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Quasars probing quasars. X. The quasar pair spectral database.

Findlay, Joseph R. and Prochaska, J. Xavier and Hennawi, Joseph F. and Fumagalli, Michele and Myers, Adam D. and Bartle, Stephanie and Chehade, Ben and DiPompeo, Michael A. and Shanks, Tom and Lau, Marie Wingyee and Rubin, Kate H. R. (2018) 'Quasars probing quasars. X. The quasar pair spectral database.', Astrophysical journal supplement series., 236 (2). p. 44.


The rare close projection of two quasars on the sky provides the opportunity to study the host galaxy environment of a foreground quasar in absorption against the continuum emission of a background quasar. For over a decade the "Quasars probing quasars" series has utilized this technique to further the understanding of galaxy formation and evolution in the presence of a quasar at z > 2, resolving scales as small as a galactic disk and from bound gas in the circumgalactic medium to the diffuse environs of intergalactic space. Presented here is the public release of the quasar pair spectral database utilized in these studies. In addition to projected pairs at z > 2, the database also includes quasar pair members at z < 2, gravitational lens candidates, and quasars closely separated in redshift that are useful for small-scale clustering studies. In total, the database catalogs 5627 distinct objects, with 4083 lying within 5' of at least one other source. A spectral library contains 3582 optical and near-infrared spectra for 3028 of the cataloged sources. As well as reporting on 54 newly discovered quasar pairs, we outline the key contributions made by this series over the last 10 years, summarize the imaging and spectroscopic data used for target selection, discuss the target selection methodologies, describe the database content, and explore some avenues for future work. Full documentation for the spectral database, including download instructions, is supplied at

Item Type:Article
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Publisher statement:© 2018. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Date accepted:31 March 2018
Date deposited:27 June 2018
Date of first online publication:05 June 2018
Date first made open access:27 June 2018

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