A synoptic multiwavelength analysis of a large quasar sample

A. W. Rengstorf, R. J. Brunner, B. C. Wilhite

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We present variability and multiwavelength photometric information for the 933 known quasars in the QUEST Variability Survey. These quasars are grouped into variable and nonvariable populations based on measured variability confidence levels. In a time-limited synoptic survey, we detect an anticorrelation between redshift and the likelihood of variability. Our comparison of variability likelihood to radio, IR, and X-ray data is consistent with earlier quasar studies. Using already known quasars as a template, we introduce a light-curve morphology algorithm that provides an efficient method for discriminating variable quasars from periodic variable objects in the absence of spectroscopic information. The establishment of statistically robust trends and efficient nonspectroscopic selection algorithms will aid in quasar identification and categorization in upcoming massive synoptic surveys. Finally, we report on three interesting variable quasars, including variability confirmation of the BL Lac candidate PKS 1222+037.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1923-1933
Number of pages11
JournalAstronomical Journal
Volume131
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2006
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Galaxies: active
  • Methods: data analysis
  • Quasars: general
  • Quasars: individual (PKS 1222+037)
  • Surveys

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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