NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2012A-0238

Small NOAO Logo

Proposal Information for 2012A-0238


PI: Stephen Fine, Durham University, stephen.fine@durham.ac.uk
Address: Physics Department, Science Laboratories, South Road, Durham, County Durham DH1 3LE, UK

CoI: Tom Shanks, Durham University
CoI: Paul Green, Harvard Center for Astrophysics
CoI: Scott Croom, University of Sydney
CoI: Rachel Webster, University of Melbourne

Title: Reverberation mapping of ~1000 QSOs

Abstract: This proposal aims to make a step-change in the potential of QSO reverberation mapping by applying a powerful new statistical technique to a photometric+spectroscopic QSO dataset. Even with only ~2 epochs of spectroscopy, our simulations show that the addition of extensive optical monitoring will allow us to probe a wide range of timescales in stacked cross-correlations. This enables us to perform reverberation mapping in groups of objects binned by e.g. redshift/luminosity, offering 2 orders of magnitude improvement in efficiency through use of MMT Hectospec. Moreover, this will be the first time reverberation mapping has been performed at redshifts 0.5<z<3. We therefore propose to use Hectospec to survey ~1000 QSOs in 2 fields that are being photometrically monitored ~weekly in optical bands by the Pan-STARRS Medium Deep Survey and that have a previous MMT spectroscopic epoch. These data will be used to make direct BH mass estimates in redshift and luminosity domains that have previously been inaccessible. And we will be able to define the radius-luminosity relationship for UV lines where previously this has been prohibitively difficult.


National Optical Astronomy Observatory, 950 North Cherry Avenue, P.O. Box 26732, Tucson, Arizona 85726, Phone: (520) 318-8000, Fax: (520) 318-8360



NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2012A-0238

noaoprop-help@noao.edu

Small NOAO Logo