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 Physics , 1999, DOI: 10.1086/301191 Abstract: This is the second paper in a series aimed at finding high-redshift quasars from five-color (u'g'r'i'z') imaging data taken along the Celestial Equator by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) during its commissioning phase. In this paper, we present 22 high-redshift quasars (z>3.6) discovered from ~250 deg^2 of data in the spring Equatorial Stripe, plus photometry for two previously known high-redshift quasars in the same region of sky. Our success rate of identifying high-redshift quasars is 68%. Five of the newly discovered quasars have redshifts higher than 4.6 (z=4.62, 4.69, 4.70, 4.92 and 5.03). All the quasars have i* < 20.2 with absolute magnitude -28.8 < M_B < -26.1 (h=0.5, q_0=0.5). Several of the quasars show unusual emission and absorption features in their spectra, including an object at z=4.62 without detectable emission lines, and a Broad Absorption Line (BAL) quasar at z=4.92.
 Physics , 2000, DOI: 10.1086/318032 Abstract: This is the third paper in a series aimed at finding high-redshift quasars from five-color (u'g'r'i'z') imaging data taken along the Celestial Equator by the SDSS during its commissioning phase. In this paper, we first present the observations of 14 bright high-redshift quasars (3.66
 Physics , 2011, DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2966.2011.18380.x Abstract: We present a catalogue of 4098 photometrically selected galaxy clusters with a median redshift = 0.32 in the 270 square degree 'Stripe 82' region of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), covering the celestial equator in the Southern Galactic Cap (-50 < RA < 59 deg, |Dec| < 1.25 deg). Owing to the multi-epoch SDSS coverage of this region, the ugriz photometry is ~2 magnitudes deeper than single scans within the main SDSS footprint. We exploit this to detect clusters of galaxies using an algorithm that searches for statistically significant overdensities of galaxies in a Voronoi tessellation of the projected sky. 32% of the clusters have at least one member with a spectroscopic redshift from existing public data (SDSS Data Release 7, 2SLAQ & WiggleZ), and the remainder have a robust photometric redshift (accurate to ~5-9% at the median redshift of the sample). The weighted average of the member galaxies' redshifts provides a reasonably accurate estimate of the cluster redshift. The cluster catalogue is publicly available for exploitation by the community to pursue a range of science objectives. In addition to the cluster catalogue, we provide a linked catalogue of 18,295 V<21 mag quasar sight-lines with impact parameters within <3 Mpc of the cluster cores selected from the catalogue of Veron et al. (2010). The background quasars cover 0.25 < z < 2, where MgII absorption-line systems associated with the clusters are detectable in optical spectra.
 Physics , 2000, DOI: 10.1086/320392 Abstract: We present an empirical investigation of the colors of quasars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) photometric system. The sample studied includes 2625 quasars with SDSS photometry. The quasars are distributed in a 2.5 degree wide stripe centered on the Celestial Equator covering $\sim529$ square degrees. Positions and SDSS magnitudes are given for the 898 quasars known prior to SDSS spectroscopic commissioning. New SDSS quasars represent an increase of over 200% in the number of known quasars in this area of the sky. The ensemble average of the observed colors of quasars in the SDSS passbands are well represented by a power-law continuum with $\alpha_{\nu} = -0.5$ ($f_{\nu} \propto \nu^{\alpha}$). However, the contributions of the $3000 {\rm \AA}$ bump and other strong emission lines have a significant effect upon the colors. The color-redshift relation exhibits considerable structure, which may be of use in determining photometric redshifts for quasars. The range of colors can be accounted for by a range in the optical spectral index with a distribution $\alpha_{\nu}=-0.5\pm0.65$ (95% confidence), but there is a red tail in the distribution. This tail may be a sign of internal reddening. Finally, we show that there is a continuum of properties between quasars and Seyfert galaxies and we test the validity of the traditional division between the two classes of AGN.
 Physics , 2000, DOI: 10.1086/319422 Abstract: We report the discovery of 27 quasars with redshifts between 3.58 and 4.49. The objects were identified as high-redshift candidates based on their colors in Sloan Digital Sky Survey commissioning data. The redshifts were confirmed with low resolution spectra obtained at the Hobby-Eberly Telescope. The quasars' $i^*$ magnitudes range from 18.55 to 20.97. Nearly 60% of the quasar candidates observed are confirmed spectroscopically as quasars. Two of the objects are Broad Absorption Line quasars, and several other quasars appear to have narrow associated absorption features.
 Physics , 1999, DOI: 10.1086/300944 Abstract: We present photometric and spectroscopic observations of 15 high-redshift quasars (z > 3.6) discovered from ~140 deg^2 of five-color (u'g'r'i'z') imaging data taken by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) during its commissioning phase. The quasars are selected by their distinctive colors in SDSS multicolor space. Four of the quasars have redshifts higher than 4.6 (z=4.63, 4.75, 4.90 and 5.00, the latter being the highest redshift quasar yet known). In addition, two previously known z > 4 objects were recovered from the data. The quasars all have i* < 20 and have luminosities comparable to that of 3C273. The spectra of the quasars have similar features (strong, broad emission lines and substantial absorption blueward of the Ly alpha emission line) seen in previously known high-redshift quasars. Although the photometric accuracy and image quality fail to meet the final survey requirements, our success rate for identifying high-redshift quasars (17 quasars from 27 candidates) is much higher than that of previous multicolor surveys. However, the numbers of high-redshift quasars found is in close accord with the number density inferred from previous surveys.
 Physics , 2010, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201015520 Abstract: We present a new approach to analysing the dependence of quasar variability on rest-frame wavelengths. We exploited the spectral archive of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) to create a sample of more than 9000 quasars in the Stripe 82. The quasar catalogue was matched with the Light Motion Curve Catalogue for SDSS Stripe 82 and individual first-order structure functions were computed. The structure functions are used to create a variability indicator that is related to the same intrinsic timescales for all quasars (1 to 2 yr in the rest frame). We study the variability ratios for adjacent SDSS filter bands as a function of redshift. While variability is almost always stronger in the bluer passband compared to the redder, the variability ratio depends on whether strong emission lines contribute to either one band or the other. The variability ratio-redshift relations resemble the corresponding colour index-redshift relations. From the comparison with Monte Carlo simulations of variable quasar spectra we find that the observed variability ratio-redshift relations are closely fitted assuming that (a) the r.m.s. fluctuation of the quasar continuum follows a power law-dependence on the intrinsic wavelength with an exponent -2 (i.e., bluer when brighter) and (b) the variability of the emission line flux is only about 10% of that of the underlying continuum. These results, based upon the photometry of more than 8000 quasars, confirm the previous findings by Wilhite et al. (2005) from 315 quasars with repeated SDSS spectroscopy. Finally, we find that quasars with unusual spectra and weak emission lines tend to have less variability than conventional quasars. This trend is opposite to what is expected from the dilution effect of variability due to line emission and may be indicative of high Eddington ratios in these unconventinal quasars.
 Physics , 1999, DOI: 10.1086/301224 Abstract: This paper describes the discovery of seven dwarf objects of spectral type L' (objects cooler than the latest M dwarfs) in commissioning imaging data taken by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). Low-resolution spectroscopy shows that these objects have spectral types from L0 to L8. Comparison of the SDSS and 2MASS photometry for several of these objects indicates the presence of significant opacity at optical wavelengths, perhaps due to atmospheric dust. This comparison also demonstrates the high astrometric accuracy (better than 1'' for these faint sources) of both surveys. The L dwarfs are shown to occupy a distinctive region of color-color space as measured in the SDSS filters, which should enable their identification in a straightforward way. This should lead eventually to a complete sample of many hundreds of these low mass objects, or about one per 15 square degrees to i'~20, in the complete SDSS data set.
 Physics , 2013, DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/780/2/162 Abstract: The stellar properties of about 800 galaxies hosting optically luminous, unobscured quasars at z < 0.6 are analyzed. Deep co-added Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) images of the quasars on Stripe 82 are decomposed into nucleus and host galaxy using point spread function and Sersic models. The systematic errors in the measured galaxy absolute magnitudes and colors are estimated to be less than 0.5 mag and 0.1 mag, respectively, with simulated quasar images. The effect of quasar light scattered by the interstellar medium is also carefully addressed. The measured quasar-to-galaxy ratio in total flux decreases toward longer wavelengths, from ~8 in the u band to ~1 in the i and z bands. We find that the SDSS quasars are hosted exclusively by massive galaxies (stellar mass Mstar > 10^{10} Msun), which is consistent with previous results for less luminous narrow-line (obscured) active galactic nuclei (AGNs). The quasar hosts are very blue and almost absent on the red sequence, showing stark contrast to the color-magnitude distribution of normal galaxies. The fact that more powerful AGNs reside in galaxies with higher star-formation efficiency may indicate that negative AGN feedback, if it exists, is not concurrent with the most luminous phase of AGNs. We also find positive correlation between the mass of supermassive black holes (SMBHs; Mbh) and host stellar mass, but the Mbh - Mstar relation is offset toward large Mbh or small Mstar compared to the local relation. While this could indicate that SMBHs grow earlier than do their host galaxies, such an argument is not conclusive, as the effect may be dominated by observational biases.
 Physics , 2001, DOI: 10.1086/322093 Abstract: We present bright galaxy number counts in five broad bands ($u', g', r', i', z'$) from imaging data taken during the commissioning phase of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). The counts are derived from two independent stripes of imaging scans along the Celestial Equator, one each toward the North and the South Galactic cap, covering about 230 and 210 square degrees, respectively. A careful study is made to verify the reliability of the photometric catalog. For galaxies brighter than $r^* = 16$, the catalog produced by automated software is examined against eye inspection of all objects. Statistically meaningful results on the galaxy counts are obtained in the magnitude range $12 \le r^* \le 21$, using a sample of 900,000 galaxies. The counts from the two stripes differ by about 30% at magnitudes brighter than $r^*= 15.5$, consistent with a local $2\sigma$ fluctuation due to large scale structure in the galaxy distribution. The shape of the number counts-magnitude relation brighter than $r^* = 16$ is well characterized by $N \propto 10^{0.6m}$, the relation expected for a homogeneous galaxy distribution in a `Euclidean'' universe. In the magnitude range $16 < r^* < 21$, the galaxy counts from both stripes agree very well, and follow the prediction of the no-evolution model, although the data do not exclude a small amount of evolution. We use empirically determined color transformations to derive the galaxy number counts in the $B$ and $I_{814}$ bands. We compute the luminosity density of the universe at zero redshift in the five SDSS bands and in the $B$ band. We find ${\cal L}_{B} = 2.4 \pm 0.4 \times 10^8L_\odot h$Mpc$^{-3}$, for a reasonably wide range of parameters of the Schechter luminosity function in the $B$ band.
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