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    We present 6 GHz Very Large Array radio images of 70 gravitational lens systems at 300 mas resolution, in which the source is an optically selected quasar, and nearly all of which have two lensed images. We find that about in half of the systems (40/70, with 33/70 secure), one or more lensed images are detected down to our detection limit of 20 μJy beam−1, similar to previous investigations and reinforcing the conclusion that typical optically selected quasars have intrinsic GHz radio flux densities of a few μJy (∼1023 W Hz−1 at redshifts of 1–2). In addition, for 10 cases it is likely that the lensing galaxies are detected in the radio. Available detections of, and limits on the far-infrared luminosities from the literature, suggest that nearly all of the sample lie on the radio-FIR correlation typical of star-forming galaxies, and that their radio luminosities are at least compatible with the radio emission being produced by star formation processes. One object, WISE2329−1258, has an extra radio component that is not present in optical images, and is difficult to explain using simple lens models. In-band spectral indices, where these can be determined, are generally moderately steep and consistent with synchrotron processes either from star formation/supernovae or AGNs. Comparison of the A/B image flux ratios at radio and optical wavelengths suggests a 10 per cent level contribution from finite source effects or optical extinction to the optical flux ratios, together with sporadic larger discrepancies that are likely to be due to optical microlensing.

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    While the direct detection of the dark-matter particle remains very challenging, the nature of dark matter could be possibly constrained by comparing the observed abundance and properties of small-scale sub-galactic mass structures with predictions from the phenomenological dark-matter models, such as cold, warm, or hot dark matter. Galaxy-galaxy strong gravitational lensing provides a unique opportunity to search for tiny surface-brightness anomalies in the extended lensed images (i.e. Einstein rings or gravitational arcs), induced by possible small-scale mass structures in the foreground lens galaxy. In this paper, the first in a series, we introduce and test a methodology to measure the power spectrum of such surface-brightness anomalies from high-resolution Hubble Space Telescope (HST) imaging. In particular, we focus on the observational aspects of this statistical approach, such as the most suitable observational strategy and sample selection, the choice of modelling techniques, and the noise correction. We test the feasibility of the power-spectrum measurement by applying it to a sample of galaxy-galaxy strong gravitational lens systems from the Sloan Lens ACS Survey, with the most extended, bright, high-signal-to-noise-ratio lensed images, observed in the rest-frame ultraviolet. In the companion paper, we present the methodology to relate the measured power spectrum to the statistical properties of the underlying small-scale mass structures in the lens galaxy and infer the first observational constraints on the sub-galactic matter power spectrum in a massive elliptical (lens) galaxy.

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    Using a single gravitational lens system observed at ≲ 5 mas resolution with very long baseline interferometry, we place a lower bound on the mass of the fuzzy dark matter (FDM) particle, ruling out mχ ≤ 4.4 × 10−21 eV with a 20:1 posterior odds ratio relative to a smooth lens model. We generalize our result to non-scalar and multiple-field models, such as vector FDM, with mχ,vec > 1.4 × 10−21 eV. Due to the extended source structure and high angular resolution of the observation, our analysis is directly sensitive to the presence of granule structures in the main dark matter halo of the lens, which is the most generic prediction of FDM theories. A model based on well-understood physics of ultra-light dark matter fields in a gravitational potential well makes our result robust to a wide range of assumed dark matter fractions and velocity dispersions in the lens galaxy. Our result is competitive with other lower bounds on mχ from past analyses, which rely on intermediate modelling of structure formation and/or baryonic effects. Higher resolution observations taken at 10–100 GHz could improve our constraints by up to two orders of magnitude in the future.

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    Stringent observational constraints on the subgalactic matter power spectrum would allow one to distinguish between the concordance ΛCDM and the various alternative dark-matter models that predict significantly different properties of mass structure in galactic haloes. Galaxy–galaxy strong gravitational lensing provides a unique opportunity to probe the subgalactic mass structure in lens galaxies beyond the Local Group. Here, we demonstrate the first application of a novel methodology to observationally constrain the subgalactic matter power spectrum in the inner regions of massive elliptical lens galaxies on 1–10 kpc scales from the power spectrum of surface-brightness anomalies in highly magnified galaxy-scale Einstein rings and gravitational arcs. The pilot application of our approach to Hubble Space Telescope (HST/WFC3/F390W) observations of the SLACS lens system SDSS J0252+0039 allows us to place the following observational constraints (at the 99 per cent confidence level) on the dimensionless convergence power spectrum $\Delta ^{2}_{\delta \kappa }$ and the standard deviation in the aperture mass σAM: $\Delta ^{2}_{\delta \kappa }\lt 1$ (σAM < 0.8 × 108 M⊙) on 0.5-kpc scale, $\Delta ^{2}_{\delta \kappa }\lt 0.1$ (σAM < 1 × 108 M⊙) on 1-kpc scale and $\Delta ^{2}_{\delta \kappa }\lt 0.01$ (σAM < 3 × 108 M⊙) on 3-kpc scale. These first upper-limit constraints still considerably exceed the estimated effect of CDM subhaloes. However, future analysis of a larger sample of galaxy–galaxy strong lens systems can substantially narrow down these limits and possibly rule out dark-matter models that predict a significantly higher level of density fluctuations on the critical subgalactic scales.

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    Recent studies have suggested that red quasars are a phase in quasar evolution when feedback from black hole accretion evacuates obscuring gas from the nucleus of the host galaxy. Here, we report a direct link between dust-reddening and molecular outflows in quasars at z ∼ 2.5. By examining the dynamics of warm molecular gas in the inner region of galaxies, we find evidence for outflows with velocities 500–1000 km s−1 and time-scales of ≈0.1 Myr that are due to ongoing quasar energy output. We infer outflows only in systems where quasar radiation pressure on dust in the vicinity of the black hole is sufficiently large to expel their obscuring gas column densities. This result is in agreement with theoretical models that predict radiative feedback regulates gas in the nuclear regions of galaxies and is a major driving mechanism of galactic-scale outflows of cold gas. Our findings suggest that radiative quasar feedback ejects star-forming gas from within nascent stellar bulges at velocities comparable to those seen on larger scales, and that molecules survive in outflows even from the most luminous quasars.

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    We investigate the mass structure of a strong gravitational lens galaxy at z = 0.350, taking advantage of the milliarcsecond (mas) angular resolution of very long baseline interferometric (VLBI) observations. In the first analysis of its kind at this resolution, we jointly infer the lens model parameters and pixellated radio source surface brightness. We consider several lens models of increasing complexity, starting from an elliptical power-law density profile. We extend this model to include angular multipole structures, a separate stellar mass component, additional nearby field galaxies, and/or a generic external potential. We compare these models using their relative Bayesian log-evidence (Bayes factor). We find strong evidence for angular structure in the lens; our best model is comprised of a power-law profile plus multipole perturbations and external potential, with a Bayes factor of +14984 relative to the elliptical power-law model. It is noteworthy that the elliptical power-law mass distribution is a remarkably good fit on its own, with additional model complexity correcting the deflection angles only at the ∼5 mas level. We also consider the effects of added complexity in the lens model on time-delay cosmography and flux-ratio analyses. We find that an overly simplistic power-law ellipsoid lens model can bias the measurement of H0 by ∼3 per cent and mimic flux ratio anomalies of ∼8 per cent. Our results demonstrate the power of high-resolution VLBI observations to provide strong constraints on the inner density profiles of lens galaxies.

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  7. Abstract We present an analysis of seven strongly gravitationally lensed quasars and the corresponding constraints on the properties of dark matter. Our results are derived by modelling the lensed image positions and flux-ratios using a combination of smooth macro models and a population of low-mass haloes within the mass range 106 to 109 M⊙. Our lens models explicitly include higher-order complexity in the form of stellar discs and luminous satellites, as well as low-mass haloes located along the observed lines of sight for the first time. Assuming a Cold Dark Matter (CDM) cosmology, we infer an average total mass fraction in substructure of $f_{\rm sub} = 0.012^{+0.007}_{-0.004}$ (68 per cent confidence limits), which is in agreement with the predictions from CDM hydrodynamical simulations to within 1σ. This result is closer to the predictions than those from previous studies that did not include line-of-sight haloes. Under the assumption of a thermal relic dark matter model, we derive a lower limit on the particle relic mass of mth > 5.58 keV (95 per cent confidence limits), which is consistent with a value of mth > 5.3 keV from the recent analysis of the Lyα forest. We also identify two main sources of possible systematic errors and conclude that deeper investigations in the complex structure of lens galaxies as well as the size of the background sources should be a priority for this field. 
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  8. ABSTRACT We present a study of the stellar host galaxy, CO (1–0) molecular gas distribution and AGN emission on 50–500 pc-scales of the gravitationally lensed dust-obscured AGN MG J0751+2716 and JVAS B1938+666 at redshifts 3.200 and 2.059, respectively. By correcting for the lensing distortion using a grid-based lens modelling technique, we spatially locate the different emitting regions in the source plane for the first time. Both AGN host galaxies have 300–500 pc-scale size and surface brightness consistent with a bulge/pseudo-bulge, and 2 kpc-scale AGN radio jets that are embedded in extended molecular gas reservoirs that are 5–20 kpc in size. The CO (1–0) velocity fields show structures possibly associated with discs (elongated velocity gradients) and interacting objects (off-axis velocity components). There is evidence for a decrement in the CO (1–0) surface brightness at the location of the host galaxy, which may indicate radiative feedback from the AGN, or offset star formation. We find CO–H2 conversion factors of around αCO = 1.5 ± 0.5 (K km s−1 pc2)−1, molecular gas masses of >3 × 1010 M⊙, dynamical masses of ∼1011 M⊙, and gas fractions of around 60 per cent. The intrinsic CO line luminosities are comparable to those of unobscured AGN and dusty star-forming galaxies at similar redshifts, but the infrared luminosities are lower, suggesting that the targets are less efficient at forming stars. Therefore, they may belong to the AGN feedback phase predicted by galaxy formation models, because they are not efficiently forming stars considering their large amount of molecular gas. 
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