Clustering of high-redshift (z ≥ 2.9) quasars from the sloan digital sky survey

Yue Shen, Michael A. Strauss, Masamune Oguri, Joseph F. Hennawi, Fan Xiaohui, Gordon T. Richards, Patrick B. Hall, James E. Gunn, Donald P. Schneider, Alexander S. Szalay, Anirudda R. Thakar, Daniel E. Vanden Berk, Scott F. Anderson, Neta A. Bahcall, Andrew J. Connolly, Gillian R. Knapp

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Abstract

We study the two-point correlation function of a uniformly selected sample of 4426 luminous optical quasars with redshift 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 5.4 selected over 4041 deg2 from the Fifth Data Release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. We fit a power-law to the projected correlation function w p(rp) to marginalize over redshift-space distortions and redshift errors. For a real-space correlation function of the form ξ(r) = (r/r0), the fitted parameters in comoving coordinates are r0 = 15.2 ± 2.7 h-1 Mpc and γ = 2.0 ± 0.3, over a scale range 4 h-1 Mpc ≤ rp ≤ 150 h-1 Mpc. Thus high-redshift quasars are appreciably more strongly clustered than their z ≈ 1.5 counterparts, which have a comoving clustering length r0 ≈ 6.5 h-1 Mpc. Dividing our sample into two redshift bins, 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 3.5 and z ≥ 3.5, and assuming a power-law index γ = 2.0, we find a correlation length of r0 = 16.9 ± 1.7 h-1 Mpc for the former and r0 = 24.3 ± 2.4 h-1 Mpc for the latter. Strong clustering at high redshift indicates that quasars are found in very massive, and therefore highly biased, halos. Following Martini & Weinberg, we relate the clustering strength and quasar number density to the quasar lifetimes and duty cycle. Using the Sheth & Tonnen halo mass function, the quasar lifetime is estimated to lie in the range ∼4-50Myr for quasars with 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 3.5, and ∼30-600 Myr for quasars with z ≥ 3.5. The corresponding duty cycles are ∼0.004-0.05 for the lower redshift bin and ∼0.03-0.6 for the higher redshift bin. The minimum mass of halos in which these quasars reside is (2-3) × 1012 h-1 M for quasars with 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 3.5 and (4-6) × 1012 h-1 M for quasars with z ≥ 3.5; the effective bias factor b eff increases with redshift, e.g., beff ∼ 8 at z = 3.0 and beff ∼ 16 at z = 4.5.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2222-2241
Number of pages20
JournalAstronomical Journal
Volume133
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2007

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quasars
power law
halos
life (durability)
cycles

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Shen, Y., Strauss, M. A., Oguri, M., Hennawi, J. F., Xiaohui, F., Richards, G. T., ... Knapp, G. R. (2007). Clustering of high-redshift (z ≥ 2.9) quasars from the sloan digital sky survey. Astronomical Journal, 133(5), 2222-2241. https://doi.org/10.1086/513517
Shen, Yue ; Strauss, Michael A. ; Oguri, Masamune ; Hennawi, Joseph F. ; Xiaohui, Fan ; Richards, Gordon T. ; Hall, Patrick B. ; Gunn, James E. ; Schneider, Donald P. ; Szalay, Alexander S. ; Thakar, Anirudda R. ; Vanden Berk, Daniel E. ; Anderson, Scott F. ; Bahcall, Neta A. ; Connolly, Andrew J. ; Knapp, Gillian R. / Clustering of high-redshift (z ≥ 2.9) quasars from the sloan digital sky survey. In: Astronomical Journal. 2007 ; Vol. 133, No. 5. pp. 2222-2241.
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author = "Yue Shen and Strauss, {Michael A.} and Masamune Oguri and Hennawi, {Joseph F.} and Fan Xiaohui and Richards, {Gordon T.} and Hall, {Patrick B.} and Gunn, {James E.} and Schneider, {Donald P.} and Szalay, {Alexander S.} and Thakar, {Anirudda R.} and {Vanden Berk}, {Daniel E.} and Anderson, {Scott F.} and Bahcall, {Neta A.} and Connolly, {Andrew J.} and Knapp, {Gillian R.}",
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Shen, Y, Strauss, MA, Oguri, M, Hennawi, JF, Xiaohui, F, Richards, GT, Hall, PB, Gunn, JE, Schneider, DP, Szalay, AS, Thakar, AR, Vanden Berk, DE, Anderson, SF, Bahcall, NA, Connolly, AJ & Knapp, GR 2007, 'Clustering of high-redshift (z ≥ 2.9) quasars from the sloan digital sky survey', Astronomical Journal, vol. 133, no. 5, pp. 2222-2241. https://doi.org/10.1086/513517

Clustering of high-redshift (z ≥ 2.9) quasars from the sloan digital sky survey. / Shen, Yue; Strauss, Michael A.; Oguri, Masamune; Hennawi, Joseph F.; Xiaohui, Fan; Richards, Gordon T.; Hall, Patrick B.; Gunn, James E.; Schneider, Donald P.; Szalay, Alexander S.; Thakar, Anirudda R.; Vanden Berk, Daniel E.; Anderson, Scott F.; Bahcall, Neta A.; Connolly, Andrew J.; Knapp, Gillian R.

In: Astronomical Journal, Vol. 133, No. 5, 01.05.2007, p. 2222-2241.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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T1 - Clustering of high-redshift (z ≥ 2.9) quasars from the sloan digital sky survey

AU - Shen, Yue

AU - Strauss, Michael A.

AU - Oguri, Masamune

AU - Hennawi, Joseph F.

AU - Xiaohui, Fan

AU - Richards, Gordon T.

AU - Hall, Patrick B.

AU - Gunn, James E.

AU - Schneider, Donald P.

AU - Szalay, Alexander S.

AU - Thakar, Anirudda R.

AU - Vanden Berk, Daniel E.

AU - Anderson, Scott F.

AU - Bahcall, Neta A.

AU - Connolly, Andrew J.

AU - Knapp, Gillian R.

PY - 2007/5/1

Y1 - 2007/5/1

N2 - We study the two-point correlation function of a uniformly selected sample of 4426 luminous optical quasars with redshift 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 5.4 selected over 4041 deg2 from the Fifth Data Release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. We fit a power-law to the projected correlation function w p(rp) to marginalize over redshift-space distortions and redshift errors. For a real-space correlation function of the form ξ(r) = (r/r0)-γ, the fitted parameters in comoving coordinates are r0 = 15.2 ± 2.7 h-1 Mpc and γ = 2.0 ± 0.3, over a scale range 4 h-1 Mpc ≤ rp ≤ 150 h-1 Mpc. Thus high-redshift quasars are appreciably more strongly clustered than their z ≈ 1.5 counterparts, which have a comoving clustering length r0 ≈ 6.5 h-1 Mpc. Dividing our sample into two redshift bins, 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 3.5 and z ≥ 3.5, and assuming a power-law index γ = 2.0, we find a correlation length of r0 = 16.9 ± 1.7 h-1 Mpc for the former and r0 = 24.3 ± 2.4 h-1 Mpc for the latter. Strong clustering at high redshift indicates that quasars are found in very massive, and therefore highly biased, halos. Following Martini & Weinberg, we relate the clustering strength and quasar number density to the quasar lifetimes and duty cycle. Using the Sheth & Tonnen halo mass function, the quasar lifetime is estimated to lie in the range ∼4-50Myr for quasars with 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 3.5, and ∼30-600 Myr for quasars with z ≥ 3.5. The corresponding duty cycles are ∼0.004-0.05 for the lower redshift bin and ∼0.03-0.6 for the higher redshift bin. The minimum mass of halos in which these quasars reside is (2-3) × 1012 h-1 M⊙ for quasars with 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 3.5 and (4-6) × 1012 h-1 M ⊙ for quasars with z ≥ 3.5; the effective bias factor b eff increases with redshift, e.g., beff ∼ 8 at z = 3.0 and beff ∼ 16 at z = 4.5.

AB - We study the two-point correlation function of a uniformly selected sample of 4426 luminous optical quasars with redshift 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 5.4 selected over 4041 deg2 from the Fifth Data Release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. We fit a power-law to the projected correlation function w p(rp) to marginalize over redshift-space distortions and redshift errors. For a real-space correlation function of the form ξ(r) = (r/r0)-γ, the fitted parameters in comoving coordinates are r0 = 15.2 ± 2.7 h-1 Mpc and γ = 2.0 ± 0.3, over a scale range 4 h-1 Mpc ≤ rp ≤ 150 h-1 Mpc. Thus high-redshift quasars are appreciably more strongly clustered than their z ≈ 1.5 counterparts, which have a comoving clustering length r0 ≈ 6.5 h-1 Mpc. Dividing our sample into two redshift bins, 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 3.5 and z ≥ 3.5, and assuming a power-law index γ = 2.0, we find a correlation length of r0 = 16.9 ± 1.7 h-1 Mpc for the former and r0 = 24.3 ± 2.4 h-1 Mpc for the latter. Strong clustering at high redshift indicates that quasars are found in very massive, and therefore highly biased, halos. Following Martini & Weinberg, we relate the clustering strength and quasar number density to the quasar lifetimes and duty cycle. Using the Sheth & Tonnen halo mass function, the quasar lifetime is estimated to lie in the range ∼4-50Myr for quasars with 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 3.5, and ∼30-600 Myr for quasars with z ≥ 3.5. The corresponding duty cycles are ∼0.004-0.05 for the lower redshift bin and ∼0.03-0.6 for the higher redshift bin. The minimum mass of halos in which these quasars reside is (2-3) × 1012 h-1 M⊙ for quasars with 2.9 ≤ z ≤ 3.5 and (4-6) × 1012 h-1 M ⊙ for quasars with z ≥ 3.5; the effective bias factor b eff increases with redshift, e.g., beff ∼ 8 at z = 3.0 and beff ∼ 16 at z = 4.5.

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Shen Y, Strauss MA, Oguri M, Hennawi JF, Xiaohui F, Richards GT et al. Clustering of high-redshift (z ≥ 2.9) quasars from the sloan digital sky survey. Astronomical Journal. 2007 May 1;133(5):2222-2241. https://doi.org/10.1086/513517