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The Final SDSS High-redshift Quasar Sample of 52 Quasars at z>5.7

Author(s): Jiang, Linhua; McGreer, Ian D; Fan, Xiaohui; Strauss, Michael A; Ba nados, Eduardo; et al

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Abstract: We present the discovery of nine quasars at ~z 6 identified in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS)imaging data. This completes our survey of ~z 6 quasars in the SDSS footprint. Our final sample consists of 52 quasars at < z5.7 6.4, including 29 quasars with z 20AB mag selected from 11,240 deg2 of the SDSS single-epoch imaging survey (the main survey), 10 quasars with   z20 20.5AB selected from 4223 deg2 of the SDSS overlap regions (regions with two or more imaging scans), and 13 quasars down to »z 22AB mag from the 277 deg2 in Stripe 82. They span a wide luminosity range of   - -M29.0 24.51450 . This well-defined sample is used to derive the quasar luminosity function (QLF)at ~z 6. After combining our SDSS sample with two faint ( -M 231450 mag)quasars from the literature, we obtain the parameters for a double power-law fit to the QLF. The bright-end slope βof the QLF is well constrained to be b = -  2.8 0.2. Due to the small number of low- luminosity quasars, the faint-end slope αand the characteristic magnitude *M1450 are less well constrained, with a = - -+1.90 0.440.58 and *= - -+M 25.2 3.81.2 mag. The spatial density of luminous quasars, parametrized as r r< - = = -M z z 26, 6 10k z 1450 6( ) ( ) ( ) , drops rapidly from ~z 5 to 6, with = -  k 0.72 0.11. Based on our fitted QLF and assuming an intergalactic medium (IGM) clumping factor of C=3, we find that the observed quasar population cannot provide enough photons to ionize the ~z 6 IGM at ∼90% confidence. Quasars may still provide a significant fraction of the required photons, although much larger samples of faint quasars are needed for more stringent constraints on the quasar contribution to reionization.
Publication Date: 19-Dec-2016
Electronic Publication Date: 20-Dec-2016
Citation: Jiang, Linhua, McGreer, Ian D, Fan, Xiaohui, Strauss, Michael A, Ba nados, Eduardo, Becker, Robert H, Bian, Fuyan, Farnsworth, Kara, Shen, Yue, Wang, Feige, Wang, Ran, Wang, Shu, White, Richard L, Wu, Jin, Wu, Xue-Bing, Yang, Jinyi, Yang, Qian. (2016). The Final SDSS High-redshift Quasar Sample of 52 Quasars at z>5.7. \apj, 833 (222 - 222. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/833/2/222
DOI: doi:10.3847/1538-4357/833/2/222
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Type of Material: Journal Article
Journal/Proceeding Title: Astrophysical Journal
Version: Final published version. Article is made available in OAR by the publisher's permission or policy.

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