Lick Slit Spectra of Thirty-Eight Objective Prism QSO Candidates and Low Metallicity Halo Stars

The Astronomical Journal (Impact Factor: 4.05). 09/1993; DOI: 10.1086/116652
Source: NTRS

ABSTRACT Lick Observatory slit spectra of 38 objects which were claimed to have pronounced UV excess and emission lines are presented. Eleven QSOs, four galaxies at z of about 0.1, 22 stars, and one unidentified object with a low S/N spectrum were found. Of 11 objects which Zhan and Chen (1987, 1989) suggested were QSO with z(prism) not greater than 2.8; eight are QSOs. Six of the QSOs show absorption systems, including Q0000+027A with a relatively strong associated C IV absorption system, and Q0008+008 with a damped Ly-alpha system with an H I column density of 10 exp 21/sq cm. The equivalent widths of the Ca II K line, the G band, and the Balmer lines in 10 stars with the best spectra are measured, and metallicities are derived. Seven of them are in the range -2.5 to -1.7, while the others are less metal-poor.

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    ABSTRACT: We present optical spectra of the most luminous known quasi stellar object (QSO) HS 1946+7658 (z(sub em) = 3.051). Our spectra have both full wavelength coverage, 3240-10570 A, and in selected regions, either high signal-to-noise ratio, SNR approximately equals 40-100, or unusually high approximately 10 km/sec resolution, and in parts of the Ly alpha forest and to the red of Ly alpha emission they are among the best published. We find 113 Ly alpha systems and six metal-line systems, three of which are new. The metal systems at z(sub abs) = 2.844 and 3.050 have complex velocity structure with four and three prominent components, respectively. We find that the system at z(sub abs) = 2.844 is a damped Ly alpha absorption (DLA) system, with a neutral hydrogen column density of log N(H I) = 20.2 +/- 0.4, and it is the cause of the Lyman limit break at lambda approximately equals 3520 A. We believe that most of the H I column density in this system is in z(sub abs) = 2.8443 component which shows the strongest low-ionization absorption lines. The metal abundance in the gas phase of the system is (M/H) approximately equals -2.6 +/- 0.3, with a best estimate of (M/H) = -2.8, with ionizaion parameter log gamma = -2.75, from a photoionization model. The ratios of the logarithmic abundances of C, O, Al, and Si are all within a factor of 2 of solar, which is important for two reasons. First, we believe that the gas abundances which we measure are close to the total abundances, because the ratio of aluminum to other elements is near cosmic, and Al is a refractory element which depletes very readily like chromium, in the interstellar medium. Second, we do not see the enhancement of O with respect to C of (O/C) approximately equals 0.5-0.9 reported in three partial Lyman limit systems by Reimers et al. (1992) and Vogel & Reimers (1993); we measure (O/C) = -0.06 for observed ions and (O/C) approximately equals 0.2 after ionization corrections, which is consistent with solar abundances. We see C II*(lambda 1335) offset by 15 km/sec with respect to C II(lambda 1334), presumably because the gas density varies from 2 to 8 cm(exp -3) with changing velocity in the DLA system. These densities imply that the damped component is 6-25 pc thick, which is reasonable for a single cloud in a cold spiral disk. They also imply that the cloud is relatively highly ionized with more C III than C II, more O III than O I, and log N(H I) = 20.72, which is 3 times the H I column. The system at z(abs) = 1.7382 is also believed to be damped with N(H I) approximately equals 10(exp 21) cm(exp -2), because we see Cr II, but its Ly alpha line will never be seen because it is below the Lyman limit of the other DLA system. We see a 2.6 sigma lack of Ly alpha forest lines well away from the QSO redshift, which may be a chance fluctuation. We also see a correlation between column density N(H I) and Doppler parameter b for 96 unsaturated Ly Alpha forest absorption lines, and although this correlation persists in the 36 Ly alpha lines which lie in regions where the SNR approximately equals 8-16, we agree with Rauch et al. (1993) that it is probably a bogus effect of low supernova remnant (SNR). The same applies to lines with very low b values: in regions where SNR less than or equal to 8 we see many Ly alpha lines which appear to have 10 less than or equal to b less than or equal to 20, but when 8 less than or equal to SNR less than or equal to 16 we see only one line with b less than or equal to 15 km/sec, and two others which we believe have b less than or equal to 20, with values of 20 and 16 km/sec. Traditional Ly alpha line samples which include all lines which have W/sigma(W) greater than or equal to 4 are not adequate to explore the distribution of the properties of individual clouds, because we need much higher (W/sigma(W)) and SNR to avoid the strong biases.
    The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series 10/1994; DOI:10.1086/192071 · 14.14 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We investigate the possible occurrence of extra spatial dimensions (D = 3+epsilon) in the early universe. A detailed calculation is presented which shows that the crucial signal is the apparent inequality of the cosmological Z-term between matching Lyman alpha (Ly{alpha}) and Lyman beta (Ly{beta}) spectral lines, both emission and absorption, when using the present epoch (laboratory) wavelengths. We present preliminary upper limits to the value of epsilon, to be improved by direct, more careful analysis of the spectra. We take catalogued quasar Ly{alpha} forest data and perform Student's t-test to determine whether we should reject the null hypothesis (no fractal dimensions). Finally, a chi^{2} analysis is done for fitting epsilon in the early universe. The statistical tests and experimental data are all consistent with epsilon = 0 for Z < 3.3, but the experimental data support non-zero epsilon values for Z > 4. However, it should be emphasized that the non-zero values of epsilon found for Z > 4 may be due to undiscovered systematic errors in the original data. Comment: 9 pages, 1 figure. To be published in Physics Letters B
    Physics Letters B 12/1999; 474(1-2). DOI:10.1016/S0370-2693(00)00004-6 · 6.02 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present moderate resolution data for 39 quasi-stellar objects (QSOs) at z � 2 obtained at the Multiple Mirror Telescope. These data are combined with spectra of comparable resolution of 60 QSOs with redshifts greater than 1.7 found in the literature to investigate the distribution of Lyforest lines in redshift and equivalent width. We find a value for , the parameter describing the number distribution of Lyforest lines in redshift, of 1.88±0.22 for lines stronger than a rest equivalent width of 0.32 ûA, in good agreement with some previous studies. The Kolmogorov-Smirnov test was applied to the data and it is found that this single power law is a good fit over the relevant redshift ranges. Simulations of the Lymanforest were performed to determine the completeness of the line lists and to test how well the analysis recovers the underlying line statistics, given this level of completeness.
    The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series 09/2000; 130(1). DOI:10.1086/317339 · 14.14 Impact Factor

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