X-ray constraints on the fraction of obscured active galactic nuclei at high accretion luminosities
Brandt, W. N.
Ananna, T. Tasnim
McGreer, I. D.
AffiliationUniv Arizona, Steward Observ
quasars: supermassive black holes
X-rays: diffuse background
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherOXFORD UNIV PRESS
CitationX-ray constraints on the fraction of obscured active galactic nuclei at high accretion luminosities 2017, 469 (3):3232 Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Rights© 2017 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society
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AbstractThe wide-area XMM-XXL X-ray survey is used to explore the fraction of obscured active galactic nuclei (AGNs) at high accretion luminosities, L-X(2-10 keV) greater than or similar to 10(44) erg s(-1), and out to redshift z approximate to 1.5. The sample covers an area of about 14 deg(2) and provides constraints on the space density of powerful AGNs over a wide range of neutral hydrogen column densities extending beyond the Compton-thick limit, N-H approximate to 10(24) cm(-2). The fraction of obscured Compton-thin (N-H = 10(22) - 10(24) cm(-2)) AGNs is estimated to be approximate to 0.35 for luminosities L-X(2-10 keV) > 10(44) erg s(-1), independent of redshift. For less luminous sources, the fraction of obscured Compton-thin AGNs increases from 0.45 +/- 0.10 at z = 0.25 to 0.75 +/- 0.05 at z = 1.25. Studies that select AGNs in the infrared via template fits to the observed spectral energy distribution of extragalactic sources estimate space densities at high accretion luminosities consistent with the XMM-XXL constraints. There is no evidence for a large population of AGNs (e.g. heavily obscured) identified in the infrared and missed at X-ray wavelengths. We further explore the mid-infrared colours of XMM-XXL AGNs as a function of accretion luminosity, column density and redshift. The fraction of XMM-XXL sources that lie within the mid-infrared colour wedges defined in the literature to select AGNs is primarily a function of redshift. This fraction increases from about 20-30 per cent at z = 0.25 to about 50-70 per cent at z = 1.5.
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsTHALES - European Union ; Greek Government of the programme 'Education and lifelong learning'; FONDECYT Postdoctorados ; Ministry of Economy, Development, and Tourism's Millennium Science Initiative [IC120009]; Millennium Institute of Astro-physics MAS; Alfred P. Sloan Foundation; National Science Foundation; U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science; University of Arizona; Brazilian Participation Group; Brookhaven National Laboratory; Carnegie Mellon University; University of Florida; French Participation Group; German Participation Group; Harvard University; Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias; Michigan State/Notre Dame/JINA Participation Group; Johns Hopkins University; Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics; Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics; New Mexico State University; New York University; Ohio State University; Pennsylvania State University; University of Portsmouth; Princeton University; Spanish Participation Group; University of Tokyo; University of Utah; Vanderbilt University; University of Virginia; University of Washington; Yale University