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Title: DISCLOSING THE RADIO LOUDNESS DISTRIBUTION DICHOTOMY IN QUASARS: AN UNBIASED MONTE CARLO APPROACH APPLIED TO THE SDSS-FIRST QUASAR SAMPLE

Abstract

We investigate the dichotomy in the radio loudness distribution of quasars by modeling their radio emission and various selection effects using a Monte Carlo approach. The existence of two physically distinct quasar populations, the radio-loud and radio-quiet quasars, is controversial and over the last decade a bimodal distribution of radio loudness of quasars has been both affirmed and disputed. We model the quasar radio luminosity distribution with simple unimodal and bimodal distribution functions. The resulting simulated samples are compared to a fiducial sample of 8300 quasars drawn from the SDSS DR7 Quasar Catalog and combined with radio observations from the FIRST survey. Our results indicate that the SDSS-FIRST sample is best described by a radio loudness distribution which consists of two components, with (12 {+-} 1)% of sources in the radio-loud component. On the other hand, the evidence for a local minimum in the loudness distribution (bimodality) is not strong and we find that previous claims for its existence were probably affected by the incompleteness of the FIRST survey close to its faint limit. We also investigate the redshift and luminosity dependence of the radio loudness distribution and find tentative evidence that at high redshift radio-loud quasars were rarer, onmore » average louder, and exhibited a smaller range in radio loudness. In agreement with other recent work, we conclude that the SDSS-FIRST sample strongly suggests that the radio loudness distribution of quasars is not a universal function, and that more complex models than presented here are needed to fully explain available observations.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [4];  [5];  [6]
  1. Department of Astronomy, California Institute of Technology, 1200 East California Boulevard, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States)
  2. Argelander-Institut fuer Astronomie, Auf dem Hugel 71, D-53121 Bonn (Germany)
  3. Department of Astronomy, University of Washington, Box 351580, Seattle, WA 98195 (United States)
  4. INAF-Osservatorio Astronomico di Bologna, via Ranzani 1, I-40127 Bologna (Italy)
  5. Max-Planck-Institut fuer Astronomie, Koenigstuhl 17, D-69117 Heidelberg (Germany)
  6. Department of Physics, Broida Hall, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22086473
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Astrophysical Journal
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 759; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); Journal ID: ISSN 0004-637X
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; ASTROPHYSICS; CATALOGS; COMPUTERIZED SIMULATION; DISTRIBUTION FUNCTIONS; GALACTIC EVOLUTION; GALAXIES; LUMINOSITY; MONTE CARLO METHOD; PHOTON EMISSION; QUASARS; RADIOASTRONOMY; RED SHIFT

Citation Formats

Balokovic, M., Smolcic, V., Ivezic, Z., Zamorani, G., Schinnerer, E., and Kelly, B. C. DISCLOSING THE RADIO LOUDNESS DISTRIBUTION DICHOTOMY IN QUASARS: AN UNBIASED MONTE CARLO APPROACH APPLIED TO THE SDSS-FIRST QUASAR SAMPLE. United States: N. p., 2012. Web. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/759/1/30.
Balokovic, M., Smolcic, V., Ivezic, Z., Zamorani, G., Schinnerer, E., & Kelly, B. C. DISCLOSING THE RADIO LOUDNESS DISTRIBUTION DICHOTOMY IN QUASARS: AN UNBIASED MONTE CARLO APPROACH APPLIED TO THE SDSS-FIRST QUASAR SAMPLE. United States. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/759/1/30.
Balokovic, M., Smolcic, V., Ivezic, Z., Zamorani, G., Schinnerer, E., and Kelly, B. C. Thu . "DISCLOSING THE RADIO LOUDNESS DISTRIBUTION DICHOTOMY IN QUASARS: AN UNBIASED MONTE CARLO APPROACH APPLIED TO THE SDSS-FIRST QUASAR SAMPLE". United States. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/759/1/30.
@article{osti_22086473,
title = {DISCLOSING THE RADIO LOUDNESS DISTRIBUTION DICHOTOMY IN QUASARS: AN UNBIASED MONTE CARLO APPROACH APPLIED TO THE SDSS-FIRST QUASAR SAMPLE},
author = {Balokovic, M. and Smolcic, V. and Ivezic, Z. and Zamorani, G. and Schinnerer, E. and Kelly, B. C.},
abstractNote = {We investigate the dichotomy in the radio loudness distribution of quasars by modeling their radio emission and various selection effects using a Monte Carlo approach. The existence of two physically distinct quasar populations, the radio-loud and radio-quiet quasars, is controversial and over the last decade a bimodal distribution of radio loudness of quasars has been both affirmed and disputed. We model the quasar radio luminosity distribution with simple unimodal and bimodal distribution functions. The resulting simulated samples are compared to a fiducial sample of 8300 quasars drawn from the SDSS DR7 Quasar Catalog and combined with radio observations from the FIRST survey. Our results indicate that the SDSS-FIRST sample is best described by a radio loudness distribution which consists of two components, with (12 {+-} 1)% of sources in the radio-loud component. On the other hand, the evidence for a local minimum in the loudness distribution (bimodality) is not strong and we find that previous claims for its existence were probably affected by the incompleteness of the FIRST survey close to its faint limit. We also investigate the redshift and luminosity dependence of the radio loudness distribution and find tentative evidence that at high redshift radio-loud quasars were rarer, on average louder, and exhibited a smaller range in radio loudness. In agreement with other recent work, we conclude that the SDSS-FIRST sample strongly suggests that the radio loudness distribution of quasars is not a universal function, and that more complex models than presented here are needed to fully explain available observations.},
doi = {10.1088/0004-637X/759/1/30},
journal = {Astrophysical Journal},
issn = {0004-637X},
number = 1,
volume = 759,
place = {United States},
year = {2012},
month = {11}
}