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Title: First Results from the Lyman Alpha Galaxies in the Epoch of Reionization (LAGER) Survey: Cosmological Reionization at z ∼ 7

Abstract

We present the first results from the ongoing Lyman Alpha Galaxies in the Epoch of Reionization (LAGER) project, which is the largest narrowband survey for z ∼ 7 galaxies to date. Using a specially built narrowband filter NB964 for the superb large-area Dark Energy Camera (DECam) on the NOAO/CTIO 4 m Blanco telescope, LAGER has collected 34 hr NB964 narrowband imaging data in the 3 deg{sup 2} COSMOS field. We have identified 23 Ly α Emitter candidates at z = 6.9 in the central 2-deg{sup 2} region, where DECam and public COSMOS multi-band images exist. The resulting luminosity function (LF) can be described as a Schechter function modified by a significant excess at the bright end (four galaxies with L {sub Lyα∼} 10{sup 43.4±0.2} erg s{sup −1}). The number density at L {sub Ly} {sub α} ∼ 10{sup 43.4±0.2} erg s{sup −1} is little changed from z = 6.6, while at fainter L {sub Lyα} it is substantially reduced. Overall, we see a fourfold reduction in Ly α luminosity density from z = 5.7 to z = 6.9. Combined with a more modest evolution of the continuum UV luminosity density, this suggests a factor of ∼3 suppression of Ly αmore » by radiative transfer through the z ∼ 7 intergalactic medium (IGM). It indicates an IGM neutral fraction of x {sub Hi} ∼ 0.4–0.6 (assuming Ly α velocity offsets of 100–200 km s{sup −1}). The changing shape of the Ly α LF between z ≲ 6.6 and z = 6.9 supports the hypothesis of ionized bubbles in a patchy reionization at z ∼ 7.« less

Authors:
;  [1]; ; ;  [2]; ; ;  [3]; ; ;  [4];  [5];  [6];  [7];  [8]
  1. CAS Key Laboratory for Research in Galaxies and Cosmology, Shanghai Astronomical Observatory, Shanghai 200030 (China)
  2. CAS Key Laboratory for Research in Galaxies and Cosmology, Department of Astronomy, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui 230026 (China)
  3. School of Earth and Space Exploration, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287 (United States)
  4. Institute of Astrophysics and Center for Astroengineering, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile, Santiago 7820436 (Chile)
  5. Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, Casilla 603, La Serena (Chile)
  6. The Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Peking University, Beijing 100871 (China)
  7. European Southern Observatory, Alonso de Cordova 3107, Casilla 19001, Santiago (Chile)
  8. Purple Mountain Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008 (China)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22654451
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal Letters; Journal Volume: 842; Journal Issue: 2; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; CAMERAS; COSMOLOGY; DENSITY; FILTERS; GALAXIES; HYPOTHESIS; LUMINOSITY; MASS; NONLUMINOUS MATTER; RADIANT HEAT TRANSFER; RED SHIFT; REDUCTION; STARS; TELESCOPES; UNIVERSE; VELOCITY

Citation Formats

Zheng, Zhen-Ya, Jiang, Chunyan, Wang, Junxian, Hu, Weida, Kong, Xu, Rhoads, James, Malhotra, Sangeeta, Gonzalez, Alicia, Infante, Leopoldo, Galaz, Gaspar, Barrientos, L. Felipe, Walker, Alistair R., Jiang, Linhua, Hibon, Pascale, and Zheng, XianZhong, E-mail: zhengzy@shao.ac.cn, E-mail: linfante@astro.puc.cl, E-mail: jxw@ustc.edu.cn, E-mail: Sangeeta.Malhotra@asu.edu, E-mail: James.Rhoads@asu.edu. First Results from the Lyman Alpha Galaxies in the Epoch of Reionization (LAGER) Survey: Cosmological Reionization at z ∼ 7. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/AA794F.
Zheng, Zhen-Ya, Jiang, Chunyan, Wang, Junxian, Hu, Weida, Kong, Xu, Rhoads, James, Malhotra, Sangeeta, Gonzalez, Alicia, Infante, Leopoldo, Galaz, Gaspar, Barrientos, L. Felipe, Walker, Alistair R., Jiang, Linhua, Hibon, Pascale, & Zheng, XianZhong, E-mail: zhengzy@shao.ac.cn, E-mail: linfante@astro.puc.cl, E-mail: jxw@ustc.edu.cn, E-mail: Sangeeta.Malhotra@asu.edu, E-mail: James.Rhoads@asu.edu. First Results from the Lyman Alpha Galaxies in the Epoch of Reionization (LAGER) Survey: Cosmological Reionization at z ∼ 7. United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/AA794F.
Zheng, Zhen-Ya, Jiang, Chunyan, Wang, Junxian, Hu, Weida, Kong, Xu, Rhoads, James, Malhotra, Sangeeta, Gonzalez, Alicia, Infante, Leopoldo, Galaz, Gaspar, Barrientos, L. Felipe, Walker, Alistair R., Jiang, Linhua, Hibon, Pascale, and Zheng, XianZhong, E-mail: zhengzy@shao.ac.cn, E-mail: linfante@astro.puc.cl, E-mail: jxw@ustc.edu.cn, E-mail: Sangeeta.Malhotra@asu.edu, E-mail: James.Rhoads@asu.edu. Tue . "First Results from the Lyman Alpha Galaxies in the Epoch of Reionization (LAGER) Survey: Cosmological Reionization at z ∼ 7". United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/AA794F.
@article{osti_22654451,
title = {First Results from the Lyman Alpha Galaxies in the Epoch of Reionization (LAGER) Survey: Cosmological Reionization at z ∼ 7},
author = {Zheng, Zhen-Ya and Jiang, Chunyan and Wang, Junxian and Hu, Weida and Kong, Xu and Rhoads, James and Malhotra, Sangeeta and Gonzalez, Alicia and Infante, Leopoldo and Galaz, Gaspar and Barrientos, L. Felipe and Walker, Alistair R. and Jiang, Linhua and Hibon, Pascale and Zheng, XianZhong, E-mail: zhengzy@shao.ac.cn, E-mail: linfante@astro.puc.cl, E-mail: jxw@ustc.edu.cn, E-mail: Sangeeta.Malhotra@asu.edu, E-mail: James.Rhoads@asu.edu},
abstractNote = {We present the first results from the ongoing Lyman Alpha Galaxies in the Epoch of Reionization (LAGER) project, which is the largest narrowband survey for z ∼ 7 galaxies to date. Using a specially built narrowband filter NB964 for the superb large-area Dark Energy Camera (DECam) on the NOAO/CTIO 4 m Blanco telescope, LAGER has collected 34 hr NB964 narrowband imaging data in the 3 deg{sup 2} COSMOS field. We have identified 23 Ly α Emitter candidates at z = 6.9 in the central 2-deg{sup 2} region, where DECam and public COSMOS multi-band images exist. The resulting luminosity function (LF) can be described as a Schechter function modified by a significant excess at the bright end (four galaxies with L {sub Lyα∼} 10{sup 43.4±0.2} erg s{sup −1}). The number density at L {sub Ly} {sub α} ∼ 10{sup 43.4±0.2} erg s{sup −1} is little changed from z = 6.6, while at fainter L {sub Lyα} it is substantially reduced. Overall, we see a fourfold reduction in Ly α luminosity density from z = 5.7 to z = 6.9. Combined with a more modest evolution of the continuum UV luminosity density, this suggests a factor of ∼3 suppression of Ly α by radiative transfer through the z ∼ 7 intergalactic medium (IGM). It indicates an IGM neutral fraction of x {sub Hi} ∼ 0.4–0.6 (assuming Ly α velocity offsets of 100–200 km s{sup −1}). The changing shape of the Ly α LF between z ≲ 6.6 and z = 6.9 supports the hypothesis of ionized bubbles in a patchy reionization at z ∼ 7.},
doi = {10.3847/2041-8213/AA794F},
journal = {Astrophysical Journal Letters},
number = 2,
volume = 842,
place = {United States},
year = {Tue Jun 20 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Tue Jun 20 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}