AffiliationUniv Arizona, Steward Observ
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherOXFORD UNIV PRESS
CitationFei Xu, Fuyan Bian, Yue Shen, Wenwen Zuo, Xiaohui Fan, Zonghong Zhu; The evolution of chemical abundance in quasar broad line region, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Volume 480, Issue 1, 11 October 2018, Pages 345–357, https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/sty1763
Rights© 2018 The Author(s) Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society
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AbstractWe study the relation between the metallicity of quasar broad line region (BLR) and black hole (BH) mass (10(7.5)-10(10) M-circle dot) and quasar bolometric luminosity (10(44.6)-10(48) erg s(-1)) using a sample of similar to 130000 quasars at 2.25 <= z <= 5.25 from Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 12 (DR12). We generate composite spectra by stacking individual spectra in the same BH mass (bolometric luminosity) and redshift bins and then estimate the metallicity of quasar BLR using metallicity-sensitive broad emission-line flux ratios based on the photoionization models. We find a significant correlation between quasar BLR metallicity and BH mass (bolometric luminosity) but no correlation between quasar BLR metallicity and redshift. We also compare the metallicity of quasar BLR and that of host galaxies inferred from the mass metallicity relation of star-forming galaxy at z similar to 2.3 and 3.5. We find quasar BLR metallicity is 0.3 similar to 1.0 dex higher than their host galaxies. This discrepancy cannot be interpreted by the uncertainty due to different metallicity diagnostic methods, mass metallicity relation of galaxy, metallicity gradient in quasar host galaxies, BH mass estimation, the effect of different spectral energy distribution models, and a few other potential sources of uncertainties. We propose a possibility that the high metallicity in quasar BLR might be caused by metal enrichment from massive star formation in the nucleus region of quasars or even the accretion disc.
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsBeijing Normal University; Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship; NSF [AST-1715579]; Alfred P. Sloan Foundation; U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science; Center for High Performance Computing at the University of Utah; Brazilian Participation Group; Carnegie Institution for Science; Carnegie Mellon University; Chilean Participation Group; French Participation Group; Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics; Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias; Johns Hopkins University; Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe (IPMU)/University of Tokyo; Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; Leibniz Institut fur Astrophysik Potsdam (AIP); Max-Planck-Institut fur Astronomie (MPIA Heidelberg); Max-Planck-Institut fur Astrophysik (MPA Garching); Max-Planck-Institut fur Extraterrestrische Physik (MPE); National Astronomical Observatories of China; New Mexico State University; New York University; University of Notre Dame; Observatario Nacional/MCTI; Ohio State University; Pennsylvania State University; Shanghai Astronomical Observatory; United Kingdom Participation Group; Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico; University of Arizona; University of Colorado Boulder; University of Oxford; University of Portsmouth; University of Utah; University of Virginia; University of Washington; University of Wisconsin; Vanderbilt University; Yale University