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Title: Probing the Metal Enrichment of the Intergalactic Medium at z = 5–6 Using the Hubble Space Telescope

Abstract

We test the galactic outflow model by probing associated galaxies of four strong intergalactic C iv absorbers at z = 5–6 using the Hubble Space Telescope ( HST ) Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) ramp narrowband filters. The four strong C iv absorbers reside at z = 5.74, 5.52, 4.95, and 4.87, with column densities ranging from N {sub Civ} = 10{sup 13.8} to 10{sup 14.8} cm{sup −2}. At z = 5.74, we detect an i-dropout Ly α emitter (LAE) candidate with a projected impact parameter of 42 physical kpc from the C iv absorber. This LAE candidate has a Ly α -based star formation rate (SFR{sub Lyα} ) of 2 M {sub ⊙} yr{sup −1} and a UV-based SFR of 4 M {sub ⊙} yr{sup −1}. Although we cannot completely rule out that this i-dropout emitter may be an [O ii] interloper, its measured properties are consistent with the C iv powered galaxy at z = 5.74. For C iv absorbers at z = 4.95 and z = 4.87, although we detect two LAE candidates with impact parameters of 160 and 200 kpc, such distances are larger than that predicted from the simulations. Therefore, we treat them as nondetections.more » For the system at z = 5.52, we do not detect LAE candidates, placing a 3 σ upper limit of SFR{sub Lyα} ≈ 1.5 M {sub ⊙} yr{sup −1}. In summary, in these four cases, we only detect one plausible C iv source at z = 5.74. Combining the modest SFR of the one detection and the three nondetections, our HST observations strongly support that smaller galaxies (SFR{sub Lyα} ≲ 2 M {sub ⊙} yr{sup −1}) are main sources of intergalactic C iv absorbers, and such small galaxies play a major role in the metal enrichment of the intergalactic medium at z ≳ 5.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [4];  [5]
  1. UCO/Lick Observatory, University of California, 1156 High Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95064 (United States)
  2. Steward Observatory, University of Arizona, 933 North Cherry Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85721 (United States)
  3. Institute for Astronomy, University of Edinburgh, Royal Observatory, Edinburgh EH9 3HJ (United Kingdom)
  4. New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM 88003 (United States)
  5. CASA, Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences, University of Colorado, 389 UCB, Boulder, CO 80309 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22654355
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal Letters; Journal Volume: 849; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; DENSITY; DETECTION; ENRICHMENT; FILTERS; GALAXIES; IMPACT PARAMETER; INTERGALACTIC SPACE; LYMAN LINES; METALS; RED SHIFT; SIMULATION; SPACE; STARS; TELESCOPES

Citation Formats

Cai, Zheng, Fan, Xiaohui, Dave, Romeel, Finlator, Kristian, and Oppenheimer, Ben, E-mail: zcai@ucolick.org. Probing the Metal Enrichment of the Intergalactic Medium at z = 5–6 Using the Hubble Space Telescope. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/AA8FC6.
Cai, Zheng, Fan, Xiaohui, Dave, Romeel, Finlator, Kristian, & Oppenheimer, Ben, E-mail: zcai@ucolick.org. Probing the Metal Enrichment of the Intergalactic Medium at z = 5–6 Using the Hubble Space Telescope. United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/AA8FC6.
Cai, Zheng, Fan, Xiaohui, Dave, Romeel, Finlator, Kristian, and Oppenheimer, Ben, E-mail: zcai@ucolick.org. Wed . "Probing the Metal Enrichment of the Intergalactic Medium at z = 5–6 Using the Hubble Space Telescope". United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/AA8FC6.
@article{osti_22654355,
title = {Probing the Metal Enrichment of the Intergalactic Medium at z = 5–6 Using the Hubble Space Telescope},
author = {Cai, Zheng and Fan, Xiaohui and Dave, Romeel and Finlator, Kristian and Oppenheimer, Ben, E-mail: zcai@ucolick.org},
abstractNote = {We test the galactic outflow model by probing associated galaxies of four strong intergalactic C iv absorbers at z = 5–6 using the Hubble Space Telescope ( HST ) Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) ramp narrowband filters. The four strong C iv absorbers reside at z = 5.74, 5.52, 4.95, and 4.87, with column densities ranging from N {sub Civ} = 10{sup 13.8} to 10{sup 14.8} cm{sup −2}. At z = 5.74, we detect an i-dropout Ly α emitter (LAE) candidate with a projected impact parameter of 42 physical kpc from the C iv absorber. This LAE candidate has a Ly α -based star formation rate (SFR{sub Lyα} ) of 2 M {sub ⊙} yr{sup −1} and a UV-based SFR of 4 M {sub ⊙} yr{sup −1}. Although we cannot completely rule out that this i-dropout emitter may be an [O ii] interloper, its measured properties are consistent with the C iv powered galaxy at z = 5.74. For C iv absorbers at z = 4.95 and z = 4.87, although we detect two LAE candidates with impact parameters of 160 and 200 kpc, such distances are larger than that predicted from the simulations. Therefore, we treat them as nondetections. For the system at z = 5.52, we do not detect LAE candidates, placing a 3 σ upper limit of SFR{sub Lyα} ≈ 1.5 M {sub ⊙} yr{sup −1}. In summary, in these four cases, we only detect one plausible C iv source at z = 5.74. Combining the modest SFR of the one detection and the three nondetections, our HST observations strongly support that smaller galaxies (SFR{sub Lyα} ≲ 2 M {sub ⊙} yr{sup −1}) are main sources of intergalactic C iv absorbers, and such small galaxies play a major role in the metal enrichment of the intergalactic medium at z ≳ 5.},
doi = {10.3847/2041-8213/AA8FC6},
journal = {Astrophysical Journal Letters},
number = 1,
volume = 849,
place = {United States},
year = {Wed Nov 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Wed Nov 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}