Volume 585, January 2016
|Number of page(s)||18|
|Published online||13 January 2016|
Is there any evidence that ionized outflows quench star formation in type 1 quasars at z < 1?
Dipartimento di Fisica e Astronomia, Università di
Firenze, via G. Sansone
1, 50019 Sesto
Fiorentino ( Firenze), Italy
2 INAF–Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri, Largo Enrico Fermi 5, 50125 Firenze, Italy
3 Dipartimento di Fisica e Astronomia, Università di Bologna, viale Berti Pichat 6/2, 40127 Bologna, Italy
4 INAF–Osservatorio Astronomico di Bologna, via Ranzani 1, 40127 Bologna, Italy
5 Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge, 19 J. J. Thomson Ave, Cambridge CB3 0HE, UK
6 Kavli Institute for Cosmology, University of Cambridge, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0HA, UK
7 Research Center for Space and Cosmic Evolution, Ehime University, Bunkyo-cho 2–5, 790-8577 Matsuyama, Japan
Received: 8 June 2015
Accepted: 11 September 2015
Aims. The aim of this paper is to test the basic model of negative active galactic nuclei (AGN) feedback. According to this model, once the central black hole accretes at the Eddington limit and reaches a certain critical mass, AGN driven outflows blow out gas, suppressing star formation in the host galaxy and self-regulating black hole growth.
Methods. We consider a sample of 224 quasars selected from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) at z< 1 observed in the infrared band by the Herschel Space Observatory in point source photometry mode. We evaluate the star formation rate in relation to several outflow signatures traced by the [O III] λ4959, 5007 and [O II] λ3726, 3729 emission lines in about half of the sample with high quality spectra.
Results. Most of the quasars show asymmetric and broad wings in [O III], which we interpret as outflow signatures. We separate the quasars in two groups, “weakly” and “strongly” outflowing, using three different criteria. When we compare the mean star formation rate in five redshift bins in the two groups, we find that the star formation rate (SFR) are comparable or slightly larger in the strongly outflowing quasars. We estimate the stellar mass from spectral energy distribution (SED) fitting and the quasars are distributed along the star formation main sequence, although with a large scatter. The scatter from this relation is uncorrelated with respect to the kinematic properties of the outflow. Moreover, for quasars dominated in the infrared by starburst or by AGN emission, we do not find any correlation between the star formation rate and the velocity of the outflow, a trend previously reported in the literature for pure starburst galaxies.
Conclusions. We conclude that the basic AGN negative feedback scenario seems not to agree with our results. Although we use a large sample of quasars, we did not find any evidence that the star formation rate is suppressed in the presence of AGN driven outflows on large scale. A possibility is that feedback is effective over much longer timescales than those of single episodes of quasar activity.
Key words: quasars: general / galaxies: active / galaxies: star formation
© ESO, 2016
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