NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2006A-0547

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Proposal Information for 2006A-0547


PI: Joseph Hennawi, UC Berkeley, joeh@berkeley.edu
Address: Astronomy Department, 601 Campbell Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720-3411, United States

CoI: Michael Strauss, Princeton
CoI: Donald Schneider, Pennsylvania State
CoI: Alejandro Clocchiatti, Catolica

Title: MMT Spectroscopy of High Redshift Quasar Pairs: Measuring Small Scale Quasar Clustering at z > 3

Abstract: We request three nights of gray time on the MMT red channel spectrograph to search for companion quasars around the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) high redshift (z > 3) quasar sample. Our quasar pair selection technique has been tremendously successful at finding low redshift quasar pairs (0.7 < z < 3.0), allowing us to make the first measurement of the quasar correlation function on scales 10 \hkpc < R < 1 \hmpc. With three nights at the MMT, we will be able to make a similar measurement at z > 3. Our group has discovered the only two known sub-arcminute binary quasars at z > 4, and the existence of these objects provides circumstantial evidence that quasars cluster \emphmuch more strongly that galaxies at high redshift. Our MMT observations will put this speculation on solid statistical footing. A by product of our proposed observations, is that we will also discover several physically unassociated projected pairs of high redshift quasars, which will provide new extremely rare sightlines which cna be used to characterize the transverse proximity effect at high redshifts.


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 >   2006A-0547

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