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  1. Abstract

    We present a new constraint on the mass of the black hole in the active S0 galaxy NGC 5273. Due to the proximity of the galaxy at 16.6 ± 2.1 Mpc, we were able to resolve and extract the bulk motions of stars near the central black hole using adaptive-optics-assisted observations with the Gemini Near-infrared Integral Field Spectrograph, as well as constrain the large-scale kinematics using archival Spectroscopic Areal Unit for Research and Optical Nebulae spectroscopy. High-resolution Hubble Space Telescope imaging allowed us to generate a surface-brightness decomposition, determine approximate mass-to-light ratios for the bulge and disk, and obtain an estimate for the disk inclination. We constructed an extensive library of dynamical models using the Schwarzschild orbit-superposition code FORSTAND, exploring a range of disk and bulge shapes, halo masses, etc. We determined a black hole mass ofM= [0.5–2] × 107M, where the low side of the range is in agreement with the reverberation mapping measurement ofM= [4.7 ± 1.6] × 106M. NGC 5273 is one of the few nearby galaxies that hosts a broad-lined active galactic nucleus, allowing a crucial comparison of black hole masses derived from independent mass-measurement techniques.

  2. Abstract

    We present the results of a new reverberation mapping campaign for the broad-line active galactic nucleus (AGN) in the edge-on spiral IC 4329A. Monitoring of the optical continuum withV-band photometry and broad emission-line flux variability with moderate-resolution spectroscopy allowed emission-line light curves to be measured for Hβ, Hγ, and Heiiλ4686. We find a time delay of16.32.3+2.6days for Hβ, a similar time delay of16.02.6+4.8days for Hγ, and an unresolved time delay of0.63.9+3.9days for Heii. The time delay for Hβis consistent with the predicted value from the relationship between AGN luminosity and broad-line region radius, after correction for the ∼2.4 mag of intrinsic extinction at 5100 Å. Combining the measured time delay for Hβwith the broad emission-line width and an adopted value of 〈f〉 = 4.8, we find a central supermassive black hole mass ofMBH=6.81.1+1.2×107M. Velocity-resolved time delays were measured across the broad Hβemission-line profile and may be consistent with an “M”-like shape. Modeling of the full reverberation response of Hβwas able to provide only modest constraints on some parameters, but does exhibit agreement with the black hole mass and average time delay. The models also suggest that themore »AGN structure is misaligned by a large amount from the edge-on galaxy disk. This is consistent with expectations from the unified model of AGNs, in which broad emission lines are expected to be visible only for AGNs that are viewed at relatively face-on inclinations.

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    Binaries consisting of a hot subdwarf star and an accreting white dwarf (WD) are sources of gravitational wave radiation at low frequencies and possible progenitors of Type Ia supernovae if the WD mass is large enough. Here, we report the discovery of the third binary known of this kind: It consists of a hot subdwarf O (sdO) star and a WD with an orbital period of 3.495 h and an orbital shrinkage of 0.1 s in 6 yr. The sdO star overfills its Roche lobe and likely transfers mass to the WD via an accretion disc. From spectroscopy, we obtain an effective temperature of $T_{\mathrm{eff}}=54\, 240\pm 1840$ K and a surface gravity of log g = 4.841 ± 0.108 for the sdO star. From the light curve analysis, we obtain an sdO mass of MsdO = 0.55 M⊙ and a mass ratio of q = MWD/MsdO = 0.738 ± 0.001. Also, we estimate that the disc has a radius of $\sim\!0.41\ \mathrm{R}_\odot$ and a thickness of $\sim\!0.18\ \mathrm{R}_\odot$. The origin of this binary is probably a common envelope ejection channel, where the progenitor of the sdO star is either a red giant branch star or, more likely, an early asymptotic giant branch star; the sdO star will subsequently evolve intomore »a WD and merge with its WD companion, likely resulting in an R Coronae Borealis (R CrB) star. The outstanding feature in the spectrum of this object is strong Ca H&K lines, which are blueshifted by ∼200 km s−1 and likely originate from the recently ejected common envelope, and we estimated that the remnant common envelope (CE) material in the binary system has a density $\sim\!6\times 10^{-10}\ {\rm g\, cm}^{-3}$.

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    We search for ultraluminous Quasi-Stellar Objects (QSOs) at high redshift using photometry from the SkyMapper Southern Survey Data Release 3 (DR3), in combination with 2MASS, VHS DR6, VIKING DR5, AllWISE, and CatWISE2020, as well as parallaxes and proper motions from Gaia DR2 and eDR3. We report 142 newly discovered Southern QSOs at 3.8 < z < 5.5, of which 126 have M145 < −27 AB mag and are found in a search area of 14 486 deg2. This Southern sample, utilizing the Gaia astrometry to offset wider photometric colour criteria, achieves unprecedented completeness for an ultraluminous QSO search at high redshift. In combination with already known QSOs, we construct a sample that is >80 per cent complete for M145 < −27.33 AB mag at z = 4.7 and for M145 < −27.73 AB mag at z = 5.4. We derive the bright end of the QSO luminosity function at rest frame 145 nm for z = 4.7–5.4 and measure its slope to be β = −3.60 ± 0.37 and β = −3.38 ± 0.32 for two different estimates of the faint-end QSO density adopted from the literature. We also present the first z ∼ 5 QSO luminosity function at rest frame 300 nm.

  5. Abstract We report the discovery of a bright ( $g = 14.5$ mag (AB), $K = 11.9$ mag (Vega)) quasar at redshift $z=0.83$ — the optically brightest (unbeamed) quasar at $z>0.4$ . SMSS J114447.77-430859.3, at a Galactic latitude of $b=+18.1^{\circ}$ , was identified by its optical colours from the SkyMapper Southern Survey (SMSS) during a search for symbiotic binary stars. Optical and near-infrared spectroscopy reveals broad Mg ii , H $\unicode{x03B2}$ , H $\unicode{x03B1}$ , and Pa $\unicode{x03B2}$ emission lines, from which we measure a black hole mass of $\log_{10}\! (M_{\mathrm{BH}}/\mathrm{M}_{\odot}) = 9.4 \pm 0.5$ . With its high luminosity, $L_{\mathrm{bol}} = (4.7\pm1.0)\times10^{47}\,\mathrm{erg\,s}^{-1}$ or $M_{i}(z=2) = -29.74$ mag (AB), we estimate an Eddington ratio of $\approx1.4$ . As the most luminous quasar known over the last ${\sim}$ 9 Gyr of cosmic history, having a luminosity $8\times$ greater than 3C 273, the source offers a range of potential follow-up opportunities.
  6. ABSTRACT From near-infrared spectroscopic measurements of the Mg ii emission line doublet, we estimate the black hole (BH) mass of the quasar, SMSS J215728.21–360215.1, as being (3.4 ± 0.6) × 1010 M⊙ and refine the redshift of the quasar to be z = 4.692. SMSS J2157 is the most luminous known quasar, with a 3000 Å luminosity of (4.7 ± 0.5) × 1047 erg s−1 and an estimated bolometric luminosity of 1.6 × 1048 erg s−1, yet its Eddington ratio is only ∼0.4. Thus, the high luminosity of this quasar is a consequence of its extremely large BH – one of the most massive BHs at z > 4.

    The elemental abundances in the broad-line regions of high-redshift quasars trace the chemical evolution in the nuclear regions of massive galaxies in the early Universe. In this work, we study metallicity-sensitive broad emission-line flux ratios in rest-frame UV spectra of 25 high-redshift (5.8 < z < 7.5) quasars observed with the VLT/X-shooter and Gemini/GNIRS instruments, ranging over $\log \left({{M}_{\rm {BH}}/\rm {M}_{\odot }}\right) = 8.4-9.8$ in black hole mass and $\log \left(\rm {L}_{\rm {bol}}/\rm {erg \, s}^{-1}\right) = 46.7-47.7$ in bolometric luminosity. We fit individual spectra and composites generated by binning across quasar properties: bolometric luminosity, black hole mass, and blueshift of the C iv line, finding no redshift evolution in the emission-line ratios by comparing our high-redshift quasars to lower redshift (2.0 < z < 5.0) results presented in the literature. Using cloudy-based locally optimally emitting cloud photoionization model relations between metallicity and emission-line flux ratios, we find the observable properties of the broad emission lines to be consistent with emission from gas clouds with metallicity that are at least 2–4 times solar. Our high-redshift measurements also confirm that the blueshift of the C iv emission line is correlated with its equivalent width, which influences line ratios normalized against C iv. When accountingmore »for the C iv blueshift, we find that the rest-frame UV emission-line flux ratios do not correlate appreciably with the black hole mass or bolometric luminosity.

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