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The Spectroscopic Follow-up of the QUBRICS Bright Quasar Survey

Boutsia, Konstantina et al., 2020, The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series, 250, 26 | View on ADS (2020ApJS..250...26B)


We present the results of the spectroscopic follow-up of the QUasars as BRIght beacons for Cosmology in the Southern Hemisphere (QUBRICS; Calderone et al. 2019) survey. The selection method is based on a machine-learning approach applied to photometric catalogs, covering an area of ∼12,400 deg2 in the Southern Hemisphere. The spectroscopic observations started in 2018 and identified 55 new, high-redshift (z ≥ 2.5), bright (i ≤ 18) quasi-stellar objects (QSOs), with the catalog published in late 2019. Here we report the current status of the survey, bringing the total number of bright QSOs at z ≥ 2.5 identified by QUBRICS to 224. The success rate of the QUBRICS selection method, in its most recent training, is estimated to be 68%. The predominant contaminant turns out to be lower-z QSOs at z < 2.5. This survey provides a unique sample of bright QSOs at high z available for a number of cosmological investigations. In particular, carrying out the redshift drift measurements (Sandage Test) in the Southern Hemisphere, using the High Resolution Spectrograph at the 39 m Extremely Large Telescope appears to be possible with less than 2500 hr of observations spread over 30 targets in 25 yr.

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