PI: John D. Silverman, SAO; University of Virginia, firstname.lastname@example.org
Address: 60 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
CoI: Paul Green, Chandra X-ray Center
CoI: Belinda Wilkes, Chandra X-ray Center
CoI: Paul Smith, Steward Observatory
CoI: Buell Jannuzi, NOAO
Title: Is the dawn of the quasar epoch between 3<z<5?
Abstract: My thesis investigates the evolution of the quasar population by measuring the intrinsic luminosity function and the comoving space density of X-ray selected quasars out to z>=4. My goal is to determine if a decline in the space density of optically-selected quasars beyond z>3 persists in sensitive X-ray-selected samples, which include obscured quasars missed by previous surveys. To do so, I propose to acquire optical spectra for classification and redshift determination of serendipitous Chandra sources imaged by the Chandra Multiwavelength Project (ChaMP). Using the remarkable sensitivity of the Chandra X-ray observatory to detect obscured and distant quasars, this work forms the foundation for the spectroscopic component of the ChaMP - to investigate the X-ray luminosity function and its evolution. With 70 quasars already identified (9 at z>3), I seek to increase my thesis sample by ~75 using NOAO facilities this fall. These observations are crucial to acquire a sample of 200 quasars with 20 at z>3 needed to complete the thesis project by August 2003, the end of my term as a SAO predoctoral fellow.
National Optical Astronomy Observatory, 950 North Cherry Avenue, P.O. Box 26732, Tucson, Arizona 85726, Phone: (520) 318-8000, Fax: (520) 318-8360