorption details in these and other known quasars are compared.

  14. Tracing the outflow of a z = 0.334 FeLoBAL: New constraints from low-ionization absorbers in FBQS J1151+3822

    SciTech Connect

    Lucy, Adrian B.; Leighly, Karen M.; Terndrup, Donald M.; Dietrich, Matthias; Gallagher, Sarah C.

    2014-03-01

    We show for the first time that FBQS J1151+3822 is an iron low-ionization broad absorption line quasar (FeLoBAL QSO), the second-brightest and second-closest known example of this class. He I* and Fe II together act as an effective analytical tool, allowing us to obtain useful kinematic constraints from photoionization models of the outflow without needing to assume any particular acceleration model. The main outflow's log ionization parameter is –1.5, the log hydrogen density (cm{sup –3}) 5.5-8, the log hydrogen column density (cm{sup –2}) 21.7-21.9, the absorption radius 7.2-127 pc, and the kinetic luminosity is 0.16%-4.5% of the bolometric luminosity. We obtain line-of-sight covering fractions of ∼0.25 for strong Fe II, ∼0.5 for He I*, and ∼0.6 for Mg II. Narrower and shallower absorption lines from weaker Fe II and Mn II with an outflow velocity of ∼3400 km s{sup –1} have appeared between 2005 and 2011, suggesting that dense cores may have condensed inside the main outflow. Consideration of the literature might suggest that the FBQS J1151+3822 outflow is a member of a rare and distinct subclass of FeLoBALs with high densities and correspondingly small absorption radii. We find, however, that such outflows are not necessarily a distinct subclass, and that their apparent rarity could be a symptom of selection bias in studies using density-sensitive lines.

  15. THE CANADA-FRANCE HIGH-z QUASAR SURVEY: NINE NEW QUASARS AND THE LUMINOSITY FUNCTION AT REDSHIFT 6

    SciTech Connect

    Willott, Chris J.; Crampton, David; Hutchings, John B.; Schade, David; Delorme, Philippe; Reyle, Celine; Albert, Loic; Bergeron, Jacqueline; Omont, Alain; Delfosse, Xavier; Forveille, Thierry; McLure, Ross J.

    2010-03-15

    We present discovery imaging and spectroscopy for nine new z {approx} 6 quasars found in the Canada-France High-z Quasar Survey (CFHQS) bringing the total number of CFHQS quasars to 19. By combining the CFHQS with the more luminous Sloan Digital Sky Survey sample, we are able to derive the quasar luminosity function from a sample of 40 quasars at redshifts 5.74 < z < 6.42. Our binned luminosity function shows a slightly lower normalization and flatter slope than found in previous work. The binned data also suggest a break in the luminosity function at M {sub 1450} {approx} -25. A double power-law maximum likelihood fit to the data is consistent with the binned results. The luminosity function is strongly constrained (1{sigma} uncertainty <0.1 dex) over the range -27.5 < M {sub 1450} < -24.7. The best-fit parameters are {phi}(M*{sub 1450}) = 1.14 x 10{sup -8} Mpc{sup -3} mag{sup -1}, break magnitude M*{sub 1450} = -25.13, and bright end slope {beta} = -2.81. However, the covariance between {beta} and M*{sub 1450} prevents strong constraints being placed on either parameter. For a break magnitude in the range -26 < M*{sub 1450} < -24, we find -3.8 < {beta} < -2.3 at 95% confidence. We calculate the z = 6 quasar intergalactic ionizing flux and show it is between 20 and 100 times lower than that necessary for reionization. Finally, we use the luminosity function to predict how many higher redshift quasars may be discovered in future near-IR imaging surveys.

  16. First constraint on cosmological variation of the proton-to-electron mass ratio from two independent telescopes.

    PubMed

    van Weerdenburg, F; Murphy, M T; Malec, A L; Kaper, L; Ubachs, W

    2011-05-01

    A high signal-to-noise spectrum covering the largest number of hydrogen lines (90 H(2) lines and 6 HD lines) in a high-redshift object was analyzed from an observation along the sight line to the bright quasar source J2123-005 with the Ultraviolet and Visual Echelle Spectrograph on the European Southern Observatory Very Large Telescope (Paranal, Chile). This delivers a constraint on a possible variation of the proton-to-electron mass ratio of Δμ/μ=(8.5 ± 3.6(stat) ± 2.2(syst))×10(-6) at redshift z(abs) = 2.059, which agrees well with a recently published result on the same system observed at the Keck telescope yielding Δμ/μ=(5.6 ± 5.5(stat) ± 2.9(syst))×10(-6). Both analyses used the same robust absorption line fitting procedures with detailed consideration of systematic errors. PMID:21635080

  17. A POPULATION OF X-RAY WEAK QUASARS: PHL 1811 ANALOGS AT HIGH REDSHIFT

    SciTech Connect

    Wu Jianfeng; Brandt, W. N.; Schneider, Donald P.; Hall, Patrick B.; Gibson, Robert R.; Schmidt, Sarah J.; Richards, Gordon T.; Shemmer, Ohad; Just, Dennis W.

    2011-07-20

    We report the results from Chandra and XMM-Newton observations of a sample of 10 type 1 quasars selected to have unusual UV emission-line properties (weak and blueshifted high-ionization lines; strong UV Fe emission) similar to those of PHL 1811, a confirmed intrinsically X-ray weak quasar. These quasars were identified by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey at high redshift (z {approx} 2.2); eight are radio quiet while two are radio intermediate. All of the radio-quiet PHL 1811 analogs, without exception, are notably X-ray weak by a mean factor of {approx}13. These sources lack broad absorption lines and have blue UV/optical continua, supporting the hypothesis that they are intrinsically X-ray weak like PHL 1811 itself. However, their average X-ray spectrum appears to be harder than those of typical quasars, which may indicate the presence of heavy intrinsic X-ray absorption. Our sample of radio-quiet PHL 1811 analogs supports a connection between an X-ray weak spectral energy distribution and PHL 1811-like UV emission lines; this connection provides an economical way to identify X-ray weak type 1 quasars. The fraction of radio-quiet PHL 1811 analogs in the radio-quiet quasar population is estimated to be {approx}< 1.2%. We have investigated correlations between relative X-ray brightness and UV emission-line properties (e.g., C IV equivalent width and blueshift) for a sample combining our radio-quiet PHL 1811 analogs, PHL 1811 itself, and typical type 1 quasars. These correlation analyses suggest that PHL 1811 analogs may have extreme wind-dominated broad emission-line regions. Observationally, the radio-quiet PHL 1811 analogs appear to be a subset ({approx}30%) of radio-quiet weak-line quasars (WLQs). The existence of a subset of quasars in which high-ionization 'shielding gas' covers most of the broad emission-line region (BELR), but little more than the BELR, could potentially unify the PHL 1811 analogs and WLQs. The two radio-intermediate PHL 1811 analogs are X

  18. The pattern of extreme star formation events in SDSS quasar hosts in Herschel fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pitchford, Lura Katherine; Hatziminaoglou, Evanthia; Feltre, Anna; Clarke, Charlotte; Farrah, Duncan; Harris, Kathryn Amy; Hurley, Peter; Oliver, Sebastian; Page, Mat; Wang, Lingyu

    2016-01-01

    Using a sample of ~500 quasars up to redshifts of ~4 detected by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) and the Spectral and Photometric Imaging Receiver (SPIRE) instrument of Herschel, we describe the behavior of intense starbursts in luminous quasars and how it correlates with the properties of the active galactic nuclei (AGN). We select our objects in the Herschel Stripe 82 Survey (HerS) and in the largest fields of the Herschel Multi-tiered Extragalactic Survey (HerMES), including the HerMES Large Mode Survey (HeLMS).The far-infrared (FIR) emission of our objects is quantified using a spectral energy distribution (SED) fitting technique. As our sources are individually detected in the SPIRE bands, they are bright in the FIR, exhibiting typical star formation rates (SFRs) of order of 1000 M⊙yr-1. We find the SFR to increase by a factor of nearly ten from z~0.5 to z~3, in line with the increasing comoving SFR density over a similar redshift range. The SFR, however, is shown to remain constant with increasing quasar luminosity for quasars with IR luminosities above 1012L⊙, indicating a self-regulating star formation process rather than a suppression effect due to the presence of powerful AGN. We find no further proof of a causal relation between star formation and accretion onto the central black hole, as the SFR and the Eddington ratio, λEdd, are found to be uncorrelated.We then compare the broad absorption line (BAL) quasars to the rest of the quasar population, as they are candidates for outflows in action from which shorter-term feedback effects could be sought. We find the accretion luminosities and λEdd values of BAL quasars to be drawn from the same population as those of the non-BAL quasars; further, the host SFRs are statistically similar among the two populations, all of which argue against feedback effects. These similarities also oppose an evolutionary scenario, as a different evolutionary stage would imply differences in either the accretion state

  19. Extremely red quasars from SDSS, BOSS and WISE: classification of optical spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ross, Nicholas P.; Hamann, Fred; Zakamska, Nadia L.; Richards, Gordon T.; Villforth, Carolin; Strauss, Michael A.; Greene, Jenny E.; Alexandroff, Rachael; Brandt, W. Niel; Liu, Guilin; Myers, Adam D.; Pâris, Isabelle; Schneider, Donald P.

    2015-11-01

    Quasars with extremely red infrared-to-optical colours are an interesting population that can test ideas about quasar evolution as well as orientation, obscuration and geometric effects in the so-called AGN unified model. To identify such a population, we match the quasar catalogues of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) to the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) to identify quasars with extremely high infrared-to-optical ratios. We identify 65 objects with rAB - W4Vega > 14 mag (i.e. Fν(22 μm)/Fν(r) ≳ 1000). This sample spans a redshift range of 0.28 < z < 4.36 and has a bimodal distribution, with peaks at z ˜ 0.8 and z ˜ 2.5. It includes three z > 2.6 objects that are detected in the W4 band but not W1 or W2 (i.e. `W1W2 dropouts'). The SDSS/BOSS spectra show that the majority of the objects are reddened type 1 quasars, type 2 quasars (both at low and high redshift) or objects with deep low-ionization broad absorption lines (BALs) that suppress the observed r-band flux. In addition, we identify a class of type 1 permitted broad emission-line objects at z ≃ 2-3 which are characterized by emission line rest-frame equivalent widths (REWs) of ≳150 Å, much larger than those of typical quasars. In particular, 55 per cent (45 per cent) of the non-BAL type 1s with measurable C IV in our sample have REW(C IV) > 100 (150) Å, compared to only 5.8 per cent (1.3 per cent) for non-BAL quasars in BOSS. These objects often also have unusual line ratios, such as very high N V/Ly α ratios. These large REWs might be caused by suppressed continuum emission analogous to type 2 quasars; however, there is no obvious mechanism in standard unified models to suppress the continuum without also obscuring the broad emission lines.

  20. Observational constraints on the nature of low redshift Lyα absorbers.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Brun, V.; Bergeron, J.; Boisse, P.

    1996-02-01

    We present results from a spectroscopic and imaging survey of galaxies in the fields of quasars from the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Quasar Absorption Line Key Project. The aim of this survey is to identify galaxies within 3.5' from the quasar sightline, to a limiting, integrated r-band magnitude m_r_=22.5. The data are then compared to the HST homogeneous sample of Lyα-only absorbers in order to put constraints on the nature of these absorbers, and in particular on their relation to galaxies. We have obtained spectra for 81 objects in three quasar fields and identified 66 galaxies (success rate of 81%) at redshifts in the range z=0.0500-0.7974, and at linear impact parameters to the quasar sightlines spanning D=57-2380h_50_^-1^kpc. Among these galaxies, 19 are at less than 750km/s from a Lyα absorber, and only one clearly does not give rise to any absorption. Three other galaxies are at the redshifts of metal-rich absorption systems, of which one belongs to a cluster with altogether 19 identified galaxies at the quasar redshift. The analysis of our sample combined with those of previous studies shows that: 1) the redshift agreements of the Lyα absorber-galaxy associations cannot be due to chance coincidence; 2) there is no clear anti-correlation between the Lyα rest-frame equivalent width and the impact parameter for the whole sample (w_r, min_=0.10A). When only the strongest lines are considered (w_r_>=0.24A), w_r_(Lyα) and D are marginally anti-correlated. Lanzetta et al. (1995) found a stronger anti-correlation which could be due, at least in part, to the existence of metal-rich absorbers in their sample. Our results suggest that most Lyα absorbers are not gaseous clouds that belong in a strict sense to galaxies, as is the case for MgII absorbers. The size of Lyα galactic halos can be inferred from the variation with D of the fraction of associations to the total number of galaxies at impact parameters < D. This fraction drops from 1 to ~0.65 at D~200h

  1. Invisible Active Galactic Nuclei. II. Radio Morphologies and Five New H i 21cm Absorption Line Detectors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Ting; Stocke, John T.; Darling, Jeremy; Momjian, Emmanuel; Sharma, Soniya; Kanekar, Nissim

    2016-03-01

    This is the second paper directed toward finding new highly redshifted atomic and molecular absorption lines at radio frequencies. To this end, we selected a sample of 80 candidates for obscured radio-loud active galactic nuclei (AGNs) and presented their basic optical/near-infrared (NIR) properties in Paper I. In this paper, we present both high-resolution radio continuum images for all of these sources and H i 21 cm absorption spectroscopy for a few selected sources in this sample. A-configuration 4.9 and 8.5 GHz Very Large Array continuum observations find that 52 sources are compact or have substantial compact components with size <0.″5 and flux densities >0.1 Jy at 4.9 GHz. The 36 most compact sources were then observed with the Very Long Baseline Array at 1.4 GHz. One definite and 10 candidate Compact Symmetric Objects (CSOs) are newly identified, which is a detection rate of CSOs ∼three times higher than the detection rate previously found in purely flux-limited samples. Based on possessing compact components with high flux densities, 60 of these sources are good candidates for absorption-line searches. Twenty-seven sources were observed for H i 21 cm absorption at their photometric or spectroscopic redshifts with only six detections (five definite and one tentative). However, five of these were from a small subset of six CSOs with pure galaxy optical/NIR spectra (i.e., any AGN emission is obscured) and for which accurate spectroscopic redshifts place the redshifted 21 cm line in a radio frequency intereference (RFI)-free spectral “window” (i.e., the percentage of H i 21 cm absorption-line detections could be as high as ∼90% in this sample). It is likely that the presence of ubiquitous RFI and the absence of accurate spectroscopic redshifts preclude H i detections in similar sources (only 1 detection out of the remaining 22 sources observed, 13 of which have only photometric redshifts); that is, H i absorption may well be present but is masked by

  2. The Extremes of Quasar Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stern, Daniel

    2016-04-01

    Variability is one of the key observational properties of quasars, and it can be used as a probe of their fueling, physics, and evolution. A new generation of synoptic sky surveys, in combination with the novel data analytics tools, offers unprecedented data sets for the studies of quasars in the time domain. I will illustrate this with examples from the Catalina Real-Time Transient Survey (CRTS), which has an open and growing archive of 500 million light curves, including 350,000 spectroscopically confirmed quasars, with the time baselines ranging from 10 minutes to 10 years. I will discuss a new approach to discover quasars using a combination of variability and mid-IR colors from WISE, which results in a catalog of over a million quasar candidates. I will then discuss quasars with extreme, anomolous light curves, including quasars that have gone through extreme brightening events over the past decade with concordant large changes in their spectroscopic properties. I will also discuss a small subset of quasars with periodic light curves which we interpret as a signature of close (milliparsec scale) supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries.

  3. On the alignment of quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, X.-F.

    1986-06-01

    Taking the two Savage-Bolton 5 deg x 5 deg regions of optical quasar patrol as samples, a systematic analysis of the number of aligned quasars was made and compared with the random data generated by Monte Carlo method. The statistical result is that, at least for these two samples, there is no clear evidence for alignment.

  4. On the alignment of quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Xing-fen

    1986-06-01

    Taking the two Savage-Bolton 5° × 5° regions of optical quasar patrol as samples, I made a systematic analysis of the number of aligned quasars and compared with the random data generated by Monte Carlo method. The statistical result is that, at least for these two samples, there is no clear evidence for alignment.

  5. The Circumgalactic Medium of Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hennawi, Joe

    2014-07-01

    I will argue that observations of the diffuse gas in the outskirts of quasar host galaxies, or the so called circumgalactic medium, are essential for understanding how luminous quasars evolve in a cosmological context. Such observations also provide a fruitful comparison to theory, because hydrodynamics at moderate overdensities is much easier to simulate than the complicated processes which trigger quasar activity. A novel technique will be introduced, whereby a foreground quasar can be studied in absorption against a background quasar, resolving scales as small as 30 kpc. This experiment reveals a rich absorption spectrum which contains a wealth of information about the physical conditions of diffuse gas around quasars. Hydrodynamical simulations of the massive dark matter halos which host luminous quasars under predict the amount of cool gas observed in quasar environs by a large factor, challenging our understanding of how massive galaxies form. I will also discuss a very sensitive search for Ly-alpha emission from the same gas which we study in absorption.

  6. A quasar sample for the Lyα forest studies from the Data Release 10 of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torbaniuk O.

    2015-12-01

    We present a new sample of the z≥ quasar spectra. It contains 102643 spectra which were visually selected from the SDSS DR10, and includes also a subsample of 65 976 spectra for the composite spectra compilation. This sample will be used for the Lyα forest studies, and can be used for other studies, including those of the quasar spectral properties and the spatial distribution of quasars at z>2. The compiled composite spectra will be used for the determination of the intrinsic spectrum in the Lyα forest studies. Those objects which were not included into the main sample and rejected during the visual examination, are 11192 quasars with the broad absorption lines, 6804 spectra with the damped Lyα systems, 1248 and 493 spectra with the absorption in the Lyα and Lyβ lines, respectively. The "non-quasar" objects, including 191 candidates for blazars and 30 galaxies with starburst, as well as 617 quasar spectra with wrong redshift, 417 incomplete spectra and 1497 spectra with low S/N ratio, were also excluded.

  7. Time-averaging approximation in the interaction picture: Absorption line shapes for coupled chromophores with application to liquid water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Mino; Skinner, J. L.

    2011-10-01

    The time-averaging approximation (TAA), originally developed to calculate vibrational line shapes for coupled chromophores using mixed quantum/classical methods, is reformulated. In the original version of the theory, time averaging was performed for the full one-exciton Hamiltonian, while herein the time averaging is performed on the coupling (off-diagonal) Hamiltonian in the interaction picture. As a result, the influence of the dynamic fluctuations of the transition energies is more accurately described. We compare numerical results of the two versions of the TAA with numerically exact results for the vibrational absorption line shape of the OH stretching modes in neat water. It is shown that the TAA in the interaction picture yields theoretical line shapes that are in better agreement with exact results.

  8. Broad Balmer Absorption Line Variability: Evidence of Gas Transverse Motion in the QSO SDSS J125942.80+121312.6

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Xiheng; Zhou, Hongyan; Shu, Xinwen; Zhang, Shaohua; Ji, Tuo; Pan, Xiang; Sun, Luming; Zhao, Wen; Hao, Lei

    2016-03-01

    We report on the discovery of broad Balmer absorption lines variability in the QSO SDSS J125942.80+121312.6, based on the optical and near-infrared spectra taken from the SDSS-I, SDSS-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS), and TripleSpec observations over a timescale of 5.8 years in the QSO's rest-frame. The blueshifted absorption profile of Hβ shows a variation of more than 5σ at a high velocity portion (\\gt 3000 {km} {{{s}}}-1) of the trough. We perform a detailed analysis for the physical conditions of the absorber using Balmer lines as well as metastable He i and optical Fe ii absorptions (λ4233 from b4P5/2 level and λ5169 from a6S5/2) at the same velocity. These Fe ii lines are identified in the QSO spectra for the first time. According to the photoionization simulations, we estimate a gas density of n({{H}})≈ {10}9.1 {{cm}}-3 and a column density of {N}{col}({{H}})≈ {10}23 {{cm}}-2 for the BOSS data, but the model fails to predict the variations of ionic column densities between the SDSS and BOSS observations if changes in ionizing flux are assumed. We thus propose transverse motion of the absorbing gas being the cause of the observed broad Balmer absorption line variability. In fact, we find that the changes in covering factors of the absorber can well-reproduce all of the observed variations. The absorber is estimated ∼0.94 pc away from the central engine, which is where the outflow likely experiences deceleration due to the collision with the surrounding medium. This scheme is consistent with the argument that LoBAL QSOs may represent the transition from obscured star-forming galaxies to classic QSOs.

  9. The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasar Catalog. 3. Third data release

    SciTech Connect

    Schneider, Donald P.; Hall, Patrick B.; Richards, Gordon T.; Vanden Berk, Daniel E.; Anderson, Scott F.; Fan, Xiao-Hui; Jester, Sebastian; Stoughton, Chris; Strauss, Michael A.; SubbaRao, Mark; Brandt, W.N.; Gunn, James E.; Yanny, Brian; Bahcall, Neta A.; Barentine, J.C.; Blanton, Michael R.; Boroski, William N.; Brewington, Howard J.; Brinkmann, J.; Brunner, Robert; Csabai, Istvan; /Penn State U., Astron. Astrophys. /York U., Canada /Princeton U. Observ. /Washington U., Seattle, Astron. Dept. /Arizona U., Astron. Dept. - Steward Observ. /Fermilab /Chicago U., Astron. Astrophys. Ctr. /Adler Planetarium, Chicago /Apache Point Observ. /New York U. /Illinois U., Urbana, Astron. Dept. /Eotvos U. /Tokyo U., Astron. Dept. /Tokyo U., RESCEU /Tokyo U., ICRR /Princeton, Inst. Advanced Study /Microsoft, BARC /Johns Hopkins U. /Mt. Suhora Observ., Cracow /Sussex U., Astron. Ctr. /Baltimore, Space Telescope Sci.

    2005-03-01

    We present the third edition of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Quasar Catalog. The catalog consists of the 46,420 objects in the SDSS Third Data Release that have luminosities larger than M{sub i} = -22 (in a cosmology with H{sub 0} = 70 km s{sup -1} Mpc{sup -1}, {Omega}{sub M} = 0.3, and {Omega}{sub {Lambda}} = 0.7), have at least one emission line with FWHM larger than 1000 km s{sup -1} or are unambiguously broad absorption line quasars, are fainter than i = 15.0, and have highly reliable redshifts. The area covered by the catalog is {approx} 4188 deg{sup 2}. The quasar redshifts range from 0.08 to 5.41, with a median value of 1.47; the high-redshift sample includes 520 quasars at redshifts greater than four, of which 17 are at redshifts greater than five. For each object the catalog presents positions accurate to better than 0.2'' rms per coordinate, five-band (ugriz) CCD-based photometry with typical accuracy of 0.03 mag, and information on the morphology and selection method. The catalog also contains radio, near-infrared, and X-ray emission properties of the quasars, when available, from other large-area surveys. The calibrated digital spectra cover the wavelength region 3800-9200 at a spectral resolution of {approx} 2000; the spectra can be retrieved from the public database using the information provided in the catalog. A total of 44,221 objects in the catalog were discovered by the SDSS; 28,400 of the SDSS discoveries are reported here for the first time.

  10. Quasars Probing Quasars. VI. Excess H I Absorption within One Proper Mpc of z ~ 2 Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prochaska, J. Xavier; Hennawi, Joseph F.; Lee, Khee-Gan; Cantalupo, Sebastiano; Bovy, Jo; Djorgovski, S. G.; Ellison, Sara L.; Lau, Marie Wingyee; Martin, Crystal L.; Myers, Adam; Rubin, Kate H. R.; Simcoe, Robert A.

    2013-10-01

    With close pairs of quasars at different redshifts, a background quasar sightline can be used to study a foreground quasar's environment in absorption. We use a sample of 650 projected quasar pairs to study the H I Lyα absorption transverse to luminous, z ~ 2 quasars at proper separations of 30 kpc < R < 1 Mpc. In contrast to measurements along the line-of-sight, regions transverse to quasars exhibit enhanced H I Lyα absorption and a larger variance than the ambient intergalactic medium, with increasing absorption and variance toward smaller scales. Analysis of composite spectra reveals excess absorption characterized by a Lyα equivalent width profile W = 2.3 Å (R /100 kpc)-0.46. We also observe a high (sime 60%) covering factor of strong, optically thick H I absorbers (H I column N_{H\\,\\scriptsize{I}}>10^{17.3}\\, cm^{-2}) at separations R < 200 kpc, which decreases to ~20% at R ~= 1 Mpc, but still represents a significant excess over the cosmic average. This excess of optically thick absorption can be described by a quasar-absorber cross-correlation function ξQA(r) = (r/r 0)γ with a large correlation length r_0=12.5^{+2.7}_{-1.4}\\, h^{-1}\\ Mpc (comoving) and \\gamma =1.68^{+0.14}_{-0.30}. The H I absorption measured around quasars exceeds that of any previously studied population, consistent with quasars being hosted by massive dark matter halos M halo ≈ 1012.5 M ⊙ at z ~ 2.5. The environments of these massive halos are highly biased toward producing optically thick gas, and may even dominate the cosmic abundance of Lyman limit systems and hence the intergalactic opacity to ionizing photons at z ~ 2.5. The anisotropic absorption around quasars implies the transverse direction is much less likely to be illuminated by ionizing radiation than the line-of-sight.

  11. Do quasars evolve over cosmological time scales?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wampler, E. J.; Ponz, D.

    Systematic biases that are redshift dependent can influence the optical discovery of quasars and the evolution laws derived from counts of quasars. New data and their interpretation for quasars brighter than MB = -24 in the Palomar Bright Quasar Survey (BQS) (Schmidt and Green, 1983) are consistent with no evolution. A comparison of BQS quasars with the brightest quasars from the CTIO Schmidt Telescope Survey (Osmer and Smith, 1980) shows that if q(0) is near zero, the comoving density of bright quasars in a Friedmann cosmology is about 15 times higher for the CTIO survey quasars (mean z of about 2.8) than for the BQS quasars (mean z of about 1.8). In this case spectral evolution is also required since the CTIO quasars have stronger CIV 1548 A lines than the BQS quasars of similar luminosity. Alternatively, if q(0) is taken to be near 1, the CTIO survey quasars would then have a lower luminosity than the BQS quasars and these data would be consistent with no evolution. Strong CIV 1548 A lines for the CTIO quasars would then fit the general correlation between absolute quasar luminosity and emission line strength (Wampler, Gaskell, Burke and Baldwin, 1984).

  12. Towards an ALHAMBRA quasar catalogue

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chaves-Montero, J.; Bonoli, S.

    2015-05-01

    We present the steps towards the identification of quasars in the ALHAMBRA fields using only the ALHAMBRA photospectra. The ALHAMBRA survey (Moles et al. 2005, 2008) uses a set of 20 contiguous optical filters and three infrared filtes (J, H, and Ks). The entire coverage of the optical range and the width of the filters (˜ 300 Å) allowed us to detect emission line quasars and to compute their accurate redshifts. Starting from ˜430 000 sources we ended up with a catalogue of 524 quasar candidates with z>0.8 in an area of 2.79 deg^2. To determine the level of galaxy contamination in our sample and the accuracy of the photo-z we performed a crossmatch between spectroscopically identified objects in another surveys and the ALHAMBRA sources, detecting 1 058 galaxies and 205 quasars. After applying our algorithm none of the galaxies was classified as quasar, the accuracy of the quasar photo-z was σ_{NMAD}=0.010, and the level of quasars with photo-z significantly different to their spec-z (outliers) was 3.12 %.

  13. METAL-ENRICHED OUTFLOWS IN THE ULTRALUMINOUS INFRARED QUASAR Q1321+058

    SciTech Connect

    Wang Tinggui; Zhou Hongyan; Lu HongLin; Dong Xiaobo; Yuan Weimin; Shan Hongguang

    2009-09-10

    Quasar outflows may play important role in the evolution of its host galaxy and central black hole, and are most often studied in absorption lines. In this paper, we present a detailed study of multiple outflows in the obscured ultraluminous infrared quasar Q1321+058. The outflows reveal themselves in the complex optical and ultraviolet (UV) emission-line spectrum, with a broad component blueshifted by 1650 km s{sup -1} and a narrow component by 360 km s{sup -1}, respectively. The higher velocity component shows ever strong N III] (N III]/C III] = 3.8 {+-} 0.3 and N III]/C IV = 0.53) and strong Si III] (Si III]/C III] {approx_equal} 1), in addition to strong [O III]{lambda}5007 and [Ne III]{lambda}3869 emission. A comparison of these line ratios with photoionization models suggests an overabundance of N and Si relative to C. The abundance pattern is consistent with a fast chemical enriching process associated with a recent starburst, triggered by a recent galaxy merger. The outflow extends to several tens to hundred parsecs from the quasar, and covers only a very small sky. We find that the outflow with line emitting gas is energetically insufficient to remove the interstellar medium of the host galaxy, but total kinetic energy may be much larger than suggested by the emission lines. The velocity range and the column density suggest that the outflow might be part of the low-ionization broad absorption line region as seen in a small class of quasars. The optical and UV continuum is starlight dominated and can be modeled with a young-aged (1 Myr) plus an intermediate-aged ({approx}0.5-1 Gyr) stellar populations, suggesting a fast building of the stellar mass in the host galaxy, consistent with the starburst-type metal abundances inferred from the high-velocity outflow spectrum. The broadband spectral energy distribution shows that it is an obscured quasar with its bulk emission in the middle infrared. The star formation rate, independently estimated from UV, far

  14. Beyond the single-atom response in absorption line shapes: probing a dense, laser-dressed helium gas with attosecond pulse trains.

    PubMed

    Liao, Chen-Ting; Sandhu, Arvinder; Camp, Seth; Schafer, Kenneth J; Gaarde, Mette B

    2015-04-10

    We investigate the absorption line shapes of laser-dressed atoms beyond the single-atom response, by using extreme ultraviolet (XUV) attosecond pulse trains to probe an optically thick helium target under the influence of a strong infrared (IR) field. We study the interplay between the IR-induced phase shift of the microscopic time-dependent dipole moment and the resonant-propagation-induced reshaping of the macroscopic XUV pulse. Our experimental and theoretical results show that as the optical depth increases, this interplay leads initially to a broadening of the IR-modified line shape, and subsequently, to the appearance of new, narrow features in the absorption line. PMID:25910116

  15. A Hubble Diagram for Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Risaliti, Guido; Lusso, Elisabeta

    2015-09-01

    We present a new method to test the cosmological model at high z, and measure the cosmological parameters, based on the non-linear correlation between UV and X-ray luminosity in quasars. While the method can be successfully tested with the data available today, a deep X-ray survey matching the future LSST and Euclid quasar catalogs is needed to achieve a high precision. Athena could provide a Hubble diagram for quasar analogous to that available today for supernovae, but extending up to z>6.

  16. BAL PHOSPHORUS ABUNDANCE AND EVIDENCE FOR IMMENSE IONIC COLUMN DENSITIES IN QUASAR OUTFLOWS: VLT/X-SHOOTER OBSERVATIONS OF QUASAR SDSS J1512+1119

    SciTech Connect

    Borguet, Benoit C. J.; Edmonds, Doug; Arav, Nahum; Chamberlain, Carter; Benn, Chris

    2012-10-10

    We present spectroscopic analysis of the broad absorption line (BAL) outflow in quasar SDSS J1512+1119. In particular, we focus our attention on a kinematic component in which we identify P V and S IV/S IV* absorption troughs. The shape of the unblended phosphorus doublet troughs and the three S IV/S IV* troughs allow us to obtain reliable column density measurements for these two ions. Photoionization modeling using these column densities and those of He I* constrain the abundance of phosphorus to the range of 0.5-4 times the solar value. The total column density, ionization parameter, and metallicity inferred from the P V and S IV column densities lead to large optical depth values for the common transition observed in BAL outflows. We show that the true C IV optical depth is {approx}1000 times greater in the core of the absorption profile than the value deduced from its apparent optical depth.

  17. Impact of instrumental systematic errors on fine-structure constant measurements with quasar spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whitmore, Jonathan B.; Murphy, Michael T.

    2015-02-01

    We present a new `supercalibration' technique for measuring systematic distortions in the wavelength scales of high-resolution spectrographs. By comparing spectra of `solar twin' stars or asteroids with a reference laboratory solar spectrum, distortions in the standard thorium-argon calibration can be tracked with ˜10 m s-1 precision over the entire optical wavelength range on scales of both echelle orders (˜50-100 Å) and entire spectrographs arms (˜1000-3000 Å). Using archival spectra from the past 20 yr, we have probed the supercalibration history of the Very Large Telescope-Ultraviolet and Visible Echelle Spectrograph (VLT-UVES) and Keck-High Resolution Echelle Spectrograph (HIRES) spectrographs. We find that systematic errors in their wavelength scales are ubiquitous and substantial, with long-range distortions varying between typically ±200 m s-1 per 1000 Å. We apply a simple model of these distortions to simulated spectra that characterize the large UVES and HIRES quasar samples which previously indicated possible evidence for cosmological variations in the fine-structure constant, α. The spurious deviations in α produced by the model closely match important aspects of the VLT-UVES quasar results at all redshifts and partially explain the HIRES results, though not self-consistently at all redshifts. That is, the apparent ubiquity, size and general characteristics of the distortions are capable of significantly weakening the evidence for variations in α from quasar absorption lines.

  18. Atmospheric Profiling Combining the Features of GPS ro & Mls: Satellite to Satellite Occultations Near Water & Ozone Absorption Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kursinski, E. R.; Ward, D.; Otarola, A. C.; McGhee, J.; Reed, H.; Erickson, D.

    2015-12-01

    Assessing climate models & their predictions requires observations that determine the state of the real climate system precisely and unambiguously, independently from models. For this purpose, we have been developing a new orbiting remote sensing system called the Active Temperature, Ozone & Moisture Microwave Spectrometer (ATOMMS) which is a cross between GPS RO and the Microwave Limb Sounder. ATOMMS actively probes water vapor, ozone & other absorption lines at cm & mm wavelengths in a satellite to satellite occultation geometry to simultaneously profile temperature, pressure, water vapor and ozone as well as other important constituents. Individual profiles of water vapor, temperature & pressure heights will extend from near the surface into the mesosphere with ~1%, 0.4K and 10 m precision respectively and still better accuracy, with 100 m vertical resolution. Ozone profiles will extend upward from the upper troposphere. Line of sight wind profiles will extend upwards from the mid-stratosphere. ATOMMS is a doubly differential absorption system which eliminates drift and both sees clouds and sees thru them, to deliver performance in clouds within a factor of 2 of the performance in clear skies. This all-weather sampling combined with insensitivity to surface emissivity avoids sampling biases that limit most existing satellite records. ATOMMS will profile slant liquid water in clouds & rain and as well as turbulence via scintillations ("twinkling of a star"). Using prototype ATOMMS instrumentation that we developed with funding from NSF, several ATOMMS ground field campaigns precisely measured water vapor, cloud amount, rainfall, turbulence and absorption line spectroscopy. ATOMMS's dynamic range was demonstrated as water vapor was derived to 1% precision in optical depths up to 17. We are developing high altitude aircraft to aircraft instrumentation to further demonstrate ATOMMS performance, refine spectroscopy & support future field campaigns. Our vision is a

  19. A Survey of Metal Lines at High Redshift. II. SDSS Absorption Line Studies—O VI Line Density, Space Density, and Gas Metallicity at z abs ~ 3.0

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frank, S.; Mathur, S.; Pieri, M.; York, D. G.

    2010-09-01

    We have analyzed a large data set of O VI absorber candidates found in the spectra of 3702 Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) quasars, focusing on a subsample of 387 active galactic nuclei sight lines with an average S/N >=5.0, allowing for the detection of absorbers above a rest-frame equivalent width limit of W r >= 0.19 Å for the O VI 1032 Å component. Accounting for random interlopers mimicking an O VI doublet, we derive for the first time a secure lower limit for the redshift number density ΔN/Δz for redshifts z abs >= 2.8. With extensive Monte Carlo simulations, we quantify the losses of absorbers due to blending with the ubiquitous Lyα forest lines and estimate the success rate of retrieving each individual candidate as a function of its redshift, the emission redshift of the quasar, the strength of the absorber, and the measured signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) of the spectrum by modeling typical Lyman forest spectra. These correction factors allow us to derive the "incompleteness and S/N-corrected" redshift number densities of O VI absorbers: ΔN O VI,c /Δzc (2.8 < z < 3.2) = 4.6 ± 0.3, ΔN O VI,c /Δzc (3.2 < z < 3.6) = 6.7 ± 0.8, and ΔN O VI,c /Δzc (3.6 < z < 4.0) = 8.4 ± 2.9. We can place a secure lower limit for the contribution of O VI to the closure mass density at the redshifts probed here: ΩO VI (2.8 < z < 3.2) >= 1.9 × 10-8 h -1. We show that the strong lines we probe account for over 65% of the mass in the O VI absorbers; the weak absorbers, while dominant in line number density, do not contribute significantly to the mass density. Making a conservative assumption about the ionization fraction, {O VI}/{O}, and adopting the Anders & Grevesse solar abundance values, we derive the mean metallicity of the gas probed in our search: ζ(2.8 < z < 3.2) >= 3.6 × 10-4 h, in good agreement with other studies. These results demonstrate that large spectroscopic data sets such as SDSS can play an important role in QSO absorption line studies, in spite of

  20. A census of quasar-intrinsic absorption in the Hubble Space Telescope archive: systems from high-resolution echelle spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ganguly, Rajib; Lynch, Ryan S.; Charlton, Jane C.; Eracleous, Michael; Tripp, Todd M.; Palma, Christopher; Sembach, Kenneth R.; Misawa, Toru; Masiero, Joseph R.; Milutinovic, Nikola; Lackey, Benjamin D.; Jones, Therese M.

    2013-10-01

    We present a census of zabs ≲ 2 intrinsic (those showing partial coverage) and associated (zabs ˜ zem) quasar absorption-line systems detected in the Hubble Space Telescope archive of Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph echelle spectra. This work complements the Misawa et al. survey of 2 < zem < 4 quasars that selects systems using similar techniques. We confirm the existence of so-called strong N V intrinsic systems (where the equivalent width of H I Lyα is small compared to N V λ1238) presented in that work, but find no convincing cases of `strong C IV' intrinsic systems at low redshift/luminosity. Moreover, we also report on the existence of `strong O VI' systems. From a comparison of partial coverage results as a function of ion, we conclude that systems selected by the N V ion have the highest probability of being intrinsic. By contrast, the C IV and O VI ions are poor selectors. Of the 30 O VI systems tested, only two of the systems in the spectrum on 3C 351 show convincing evidence for partial coverage. However, there is an ˜3σ excess in the number of absorbers near the quasar redshift (|Δv| ≤ 5000 km s-1) over absorbers at large redshift differences. In at least two cases, the associated O VI systems are known not to arise close to the accretion disc of the quasar.

  1. The ultraviolet absorption spectrum of the quasar PKS 0405-12 and the local density of Lyman-alpha absorption systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bahcall, John N.; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Schneider, Donald P.; Hartig, George F.

    1993-01-01

    A sample of 32 absorption lines has been identified in the ultraviolet spectrum of the z = 0.57 quasar PKS 0405-12. Data cover the wavelength range 1190-3260 A. There are 10 extragalactic Ly-alpha absorption lines in the complete sample, all with observed equivalent widths greater than or equal to 0.40 A; three of the Ly-alpha lines have Ly-beta counterparts. The number of Ly-alpha lines observed in the spectrum of PKS 0405-12 is within 1 sigma of the number predicted on the basis of previous HST observations of 3C 273 and of H1821 + 643. Combining the HST observations of 3C 273, H1821 + 643, and PKS 0405-12, we estimate the local number density of Ly-alpha systems with rest equivalent widths larger than 0.32 A to be about 15 +/- 4 Ly-alpha lines per unit redshift. Ground-based images reveal a rich field of galaxies in the direction of PKS 0405-12, including many galaxies with the brightnesses and sizes expected if they belong to a cluster associated with the quasar. The quasar spectrum does not show any evidence for absorption at the redshift of the emission lines, indicating a covering factor of less than unity for the halos of galaxies in the cluster around PKS 0405 - 12.

  2. Constraining Sub-parsec Binary Supermassive Black Holes in Quasars with Multi-epoch Spectroscopy. I. The General Quasar Population

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shen, Yue; Liu, Xin; Loeb, Abraham; Tremaine, Scott

    2013-09-01

    We perform a systematic search for sub-parsec binary supermassive black holes (BHs) in normal broad-line quasars at z < 0.8, using multi-epoch Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) spectroscopy of the broad Hβ line. Our working model is that (1) one and only one of the two BHs in the binary is active; (2) the active BH dynamically dominates its own broad-line region (BLR) in the binary system, so that the mean velocity of the BLR reflects the mean velocity of its host BH; (3) the inactive companion BH is orbiting at a distance of a few R BLR, where R BLR ~ 0.01-0.1 pc is the BLR size. We search for the expected line-of-sight acceleration of the broad-line velocity from binary orbital motion by cross-correlating SDSS spectra from two epochs separated by up to several years in the quasar rest frame. Out of ~700 pairs of spectra for which we have good measurements of the velocity shift between two epochs (1σ error ~40 km s-1), we detect 28 systems with significant velocity shifts in broad Hβ, among which 7 are the best candidates for the hypothesized binaries, 4 are most likely due to broad-line variability in single BHs, and the rest are ambiguous. Continued spectroscopic observations of these candidates will easily strengthen or disprove these claims. We use the distribution of the observed accelerations (mostly non-detections) to place constraints on the abundance of such binary systems among the general quasar population. Excess variance in the velocity shift is inferred for observations separated by longer than 0.4 yr (quasar rest frame). Attributing all the excess to binary motion would imply that most of the quasars in this sample must be in binaries, that the inactive BH must be on average more massive than the active one, and that the binary separation is at most a few times the size of the BLR. However, if this excess variance is partly or largely due to long-term broad-line variability, the requirement of a large population of close binaries is much weakened

  3. A Hubble Space Telescope Faint Object Spectrograph Survey for Broad Absorption Lines in a Sample of Low-redshift Weak [O III] Quasi-stellar Objects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turnshek, David A.; Monier, Eric M.; Sirola, Christopher J.; Espey, Brian R.

    1997-02-01

    The study by Boroson & Meyers led to the suggestion that radio-quiet QSOs with weak [O III] and strong Fe II emission spectra form a class of QSOs that has a high probability of exhibiting broad absorption lines (BALs) in their spectra. Furthermore, they argued that since narrow-line [O III] emission is almost certainly emitted isotropically, this indicates that such objects have relatively large BAL region covering factors. Low covering factor models are consistent with scenarios in which most QSOs have BAL regions, while higher covering factor models are consistent with scenarios in which there are special classes of QSOs with large BAL region outflows. By making Hubble Space Telescope (HST) FOS observations and using IUE or HST archival data when available, the details of the Boroson & Meyers suggestion have been explored by directly searching for classical C IV BALs in a sample of 18 QSOs with weak [O III] and often strong Fe II emission. Six of the 18 QSOs are found to exhibit C IV BALs. (In the archival sample, four of six objects have BALs, while two of the 12 new objects observed with the HST FOS have BALs.) However, there is evidence that the sample is heterogeneous, with IRAS-selected objects and high-luminosity objects having a greater tendency to exhibit BALs. If an isotropic model for [O III] emission equivalent width is considered, the results suggest that for the 18 object sample as a whole the average BAL region covering factor is ~0.33+0.20-0.09, which is significantly larger (with a more than 99% probability) than the overall fraction of QSOs observed to have BALs (normally taken as ~0.1). Given possible selection effects, in the context of an isotropic model the results may indicate that some of the sample objects have covering factors <<0.33, while others have covering factors >>0.33. At the same time, it is impossible to rule out in a non-model-dependent way a scenario in which orientation effects are important and covering factors are

  4. Possible Signatures of a Cold-flow Disk from MUSE Using a z ˜ 1 Galaxy-Quasar Pair toward SDSS J1422-0001

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouché, N.; Finley, H.; Schroetter, I.; Murphy, M. T.; Richter, P.; Bacon, R.; Contini, T.; Richard, J.; Wendt, M.; Kamann, S.; Epinat, B.; Cantalupo, S.; Straka, L. A.; Schaye, J.; Martin, C. L.; Péroux, C.; Wisotzki, L.; Soto, K.; Lilly, S.; Carollo, C. M.; Brinchmann, J.; Kollatschny, W.

    2016-04-01

    We use a background quasar to detect the presence of circumgalactic gas around a z=0.91 low-mass star-forming galaxy. Data from the new Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) on the Very Large Telescope show that the galaxy has a dust-corrected star formation rate (SFR) of 4.7 ± 2.0 M⊙ yr-1, with no companion down to 0.22 M⊙ yr-1 (5σ) within 240 {h}-1 kpc (“30”). Using a high-resolution spectrum of the background quasar, which is fortuitously aligned with the galaxy major axis (with an azimuth angle α of only 15°), we find, in the gas kinematics traced by low-ionization lines, distinct signatures consistent with those expected for a “cold-flow disk” extending at least 12 kpc (3× {R}1/2). We estimate the mass accretion rate {\\dot{M}}{{in}} to be at least two to three times larger than the SFR, using the geometric constraints from the IFU data and the H i column density of log {N}{{H}{{I}}}/{{cm}}-2 ≃ 20.4 obtained from a Hubble Space Telescope/COS near-UV spectrum. From a detailed analysis of the low-ionization lines (e.g., Zn ii, Cr ii, Ti ii, Mn ii, Si ii), the accreting material appears to be enriched to about 0.4 {Z}⊙ (albeit with large uncertainties: {log} Z/{Z}⊙ =-0.4\\quad +/- \\quad 0.4), which is comparable to the galaxy metallicity (12 + log O/H = 8.7 ± 0.2), implying a large recycling fraction from past outflows. Blueshifted Mg ii and Fe ii absorptions in the galaxy spectrum from the MUSE data reveal the presence of an outflow. The Mg ii and Fe ii absorption line ratios indicate emission infilling due to scattering processes, but the MUSE data do not show any signs of fluorescent Fe ii* emission. Based on observations made at the ESO telescopes under program 080.A-0364 (SINFONI), 079.A-0600 (UVES), and as part of MUSE commissioning (ESO program 060.A-9100). Based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities

  5. Measurement of the absorption line profiles of water vapour isotopomers at 1.39 {mu}m using the methods of diode laser spectroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Kuz'michev, A S; Nadezhdinskii, Aleksandr I; Ponurovskii, Ya Ya

    2011-07-31

    The issues related to high-precision measurement of the absorption line profiles of water vapour and its isotopomers using the methods of diode laser spectroscopy in the near IR range aimed at the analysis and detection of greenhouse gases are considered. The absorption line shape of H{sub 2}{sup 16}O is investigated as a function of pressure of different buffer gases. The influence of the instrument function of the diode laser (DL) on the precision of measuring the line profile is studied. From fitting the profile of Doppler-broadened H{sub 2}{sup 16}O absorption line to a model profile the lasing line width of the DL with a fibre pigtail is determined. The frequencies and intensities of absorption lines of water isotopomers H{sub 2}{sup 16}O, H{sub 2}{sup 17}O, H{sub 2}{sup 18}O, and HDO are measured in the range of DL oscillation. Analytical spectral regions are chosen for distant probing of water vapour using an airborne lab. (laser spectroscopy)

  6. Atmospheric profiling via satellite to satellite occultations near water and ozone absorption lines for weather and climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kursinski, E. R.; Ward, D.; Otarola, A. C.; McGhee, J.; Stovern, M.; Sammler, K.; Reed, H.; Erickson, D.; McCormick, C.; Griggs, E.

    2016-05-01

    Significantly reducing weather and climate prediction uncertainty requires global observations with substantially higher information content than present observations provide. While GPS occultations have provided a major advance, GPS observations of the atmosphere are limited by wavelengths chosen specifically to minimize interaction with the atmosphere. Significantly more information can be obtained via satellite to satellite occultations made at wavelengths chosen specifically to characterize the atmosphere. Here we describe such a system that will probe cm- and mmwavelength water vapor absorption lines called the Active Temperature, Ozone and Moisture Microwave Spectrometer (ATOMMS). Profiling both the speed and absorption of light enables ATOMMS to profile temperature, pressure and humidity simultaneously, which GPS occultations cannot do, as well as profile clouds and turbulence. We summarize the ATOMMS concept and its theoretical performance. We describe field measurements made with a prototype ATOMMS instrument and several important capabilities demonstrated with those ground based measurements including retrieving temporal variations in path-averaged water vapor to 1%, in clear, cloudy and rainy conditions, up to optical depths of 17, remotely sensing turbulence and determining rain rates. We conclude with a vision of a future ATOMMS low Earth orbiting satellite constellation designed to take advantage of synergies between observational needs for weather and climate, ATOMMS unprecedented orbital remote sensing capabilities and recent cubesat technological innovations that enable a constellation of dozens of very small spacecraft to achieve many critical, but as yet unfulfilled, monitoring and forecasting needs.

  7. Interstellar absorption lines toward NGC 2264 and AFGL 2591 - Abundances of H2, H3(+), and CO

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Black, John H.; Van Dishoek, Ewine F.; Willner, Steven P.; Woods, R. Claude

    1990-01-01

    Interstellar absorption-line spectroscopy of NGC 2264 is reported which shows that the CO molecule has a column density of 5 x 10 to the 18th/sq cm and a rotational excitation temperature of 28 K. A direct upper limit on the H2 column density implies that at least 6 percent of a solar carbon abundance is in the form of CO. The upper limit on the H3(+) abundance implies that the cosmic-ray ionization rate is of the order of 10 to the -16th/s or less. The H3(+) upper limit, together with a previous radio detection of H2D(+) emission, implies either an enormous overabundance of the deuterated molecule or else that most of the radio emission comes from clouds not located directly between use and the infrared source. Observations of the sources AFGL 2591 and NGC 2024 IRS2 indicate that upper limits on H3(+) imply cosmic ray ionization rates of less than 3 and 60 x 10 to the -17th/s, respectively.

  8. Variable Doppler shifts of the thermal wind absorption lines in low-mass X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madej, O. K.; Jonker, P. G.; Díaz Trigo, M.; Miškovičová, I.

    2014-02-01

    In this paper, we address the general applicability of the method pioneered by Zhang, Liao & Yao in which the motion of the compact object can be tracked using wind X-ray absorption lines. We present the velocity measurements of the thermal wind lines observed in the X-ray spectrum of a few low-mass X-ray binaries: GX 13+1, H 1743-322, GRO J1655-40 and GRS 1915+105. We find that the variability in the velocity of the wind lines in about all of the sources is larger than conceivable radial velocity variations of the compact object. GX 13+1 provides a potential exception, although it would require the red giant star to be massive with a mass of ≈5-6 M⊙. We conclude that the variability of the source luminosity occurring on a time-scale of days/months can affect the outflow properties making it difficult to track the orbital motion of the compact object using current observations. Given the intrinsic variability of the outflows we suggest that low-mass X-ray binaries showing stable coronae instead of an outflow (e.g. 4U 1254-69, MXB 1659-29, 4U 1624-49) could be more suitable targets for tracking the orbital motion of the compact object.

  9. The central structure of Broad Absorption Line QSOs: observational characteristics in the cm-mm wavelength domain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruni, G.; Mack, K.-H.; Dallacasa, D.; Montenegro-Montes, F. M.; Benn, C. R.; Carballo, R.; González-Serrano, J. I.; Holt, J.; Jiménez-Luján, F.

    2012-07-01

    Accounting for ~20% of the total QSO population, Broad Absorption Line QSOs are still an unsolved problem in the AGN context. They present wide troughs in the UV spectrum, due to material with velocities up to 0.2 c toward the observer. The two models proposed in literature try to explain them as a particular phase of the evolution of QSOs or as normal QSOs, but seen from a particular line of sight. We built a statistically complete sample of Radio-Loud BAL QSOs, and carried out an observing campaign to piece together the whole spectrum in the cm wavelength domain, and highlight all the possible differences with respect to a comparison sample of Radio-Loud non-BAL QSOs. VLBI observations at high angular resolution have been performed, to study the pc-scale morphology of these objects. Finally, we tried to detect a possible dust component with observations at mm-wavelengths. Results do not seem to indicate a young age for all BAL QSOs. Instead a variety of orientations and morphologies have been found, constraining the outflows foreseen by the orientation model to have different possible angles with respect to the jet axis.

  10. Inner-Shell Absorption Lines of Fe 6-Fe 16: a Many-Body Perturbation Theory Approach

    SciTech Connect

    Gu, Ming F.; Holczer, Tomer; Behar, Ehud; Kahn, Steven M.; /KIPAC, Menlo Park

    2006-01-17

    We provide improved atomic calculation of wavelengths, oscillator strengths, and autoionization rates relevant to the 2 -> 3 inner-shell transitions of Fe VI-XVI, the so-called Fe M-shell unresolved transition array (UTA). A second order many-body perturbation theory is employed to obtain accurate transition wavelengths, which are systematically larger than previous theoretical results by 15-45 mA. For a few transitions of Fe XVI and Fe XV where laboratory measurements exist, our new wavelengths are accurate to within a few mA. Using these new calculations, the apparent discrepancy in the velocities between the Fe M-shell UTA and other highly ionized absorption lines in the outflow of NGC 3783 disappears. The oscillator strengths in our new calculation agree well with the previous theoretical data, while the new autoionization rates are significantly larger, especially for lower charge states. We attribute this discrepancy to the missing autoionization channels in the previous calculation. The increased autoionization rates may slightly affect the column density analysis of the Fe M-shell UTA for sources with high column density and very low turbulent broadening. The complete set of atomic data is provided as an electronic table.

  11. Hydrodynamical simulations of the jet in the symbiotic star MWC 560. I. Structure, emission and synthetic absorption line profiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stute, M.; Camenzind, M.; Schmid, H. M.

    2005-01-01

    We performed hydrodynamical simulations with and without radiative cooling of jet models with parameters representative of the symbiotic system MWC 560. For symbiotic systems we have to perform jet simulations of a pulsed underdense jet in a high density ambient medium. We present the jet structure resulting from our simulations and calculate emission plots which account for expected radiative processes. In addition, our calculations provide expansion velocities for the jet bow shock, the density and temperature structure in the jet, and the propagation and evolution of the jet pulses. In MWC 560 the jet axis is parallel to the line of sight so that the outflowing jet gas can be seen as blue shifted, variable absorption lines in the continuum of the underlying jet source. Based on our simulations we calculate and discuss synthetic absorption profiles. Based on a detailed comparison between model spectra and observations we discuss our hydrodynamical calculations for a pulsed jet in MWC 560 and suggest improvements for future models. Figures \\ref{skizze}, \\ref{modi_det}, \\ref{slice_cool_p}, \\ref{NV_3.0_synch}, \\ref{modelicool_greyscale}, \\ref{line_rem}-\\ref{line_dv} and \\ref{line_zmax} are only available in electronic form at http://www.edpsciences.org

  12. Highly Ionized Iron Absorption Lines from Outflowing Gases in the X-ray Spectrum of NGC 1365

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Risaliti, G.; Bianchi, S.; Matt, G.; Baldi, A.; Elvis, M.; Fabbiano, G.; Zezas, A.

    2006-01-01

    We present the discovery of four absorption lines in the X-ray spectrum of the Seyfert galaxy NGC 1365, at energies between 6.7 and 8.3 keV. The lines are detected with high statistical confidence (from >20 sigma for the strongest to -4 sigma for the weakest) in two XMM-Newton observations 60 ks long. We also detect the same lines, with a lower signal-to-noise ratio (but still >2 sigma for each line), in two previous shorter (-10 ks) XMM-Newton observations. The spectral analysis identifies these features as Fe XXV and Fe XXVI Kalpha and Kbeta lines, outflowing with velocities varying between -1000 and -5000 km/s among the observations. These are the highest quality detections of such lines so far. The high equivalent widths [EW (Kalpha) approximately 100 eV] and the Kalpha/Kbeta ratios imply that the lines are due to absorption of the AGN continuum by a highly ionized gas with column density NH-5?1023 cm(exp -2) at a distance of -(50-100)RS from the continuum source.

  13. Intersstellar absorption lines between 2000 and 3000 A in nearby stars observed with BUSS. [Balloon Borne Ultraviolet Spectrophotometer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    De Boer, K. S.; Lenhart, H.; Van Der Hucht, K. A.; Kamperman, T. M.; Kondo, Y.

    1986-01-01

    Spectra obtained between 2000 and 3000 A with the Balloon Borne Ultraviolet Spectrophotometer (BUSS) payload were examined for interstellar absorption lines. In bright stars, with spectral types between O9V and F5V, such lines were measured of Mg I, Mg II, Cr II, Mn II, Fe II and Zn II, with Cr II and Zn II data of especially high quality. Column densities were derived and interstellar abundances were determined for the above species. It was found that metal depletion increases with increasing E(B-V); Fe was most affected and Zn showed a small depletion for E(B-V) greater than 0.3 towards Sco-Oph. The metal column densities, derived for Alpha-And, Kappa-Dra, Alpha-Com, Alpha-Aql, and 29 Cyg were used to infer N(H I). It was shown that the ratio of Mg I to Na I is instrumental in determining the ionization structure along each line of sight. The spectra of Aql stars confirms the presence of large gas densities near Alpha-Oph. Moreover, data indicated that the Rho-Oph N(H I) value needs to be altered to 35 x 10 to the 20th/sq cm, based on observed ion ratios and analysis of the Copernicus L-alpha profile.

  14. In the Dusty Recesses: Characterizing the Dark Matter Halos of Obscured Quasars via Clustering and CMB Lensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers, Adam D.; DiPompeo, Michael A.; Hickox, Ryan C.; Runnoe, Jessie C.

    2016-06-01

    The spatial clustering of obscured and unobscured quasars provides an interesting constraint on the connection between the growth of supermassive black holes and the evolution of galaxies and large-scale structure. In pursuit of these constraints, we update our recent measurements of quasar clustering using WISE and Planck data. We carefully assess how alterations in these missions' data reduction pipelines result in different systematics on a range of angular scales, and define samples of WISE-selected quasars that appear to be least-influenced by differences in data calibration. With these samples we analyze quasar clustering via two complementary methods; the angular autocorrelation function and cosmic microwave background lensing cross-correlations. We measure a higher bias and halo mass for obscured quasars (b ~ 2.1) as compared to unobscured quasars (b ~ 1.8). This is at odds with simple orientation models but at a reduced significance (1.5σ) as compared to our work with previous survey data. Assuming that some fraction (as high as 75%) of obscured quasars are intrinsically similar to unobscured quasars but viewed through a "dusty torus," we infer that the remaining non-torus obscured quasar population must have a large clustering bias of ~3, and inhabit typical halo masses of ~3 × 1013 h-1M⊙ at a redshift of z ~ 1. These massive halos are likely the descendants of high-mass unobscured quasars at high redshift, and will evolve into members of galaxy groups by z ~ 0. This work was supported in part by NSF grants 1211112, 1515404 and 1515364.

  15. The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Reverberation Mapping Project: Post-Starburst Signatures in Quasar Host Galaxies at z < 1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsuoka, Yoshiki; Strauss, Michael A.; Shen, Yue; Brandt, William N.; Greene, Jenny E.; Ho, Luis C.; Schneider, Donald P.; Sun, Mouyuan; Trump, Jonathan R.

    2015-10-01

    Quasar host galaxies are key for understanding the relation between galaxies and the supermassive black holes (SMBHs) at their centers. We present a study of 191 broad-line quasars and their host galaxies at z\\lt 1, using high signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) spectra produced by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Reverberation Mapping project. Clear detection of stellar absorption lines allows a reliable decomposition of the observed spectra into nuclear and host components, using spectral models of quasar and stellar radiations as well as emission lines from the interstellar medium. We estimate age, mass {M}*, and velocity dispersion {σ }* of the host stars, the star formation rate (SFR), quasar luminosity, and SMBH mass {M}\\bullet , for each object. The quasars are preferentially hosted by massive galaxies with {M}*˜ {10}11 {M}⊙ characterized by stellar ages around 1 billion yr, which coincides with the transition phase of normal galaxies from the blue cloud to the red sequence. The host galaxies have relatively low SFRs and fall below the main sequence of star-forming galaxies at similar redshifts. These facts suggest that the hosts have experienced an episode of major star formation sometime in the past 1 billion yr, which was subsequently quenched or suppressed. The derived {M}\\bullet -{σ }* and {M}\\bullet -{M}* relations agree with our past measurements and are consistent with no evolution from the local universe. The present analysis demonstrates that reliable measurements of stellar properties of quasar host galaxies are possible with high-S/N fiber spectra, which will be acquired in large numbers with future powerful instruments such as the Subaru Prime Focus Spectrograph.

  16. Testing the Radiative-Driving Hypothesis of Quasar Outflows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stark, Michele A.; Ganguly, R.; Gallagher, S. C.; Gibson, R.; Brotherton, M. S.

    2011-01-01

    Outflows are seen prominently in the UV spectra of Broad Absorption Line (BAL) QSOs. Models of radiatively-driven outflows predict that the velocity should scale with UV luminosity. Observations show that the UV luminosity only provides a cap to the velocity. One explanation is that the X-ray absorbing gas in an individual quasar provides a shield that improves its radiative-driving efficiency. That is, quasars with thick shields can accelerate gas to higher velocity. X-ray observations of BALQSOs support this in the sense that BALQSOs with more soft X-ray absorption tend to have higher velocity outflows. But there is much scatter in this trend, making the underlying physics difficult to extract. To combat this, we conducted an experiment using exploratory Chandra-ACIS observations of 12 carefully-selected z=1.7-2.0 BALQSOs. These BALQSOs were chosen to have very narrow ranges in (1) UV luminosity, (2) UV spectral shape, and (3) absorption velocity width. Within this otherwise uniform sample, the outflow velocities range from 4500km/s to 18000km/s, a factor of four. All objects are detected in the full band (0.5-8keV), with count rates in the range (0.5-5)e-3 cps, and have hardness ratios in the range -0.6 to 0.3. We compare the X-ray brightnesses and spectral shapes of our sample with those of more diverse samples of BALQSOs. We gratefully acknowledge support through Chandra grant GO9-0120X.

  17. Quasar Unification Via Disk Winds: From Phenomenology to Physics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knigge, C.

    2015-09-01

    I will give an overview of a collaborative project aimed at testing the viability of QSO unification via accretion disk winds. In this scenario, most of the characteristic spectral features of QSOs are formed in these outflows. More specifically, broad absorption lines (BALs) are produced for sight lines within the outflow, while broad emission lines (BELs) are observed for other viewing angles. In order to test these ideas, we use a state-of- the-art Monte Carlo radiative transfer and photoionization code to predict emergent spectra for a wide range of viewing angles and quasar properties (black hole mass, accretion rate, X-ray luminosity, etc). It turns out to be relatively straightforward to produce BALs, but harder to obtain sufficiently strong BELs. We also find that it is easy to overionize the wind with realistic X-ray luminosities. In addition, we are using our code to test and improve hydrodynamic disk wind models for quasars. So far, we have been able to demonstrate that the treatment of ionization in existing hydrodynamic models of line-driven disk winds is too simplistic to yield realistic results: the modelled outflows would be strongly overionized and hence would not feel the line-driving forces that are asssumed to produce them. We have therefore embarked on an effort to model line-driven disk winds self-consistently by linking a hydrodynamics code with our ionization and radiative transfer code. Finally, we can also predict the reverberation signatures produced by disk winds, which can be directly compared to the results of the latest reverberation mapping campaigns.

  18. Asteroids to Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lugger, Phyllis M.

    2004-12-01

    Asteroid dedication; William Liller: Biographical Sketch; William Liller: Autobiographical Meanderings; Preface; List of Participants; Conference Photo; Part I. 1. Solar System Astronomy: Asteroids Joseph Veverka; 2. Sixteen years of stellar occultations James Elliott; 3. Comets to Quasars: Surface photometry from standard stars and the morphology of the galaxy-quasar interface Peter Usher; 4. Observing Solar Eclipses Jay Pasachoff; Part II. 5. Planetary Nebulae: new insights and opportunities Lawrence Aller; 6. Studies of planetary nebulae at radio wavelengths Yervant Terzian; 7. Optical identifications of compact galactic X-ray sources: Liller Lore Jonathan Grindlay; 8. Ages of globular clusters derived from BVRI CCD photometry Gonzalo Alcaino; 9. Stellar spectrum synthesis Jun Jugaku; 10. Mass exchange and stellar abundance anomalies Benjamin Peery; Part III. Extragalactic Astronomy: 11. The M31 globular cluster system John Huchra; 12. Spiral structure and star formation in galaxies Debra Elmegreen; 13. The discovery of hot coronae around early type galaxies William Forman and Christine Jones; 14. The morphology of clusters of galaxies, the formation efficiency of galaxies and the origin of the intracluster medium Christine Jones and William Forman; 15. Testing models for the dynamical evolution of clusters of galaxies Phyllis Lugger; 16. What is in the X-ray sky? Rudolph Schild; 17. Einstein deep surveys Stephen Murray, Christine Jones and William Forman; Part IV. History, Lore and Archaeoastronomy: 18. Robert Wheeler Willson: His Life and Legacy Barbara Welther; 19. The great mnemonics contest Owen Gingerich; 20. Hetu'u Rapanui: The archaeoastronomy of Easter Island William Liller; Indexes; Names; Objects; Subjects.

  19. The Environments of Obscured Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Kristen M.; Lacy, Mark; Nielsen, Danielle

    2016-01-01

    Supermassive Black Hole (SMBH) feedback is prescribed for driving the high-end shape of the galaxy luminosity function, clearing the circumnuclear environment during the end stages of mergers, and eventually turning off its own accretion. Yet the dominant processes and characteristics of active galactic nuclei are indistinct. Chief among this confusion is how significant the role of dust is in each galaxy. Orientation of the dusty torus is attributed to causing the differences between Sy1 and Sy2, but whether obscured quasars are found in particularly dusty host galaxies, if they exist at a different stage in the merger process (early on, before the dust is blown out), or if they are merely oriented differently than optical quasars is not yet so well distinguished. With obscured quasars now observed to make up 50% or greater of the population of quasars, the question of what causes obscuration becomes vital to address. With this in mind, I study matched samples of obscured and unobscured quasars to characterize their environments, with the intent of addressing what contribution environment has to obscuration levels. I investigate the megaparsec-scale environments of SIRTF Wide-field Infra-Red Extragalactic Survey (SWIRE) quasars at z ˜ 1-3 by cross-correlating the sample with 3.8 million galaxies from the Spitzer Extragalactic Representative Volume Survey (SERVS). Optically obscured quasars are compared to a control sample of optically-bright quasars via selection in the mid-infrared. Environments were observed at 3.6 and 4.5 μm to a depth of ≈ 2 μJy (AB = 23.1). Recent work has found diverse results in such studies, with dependence of environmental richness on both redshift and level of obscuration. I find that, within reasonable error, on average there is no distinct difference between the level of clustering for obscured and normal quasars, and that there is no dependence on redshift of this result within the range of 1.3 < z < 2.5. I compare our results

  20. Paired quasars near NGC 2639 - Evidence for quasars in superclusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ford, H.; Ciardullo, R.; Harms, R.

    1983-01-01

    Arp (1979, 1980) has found quasars with similar redshifts which appear to be paired across low-redshift galaxies. Arp concludes that the pairings provide evidence for an association between high-redshift quasars and a small, low-redshift galaxy. Oort et al. (1981) suggested an alternative hypothesis to explain the close redshift pairs. They proposed that the two closest pairs are in superclusters at the cosmological distances implied by the quasars' redshifts. The low-redshift quasar pair U7/U10 (0.303/0.305) is close enough to allow detection of any associated clusters of galaxies on deep red photographs. The present investigation had originally the objective to test the supercluster hypothesis by searching for faint clusters which might comprise a supercluster at z approximately 0.3. Unfortunately, the disappearance of the pairs makes it impossible to test the hypothesis in this field. The search for a supercluster at z = 0.30 revealed a faint rich cluster of galaxies near the quasar U10 (z = 0.305). It was found that U10 is not associated with the cluster.

  1. Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods applied to measuring the fine structure constant from quasar spectroscopy .

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, J. A.; Mortlock, D. J.; Webb, J. K.; Murphy, M. T.

    Recent attempts to constrain cosmological variation in the fine structure constant, alpha , using quasar absorption lines have yielded two statistical samples which initially appear to be inconsistent. One of these samples was subsequently demonstrated to not pass consistency tests; it appears that the optimisation algorithm used to fit the model to the spectra failed. Nevertheless, the results of the other hinge on the robustness of the spectral fitting program VPFIT, which has been tested through simulation but not through direct exploration of the likelihood function. We present the application of Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) methods to this problem, and demonstrate that VPFIT produces similar values and uncertainties for Delta alpha /alpha , the fractional change in the fine structure constant, as our MCMC algorithm, and thus that VPFIT is reliable.

  2. Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods applied to measuring the fine structure constant from quasar spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, Julian; Mortlock, Daniel; Webb, John; Murphy, Michael

    2010-11-01

    Recent attempts to constrain cosmological variation in the fine structure constant, α, using quasar absorption lines have yielded two statistical samples which initially appear to be inconsistent. One of these samples was subsequently demonstrated to not pass consistency tests; it appears that the optimisation algorithm used to fit the model to the spectra failed. Nevertheless, the results of the other hinge on the robustness of the spectral fitting program VPFIT, which has been tested through simulation but not through direct exploration of the likelihood function. We present the application of Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) methods to this problem, and demonstrate that VPFIT produces similar values and uncertainties for Δα/α, the fractional change in the fine structure constant, as our MCMC algorithm, and thus that VPFIT is reliable.

  3. The role of radiative acceleration in outflows from broad absorption line QSOs. 1: Comparison with O star winds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arav, Nahum; Li, Zhi-Yun

    1994-01-01

    We investigate the role of radiation pressure in accelerating the broad absorption line (BAL) outflows in QSOs by comparing their properties with those of radiatively driven O star winds. We find that, owing to their lower column densities and higher velocity spreads, BAL outflows have only a few tens of strong resonance lines that are dynamically important, as compared with 10(exp 3) - 10(exp 4) lines in O star winds. We show that the combined radiative force (the 'force multiplier') declines more rapidly as a function of column density for BAL outflows than for O star winds. This is mainly attributed to the absence of lines from excited states in the BAL region. The absorbing gas in BAL outflows must have a small filling factor in order for radiative acceleration to be important dynamically. This allows the absorbing material to remain at a high enough density to maintain the ion species necessary for efficient radiative acceleration as well (as those responsible for the observed absorption), without the average flow density becoming so large that the absorbing matter cannot be accelerated by an increment larger than its own sound speed. The latter condition is necessary if the outflow is to tap a large portion of the incident photon momentum. Once a small filling factor is assumed, radiative acceleration can be more efficient in BAL outflows than in O stars. We show that terminal velocities of a few times 10(exp 4) km/sec can be expected, provided that the absorbing matter does not have to drag with it a much heavier substrate.

  4. X-Raying the Ultraluminous Infrared Starburst Galaxy and Broad Absorption Line QSO Markarian 231 with Chandra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gallagher, S. C.; Brandt, W. N.; Chartas, G.; Garmire, G. P.; Sambruna, R. M.

    2002-01-01

    With 40 ks of Clzandra ACIS-S3 exposure, new information on both the starburst and QSO components of the X-ray emission of Markarian 231, an ultraluminous infrared galaxy and broad absorption line QSO, has been obtained. The bulk of the X-ray luminosity is emitted from an unresolved nuclear point source, and the spectrum is remarkably hard, with the majority of the flux emitted above 2 keV. Most notably, significant nuclear variability (a decrease of -45% in approximately 6 hr) at energies above 2 keV indicates that Chuizdra has probed within light-hours of the central black hole. Although we concur with Maloney & Reynolds that the direct continuum is not observed, this variability coupled with the 188 eV upper limit on the equivalent width of the Fe K o emission line argues against the reflection-dominated model put forth by these authors based on their ASCA data. Instead, we favor a model in which a small, Compton-thick absorber blocks the direct X-rays, and only indirect, scattered X-rays from multiple lines of sight can reach the observer. Extended soft, thermal emission encompasses the optical extent of the galaxy and exhibits resolved structure. An off-nuclear X-ray source with a 0.35-8.0 keV luminosity of Lx = 7 x 10 sup39 ergs s sup -1 , consistent with the ultraluminous X-ray sources in other nearby starbursts, is detected. We also present an unpublished Faint Object Spectrograph spectrum from the Hirhhle Spuce Telescope archive showing the broad C IV absorption.

  5. THE STELLAR INITIAL MASS FUNCTION IN EARLY-TYPE GALAXIES FROM ABSORPTION LINE SPECTROSCOPY. I. DATA AND EMPIRICAL TRENDS

    SciTech Connect

    Van Dokkum, Pieter G.; Conroy, Charlie

    2012-11-20

    The strength of gravity-sensitive absorption lines in the integrated light of old stellar populations is one of the few direct probes of the stellar initial mass function (IMF) outside of the Milky Way. Owing to the advent of fully depleted CCDs with little or no fringing it has recently become possible to obtain accurate measurements of these features. Here, we present spectra covering the wavelength ranges 0.35-0.55 {mu}m and 0.72-1.03 {mu}m for the bulge of M31 and 34 early-type galaxies from the SAURON sample, obtained with the Low Resolution Imaging Spectrometer on Keck. The signal-to-noise ratio is {approx}> 200 A{sup -1} out to 1 {mu}m, which is sufficient to measure gravity-sensitive features for individual galaxies and to determine how they depend on other properties of the galaxies. Combining the new data with previously obtained spectra for globular clusters in M31 and the most massive elliptical galaxies in the Virgo cluster, we find that the dwarf-sensitive Na I {lambda}8183, 8195 doublet and the FeH {lambda}9916 Wing-Ford band increase systematically with velocity dispersion, while the giant-sensitive Ca II {lambda}8498, 8542, 8662 triplet decreases with dispersion. These trends are consistent with a varying IMF, such that galaxies with deeper potential wells have more dwarf-enriched mass functions. In a companion paper, we use a comprehensive stellar population synthesis model to demonstrate that IMF effects can be separated from age and abundance variations and quantify the IMF variation among early-type galaxies.

  6. The role of radiative acceleration in outflows from broad absorption line QSOs. 1: Comparison with O star winds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arav, Nahum; Li, Zhi-Yun

    1994-06-01

    We investigate the role of radiation pressure in accelerating the broad absorption line (BAL) outflows in QSOs by comparing their properties with those of radiatively driven O star winds. We find that, owing to their lower column densities and higher velocity spreads, BAL outflows have only a few tens of strong resonance lines that are dynamically important, as compared with 103 - 104 lines in O star winds. We show that the combined radiative force (the 'force multiplier') declines more rapidly as a function of column density for BAL outflows than for O star winds. This is mainly attributed to the absence of lines from excited states in the BAL region. The absorbing gas in BAL outflows must have a small filling factor in order for radiative acceleration to be important dynamically. This allows the absorbing material to remain at a high enough density to maintain the ion species necessary for efficient radiative acceleration as well (as those responsible for the observed absorption), without the average flow density becoming so large that the absorbing matter cannot be accelerated by an increment larger than its own sound speed. The latter condition is necessary if the outflow is to tap a large portion of the incident photon momentum. Once a small filling factor is assumed, radiative acceleration can be more efficient in BAL outflows than in O stars. We show that terminal velocities of a few times 104 km/sec can be expected, provided that the absorbing matter does not have to drag with it a much heavier substrate.

  7. DETECTION OF A TRANSIENT X-RAY ABSORPTION LINE INTRINSIC TO THE BL LACERTAE OBJECT H 2356-309

    SciTech Connect

    Fang Taotao; Buote, David A.; Humphrey, Philip J.; Canizares, Claude R.

    2011-04-10

    Since the launch of the Einstein X-ray Observatory in the 1970s, a number of broad absorption features have been reported in the X-ray spectra of BL Lac objects. These features are often interpreted as arising from high-velocity outflows intrinsic to the BL Lac object, therefore providing important information about the inner environment around the central engine. However, such absorption features have not been observed more recently with high-resolution X-ray telescopes such as Chandra and XMM-Newton. In this paper, we report the detection of a transient X-ray absorption feature intrinsic to the BL Lac object H 2356-309 with the Chandra X-ray Telescope. This BL Lac object was observed during XMM-Newton cycle 7 and Chandra cycles 8 and 10, as part of our campaign to investigate X-ray absorption produced by the warm-hot intergalactic medium residing in the foreground large-scale superstructure. During one of the 80 ks Chandra cycle 10 observations, a transient absorption feature was detected at 3.3{sigma} (or 99.9% confidence level, accounting for the number of 'trials), which we identify as the O VIII K{alpha} line produced by an absorber intrinsic to the BL Lac object. None of the other 11 observations showed this line. We constrain the ionization parameter (25 {approx}< {Xi} {approx}< 40) and temperature (10{sup 5} K absorption line; however, the derived properties of the emission material are very different from those of the absorption material, implying it is unlikely a typical P Cygni-type profile.

  8. Measurements of mesospheric water vapour, aerosols and temperatures with the Spectral Absorption Line Imager (SALI-AT)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shepherd, M. G.; Mullins, M.; Brown, S.; Sargoytchev, S. I.

    2001-08-01

    Water vapour concentration is one of the most important, yet one of the least known quantities of the mesosphere. Knowledge of water vapour concentration is the key to understanding many mesospheric processes, including the one that is primary focus of our investigation, mesospheric clouds (MC). The processes of formation and occurrence parameters of MC constitute an interesting problem in their own right, but recently evidence has been provided which suggests that they are a critical indicator of atmospheric change. The aim of the SALI-AT experiment is to make simultaneous (although not strictly collocated) measurements of water vapour, aerosols and temperature in the mesosphere and the mesopause region under twilight condition in the presence of mesospheric clouds. The water vapour will be measured in the regime of solar occultation utilizing a water vapour absorption band at 936 nm wavelength employing the SALI (Spectral Absorption Line Imager) instrument concept. A three-channel zenith photometer, AT-3, with wavelengths of 385 nm, 525 nm, and 1040 nm will measure Mie and Rayleigh scattering giving both mesospheric temperature profiles and the particle size distribution. Both instruments are small, low cost and low mass. It is envisioned that the SALI-AT experiment be flown on a small rocket - the Improved Orion/Hotel payload configuration, from the Andoya Rocket range, Norway. Alternatively the instrument can be flown as a "passenger" on larger rocket carrying other experiments. In either case flight costs are relatively low. Some performance simulations are presented showing that the instrument we have designed will be sufficiently sensitive to measure water vapor in concentrations that are expected at the summer mesopause, about 85 km height.

  9. The soft X ray excess in Einstein quasar spectra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilkes, Belinda J.; Masnou, Jean-Louis; Elvis, Martin; Mcdowell, Jonathan; Arnaud, Keith

    1989-01-01

    The soft X-ray excess component is studied for a signal to noise limited subsample of 14 quasars from the WE87 sample observed with the Einstein Imaging Proportional Counter (IPC). Detailed analysis of the IPC data, combined with Einstein Monitor Proportional Counter (MPC) data where possible, and use of accurate galactic N sub H values allows estimation of the strength of any excess and improvement of constraints on the spectral slope at higher X-ray energies. A significant excess in 9 of the 14 objects is found. It is confined in all but one case to below 0.6 keV and variable in the two cases where there are multiple observations. The relation of the soft excess to other continuum properties of the quasars is investigated.

  10. Molecules and metals in the distant universe: Sub-mm and optical spectroscopy of quasar absorbers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morrison, Sean Stephen

    In order to gain a complete understanding of galaxy formation and evolution, knowledge of the atomic and molecular gas in the interstellar medium (ISM) is required. Absorption-line spectroscopy of quasars offer a powerful and luminosity independent probe of gas to high redshifts. The sub-Damped Lyman-alpha systems (sub-DLAs; 19.0 < log NHI < 20.3), and Damped Lyman-alpha systems (DLAs; 20.3 < log NHI), are the highest neutral hydrogen column density quasar absorbers contain most of the neutral gas available for star formation in the high-redshift Universe. This thesis presents photometric measurements of 10 quasars absorbers with redshifts 0.652 < zabs < 3.104 taken with the Spectral and Photometric Imaging Receiver (SPIRE) on Herschel. Of these 10 objects, 3 showed fluxes > 1 Jy. In addition spectra for 5 other quasars with DLAs (0.524 < zabs < 1.173) were taken with SPIRE and Heterodyne Instrument for the far-infrared (HIFI) on Herschel. These observations, in the far-IR and sub-mm bands, were optimized for detection of molecular lines of CO, 13CO, C 18O, H2O, HCO, and the forbidden transitions of [C II] and [N II]. Two targets, the DLA towards PKS0420-014 at z = 0.633 and the DLA towards AO0235+164 at z = 0.524, had a tentative detection of C18O, and another, the DLA towards TXS0827+243 at z = 0.52476, had a tentative detection of HCO. There were a number of other 3 sigma limits, with at least one limit for each of the 5 systems. In addition to the DLAs, 2 super-DLAs (with z = 2.5036 and z = 2.045) were observed using the echellette mode on Keck Echellette Spectrograph and Imager (ESI). These observations, in the optical and ultraviolet wavelengths, were optimized to detect metal lines. Both absorbers show remarkably similar metallicities of ~ -1.3 to ~ -1.4 dex and comparable, definitive depletion levels, as judged from [Fe/Zn] and [Ni/Zn]. One of the absorbers shows supersolar [S/Zn] and [Si/Zn]. Using potential detections of weak Ly-alpha emission at the

  11. Measuring the M-σ Relation with Quasars from 0.2 < z < 1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hiner, Kyle; Canalizo, G.; Wold, M.; Brotherton, M.

    2012-01-01

    It is now known that the masses of black holes, M, at the centers of galaxies correlate with host galaxy properties, including the stellar velocity dispersion, σ, of the central bulge region. The relation implies supermassive black holes and their hosts have a shared evolution, but it is only well studied in the local universe. The precise mechanism of black hole and host galaxy growth regulation is still unknown, but various models predict evolution in the relation with redshift. We are studying the nature of the M-σ relation using two samples of quasars. 1) Our first sample consists of 29 post-starburst quasars that range in redshift from 0.2absorption lines, indicative of a post-starburst stellar population in the hosts. 2) Our second sample has 36 quasars ranging from 0.2quasars are over-massive with respect to their hosts when compared to the M-σ relation for local AGN. Our results are generally consistent with previous work that shows an offset for high-z low-luminosity active galaxies.

  12. Subrelativistic Jets from Black Hole Accretion Vortices. I. The Extreme-Ultraviolet and X-Ray Emission from Radio-quiet Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Punsly, Brian

    1999-12-01

    This article and its companion describe a theory of quasars that differentiates radio-loud quasars from radio-quiet quasars by the physical structures extant in the accretion vortices above the poles of a supermassive, rapidly rotating black hole. Quasars are manifestly radio loud as a consequence of large-scale magnetic flux threading these funnels and relativistic magnetic winds of plasma that propagate outward (magnetic wind models of radio-loud quasars exist in the literature). Radio-quiet quasars are devoid of this large-scale magnetic flux, and radiation pressure in the funnel drives hypersonic, underexpanded, subrelativistic jets. These jets are relatively feeble compared to the radiation-driven relativistic jets from the funnels of superluminous accretion disks that were popular in the theoretical literature of the 1980s. The primary emphases of this article are the near-field dynamics and the observational implications of the radiation-driven jets from these vortices conjectured to exist in radio-quiet quasars. The physical state of the ejecta is governed by the force of gravity, the initiating continuum radiation pressure, and the line-driving forces from ultraviolet accretion disk radiation. These hypersonic jets form a bipolar broad absorption line region (BALR) with a small covering factor dictated by the collimation of the jets. Consequently, radio-quiet quasars have broad absorption lines in the UV region of their spectra if the line of sight passes through a jet. Radio-loud quasars do not have BALRs in this model. It is demonstrated in the companion article that absorbing columns with a range of outflow velocities from ~0 km s-1 to more than 35,000 km s-1 result in these putative jets. In this article it is shown that the frictional and compressional heating in the turbulent boundary layer between the base of the jet and the funnel walls creates a hot corona above the innermost regions of the disk. The corona cools by Compton-scattering disk UV

  13. Cosmic evolution of Quasar radio structure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hutchings, J. B.; Neff, S. G.

    1991-01-01

    We discuss the results of a survey of Quasar radio structures over redshifts from 0.6 to 3.7. There are clear evolutionary trends in size and luminosity, which suggest that the duty cycle of individual Quasars has increased over cosmic time. This affects source count statistics and gives clues on the evolution of Quasar environments.

  14. Ultraviolet Continuum of the Quasar PKS 0405-123: Lyman Edge in the Accretion Disk Spectrum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, G.; Kriss, G. A.; Davidsen, A. F.; Zheng, W.

    1995-05-01

    We study the characteristics of the ultraviolet continuum of the quasar PKS 0405-123 using the archival HST/FOS spectrum. The spectrum from 1150 to 3300 Angstroms shows a steeply rising continuum in F_λ with a strong absorption feature ~ 100 Angstroms wide around the intrinsic Lyman limit of this z=0.574 quasar. The spectrum also shows Lyman absorption line systems in the wavelength range of the broad absorption feature. A Lyalpha absorption line whose corresponding Lyman limit could contribute to the broad absorption feature is also identified. We investigate the possibility that the broad absorption feature may be due to the sum of the contributions from each Lyman absorption system. The estimated opacity due to the Lyman absorption systems in the region of the broad absorption feature, however, is not high enough to completely account for it. We thus propose that a significant part of the continuum drop in the broad absorption feature may be due to a broadened Lyman edge in the spectrum of an accretion disk. We model the ultraviolet continuum using an alpha -disk with an adiabatic vertical structure. We compute the emitted spectrum by solving the radiative transfer numerically. The observed spectrum is corrected for relativistic effects assuming a Schwarzschild metric, and we also consider the effect of Comptonization by a surrounding hot corona on the observed spectrum. A realistic disk spectrum with a significant amount of Comptonization describes the steep continuum shape and the broad Lyman edge feature, and it is consistent with the X-ray flux observed with EINSTEIN observatory IPC. This work was supported by NASA Grant NAG 5-1630 to the FOS team and NASA contract NAS 5-27000 to the Johns Hopkins University.

  15. A DISTANT QUASAR'S BRILLIANT LIGHT

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    The arrow in this image, taken by a ground-based telescope, points to a distant quasar, the brilliant core of an active galaxy residing billions of light-years from Earth. As light from this faraway object travels across space, it picks up information on galaxies and the vast clouds of material between galaxies as it moves through them. The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph aboard NASA's Hubble Space Telescope decoded the quasar's light to find the spectral 'fingerprints' of highly ionized (energized) oxygen, which had mixed with invisible clouds of hydrogen in intergalactic space. The quasar's brilliant beam pierced at least four separate filaments of the invisible hydrogen laced with the telltale oxygen. The presence of oxygen between the galaxies implies there are huge quantities of hydrogen in the universe. Credits: WIYN Telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory in Arizona. The telescope is owned and operated by the University of Wisconsin, Indiana University, Yale University, and the National Optical Astronomy Observatories.

  16. Probing Interstellar Silicate Dust Grain Properties in Quasar Absorption Systems at Redshifts z<1.4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aller, M.; Kulkarni, V. P.; York, D. G.; Welty, D. E.; Vladilo, G.; Som, D.

    Absorption lines in the spectra of distant quasars whose sightlines serendipitously pass through foreground galaxies provide a valuable tool to simultaneously probe the dust and gas compositions of the interstellar medium (ISM) in galaxies. In particular, the damped and sub-damped Lyman- α (DLA/sub-DLA) absorbers trace gas-rich galaxies, independent of the intrinsic luminosities or star-formation rates of the associated galaxy stellar populations. The first evidence of silicate dust in a quasar absorption system was provided through our detection of the 10 µ m silicate feature in the z=0.52 DLA absorber toward the quasar AO 0235+164. We present results from 2 follow-up programs using archival Spitzer Space Telescope infrared spectra to study the interstellar silicate dust grain properties in a total of 13 quasar absorption systems at 0.1 < z < 1.4. We find clear detections of the 10 µ m silicate feature in the quasar absorption systems studied. In addition, we also detect the 18 µ m silicate feature in the sources with adequate spectral coverage. We find variations in the breadth, peak wavelength, and substructure of the 10 µ m interstellar silicate absorption features among the absorbers. This suggests that the silicate dust grain properties in these distant galaxies may differ relative to one another, and relative to those in the Milky Way. We also find suggestions in several sources, based on comparisons with laboratory-derived profiles from the literature, that the silicate dust grains may be significantly more crystalline than those in the amorphous Milky Way ISM. This is particularly evident in the z=0.89 absorber toward the quasar PKS 1830-211, where substructure near 10 µ m is consistent with a crystalline olivine composition. If confirmed, these grain property variations may have implications for both dust and galaxy evolution over the past 9 Gyrs, and for the commonly-made assumption that highredshift dust is similar to local dust. We also discuss

  17. Signals from the Noise: Image Stacking for Quasars in the FIRST Survey

    SciTech Connect

    White, R L; Helfand, D J; Becker, R H; Glikman, E; deVries, W

    2006-05-05

    We present a technique to explore the radio sky into the nanoJansky regime by employing image stacking using the FIRST radio sky survey. We begin with a discussion of the non-intuitive relationship between the mean and median values of a non-Gaussian distribution in which measurements of the members of the distribution are dominated by noise. Following a detailed examination of the systematic effects present in the 20 cm VLA snapshot images that comprise FIRST, we demonstrate that image stacking allows us to recover the average properties of source populations with flux densities a factor of 30 or more below the rms noise level. With the calibration described herein, mean estimates of radio flux density, luminosity, radio loudness, etc. are derivable for any undetected source class having arcsecond positional accuracy. We demonstrate the utility of this technique by exploring the radio properties of quasars found in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. We compute the mean luminosities and radio-loudness parameters for 41,295 quasars in the SDSS DR3 catalog. There is a tight correlation between optical and radio luminosity, with the radio luminosity increasing as the 0.72 power of optical luminosity. This implies declining radio-loudness with optical luminosity, with the most luminous objects (M{sub UV} = -30) having on average ten times lower radio-to-optical ratios than the least luminous objects (M{sub UV} = -21). There is also a striking correlation between optical color and radio loudness: quasars that are either redder or bluer than the norm are brighter radio sources. Quasars having g-r {approx} 0.8 magnitudes redder than the SDSS composite spectrum are found to have radio-loudness ratios that are higher by a factor of 8. We examine the radio properties of the subsample of quasars with broad absorption lines, finding, surprisingly, that BAL quasars have higher mean radio flux densities at all redshifts, with the greatest disparity arising in the rare low

  18. Relativistic Motion in Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen, M. H.

    1986-02-01

    This is a summary of an article which will appear in "Highlights of Modern Astrophysics" (Cohen, 1985). The majority of strong core-dominated radio sources show superluminal motion and rapid variations in flux density. Some of them also have X-rays which are weaker than the amount predicted by the inverse-Compton effect. All these characteristics can be explained by rela tivistic motion. The superluminal motion and the unusual rapidity of the variations are kinematic effects. The radiating source nearly keeps up with its own radiation, with a consequent reduction in time scales. The weak X-rays are an artifact introduced when the inverse-Compton cal culation is based on the spectrum measured in the terrestrial coordinate system. When allowance is made for motion towards the observer,the measurements give a lower limit to the Doppler factor of the moving source. The common model uses a narrow jet pointed at angle θ to the line of sight, and carrying luminous blobs moving at Lorentz factor y. This model can explain all the above effects, and also the common core-jet radio morphology. Application of the model gives values of y between 5 and 10, and values of θ less than 200. The Doppler effect boosts t e flux density of those jets which are pointed nearly at us. The strong sources we see must therefore form a small subset of a large population of sources most of which are misdi rected and weak. It is likely that the parent population consists of the "classical double" quasars. Nearly all of the superluminal sources have low surface brightness halos, which could be the outer double radio lobes seen end-on.

  19. Size of HII Regions Around High Redshift Quasars vs Intergalactic Medium Neutral Hydrogen Fraction at z~6

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maselli, A.; Gallerani, S.; Ferrara, A.; Choudury, T. S.

    2006-08-01

    We discuss the robustness of constraints on the intergalactic medium neutral hydrogen fraction inferred from the extent of HII regions of high redshift quasars by means of their absorption spectra. We have combined state-of-art SPH and 3D Radiative Transfer (RT) simulations to extract a sample of mock quasar spectra and we have analyzed such a sample with a procedure commonly adopted in real observations. Our analysis shows that the size of the quasar HII regions measured in quasar spectra strongly underestimate the real HII extent, as a result of absorption by residual neutral hydrogen inside the HII region and red damping wing absorption produced by HI just outside the HII region. We demonstrate that, even an idealized large sample of observed spectra -with negligible uncertainties on the quasars parameters (ie. lifetime, luminosity)- is compatible with a surrounding IGM whose mean IGM neutral hydrogen fraction can range freely in the interval [0.05,1] . We conclude, that our current knowledge of the re-ionization process is not accurate enough to allow a direct conversion of the quasars HII region extent into a value for the mean IGM ionization fraction. Finally, we propose a statistical method which could allow to extract such information from a large sample of quasar spectra at z>6.

  20. Evidence for ultra-fast outflows in radio-quiet AGNs. I. Detection and statistical incidence of Fe K-shell absorption lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tombesi, F.; Cappi, M.; Reeves, J. N.; Palumbo, G. G. C.; Yaqoob, T.; Braito, V.; Dadina, M.

    2010-10-01

    Context. Blue-shifted Fe K absorption lines have been detected in recent years between 7 and 10 keV in the X-ray spectra of several radio-quiet AGNs. The derived blue-shifted velocities of the lines can often reach mildly relativistic values, up to 0.2-0.4c. These findings are important because they suggest the presence of a previously unknown massive and highly ionized absorbing material outflowing from their nuclei, possibly connected with accretion disk winds/outflows. Aims: The scope of the present work is to statistically quantify the parameters and incidence of the blue-shifted Fe K absorption lines through a uniform analysis on a large sample of radio-quiet AGNs. This allows us to assess their global detection significance and to overcome any possible publication bias. Methods: We performed a blind search for narrow absorption features at energies greater than 6.4 keV in a sample of 42 radio-quiet AGNs observed with XMM-Newton. A simple uniform model composed by an absorbed power-law plus Gaussian emission and absorption lines provided a good fit for all the data sets. We derived the absorption lines parameters and calculated their detailed detection significance making use of the classical F-test and extensive Monte Carlo simulations. Results: We detect 36 narrow absorption lines on a total of 101 XMM-Newton EPIC pn observations. The number of absorption lines at rest-frame energies higher than 7 keV is 22. Their global probability to be generated by random fluctuations is very low, less than 3 × 10-8, and their detection have been independently confirmed by a spectral analysis of the MOS data, with associated random probability <10-7. We identify the lines as Fe XXV and Fe XXVI K-shell resonant absorption. They are systematically blue-shifted, with a velocity distribution ranging from zero up to ~0.3c, with a peak and mean value at ~0.1c. We detect variability of the lines on both EWs and blue-shifted velocities among different XMM-Newton observations

  1. THE DISAPPEARANCE OF A NARROW Mg II ABSORPTION SYSTEM IN QUASAR SDSS J165501.31+260517.4

    SciTech Connect

    Chen Zhifu; Qin Yiping; Gu Minfeng E-mail: ypqin@126.com

    2013-06-10

    In this paper, we present for the first time the discovery of the disappearance of a narrow Mg II {lambda}{lambda}2796, 2803 absorption system from the spectra of the quasar SDSS J165501.31+260517.4 (z{sub e} = 1.8671). This absorber is located at z{sub abs} = 1.7877 and has a velocity offset of 8423 km s{sup -1} with respect to the quasar. According to the velocity offset and the line variability, this narrow Mg II {lambda}{lambda}2796, 2803 absorption system is likely intrinsic to the quasar. Since the corresponding UV continuum emission and the absorption lines of another narrow Mg II {lambda}{lambda}2796, 2803 absorption system at z{sub abs} = 1.8656 are very stable, we believe that the disappearance of the absorption system is unlikely to be caused by the change in ionization of absorption gas. Instead, it likely arises from the motion of the absorption gas across the line of sight.

  2. First Connection between Cold Gas in Emission and Absorption: CO Emission from a Galaxy-Quasar Pair

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neeleman, Marcel; Prochaska, J. Xavier; Zwaan, Martin A.; Kanekar, Nissim; Christensen, Lise; Dessauges-Zavadsky, Miroslava; Fynbo, Johan P. U.; van Kampen, Eelco; Møller, Palle; Zafar, Tayyaba

    2016-04-01

    We present the first detection of molecular emission from a galaxy selected to be near a projected background quasar using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA). The ALMA detection of CO(1-0) emission from the z = 0.101 galaxy toward quasar PKS 0439-433 is coincident with its stellar disk and yields a molecular gas mass of Mmol ≈ 4.2 × 109 M⊙ (for a Galactic CO-to-H2 conversion factor), larger than the upper limit on its atomic gas mass. We resolve the CO velocity field, obtaining a rotational velocity of 134 ± 11 km s-1 and a resultant dynamical mass of ≥4 × 1010 M⊙. Despite its high metallicity and large molecular mass, the z = 0.101 galaxy has a low star formation rate, implying a large gas consumption timescale, larger than that typical of late-type galaxies. Most of the molecular gas is hence likely to be in a diffuse extended phase, rather than in dense molecular clouds. By combining the results of emission and absorption studies, we find that the strongest molecular absorption component toward the quasar cannot arise from the molecular disk, but is likely to arise from diffuse gas in the galaxy’s circumgalactic medium. Our results emphasize the potential of combining molecular and stellar emission line studies with optical absorption line studies to achieve a more complete picture of the gas within and surrounding high-redshift galaxies.

  3. Atlas of quasar energy distributions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Elvis, Martin; Wilkes, Belinda J.; Mcdowell, Jonathan C.; Green, Richard F.; Bechtold, Jill; Willner, S. P.; Oey, M. S.; Polomski, Elisha; Cutri, Roc

    1994-01-01

    We present an atlas of the spectral energy distributions (SEDs) of normal, nonblazar, quasars over the whole available range (radio to 10 keV X-rays) of the electromagnetic spectrum. The primary (UVSX) sample includes 47 quasars for which the spectral energy distributions include X-ray spectral indices and UV data. Of these, 29 are radio quiet, and 18 are radio loud. The SEDs are presented both in figures and in tabular form, with additional tabular material published on CD-ROM. Previously unpublished observational data for a second set of quasars excluded from the primary sample are also tabulated. The effects of host galaxy starlight contamination and foreground extinction on the UVSX sample are considered and the sample is used to investigate the range of SED properties. Of course, the properties we derive are influenced strongly by the selection effects induced by quasar discovery techniques. We derive the mean energy distribution (MED) for radio-loud and radio-quiet objects and present the bolometric corrections derived from it. We note, however, that the dispersion about this mean is large (approximately one decade for both the infrared and ultraviolet components when the MED is normalized at the near-infrared inflection). At least part of the dispersion in the ultraviolet may be due to time variability, but this is unlikely to be important in the infrared. The existence of such a large dispersion indicates that the MED reflects only some of the properties of quasars and so should be used only with caution.

  4. DISCOVERY OF HYDROGEN FLUORIDE IN THE CLOVERLEAF QUASAR AT z = 2.56

    SciTech Connect

    Monje, R. R.; Phillips, T. G.; Lis, D. C.; Emprechtinger, M.; Peng, R.; Neufeld, D. A.

    2011-12-15

    We report the first detection of hydrogen fluoride (HF) toward a high-redshift quasar. Using the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory, we detect the HF J = 1-0 transition in absorption toward the Cloverleaf, a broad absorption line quasi-stellar object at z = 2.56. The detection is statistically significant at the {approx}6{sigma} level. We estimate a lower limit of 4 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 14} cm{sup -2} for the HF column density and using a previous estimate of the hydrogen column density, we obtain a lower limit of 1.7 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -9} for the HF abundance. This value suggests that, assuming a Galactic N(HF)/N{sub H} ratio, HF accounts for at least {approx}10% of the fluorine in the gas phase along the line of sight to the Cloverleaf quasar. This observation corroborates the prediction that HF should be a good probe of the molecular gas at high redshift. Measurements of the HF abundance as a function of redshift are urgently needed to better constrain the fluorine nucleosynthesis mechanism(s).

  5. IONIZATION-DRIVEN FRAGMENTATION OF GAS OUTFLOWS RESPONSIBLE FOR FeLoBALs IN QUASARS

    SciTech Connect

    Bautista, Manuel A.; Dunn, Jay P.

    2010-07-10

    We show that time variations in the UV ionizing continuum of quasars, on scales of {approx}1 yr, affect the dynamic structure of the plasmas responsible for low-ionization broad absorption lines. Variations of the ionizing continuum produce non-equilibrium photoionization conditions over a significant fraction of the absorbing clouds and supersonically moving ionization fronts. When the flux drops, the contraction of the ionized region drives a supersonic cooling front toward the radiation source and a rarefaction wave in the opposite direction. The pressure imbalance is compensated by an increased speed of the cool gas relative to the front. When the flux recovers, the cool gas is re-ionized and re-heated by a supersonic ionization front traveling away from the radiation source and a forward shock is created. The re-heated clouds equilibrate to a temperature of {approx}10{sup 4} K and are observed to have different radial velocities than the main cloud. Such fragmentation seems consistent with the multicomponent structure of troughs seen in some objects. The velocity differences measured among various components in the quasars QSO 2359-1241 and SDSS J0318-0600 can be reproduced by our model if strong magnetic fields ({approx}10 mG) are present within the clouds.

  6. Ionization-driven Fragmentation of Gas Outflows Responsible for FeLoBALs in Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bautista, Manuel A.; Dunn, Jay P.

    2010-07-01

    We show that time variations in the UV ionizing continuum of quasars, on scales of ~1 yr, affect the dynamic structure of the plasmas responsible for low-ionization broad absorption lines. Variations of the ionizing continuum produce non-equilibrium photoionization conditions over a significant fraction of the absorbing clouds and supersonically moving ionization fronts. When the flux drops, the contraction of the ionized region drives a supersonic cooling front toward the radiation source and a rarefaction wave in the opposite direction. The pressure imbalance is compensated by an increased speed of the cool gas relative to the front. When the flux recovers, the cool gas is re-ionized and re-heated by a supersonic ionization front traveling away from the radiation source and a forward shock is created. The re-heated clouds equilibrate to a temperature of ~104 K and are observed to have different radial velocities than the main cloud. Such fragmentation seems consistent with the multicomponent structure of troughs seen in some objects. The velocity differences measured among various components in the quasars QSO 2359-1241 and SDSS J0318-0600 can be reproduced by our model if strong magnetic fields (~10 mG) are present within the clouds.

  7. The spectral energy distribution of the z=3 quasar: HS 1946+7658

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuhn, O.; Bechtold, J.; Cutri, R.; Elvis, M.; Rieke, M.

    1995-01-01

    For the bright z = 3.02 radio-quiet quasar, HS 1946+7658, we have obtained radio to X-ray data within the past year: 5 GHz and 1415 MHz data from the Very Large Array (VLA); IR photometry at J, H, K, L prime (3.4 micrometers and N; IR spectroscopy; UBVRI photometry; optical spectrophotometry and high-resolution spectra; and an X-ray spectrum from the ROSAT Position Sensitive Proportional Counter (PSPC). The spectral energy distribution (SED) constructed from these data is compared to the mean SED for a set of low-redshift quasars, and while they appear generally similar, there are several differences. In relation to the low-redshift mean, the SED of HS 1946+7658 shows (1) only an upper limit at 10 micrometers (a rest wavelength of 2.5 micrometers, indicating that HS 1946+7658 does not have a strong near-IR excess such as hot dust would produce; (2) relatively weak Fe II and Balmer continuum emission at approximately 3000 A; and (3) a steeper turndown shortward of Ly alpha, even after correction for the Ly alpha forest absorption lines.

  8. QUART: Quasar hosts Unveiled by high Angular Resolution Techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vayner, Andrey; Wright, Shelley; Murray, Norman W.; Armus, Lee; Larkin, James E.

    2016-06-01

    We present results from the new QUART survey that aims to resolve high-redshift (z = 1.5 - 2.5) radio-quiet and radio-loud quasi stellar object (QSO) host galaxies using the integral field spectrograph (IFS) OSIRIS, and the Keck Adaptive Optics (AO) system. The combination of AO and IFS provides the necessary contrast to disentangle the bright-unresolved QSO from the underlying faint host galaxy with unprecedented sensitivity. We study the ionized gas in these systems to sub-kiloparsec scales, yielding essential constraints on the resolved host galaxies dynamics, morphologies, star formation rates, metallicities, and nebular emission diagnostics. We combine OSIRIS and AO observations with multi-wavelength data sets from Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, Hubble Space Telescope, and Very Large Array to better understand the multiple phases of the ISM and stellar population properties of the hosts. Radio-quiet QSOs have shown little-to-no star formation and no evidence of extended QSO narrow line emission. In contrast, our latest OSIRIS results of radio-loud z~1.5-2 quasars have revealed evidence for both concurrent star formation and extended quasar narrow line emission with strong outflows. These outflows are co-spatial with structure observed in the radio data, typically with the path of the quasar jet and/or lobe structure. These winds are highly extended (8-12 kpc) and show broad emission line profiles (extending up to 2,500 km/s), indicating strong evidence of quasar “feedback” in their host galaxies.

  9. Constraining the neutrino emission of gravitationally lensed Flat-Spectrum Radio Quasars with ANTARES data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adrián-Martínez, S.; Albert, A.; André, M.; Anton, G.; Ardid, M.; Aubert, J.-J.; Baret, B.; Barrios-Martí, J.; Basa, S.; Bertin, V.; Biagi, S.; Bogazzi, C.; Bormuth, R.; Bou-Cabo, M.; Bouwhuis, M. C.; Bruijn, R.; Brunner, J.; Busto, J.; Capone, A.; Caramete, L.; Carr, J.; Chiarusi, T.; Circella, M.; Coniglione, R.; Core, L.; Costantini, H.; Coyle, P.; Creusot, A.; De Rosa, G.; Dekeyser, I.; Deschamps, A.; De Bonis, G.; Distefano, C.; Donzaud, C.; Dornic, D.; Dorosti, Q.; Drouhin, D.; Dumas, A.; Eberl, T.; Elsässer, D.; Enzenhöfer, A.; Escoffier, S.; Fehn, K.; Felis, I.; Fermani, P.; Folger, F.; Fusco, L. A.; Galatà, S.; Gay, P.; Geißelsöder, S.; Geyer, K.; Giordano, V.; Gleixner, A.; Gómez-González, J. P.; Graf, K.; Guillard, G.; van Haren, H.; Heijboer, A. J.; Hello, Y.; Hernández-Rey, J. J.; Herold, B.; Herrero, A.; Hößl, J.; Hofestädt, J.; Hugon, C.; James, C. W.; de Jong, M.; Kadler, M.; Kalekin, O.; Kappes, A.; Katz, U.; Kießling, D.; Kooijman, P.; Kouchner, A.; Kreykenbohm, I.; Kulikovskiy, V.; Lahmann, R.; Lambard, E.; Lambard, G.; Lefèvre, D.; Leonora, E.; Loehner, H.; Loucatos, S.; Mangano, S.; Marcelin, M.; Margiotta, A.; Martínez-Mora, J. A.; Martini, S.; Mathieu, A.; Michael, T.; Migliozzi, P.; Müller, C.; Neff, M.; Nezri, E.; Palioselitis, D.; Păvălaš, G. E.; Perrina, C.; Popa, V.; Pradier, T.; Racca, C.; Riccobene, G.; Richter, R.; Roensch, K.; Rostovtsev, A.; Saldaña, M.; Samtleben, D. F. E.; Sánchez-Losa, A.; Sanguineti, M.; Schmid, J.; Schnabel, J.; Schulte, S.; Schüssler, F.; Seitz, T.; Sieger, C.; Spies, A.; Spurio, M.; Steijger, J. J. M.; Stolarczyk, Th.; Taiuti, M.; Tamburini, C.; Tayalati, Y.; Trovato, A.; Tselengidou, M.; Tönnis, C.; Vallage, B.; Vallée, C.; Van Elewyck, V.; Visser, E.; Vivolo, D.; Wagner, S.; Wilms, J.; de Wolf, E.; Yatkin, K.; Yepes, H.; Zornoza, J. D.; Zúñiga, J.; Falco, E. E.

    2014-11-01

    This paper proposes to exploit gravitational lensing effects to improve the sensitivity of neutrino telescopes to the intrinsic neutrino emission of distant blazar populations. This strategy is illustrated with a search for cosmic neutrinos in the direction of four distant and gravitationally lensed Flat-Spectrum Radio Quasars. The magnification factor is estimated for each system assuming a singular isothermal profile for the lens. Based on data collected from 2007 to 2012 by the ANTARES neutrino telescope, the strongest constraint is obtained from the lensed quasar B0218+357, providing a limit on the total neutrino luminosity of this source of 1.08× 1046 erg s-1. This limit is about one order of magnitude lower than those previously obtained in the ANTARES standard point source searches with non-lensed Flat-Spectrum Radio Quasars.

  10. Constraining the neutrino emission of gravitationally lensed Flat-Spectrum Radio Quasars with ANTARES data

    SciTech Connect

    Adrián-Martínez, S.; Ardid, M.; Bou-Cabo, M.; André, M.; Anton, G.; Aubert, J.-J.; Bertin, V.; Brunner, J.; Busto, J.; Basa, S.; Biagi, S.; Capone, A.; Caramete, L.; and others

    2014-11-01

    This paper proposes to exploit gravitational lensing effects to improve the sensitivity of neutrino telescopes to the intrinsic neutrino emission of distant blazar populations. This strategy is illustrated with a search for cosmic neutrinos in the direction of four distant and gravitationally lensed Flat-Spectrum Radio Quasars. The magnification factor is estimated for each system assuming a singular isothermal profile for the lens. Based on data collected from 2007 to 2012 by the ANTARES neutrino telescope, the strongest constraint is obtained from the lensed quasar B0218+357, providing a limit on the total neutrino luminosity of this source of 1.08× 10{sup 46} erg s{sup -1}. This limit is about one order of magnitude lower than those previously obtained in the ANTARES standard point source searches with non-lensed Flat-Spectrum Radio Quasars.

  11. Molecular gas in the host galaxy of a quasar at redshift z = 6.42.

    PubMed

    Walter, Fabian; Bertoldi, Frank; Carilli, Chris; Cox, Pierre; Lo, K Y; Neri, Roberto; Fan, Xiaohui; Omont, Alain; Strauss, Michael A; Menten, Karl M

    2003-07-24

    Observations of molecular hydrogen in quasar host galaxies at high redshifts provide fundamental constraints on galaxy evolution, because it is out of this molecular gas that stars form. Molecular hydrogen is traced by emission from the carbon monoxide molecule, CO; cold H2 itself is generally not observable. Carbon monoxide has been detected in about ten quasar host galaxies with redshifts z > 2; the record-holder is at z = 4.69 (refs 1-3). Here we report CO emission from the quasar SDSS J114816.64 + 525150.3 (refs 5, 6) at z = 6.42. At that redshift, the Universe was only 1/16 of its present age, and the era of cosmic reionization was just ending. The presence of about 2 x 1010 M\\circ of H2 in an object at this time demonstrates that molecular gas enriched with heavy elements can be generated rapidly in the youngest galaxies. PMID:12879063

  12. Discovery of a narrow line quasar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stocke, J.; Liebert, J.; Maccacaro, T.; Griffiths, R. E.; Steiner, J. E.

    1982-01-01

    A stellar object is reported which, while having X-ray and optical luminosities typical of quasars, has narrow permitted and forbidden emission lines over the observed spectral range. The narrow-line spectrum is high-excitation, the Balmer lines seem to be recombinational, and a redder optical spectrum than that of most quasars is exhibited, despite detection as a weak radio source. The object does not conform to the relationships between H-beta parameters and X-ray flux previously claimed for a large sample of the active galactic nuclei. Because reddish quasars with narrow lines, such as the object identified, may not be found by the standard techniques for the discovery of quasars, the object may be a prototype of a new class of quasars analogous to high-luminosity Seyfert type 2 galaxies. It is suggested that these objects cannot comprise more than 10% of all quasars.

  13. Various Approaches for Targeting Quasar Candidates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Y.; Zhao, Y.

    2015-09-01

    With the establishment and development of space-based and ground-based observational facilities, the improvement of scientific output of high-cost facilities is still a hot issue for astronomers. The discovery of new and rare quasars attracts much attention. Different methods to select quasar candidates are in bloom. Among them, some are based on color cuts, some are from multiwavelength data, some rely on variability of quasars, some are based on data mining, and some depend on ensemble methods.

  14. X-rays from the redshift 7.1 quasar ULAS J1120+0641

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Page, M. J.; Simpson, C.; Mortlock, D. J.; Warren, S. J.; Hewett, P. C.; Venemans, B. P.; McMahon, R. G.

    2014-05-01

    We present X-ray imaging and spectroscopy of the redshift z = 7.084 radio-quiet quasar ULAS J112001.48+064124.3 obtained with Chandra and XMM-Newton. The quasar is detected as a point source with both observatories. The Chandra observation provides a precise position, confirming the association of the X-ray source and the quasar, while a sufficient number of photons is detected in the XMM-Newton observation to yield a meaningful X-ray spectrum. In the XMM-Newton observation, the quasar has a 2-10 keV luminosity of 4.7 ± 0.9 × 1044 erg s-1 and a spectral slope α = 1.6^{+0.4}_{-0.3} (where fν ∝ ν-α). The quasar appears to have dimmed in the 15 months between the two observations, with a 2-10 keV luminosity of 1.8^{+1.0}_{-0.7}× 10^{45} erg s-1 during the Chandra observation. We derive optical-to-X-ray spectral slopes αOX of 1.76 ± 0.07 and 1.54^{+0.09}_{-0.08} at the times of the XMM-Newton and Chandra observations, respectively, consistent with the range of αOX found in other quasars of comparable ultraviolet luminosity. The very soft X-ray spectrum suggests that the quasar is accreting above the Eddington rate, L/L_Edd = 5^{+15}_{-4}, compared to L/L_Edd = 1.2^{+0.6}_{-0.5} derived from the rest-frame ultraviolet. Super-Eddington accretion would help to reduce the discrepancy between the age of the quasar implied by the small size of the ionized near-zone in which it sits (<107 yr) and the characteristic e-folding time (2.5 × 107 yr if L/LEdd = 2). Such super-Eddington accretion would also alleviate the challenging constraints on the seed black hole mass provided that the quasar has been rapidly accreting throughout its history. The remnant of an individual Population III star is a plausible progenitor if an average L/LEdd > 1.46 has been maintained over the quasar's lifetime. L71

  15. NEAR-INFRARED IMAGING OF SIX METAL-RICH QUASAR ABSORBER GALAXY FIELDS

    SciTech Connect

    Straka, Lorrie A.; Kulkarni, Varsha P.; York, Donald G.

    2011-06-15

    Absorption lines in quasar spectra allow us to locate and study intervening galaxies. In order to obtain a clearer picture of these absorber galaxies, we have used the Near-Infrared Camera Fabry-Perot System at Apache Point Observatory to obtain near-infrared broadband images in one or more filters (J and K{sub s} ) of six quasar fields containing metal-rich low-z damped or sub-damped Ly{alpha} systems. These data allow us to search for the galaxies and constrain their luminosities. Candidate absorber galaxies are detected at 2.''01-7.''38 separation from the quasar in three out of six fields in the J and K{sub s} bands at >3{sigma} level with luminosities ranging from log(L/L{sub sun}) = 10.44-10.36 in the J band (for E-Sc type galaxies) and log(L/L{sub sun}) = 11.59-10.03 in the K{sub s} band for our detections. We place limits on the remaining fields with no detections of log(L/L{sub sun}) <10.83-9.75 for the J band and log(L/L{sub sun}) <10.43-10.05 for the K{sub s} band. We are also able to utilize Sloan Digital Sky Survey spectra for each field to calculate optical fluxes and limits as well as limits on star formation rate via [O II]{lambda}3727 emission in spectra. Our data, combined with other recent imaging results for metal-rich absorbers, suggest a possible positive correlation between absorber metallicity and galaxy luminosity, although the samples are still small.

  16. Quasars and Active Galaxies: A Reading List.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fraknoi, Andrew

    1988-01-01

    Contains the annotated bibliographies of introductory books and sections of books, recent introductory articles, more advanced articles, and more advanced books dealing with quasars and active galaxies. (CW)

  17. Connecting the Silicate Dust and Gas Properties of Distant Galaxies Using Quasar Absorption Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aller, Monique C.; Kulkarni, Varsha P.; York, Donald G.; Welty, Daniel E.; Vladilo, Giovanni; Som, Debopam; Lackey, Kyle; Dwek, Eli; Beiranvand, Nassim; Morrison, Sean

    2016-01-01

    We present recent results from our program investigating the silicate dust properties in distant galaxies using quasar absorption systems. The dust and gas properties of distant galaxies can be characterized by studying the absorption features produced by them along the sightlines to luminous background quasars. Based on our prior finding that silicate dust absorption in z<1.5 quasar absorption systems exhibits a range of optical depths and absorption feature substructures, suggestive of silicate grain property variations, we are investigating silicate dust absorption in quasar absorption systems toward quasars with archival Spitzer Space Telescope Infrared Spectrograph (IRS) spectra. We present our measurements of the 10 and/or 18 micron silicate dust absorption feature(s) in these systems, and discuss constraints on the grain properties, such as composition and crystallinity, based on the shape and substructure present in these features. We also investigate the correlations between the silicate dust properties and the reddening. Connections between the silicate dust and gas phase metal absorption properties can also be probed for some of our targets with archival ground-based spectra. These relationships will yield valuable insights into the star formation history and evolution of metals and dust. This work is supported by NASA through ADAP grant NNX14AG74G and by an award issued by JPL/Caltech, and from US-NSF grant AST-1108830 to the University of South Carolina.

  18. Infrared heterodyne spectroscopy of astronomical and laboratory sources at 8.5 micron. [absorption line profiles of nitrogen oxide and black body emission from Moon and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mumma, M.; Kostiuk, T.; Cohen, S.; Buhl, D.; Vonthuna, P. C.

    1974-01-01

    The first infrared heterodyne spectrometer using tuneable semiconductor (PbSe) diode lasers has been constructed and was used near 8.5 micron to measure absorption line profiles of N2O in the laboratory and black body emission from the Moon and from Mars. Spectral information was recorded over a 200 MHz bandwidth using an 8-channel filter bank. The resolution was 25 MHz and the minimum detectable (black body) power was 1 x 10 to the minus 16th power watts for 8 minutes of integration. The results demonstrate the usefulness of heterodyne spectroscopy for the study of remote and local sources in the infrared.

  19. OPTOPUS observations of quasar candidates.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cristiani, S.

    1987-06-01

    OPTOPUS is a fiber-optic instrument for multiple-object spectroscopy with the Boiler & Chivens spectrograph and a CCD detector at the 3.6-m telescope. The system has been described in detail by the Optical Instrumentation Group (1985, The Messenger 41,25). Its application for observing Halley's comet has been reported by Lund and Surdej (1986, The Messenger 43, 1). Here another "classical" use of multiple-object spectroscopy is presented: followup observations of quasar candidates.

  20. Quasar redshifts: the intrinsic component

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, Peter M.

    2016-09-01

    The large observed redshift of quasars has suggested large cosmological distances and a corresponding enormous energy output to explain the brightness or luminosity as seen at earth. Alternative or complementary sources of redshift have not been identified by the astronomical community. This study examines one possible source of additional redshift: an intrinsic component based on the plasma characteristics of high temperature and high electron density which are believed to be present.

  1. Quasar microlensing and dark matter

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rix, Hans-Walter; Hogan, Craig J.

    1988-01-01

    The amplification of quasar brightness due to gravitational lensing by foreground objects is discussed. It is shown that a recently published sample of X-ray-selected quasars behind foreground galaxies shows a statistically significant brightening compared to a control sample. Correlations with galaxy redshift and impact parameter predicted by microlensing are also demonstrated. A technique is described to measure the mean density of the lenses from a small number of identified cases of microlensing. It is shown that, in this sample, amplification bias is important in determining the mean intensity enhancement and must be included in the density estimate. Assuming that at least two of the four intrinsically brightest quasars behind galaxies are indeed microlensed, the present data yield a formal lower limit on the mean density parameter of lenses Omega(l) greater than 0.25 at 95 percent confidence. These data also imply that a considerable quantity of dark matter exists in macroscopic objects outside the visible parts of galaxies but is still highly correlated with them.

  2. Quasar target selection fiber efficiency

    SciTech Connect

    Newberg, H.; Yanny, B.

    1996-05-01

    We present estimates of the efficiency for finding QSOs as a function of limiting magnitude and galactic latitude. From these estimates, we have formulated a target selection strategy that should net 80,000 QSOs in the north galactic cap with an average of 70 fibers per plate, not including fibers reserved for high-redshift quasars. With this plan, we expect 54% of the targets to be QSOs. The North Galactic Cap is divided into two zones of high and low stellar density. We use about five times as many fibers for QSO candidates in the half of the survey with the lower stellar density as we use in the half with higher stellar density. The current plan assigns 15% of the fibers to FIRST radio sources; if these are not available, those fibers would be allocated to lower probability QSO sources, dropping the total number of QSOs by a small factor (5%). We will find about 17,000 additional quasars in the southern strips, and maybe a few more at very high redshift. Use was made of two data sets: the star and quasar simulated test data generated by Don Schneider, and the data from UJFN plate surveys by Koo (1986) and Kron (1980). This data was compared to results from the Palomar-Green Survey and a recent survey by Pat Osmer and collaborators.

  3. Highly accreting quasars: sample definition and possible cosmological implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marziani, P.; Sulentic, J. W.

    2014-08-01

    We propose a method to identify quasars radiating closest to the Eddington limit, defining primary and secondary selection criteria in the optical, UV and X-ray spectral range based on the 4D eigenvector 1 formalism. We then show that it is possible to derive a redshift-independent estimate of luminosity for extreme Eddington ratio sources. Using preliminary samples of these sources in three redshift intervals (as well as two mock samples), we test a range of cosmological models. Results are consistent with concordance cosmology but the data are insufficient for deriving strong constraints. Mock samples indicate that application of the method proposed in this paper using dedicated observations would allow us to set stringent limits on ΩM and significant constraints on ΩΛ.

  4. The luminosity function of quasars and its evolution: A comparison of optically selected quasars and quasars found in radio catalogs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Petrosian, V.

    1973-01-01

    The luminosity function of quasars and its evolution are discussed, based on comparison of available data on optically selected quasars and quasars found in radio catalogs. It is assumed that the red shift of quasars is cosmological and the results are expressed in the framework of the Lambda = 0, Q sub Q = 1 cosmological model. The predictions of various density evolution laws are compared with observations of an optically selected sample of quasars and quasar samples from radio catalogs. The differences between the optical luminosity functions, the red shift distributions and the radio to optical luminosity ratios of optically selected quasars and radio quasars rule out luminosity functions where there is complete absence of correlation between radio and optical luminosities. These differences also imply that Schmidt's (1970) luminosity function, where there exists a statistical correlation between radio and optical luminosities, although may be correct for high red shift objects, disagrees with observation at low red shifts. These differences can be accounted for by postulating existence of two classes (1 and 2) of objects.

  5. Varying alpha: New constraints from seasonal variations

    SciTech Connect

    Barrow, John D.; Shaw, Douglas J.

    2008-09-15

    We analyze the constraints obtained from new atomic clock data on the possible time variation of the fine structure 'constant' and the electron-proton mass ratio, and show how they are strengthened when the seasonal variation of the Sun's gravitational field at the Earth's surface is taken into account. We compare these bounds with those obtainable from tests of the weak equivalence principle and high redshift observations of quasar absorption spectra.

  6. A new limit on the variation of the fine-structure constant using absorption line multiplets in the early universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thong, Le Duc

    2015-08-01

    One of the key questions of modern physics concerns the possibility that physical constants vary over space and time during the history of the universe. The Standard Model of physics is built on these constants, but it does not provide any explanation for their values, nor requires their constancy over space and time. Here we set a new limit on possible spatial and temporal variations of the fine-structure constant , by comparing transitions line multiplets in an ensemble of Fe II 1608, 2344, 2374, 2383, 2587 and 2600 observed in the early universe with those measured in the laboratory. Based on the optical spectra observations of QSO HE 0515-4414, we deduced a constraint of at redshift z = 1.15. This is at present the tightest limit on at early cosmological epochs compared to the published results in the literature.

  7. Investigation of SO3 absorption line for in situ gas detection inside combustion plants using a 4-μm-band laser source.

    PubMed

    Tokura, A; Tadanaga, O; Nishimiya, T; Muta, K; Kamiyama, N; Yonemura, M; Fujii, S; Tsumura, Y; Abe, M; Takenouchi, H; Kenmotsu, K; Sakai, Y

    2016-09-01

    We have investigated 4-μm-band SO3 absorption lines for in situSO3 detection using a mid-infrared laser source based on difference frequency generation in a quasi-phase-matched LiNbO3 waveguide. In the wavelength range of 4.09400-4.10600 μm, there were strong SO3 absorption lines. The maximum absorption coefficient at a concentration of 170 ppmv was estimated to be about 3.2×10-5  cm-1 at a gas temperature of 190°C. In coexistence with H2O, the reduction of the SO3 absorption peak height was observed, which was caused by sulfuric acid formation. We discuss a method of using an SO3 equilibrium curve to derive the total SO3 molecule concentration. PMID:27607263

  8. Errarum: Detection of Absorption-Line Features in the X-Ray Spectra of the Galactic Superluminal Source GRO J1655-40

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ueda, Y.; Inoue, H.; Tanaka, Y.; Ebisawa, K.; Nagase, F.; Kotani, T.; Gehrels, N.

    1998-06-01

    In the paper ``Detection of Absorption-Line Features in the X-Ray Spectra of the Galactic Superluminal Source GRO J1655-40'' by Y. Ueda, H. Inoue, Y. Tanaka, K. Ebisawa, F. Nagase, T. Kotani, and N. Gehrels (ApJ, 492, 782 [1998]), there is an error in the curve of growth for the Kα absorption line (Fig. 4). The revised version of Figure 4 given here replaces Figure 4 in the paper. Several numbers derived from the figure should be corrected accordingly, but the conclusion of the paper is not affected. In the third paragraph of the discussion section (page 786), the iron column density of the plasma should be 1019-1020 cm-2, which corresponds to a hydrogen column density of 3 × 1023-3 × 1024 cm-2. The final limit on the hydrogen column density of the line-absorbing plasma should be changed to 3 × 1023 cm-2 < NH < 1024 cm-2.

  9. CONSTRAINING SUB-PARSEC BINARY SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES IN QUASARS WITH MULTI-EPOCH SPECTROSCOPY. I. THE GENERAL QUASAR POPULATION

    SciTech Connect

    Shen, Yue; Liu, Xin; Loeb, Abraham; Tremaine, Scott

    2013-09-20

    We perform a systematic search for sub-parsec binary supermassive black holes (BHs) in normal broad-line quasars at z < 0.8, using multi-epoch Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) spectroscopy of the broad Hβ line. Our working model is that (1) one and only one of the two BHs in the binary is active; (2) the active BH dynamically dominates its own broad-line region (BLR) in the binary system, so that the mean velocity of the BLR reflects the mean velocity of its host BH; (3) the inactive companion BH is orbiting at a distance of a few R{sub BLR}, where R{sub BLR} ∼ 0.01-0.1 pc is the BLR size. We search for the expected line-of-sight acceleration of the broad-line velocity from binary orbital motion by cross-correlating SDSS spectra from two epochs separated by up to several years in the quasar rest frame. Out of ∼700 pairs of spectra for which we have good measurements of the velocity shift between two epochs (1σ error ∼40 km s{sup –1}), we detect 28 systems with significant velocity shifts in broad Hβ, among which 7 are the best candidates for the hypothesized binaries, 4 are most likely due to broad-line variability in single BHs, and the rest are ambiguous. Continued spectroscopic observations of these candidates will easily strengthen or disprove these claims. We use the distribution of the observed accelerations (mostly non-detections) to place constraints on the abundance of such binary systems among the general quasar population. Excess variance in the velocity shift is inferred for observations separated by longer than 0.4 yr (quasar rest frame). Attributing all the excess to binary motion would imply that most of the quasars in this sample must be in binaries, that the inactive BH must be on average more massive than the active one, and that the binary separation is at most a few times the size of the BLR. However, if this excess variance is partly or largely due to long-term broad-line variability, the requirement of a large population of close

  10. Chandra Observations of 12 Luminous Red Quasars

    SciTech Connect

    Urrutia, T; Lacy, M; Gregg, M D; Becker, R H

    2005-03-11

    The authors present results of a study of 12 dust-reddened quasars with 0.4 < z < 2.65 and reddenings in the range 0.15 < E(B-V) < 1.7. They obtained ACIS-S X-ray spectra of these quasars, estimated the column densities towards them, and hence obtained the gas:dust ratios in the material obscuring the quasar. They detect all but one of the red quasars in the X-rays. Even though there is no obvious correlation between the X-ray determined column densities of the sources and their optical color or reddening, all of the sources show absorbed X-ray spectra. When they correct the luminosity for absorption, they can be placed among luminous quasars; therefore their objects belong to the group of high luminosity analogues of the sources contributing to the X-ray background seen in deep X-ray observations. Such sources are also found in serendipitous shallow X-ray surveys. There is a hint that the mean spectral slope of the red quasar is higher than that of normal, unobscured quasars, which could be an indication for higher accretion rates and/or an evolutionary effect. They investigate the number density of these sources compared to type 2 AGN based on the X-ray background and estimate how many moderate luminosity red quasars may be found in deep X-ray fields.

  11. Quasars as very-accurate clock synchronizers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hurd, W. J.; Goldstein, R. M.

    1975-01-01

    Quasars can be employed to synchronize global data communications, geophysical measurements, and atomic clocks. It is potentially two to three orders of magnitude better than presently-used Moon-bounce system. Comparisons between quasar and clock pulses are used to develop correction or synchronization factors for station clocks.

  12. A Stringent Limit on Variation of the Fine-Structure Constant Using Absorption Line Multiplets in the Early Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le, T. D.

    2016-06-01

    One of the key questions of modern physics concerns the possibility that physical constants have varied throughout the history of the Universe. The standard model of physics is built on these constants, but it does not provide any explanation for their values, nor does it require their constancy over space and time. Here, we set a new limit on possible spatial and temporal variations of the fine-structure constant α = e 2/4πɛ0 ħc by comparing transitions and line multiplets in an ensemble of Fe II λ 1608, λ 2344, λ 2374, λ 2383, λ 2587, and λ 2600 observed in the early Universe with those measured in the laboratory. Based on the optical spectrum observations of QSO HE 0515-4414, we deduce a constraint of Δα/α = (-0.157± 0.300)×10-6 at redshift z = 1.15. At present, this represents the tightest limit on Δα/α in early cosmological epochs compared to the published results in the literature.

  13. Evidence for the alignment of quasar radio polarizations with large quasar group axes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelgrims, V.; Hutsemékers, D.

    2016-05-01

    Recently, evidence has been presented for the polarization vectors from quasars to preferentially align with the axes of the large quasar groups (LQG) to which they belong. This report was based on observations made at optical wavelengths for two LQGs at redshift ~1.3. The correlation suggests that the spin axes of quasars preferentially align with their surrounding large-scale structure that is assumed to be traced by the LQGs. Here, we consider a large sample of LQGs built from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey DR7 quasar catalogue in the redshift range 1.0-1.8. For quasars embedded in this sample, we collected radio polarization measurements with the goal to study possible correlations between quasar polarization vectors and the major axis of their host LQGs. Assuming the radio polarization vector is perpendicular to the quasar spin axis, we found that the quasar spin axis is preferentially parallel to the LQG major axis inside LQGs that have at least 20 members. This result independently supports the observations at optical wavelengths. We additionally found that when the richness of an LQG decreases, the quasar spin axis becomes preferentially perpendicular to the LQG major axis and that no correlation is detected for quasar groups with fewer than 10 members.

  14. Systematic Effects in Large-Scale Angular Power Spectra of Photometric Quasars and Implications for Constraining Primordial Non-Gaussianity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pullen, Anthony R.; Hirata, Christopher M.

    2013-06-01

    Primordial non-Gaussianity of local type is predicted to lead to enhanced halo clustering on very large scales. Photometric quasars, which can be seen from cosmological redshifts z > 2 even in wide-shallow optical surveys, are promising tracers for constraining non-Gaussianity using this effect. However, large-scale systematics can also mimic this signature of non-Gaussianity. In order to assess the contribution of systematic effects, we cross-correlate overdensity maps of photometric quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release 6 (DR6) in different redshift ranges. We find that the maps are significantly correlated on large scales, even though we expect the angular distributions of quasars at different redshifts to be uncorrelated. This implies that the quasar maps are contaminated with systematic errors. We investigate the use of external templates that provide information on the spatial dependence of potential systematic errors to reduce the level of spurious clustering in the quasar data. We find that templates associated with stellar density, the stellar color locus, airmass, and seeing are major contaminants of the quasar maps, with seeing having the largest effect. Using template projection, we are able to decrease the significance of the cross-correlation measurement on the largest scales from 9.2σ to 5.4σ. Although this is an improvement, the remaining cross-correlation suggests the contamination in this quasar sample is too great to allow a competitive constraint on fNL by correlations internal to this sample. The SDSS quasar catalog exhibits spurious number density fluctuations of approximately 2% rms, and we need a contamination level less than 1% (0.6%) in order to measure values of fNL less than 100 (10). Properly dealing with these systematics will be paramount for future large scale structure surveys that seek to constrain non-Gaussianity.

  15. The Subaru High-z Quasar Survey: Discovery of Faint z ~ 6 Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kashikawa, Nobunari; Ishizaki, Yoshifumi; Willott, Chris J.; Onoue, Masafusa; Im, Myungshin; Furusawa, Hisanori; Toshikawa, Jun; Ishikawa, Shogo; Niino, Yuu; Shimasaku, Kazuhiro; Ouchi, Masami; Hibon, Pascale

    2015-01-01

    We present the discovery of one or two extremely faint z ~ 6 quasars in 6.5 deg2 utilizing a unique capability of the wide-field imaging of the Subaru/Suprime-Cam. The quasar selection was made in (i'-zB ) and (zB -zR ) colors, where zB and zR are bandpasses with central wavelengths of 8842 Å and 9841 Å, respectively. The color selection can effectively isolate quasars at z ~ 6 from M/L/T dwarfs without the J-band photometry down to zR < 24.0, which is 3.5 mag deeper than the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). We have selected 17 promising quasar candidates. The follow-up spectroscopy for seven targets identified one apparent quasar at z = 6.156 with M 1450 = -23.10. We also identified one possible quasar at z = 6.041 with a faint continuum of M 1450 = -22.58 and a narrow Lyα emission with HWHM =427 km s-1, which cannot be distinguished from Lyman α emitters. We derive the quasar luminosity function at z ~ 6 by combining our faint quasar sample with the bright quasar samples by SDSS and CFHQS. Including our data points invokes a higher number density in the faintest bin of the quasar luminosity function than the previous estimate employed. This suggests a steeper faint-end slope than lower z, though it is yet uncertain based on a small number of spectroscopically identified faint quasars, and several quasar candidates still remain to be diagnosed. The steepening of the quasar luminosity function at the faint end does increase the expected emission rate of the ionizing photon; however, it only changes by a factor of approximately two to six. This was found to still be insufficient for the required photon budget of reionization at z ~ 6.

  16. The X-ray spectrum and spectral energy distribution of FIRST J155633.8+351758: a LoBAL quasar with a probable polar outflow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berrington, Robert C.; Brotherton, Michael S.; Gallagher, Sarah C.; Ganguly, Rajib; Shang, Zhaohui; DiPompeo, Michael; Chatterjee, Ritaban; Lacy, Mark; Gregg, Michael D.; Hall, Patrick B.; Laurent-Muehleisen, S. A.

    2013-12-01

    We report the results of a new 60 ks Chandra X-ray Observatory Advanced CCD Imaging Spectrometer S-array (ACIS-S) observation of the reddened, radio-selected, highly polarized `FeLoBAL' quasar FIRST J1556+3517. We investigated a number of models of varied sophistication to fit the 531-photon spectrum. These models ranged from simple power laws to power laws absorbed by hydrogen gas in differing ionization states and degrees of partial covering. Preferred fits indicate that the intrinsic X-ray flux is consistent with that expected for quasars of similarly high luminosity, i.e. an intrinsic, dereddened and unabsorbed optical to X-ray spectral index of -1.7. We cannot tightly constrain the intrinsic X-ray power-law slope, but find indications that it is flat (photon index Γ = 1.7 or flatter at a >99 per cent confidence for a neutral hydrogen absorber model). Absorption is present, with a column density a few times 1023 cm-2, with both partially ionized models and partially covering neutral hydrogen models providing good fits. We present several lines of argument that suggest the fraction of X-ray emissions associated with the radio jet is not large. We combine our Chandra data with observations from the literature to construct the spectral energy distribution of FIRST J1556+3517 from radio to X-ray energies. We make corrections for Doppler beaming for the pole-on radio jet, optical dust reddening and X-ray absorption, in order to recover a probable intrinsic spectrum. The quasar FIRST J1556+3517 seems to be an intrinsically normal radio-quiet quasar with a reddened optical/UV spectrum, a Doppler-boosted but intrinsically weak radio jet and an X-ray absorber not dissimilar from that of other broad absorption line quasars.

  17. Heavily reddened quasars at z ˜ 2 in the UKIDSS Large Area Survey: a transitional phase in AGN evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banerji, Manda; McMahon, Richard G.; Hewett, Paul C.; Alaghband-Zadeh, Susannah; Gonzalez-Solares, Eduardo; Venemans, Bram P.; Hawthorn, Melanie J.

    2012-12-01

    We present a new sample of purely near-infrared-selected KVega < 16.5 [KAB < 18.4] extremely red [(J - K)Vega > 2.5] quasar candidates at z ˜ 2 from ≃900 deg2 of data in the UKIDSS Large Area Survey (LAS). Five of these are spectroscopically confirmed to be heavily reddened type 1 active galactic nuclei (AGN) with broad emission lines bringing our total sample of reddened quasars from the UKIDSS-LAS to 12 at z = 1.4-2.7. At these redshifts, Hα (6563 Å) is in the K band. However, the mean Hα equivalent width of the reddened quasars is only 10 per cent larger than that of the optically selected population and cannot explain the extreme colours. Instead, dust extinction of AV ˜ 2-6 mag is required to reproduce the continuum colours of our sources. This is comparable to the dust extinctions seen in submillimetre galaxies at similar redshifts. We argue that the AGN are likely being observed in a relatively short-lived breakout phase when they are expelling gas and dust following a massive starburst, subsequently turning into UV-luminous quasars. Some of our quasars show direct evidence for strong outflows (v ˜ 800-1000 km s-1) affecting the Hα line consistent with this scenario. We predict that a larger fraction of reddened quasar hosts are likely to be submillimetre bright compared to the UV-luminous quasar population. We use our sample to place new constraints on the fraction of obscured type 1 AGN likely to be missed in optical surveys. Taken at face value our findings suggest that the obscured fraction depends on quasar luminosity. The space density of obscured quasars is approximately five times that inferred for UV-bright quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) luminosity function at Mi < -30 but seems to drop at lower luminosities even accounting for various sources of incompleteness in our sample. We find that at Mi ˜ -28 for example, this fraction is unlikely to be larger than ˜20 per cent although these fractions are highly uncertain at

  18. The FIRST-2MASS Red Quasar Survey

    SciTech Connect

    Glikman, E; Helfand, D J; White, R L; Becker, R H; Gregg, M D; Lacy, M

    2007-06-28

    Combining radio observations with optical and infrared color selection--demonstrated in our pilot study to be an efficient selection algorithm for finding red quasars--we have obtained optical and infrared spectroscopy for 120 objects in a complete sample of 156 candidates from a sky area of 2716 square degrees. Consistent with our initial results, we find our selection criteria--J-K > 1.7,R-K > 4.0--yield a {approx} 50% success rate for discovering quasars substantially redder than those found in optical surveys. Comparison with UVX- and optical color-selected samples shows that {approx}> 10% of the quasars are missed in a magnitude-limited survey. Simultaneous two-frequency radio observations for part of the sample indicate that a synchrotron continuum component is ruled out as a significant contributor to reddening the quasars spectra. We go on to estimate extinctions for our objects assuming their red colors are caused by dust. Continuum fits and Balmer decrements suggest E(B-V) values ranging from near zero to 2.5 magnitudes. Correcting the K-band magnitudes for these extinctions, we find that for K {le} 14.0, red quasars make up between 25% and 60% of the underlying quasar population; owing to the incompleteness of the 2MASS survey at fainter K-band magnitudes, we can only set a lower limit to the radio-detected red quasar population of > 20-30%.

  19. HUBBLE CAPTURES MERGER BETWEEN QUASAR AND GALAXY

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This NASA Hubble Space Telescope image shows evidence fo r a merger between a quasar and a companion galaxy. This surprising result might require theorists to rethink their explanations for the nature of quasars, the most energetic objects in the universe. The bright central object is the quasar itself, located several billion light-years away. The two wisps on the (left) of the bright central object are remnants of a bright galaxy that have been disrupted by the mutual gravitational attraction between the quasar and the companion galaxy. This provides clear evidence for a merger between the two objects. Since their discovery in 1963, quasars (quasi-stellar objects) have been enigmatic because they emit prodigious amounts of energy from a very compact source. The most widely accepted model is that a quasar is powered by a supermassive black hole in the core of a galaxy. These new observations proved a challenge for theorists as no current models predict the complex quasar interactions unveiled by Hubble. The image was taken with the Wide Field Planetary Camera-2. Credit: John Bahcall, Institute for Advanced Study, NASA.

  20. Discovery of a cyclotron absorption line in the spectrum of the binary X-ray pulsar 4U 1538 - 52 observed by Ginga

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clark, George W.; Woo, Jonathan W.; Nagase, Fumiaki; Makishima, Kazuo; Sakao, Taro

    1990-01-01

    A cyclotron absorption line near 20 keV has been found in the spectrum of the massive eclipsing binary X-ray pulsar 4U 1538 - 52 in observations with the Ginga observatory. The line is detected throughout the 529 s pulse cycle with a variable equivalent width that has its maximum value during the smaller peak of the two-peak pulse profile. It is found that the profile of the pulse and the phase-dependence of the cyclotron line can be explained qualitatively by a pulsar model based on recent theoretical results on the properties of pencil beams emitted by accretion-heated slabs of magnetized plasma at the magnetic poles of a neutron star. The indicated field at the surface of the neutron star is 1.7 (1 + z) x 10 to the 12th G, where z is the gravitational redshift.

  1. Intensities and N2 collision-broadening coefficients measured for selected H2O absorption lines between 715 and 732 nm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilkerson, T. D.; Schwemmer, G.; Gentry, B.; Giver, L. P.

    1979-01-01

    Intensities and N2 collision-broadening coefficients are measured for 62 water vapor absorption lines between 715 and 732 nm potentially applicable to laser remote sensing of atmospheric water vapor. Absolute line strengths and widths were determined from spectra corrected for instrument resolution, air-path absorption and Lorentz and Doppler broadening for pure water vapor and water vapor-nitrogen mixtures in a multipass absorption cell with a base path length of 25 m (White cell). Line strengths are observed to range from 4 x 10 to the -25th to 4 x 10 to the -23rd kayser/molecule per sq cm, and collision broadening coefficients are found to be approximately equal to 0.1 kayser/atm.

  2. Incidence of strong Mg II absorbers towards different types of quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joshi, Ravi; Chand, Hum; Gopal-Krishna

    2013-10-01

    We report the first comparative study of strong Mg II absorbers (Wr ≥ 1.0 Å) seen towards radio-loud quasars of core-dominated (CDQ) and lobe-dominated (LDQ) types and normal quasars (QSOs). The CDQ and LDQ samples were derived from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 7 after excluding known `broad-absorption-line' quasars and blazars. The Mg II associated absorption systems having a velocity offset v < 5000 km s-1 from the systemic velocity of the background quasar were also excluded. Existing spectroscopic data for redshift-matched sightlines of 3975 CDQs and 1583 LDQs, covering an emission redshift range 0.39-4.87, were analysed and 864 strong Mg II absorbers were found, covering the redshift range 0.45-2.17. The conclusions reached using this well-defined large data set of strong Mg II absorbers are (i) the number density, dN/dz, towards CDQs shows a small, marginally significant excess (˜9 per cent at 1.5σ significance) over the estimate available for QSOs; (ii) in the redshift space, this difference is reflected in terms of a 1.6σ excess of dN/dz over the QSOs, within the narrow redshift interval 1.2-1.8; (iii) the dN/dβ distribution (with β = v/c) for CDQs shows a significant excess (at 3.75σ level) over the distribution found for a redshift- and luminosity-matched sample of QSOs, at β in the range 0.05-0.1. This leads us to infer that a significant fraction of strong Mg II absorption systems seen in this offset velocity range are probably associated with the CDQs and might be accelerated into the line of sight by their powerful jets and/or due to the accretion-disc outflows close to our direction. Support to this scenario comes from a consistency check in which we consider only the spectral range corresponding to β > 0.2. The computed redshift distribution for strong Mg II absorbers towards CDQs now shows excellent agreement with that known for QSOs, as indeed is expected for purely intervening absorption systems. Thus, it appears that for

  3. BAL Phosphorus Abundance and Evidence for Immense Ionic Column Densities in Quasar Outflows: VLT/X-Shooter Observations of Quasar SDSS J1512+1119

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borguet, Benoit C. J.; Edmonds, Doug; Arav, Nahum; Benn, Chris; Chamberlain, Carter

    2012-10-01

    We present spectroscopic analysis of the broad absorption line (BAL) outflow in quasar SDSS J1512+1119. In particular, we focus our attention on a kinematic component in which we identify P V and S IV/S IV* absorption troughs. The shape of the unblended phosphorus doublet troughs and the three S IV/S IV* troughs allow us to obtain reliable column density measurements for these two ions. Photoionization modeling using these column densities and those of He I* constrain the abundance of phosphorus to the range of 0.5-4 times the solar value. The total column density, ionization parameter, and metallicity inferred from the P V and S IV column densities lead to large optical depth values for the common transition observed in BAL outflows. We show that the true C IV optical depth is ~1000 times greater in the core of the absorption profile than the value deduced from its apparent optical depth. Based on observations collected at the European Southern Observatory, Chile, PID:87.B-0229.

  4. Merging Galaxies Create a Binary Quasar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-02-01

    Astronomers have found the first clear evidence of a binary quasar within a pair of actively merging galaxies. Quasars are the extremely bright centers of galaxies surrounding super-massive black holes, and binary quasars are pairs of quasars bound together by gravity. Binary quasars, like other quasars, are thought to be the product of galaxy mergers. Until now, however, binary quasars have not been seen in galaxies that are unambiguously in the act of merging. But images of a new binary quasar from the Carnegie Institution's Magellan telescope in Chile show two distinct galaxies with "tails" produced by tidal forces from their mutual gravitational attraction. "This is really the first case in which you see two separate galaxies, both with quasars, that are clearly interacting," says Carnegie astronomer John Mulchaey who made observations crucial to understanding the galaxy merger. Most, if not all, large galaxies, such as our galaxy the Milky Way, host super-massive black holes at their centers. Because galaxies regularly interact and merge, astronomers have assumed that binary super-massive black holes have been common in the Universe, especially during its early history. Black holes can only be detected as quasars when they are actively accreting matter, a process that releases vast amounts of energy. A leading theory is that galaxy mergers trigger accretion, creating quasars in both galaxies. Because most such mergers would have happened in the distant past, binary quasars and their associated galaxies are very far away and therefore difficult for most telescopes to resolve. The binary quasar, labeled SDSS J1254+0846, was initially detected by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, a large scale astronomical survey of galaxies and over 120,000 quasars. Further observations by Paul Green of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and colleagues* using NASA's Chandra's X-ray Observatory and telescopes at Kitt Peak National Observatory in Arizona and Palomar

  5. Unveiling hidden black holes in the cosmic web: Dark matter halos of WISE quasars from Planck CMB lensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hickox, Ryan

    The WISE and Planck surveys have now produced groundbreaking data sets which, in concert, can be exploited to obtain revolutionary constraints on the evolution of structure in the Universe. One particularly powerful application of WISE has been to uncover millions of the previously "hidden" obscured quasars, rapidly growing supermassive black holes that are shrouded in gas and dust and so are not detectable using traditional ground-based optical and near-IR techniques. Recently, Planck has produced the most precise all-sky map to date of dark matter structures via the lensing of the cosmic microwave background (CMB). We propose to combine these data sets to obtain a uniquely powerful measurement of the link between rapidly growing black holes and their host dark matter structures, by cross-correlating the density field of WISE-selected quasars with the CMB lensing convergence maps obtained from Planck. This proposal will build on our current ADAP program (NNX12AE38G), which studies the host dark matter halos of WISE-selected quasars via spatial clustering. NNX12AE38G involves a detailed characterization of the redshifts, luminosities, and spectral energy distributions of WISE-selected quasars and uses new techniques to measure how quasars cluster around themselves. NNX12AE38G has contributed to more than 10 journal articles and 5 conference proceedings. Building on our current work, an even more complete understanding of the link between black holes and their host dark matter structures is possible if we employ an independent method for measuring the clustering bias (and thus characteristic halo mass) of the quasar population. This has recently become possible using CMB lensing maps. In the past two years, our team has conducted an initial analysis covering 2500 square degrees using WISE-selected quasars and lensing maps from the South Pole Telescope (Geach, Hickox, Myers et al., 2013), and have implemented this technique with Planck over part of the SDSS region

  6. Far-Infrared Line Emission from High Redshift Quasars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benford, D. J.; Cox, P.; Hunter, T. R.; Malhotra, S.; Phillips, T. G.; Yun, M. S.

    2002-01-01

    Recent millimeter and submillimeter detections of line emission in high redshift objects have yielded new information and constraints on star formation at early epochs. Only CO transitions and atomic carbon transitions have been detected from these objects, yet bright far-infrared lines such as C+ at 158 microns and N+ at 205 microns should be fairly readily detectable when redshifted into a submillimeter atmospheric window. We have obtained upper limits for C+ emission &om two high redshift quasars, BR1202-0725 at z=4.69 and BRI1335-0415 at z=4.41. These limits show that the ratio of the C+ line luminosity to the total far-infrared luminosity is less than 0.0l%, ten times smaller than has been observed locally. Additionally, we have searched for emission in the N+ 205 micron line from the Cloverleaf quasar, H1413+117, and detected emission in CO J=7-6. The N+ emission is found to be below the amount predicted based on comparison to the only previous detection of this line, in the starburst galaxy M82.

  7. Insights on the X-ray weak quasar phenomenon from XMM-Newton monitoring of PHL 1092

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miniutti, Giovanni; Fabian, Andy; Gallo, Luigi; Brandt, Niel; Schneider, Donald

    2012-09-01

    PHL 1092 is a z~0.4 high-luminosity counterpart of the class of Narrow Line Seyfert 1 galaxies. In 2008, PHL 1092 was found to be in a remarkably low X-ray flux state during an XMM-Newton observation. Its 2 keV flux density had dropped by a factor of ~260 with respect to a previous observation performed 4.5 yr earlier. The UV flux remained almost constant, resulting in a significant steepening of the optical-to-X-ray slope alpha_ox from -1.57 to -2.51, making PHL 1092 one of the most extreme X-ray weak quasars with no observed broad absorption lines (BALs) in the UV. We have monitored the source since 2008 with XMM-Newton, producing a simultaneous UV and X-ray database spanning almost 10 yr in total in the activity of the source. We apply a series of physically motivated models to the data with the goal of explaining as self-consistently as possible the UV-to-X-ray spectral energy distribution (SED) and the extreme X-ray and alpha_ox variability. We discuss our results in the context of the class of non-BAL X-ray weak quasars and so-called PHL 1811 analogs.

  8. Mean Transmitted Flux in the Lyα Forest from a Sample of 2QZ Quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polinovskyi, G.; Malygin, M.

    2010-12-01

    The power spectrum of transmitted flux in the Lyα forest in spectra of distant quasars gives us an information about matter power spectrum on the smallest spatial scales which is very important for testing of different models of dark matter. Only a few independent samples of spectra obtained on diferent instruments have been used for this purpose, thus using of additional independent sample is useful for verification an existing results. We used the data from the 2dF (Two-degree Field) QSO Redshift Survey (2QZ) to obtain the mean transmitted flux for three different redshift bins. After visual inspection and rejection of spectra with broad absorption lines, damped Lyα systems and low signal-to-noise ratio spectra our final sample contains 655 quasars with redshift range 2.3

  9. Sloan Digital Sky Survey III photometric quasar clustering: probing the initial conditions of the Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ho, Shirley; Agarwal, Nishant; Myers, Adam D.; Lyons, Richard; Disbrow, Ashley; Seo, Hee-Jong; Ross, Ashley; Hirata, Christopher; Padmanabhan, Nikhil; O'Connell, Ross; Huff, Eric; Schlegel, David; Slosar, Anže; Weinberg, David; Strauss, Michael; Ross, Nicholas P.; Schneider, Donald P.; Bahcall, Neta; Brinkmann, J.; Palanque-Delabrouille, Nathalie; Yèche, Christophe

    2015-05-01

    The Sloan Digital Sky Survey has surveyed 14,555 square degrees of the sky, and delivered over a trillion pixels of imaging data. We present the large-scale clustering of 1.6 million quasars between z=0.5 and z=2.5 that have been classified from this imaging, representing the highest density of quasars ever studied for clustering measurements. This data set spans 0~ 11,00 square degrees and probes a volume of 80 h-3 Gpc3. In principle, such a large volume and medium density of tracers should facilitate high-precision cosmological constraints. We measure the angular clustering of photometrically classified quasars using an optimal quadratic estimator in four redshift slices with an accuracy of ~ 25% over a bin width of δl ~ 10-15 on scales corresponding to matter-radiation equality and larger (0l ~ 2-3). Observational systematics can strongly bias clustering measurements on large scales, which can mimic cosmologically relevant signals such as deviations from Gaussianity in the spectrum of primordial perturbations. We account for systematics by employing a new method recently proposed by Agarwal et al. (2014) to the clustering of photometrically classified quasars. We carefully apply our methodology to mitigate known observational systematics and further remove angular bins that are contaminated by unknown systematics. Combining quasar data with the photometric luminous red galaxy (LRG) sample of Ross et al. (2011) and Ho et al. (2012), and marginalizing over all bias and shot noise-like parameters, we obtain a constraint on local primordial non-Gaussianity of fNL = -113+154-154 (1σ error). We next assume that the bias of quasar and galaxy distributions can be obtained independently from quasar/galaxy-CMB lensing cross-correlation measurements (such as those in Sherwin et al. (2013)). This can be facilitated by spectroscopic observations of the sources, enabling the redshift distribution to be completely determined, and allowing precise estimates of the bias

  10. SDSS J163459.82+204936.0: A Ringed Infrared-luminous Quasar with Outflows in Both Absorption and Emission Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Wen-Juan; Zhou, Hong-Yan; Jiang, Ning; Wu, Xufen; Lyu, Jianwei; Shi, Xiheng; Shu, Xinwen; Jiang, Peng; Ji, Tuo; Wang, Jian-Guo; Wang, Shu-Fen; Sun, Luming

    2016-05-01

    SDSS J163459.82+204936.0 is a local (z = 0.1293) infrared-luminous quasar with L IR = 1011.91 {L}ȯ . We present a detailed multiwavelength study of both the host galaxy and the nucleus. The host galaxy, appearing as an early-type galaxy in the optical images and spectra, demonstrates violent, obscured star formation activities with SFR ≈ 140 {M}ȯ yr‑1, estimated from either the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon emission or IR luminosity. The optical to NIR spectra exhibit a blueshifted narrow cuspy component in Hβ, He i λλ5876, 10830, and other emission lines consistently with an offset velocity of ≈900 {km} {{{s}}}-1, as well as additional blueshifting phenomena in high-ionization lines (e.g., a blueshifted broad component of He i λ10830 and the bulk blueshifting of [O iii]λ5007), while there exist blueshifted broad absorption lines (BALs) in Na i D and He i λλ3889, 10830, indicative of the active galactic nucleus outflows producing BALs and emission lines. Constrained mutually by the several BALs in the photoionization simulations with Cloudy, the physical properties of the absorption line outflow are derived as follows: density 104 < n H ≲ 105 cm‑3, ionization parameter 10‑1.3 ≲ U ≲ 10‑0.7 , and column density 1022.5 ≲ N H ≲ 1022.9 cm‑2, which are similar to those derived for the emission line outflows. This similarity suggests a common origin. Taking advantages of both the absorption lines and outflowing emission lines, we find that the outflow gas is located at a distance of ∼48–65 pc from the nucleus and that the kinetic luminosity of the outflow is 1044–1046 {erg} {{{s}}}-1. J1634+2049 has a off-centered galactic ring on the scale of ∼30 kpc that is proved to be formed by a recent head-on collision by a nearby galaxy for which we spectroscopically measure the redshift. Thus, this quasar is a valuable object in the transitional phase emerging out of dust enshrouding as depicted by the co-evolution scenario invoking

  11. SDSS J163459.82+204936.0: A Ringed Infrared-luminous Quasar with Outflows in Both Absorption and Emission Lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Wen-Juan; Zhou, Hong-Yan; Jiang, Ning; Wu, Xufen; Lyu, Jianwei; Shi, Xiheng; Shu, Xinwen; Jiang, Peng; Ji, Tuo; Wang, Jian-Guo; Wang, Shu-Fen; Sun, Luming

    2016-05-01

    SDSS J163459.82+204936.0 is a local (z = 0.1293) infrared-luminous quasar with L IR = 1011.91 {L}ȯ . We present a detailed multiwavelength study of both the host galaxy and the nucleus. The host galaxy, appearing as an early-type galaxy in the optical images and spectra, demonstrates violent, obscured star formation activities with SFR ≈ 140 {M}ȯ yr‑1, estimated from either the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon emission or IR luminosity. The optical to NIR spectra exhibit a blueshifted narrow cuspy component in Hβ, He i λλ5876, 10830, and other emission lines consistently with an offset velocity of ≈900 {km} {{{s}}}-1, as well as additional blueshifting phenomena in high-ionization lines (e.g., a blueshifted broad component of He i λ10830 and the bulk blueshifting of [O iii]λ5007), while there exist blueshifted broad absorption lines (BALs) in Na i D and He i λλ3889, 10830, indicative of the active galactic nucleus outflows producing BALs and emission lines. Constrained mutually by the several BALs in the photoionization simulations with Cloudy, the physical properties of the absorption line outflow are derived as follows: density 104 < n H ≲ 105 cm‑3, ionization parameter 10‑1.3 ≲ U ≲ 10‑0.7 , and column density 1022.5 ≲ N H ≲ 1022.9 cm‑2, which are similar to those derived for the emission line outflows. This similarity suggests a common origin. Taking advantages of both the absorption lines and outflowing emission lines, we find that the outflow gas is located at a distance of ˜48–65 pc from the nucleus and that the kinetic luminosity of the outflow is 1044–1046 {erg} {{{s}}}-1. J1634+2049 has a off-centered galactic ring on the scale of ˜30 kpc that is proved to be formed by a recent head-on collision by a nearby galaxy for which we spectroscopically measure the redshift. Thus, this quasar is a valuable object in the transitional phase emerging out of dust enshrouding as depicted by the co-evolution scenario invoking galaxy

  12. Probing reionization using quasar near-zones at redshift z ˜ 6

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Padmanabhan, Hamsa; Choudhury, T. Roy; Srianand, R.

    2014-10-01

    Using hydrodynamical simulations coupled to a radiative transfer code, we study the additional heating effects in the intergalactic medium (IGM) produced by z ˜ 6 quasars in their near-zones. If helium is predominantly in He II to begin with, both normalization (T0) and slope (γ) of the IGM effective equation-of-state get modified by the excess ionization from the quasars. Using the available constraints on T0 at z ˜ 6, we discuss implications for the nature and epoch of H I and He II reionization. We study the extent of the He III region as a function of quasar age and show, for a typical inferred age of z ˜ 6 quasars (i.e. ˜108 yr), it extends up to 80 per cent of the H I proximity region. For these long lifetimes, the heating effects can be detected even when all the H I lines from the proximity region are used. Using the flux and curvature probability distribution functions (PDFs), we study the statistical detectability of heating effects as a function of initial physical conditions in the IGM. For the present sample size, cosmic variance dominates the flux PDF. The curvature statistics is more suited to capturing the heating effects beyond the cosmic variance, even if the sample size is half of what is presently available.

  13. What can we learn about quasars and unification scheme with the microlensing technique?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sluse, D.

    2015-09-01

    Our understanding of the gravitational lensing phenomenon has deeply progressed since the discovery of the "first" gravitationally lensed object in 1979 by Walsh and collaborators. With more than hundreds of quasars known to be multiply imaged by a foreground galaxy, gravitational lensing is now a powerful astrophysical and cosmological tool. The stars located in lensing galaxies produce small deflections of the light rays coming from distant quasars which adds to the main deflection from the lensing galaxy. Because the deflection caused by the stars is small, the micro-images they produce remain unresolved. Only a flickering of the flux and spectral deformation of lensed quasars images are observed. I will explain how this micro-lensing effect, can be used to study the inner region of distant quasars. Specifically, I will zoom out from the inner accretion disc up to the torus, and give an overview of the information which can be retrieved at each of these scales. I will give a special emphasis on the constraint we can put on the orientation/geometry of the various emitting regions (i.e. disc, broad line region, torus) at each of these scales.

  14. Jansky VLA Imaging of Heavily Obscured, Luminous Quasars at Redshifts ~2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trapp, Adam; Lonsdale, Carol J.; Patil, Palavi; Whittle, Mark; Lacy, Mark; Lonsdale, Colin J.

    2016-01-01

    We present JVLA A and B array observations in X-band (8-12 GHz) of a sample of radio powerful, bolometrically luminous, but optically obscured quasars. The quasars were selected using a cross-match between WISE mid-IR sources brighter than 7 mJ at 22 mu and NVSS and/or FIRST radio surveys, with a further constraint that the sources were optically faint. The survey aims to select young quasars with young radio sources at redshifts z ~ 1-3. Ultimately, we wish to study the role that radio jets play in quasar driven feedback. Our VLA observations provide fundamental information on radio source size, structure, power and spectral index, all of which shed light on the properties of the young radio source. We will present images and data on 155 objects from our primary sample WISE-NVSS sample of 156.The majority of sources are found to be compact, steep-spectrum, and sub-galactic in scale, with a significant minority of resolved doubles, triples, and core-jets. Using radio data at other wavelengths taken from the literature, we use SED fits to identify or constrain the turn-over frequencies. Combining size and turn-over frequency, the majority of the sources are found to be CSS, GPS or HFPs, consistent with young radio source ages.

  15. A possible close supermassive black-hole binary in a quasar with optical periodicity.

    PubMed

    Graham, Matthew J; Djorgovski, S G; Stern, Daniel; Glikman, Eilat; Drake, Andrew J; Mahabal, Ashish A; Donalek, Ciro; Larson, Steve; Christensen, Eric

    2015-02-01

    Quasars have long been known to be variable sources at all wavelengths. Their optical variability is stochastic and can be due to a variety of physical mechanisms; it is also well-described statistically in terms of a damped random walk model. The recent availability of large collections of astronomical time series of flux measurements (light curves) offers new data sets for a systematic exploration of quasar variability. Here we report the detection of a strong, smooth periodic signal in the optical variability of the quasar PG 1302-102 with a mean observed period of 1,884 ± 88 days. It was identified in a search for periodic variability in a data set of light curves for 247,000 known, spectroscopically confirmed quasars with a temporal baseline of about 9 years. Although the interpretation of this phenomenon is still uncertain, the most plausible mechanisms involve a binary system of two supermassive black holes with a subparsec separation. Such systems are an expected consequence of galaxy mergers and can provide important constraints on models of galaxy formation and evolution. PMID:25561176

  16. Twin Quasars Tango And It's No Mirage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2002-03-01

    Scientists have unraveled a longstanding mystery about a rare double quasar system 11 billion light years from Earth using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. These "twin" quasars, previously thought to be an optical illusion, were instead probably created by merging galaxies and may have been more common in the dense universe soon after the Big Bang. "When galaxies interact or merge, they become more active and luminous and can excite quasar activity in their centers," said Paul Green of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Mass., who led the research team. "The quasars that make up these nearly identical twins appear to have been hatched in the same nest." The Chandra data show that the quasars - luminous galaxies powered by central supermassive black holes - are not mirror images caused by a cosmic phenomenon known as a "gravitational lens." Rather, these two quasars are distinct objects that were probably spawned when their host galaxies collided, energizing the flow of gas onto their central black holes. Quasar pairs that are seen close to one another on the sky and are at the same distance from Earth often turn out to be an illusion as part of a gravitationally lensed system. In these cases, the image of a single quasar has been split into two or more images as its light has been bent and focused on its way to Earth by the gravity of an intervening massive object like a galaxy, or a cluster of galaxies. Usually, the intervening mass shows up as a fainter galaxy or cluster of galaxies seen between or among the quasar images, confirming the cause of the illusion. The quasar pair Q2345+007 A, B was thought to be such an illusion because of the remarkably similar patterns of the light, or spectra, from the pair at both optical and ultraviolet wavelengths. Quasar Pair Q2345+007A,B X-ray/Optical Composite However, almost two decades after its discovery by optical astronomers, the identification of enough intervening material to "split" the

  17. Quasars, pulsars, black holes and HEAO's

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doolitte, R. F.; Moritz, K.; Whilden, R. D. C.

    1974-01-01

    Astronomical surveys are discussed by large X-ray, gamma ray, and cosmic ray instruments carried onboard high-energy astronomy observatories. Quasars, pulsars, black holes, and the ultimate benefits of the new astronomy are briefly discussed.

  18. Quasars as Probes of Cosmological Reionization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mortlock, Daniel

    Quasars are the most luminous non-transient sources in the epoch of cosmological reionization (which ended a billion years after the Big Bang, corresponding to a redshift of z ≃ 5), and are powerful probes of the inter-galactic medium at that time. This review covers current efforts to identify high-redshift quasars and how they have been used to constrain the reionization history. This includes a full description of the various processes by which neutral hydrogen atoms can absorb/scatter ultraviolet photons, and which lead to the Gunn-Peterson effect, dark gap and dark pixel analyses, quasar near zones and damping wing absorption. Finally, the future prospects for using quasars as probes of reionization are described.

  19. Black-Hole Feedback in Quasars

    NASA Video Gallery

    This animation illustrates how black-hole feedback works in quasars. Dense gas and dust in the center simultaneously fuels the black hole and shrouds it from view. The black-hole wind propels large...

  20. Dust in the Quasar Wind (Artist Concept)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    Dusty grains -- including tiny specks of the minerals found in the gemstones peridot, sapphires and rubies -- can be seen blowing in the winds of a quasar, or active black hole, in this artist's concept. The quasar is at the center of a distant galaxy.

    Astronomers using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope found evidence that such quasar winds might have forged these dusty particles in the very early universe. The findings are another clue in an ongoing cosmic mystery: where did all the dust in our young universe come from?

    Dust is crucial for efficient star formation as it allows the giant clouds where stars are born to cool quickly and collapse into new stars. Once a star has formed, dust is also needed to make planets and living creatures. Dust has been seen as far back as when the universe was less than a tenth of its current age, but how did it get there? Most dust in our current epoch forms in the winds of evolved stars that did not exist when the universe was young.

    Theorists had predicted that winds from quasars growing in the centers of distant galaxies might be a source of this dust. While the environment close to a quasar is too hot for large molecules like dust grains to survive, dust has been found in the cooler, outer regions. Astronomers now have evidence that dust is created in these outer winds.

    Using Spitzer's infrared spectrograph instrument, scientists found a wealth of dust grains in a quasar called PG2112+059 located at the center of a galaxy 8 billion light-years away. The grains - including corundum (sapphires and rubies); forsterite (peridot); and periclase (naturally occurring in marble) - are not typically found in galaxies without quasars, suggesting they might have been freshly formed in the quasar's winds.

  1. Quasar x-ray spectra revisited

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shastri, P.; Wilkes, B. J.; Elvis, M.; Mcdowell, J.

    1992-01-01

    A sample of 45 quasars observed by the Imaging Proportional Counter (IPC) on the Einstein satellite is used to re-examine the relationship between the soft (0.2-3.5 keV) X-ray energy index and radio-loudness. We found the following: (1) the tendency for radio-loud quasars to have systematically flatter X-ray slopes than radio-quiet quasars (RQQ's) is confirmed with the soft X-ray excess having negligible effect; (2) there is a tendency for the flatness of the X-ray slope to correlate with radio core-dominance for radio-loud quasars, suggesting that a component of the X-ray emission is relativistically beamed; (3) for the RQQ's the soft X-ray slopes, with a mean of approximately 1.0, are consistent with the slopes found at higher energies (2-10 keV) although steeper than those observed for Seyfert 1 galaxies (also 2-10 keV) where the reflection model gives a good fit to the data; (4) the correlation of FeII emission line strength with X-ray energy index is confirmed for radio-quiet quasars using a subset of 18 quasars. The radio-loud quasars show no evidence for a correlation. This relation suggests a connection between the ionizing continuum and the line emission from the broad emission line region (BELR) of radio-quiet quasars, but in the opposite sense to that predicted by current photoionization models; and (5) the correlations of X-ray slope with radio core dominance and FeII equivalent width within the radio-loud and radio-quiet sub-classes respectively imply that the observed wide range of X-ray spectral slopes is real rather than due to the large measuring uncertainties for individual objects.

  2. Quasar X-ray spectra revisited

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shastri, P.; Wilkes, B. J.; Elvis, M.; Mcdowell, J.

    1993-01-01

    A sample of 45 quasars observed by the IPC on the Einstein satellite is used to reexamine the relationship of the soft X-ray energy index with radio properties and the optical Fe II emission. The tendency for radio-loud quasars to have systematically flatter X-ray energy indices than radio-quiet quasars is confirmed with the soft X-ray excess having negligible effect. There is a tendency for the flatness of the X-ray slope to correlate with radio core dominance for radio-loud quasars, suggesting that a component of the X-ray emission is relativistically beamed. For the radio-quiet quasars, the soft X-ray energy indices with a mean of about 1.0 are consistent with the indices found at higher energies, although steeper than those observed for Seyfert 1 galaxies where the reflection model gives a good fit to the data. The correlation of Fe II emission line strength with X-ray energy index is confirmed for radio-quiet quasars using a subset of 18 objects. The radio-loud quasars show no evidence for a correlation. This relation suggests a connection between the ionizing continuum and line emission from the broad emission-line region (BELR) of radio-quiet quasars, but in the opposite sense to that predicted by current photoionization models. The correlations of X-ray slope with radio core dominance and Fe II equivalent width within the radio-loud and radio-quiet subclasses, respectively, imply that the observed wide range of X-ray energy indices is real rather than due to the large measuring uncertainties for individual objects.

  3. Quasar clustering in a galaxy and quasar formation model based on ultra high-resolution N-body simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oogi, Taira; Enoki, Motohiro; Ishiyama, Tomoaki; Kobayashi, Masakazu A. R.; Makiya, Ryu; Nagashima, Masahiro

    2016-02-01

    We investigate clustering properties of quasars using a new version of our semi-analytic model of galaxy and quasar formation with state-of-the-art cosmological N-body simulations. In this study, we assume that a major merger of galaxies triggers cold gas accretion on to a supermassive black hole and quasar activity. Our model can reproduce the downsizing trend of the evolution of quasars. We find that the median mass of quasar host dark matter haloes increases with cosmic time by an order of magnitude from z = 4 (a few 1011 M⊙) to z = 1 (a few 1012 M⊙), and depends only weakly on the quasar luminosity. Deriving the quasar bias through the quasar-galaxy cross-correlation function in the model, we find that the quasar bias does not depend on the quasar luminosity, similar to observed trends. This result reflects the fact that quasars with a fixed luminosity have various Eddington ratios and thus have various host halo masses that primarily determine the quasar bias. We also show that the quasar bias increases with redshift, which is in qualitative agreement with observations. Our bias value is lower than the observed values at high redshifts, implying that we need some mechanisms that make quasars inactive in low-mass haloes and/or that make them more active in high-mass haloes.

  4. The Gaia Initial Quasar Catalog

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrei, H.; Antón, S.; Taris, F.; Bourda, G.; Souchay, J.; Bouquillon, J.; Barache, C.; Pereira Osorio, J. J.; Charlot, P.; Vieira Martins, R.; Lambert, S.; Camargo, J. I.; da Silva Neto, D. N.; Assan, M.; le Campion, J.-F.

    2014-12-01

    We present the latest, updated, and fully corrected version of the Gaia Initial QSO Catalog (GIQC), produced by the CU3 GWP-S-335-13000. It contains 1 248 372 objects, of which 191 802 are considered and marked as Defining ones, because of their observational history and existence of spectroscopic redshift. Also objects with strong, calibrator-like radio emission are included in this category. The Defining objects represent a clean sample of quasars. The remaining objects aim to bring completeness to the GIQC at the time of its compilation. For the whole GIQC the average density is 30.3 sources per sq.deg., practically all sources have an indication of magnitude and of morphological indexes, and 90% of the sources have an indication of redshift and of variability indexes.

  5. Balmer line shifts in quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sulentic, J. W.; Marziani, P.; Del Olmo, A.; Zamfir, S.

    2016-02-01

    We offer a broad review of Balmer line phenomenology in type 1 active galactic nuclei, briefly summarising luminosity and radio loudness effects, and discussing interpretation in terms of nebular physics along the 4D eigenvector 1 sequence of quasars. We stress that relatively rare, peculiar Balmer line profiles (i.e., with large shifts with respect to the rest frame or double and multiple peaked) that start attracted attentions since the 1970s are still passable of multiple dynamical interpretation. More mainstream objects are still not fully understood as well, since competing dynamical models and geometries are possible. Further progress may come from inter-line comparison across the 4D Eigenvector 1 sequence.

  6. A multicolour search for quasars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitchell, Paul Simon

    The Edinburgh Multicolour Survey is a data set of approximately 1.3 million images covering a contiguous area of 0.1 steradians at high Galactic latitudes. These data are derived from 130 UK Schmidt photographic plates taken in passbands U, B, V, R, and I in two strips at declinations -5 degrees and 0 degrees, comprising the standard United Kingdom Schmidt Telescope (UKST) fields 789-794 and 861-867 respectively. The aim of the survey is to produce a dataset containing accurate UBVRI information and morphological classification for every image detected in any waveband in the measured area, enabling the discrimination of intrinsically rare populations of objects with non-stellar colours from the foreground of normal Galactic stars. The development of the dataset from its initiation as raw plate material through to the production of the final five-band catalogues, and the selection of quasars over a wide range in redshift are discussed.

  7. Are Quasar Jets Matter Or Poynting Flux Dominated?