Frames: 209x300" -30C
Integration: 17.4 hours
Avg. Moon age: 14.14 days
Avg. Moon phase: 1.64%
Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 2.00
Mean SQM: 21.40
Mean FWHM: 2.60
Astrometry.net job: 1533538
RA center: 177.064 degrees
DEC center: 52.870 degrees
Pixel scale: 0.342 arcsec/pixel
Orientation: -179.807 degrees
Field radius: 0.241 degrees
SDSS J1148+5251 (z=6.419)
This very distant quasar was discovered 2003 in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey II as J114816.64+525150.3 (z = 6.43), later publications shows a redshift of z = 6.419 . This high redshift causes a shift of the Lyman alpha emission line from 121.6 nm to 901.2 nm. Nearly all the light from this quasar origins from wavelengths greater than 900 nm.
The redshift z = 6.419 is equivalent to a light travel time of 12.84 billion years. The age of the universe was only 870 million years by the time the photons left the quasar.
The spectrum of this quasar shows Gunn-Peterson trough, left of the Lyman alpha emission. The Gunn-Peterson trough was caused by clouds of neutral hydrogen gas (which were not ionizied yet) on the light path to the quasar. It is is a clear sign that the quasar light had its origin in the reionization epoch of the universe.
Some scientific papers show:
- the quasar contains a black hole with a mass of 3 billion sun masses.
- there is a lot of carbon monoxide (300 million sun masses).
- Hubble images do not show any signs of the quasar host galaxy, probably because of too many dust around the quasar.
Because of the light of this quasar comes from wavelengths greater 900 nm, it was a little bit difficult to catch it. The quantum efficiency of the Kodak KAF3200-ME chip in the range 900 nm - 1000 nm is app. only 17% (average).
I have measured the image with the software Astrometrica and the Gaia catalog, the results are shown at the inset (bottom left). Please zoom into the image many times to see all the details. The leftmost image shows a comparison image, where I have averaged 6 images from the Hubble Legacy Archive, total integration time 1.7 hours. In my image the quasar, marked as SDSS1148, is satisfactorely showed with a signal to noise ratio of 12.4 . The location of the quasar differs from the scientific papers by 0.2". The limiting (Gaia broadband G) magnitude of my image is +23.9 mag. (for S/N=5) or +24.5 mag. (for S/N=3).
This is and will be my deepest image ever concerning redshift. More distant quasars my ccd camera cannot see, it is restricted to wavelengths below 1000 nm.
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