HST/COS Observations of the Ly alpha Forest toward the BL Lac Object 1ES1553+113

Source: arXiv


We present new far-ultraviolet spectra from the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (HST/COS) of the BL Lac object 1ES1553+113 covering the wavelength range 1135-1795 A. The data show a smooth continuum with a wealth of narrow absorption features arising in the ISM and IGM. These features include 41 Lya absorbers at 0<z<0.43, fourteen of which are detected in multiple Lyman lines and six in one or more metal lines. We analyze a metal-rich triplet of Lya absorbers at z=0.188 in which OVI, NV, and CIII absorption is detected. Silicon ions (SiIII/IV) are not detected to fairly strong upper limits, and we use the measured SiIII/CIII upper limit to derive an abundance limit [C/Si]>0.6 for the strongest component of the absorber complex. Galaxy redshift surveys show a number of massive galaxies at approximately the same redshift as this absorption complex, suggesting that it arises in a large-scale galaxy filament. As one of the brightest extragalactic X-ray and gamma-ray sources, 1ES1553+113 is of great interest to the high-energy astrophysics community. With no intrinsic emission or absorption features, 1ES1553+113 has no direct redshift determination. We use intervening Lya absorbers to place a direct limit on the redshift: z_em>0.395 based on a confirmed Lya+OVI absorber and z_em>0.433 based on a single-line detection of Lya. COS/FUV data are only sensitive to Lya absorbers at z<0.47, but we present statistical arguments that z_em<0.58 based on the non-detection of any Lyb absorbers at z>0.4. Comment: ApJ submitted: 11 pages, 7 figures

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    ABSTRACT: Our goal is to research the upper limits on the extragalactic background light (EBL). The upper limits on the extragalactic background light (EBL), using the Fermi and very high energy (VHE) spectra recently observed in TeV blazars, are presented. We use an assumption that the VHE intrinsic photon index cannot be harder than the Fermi index measured by the Fermi-LAT. Totally, these upper limits on the EBL are compatible with ones given by most of EBL models. However, the models of high EBL density are denied by TeV blazars.
    Preview · Article · Jun 2010 · Astronomy and Astrophysics