Volume 627, July 2019
|Number of page(s)||12|
|Published online||09 July 2019|
Normalization of the extragalactic background light from high-energy γ-ray observations
Institut de Physique Nucléaire, IN2P3/CNRS, Université Paris-Sud, Univ. Paris/Saclay, 15 rue Georges Clémenceau, 91406 Orsay, Cedex, France
2 Santa Cruz Institute for Particle Physics and Department of Physics, University of California at Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA 95064, USA
Accepted: 3 June 2019
Extragalactic background light (EBL) plays an important role in cosmology since it traces the history of galaxy formation and evolution. Such diffuse radiation from near-UV to far-infrared wavelengths can interact with γ-rays from distant sources such as active galactic nuclei (AGNs), and is responsible for the high-energy absorption observed in their spectra. However, probing the EBL from γ-ray spectra of AGNs is not trivial due to internal processes that can mimic its effect. Such processes are usually taken into account in terms of curvature of the intrinsic spectrum. Hence, an improper choice of parametrization for the latter can seriously affect EBL reconstruction. In this paper, we propose a statistical approach that avoids a priori assumptions on the intrinsic spectral curvature and that, for each source, selects the best-fit model on a solid statistical basis. By combining the Fermi-LAT observations of 490 blazars, we determine the γ-ray-inferred level of EBL for various state-of-the-art EBL models. We discuss the EBL level obtained from the spectra of both BL Lacs and flat spectrum radio quasars (FSRQ) in order to investigate the impact of internal absorption in different classes of objects. We further scrutinize constraints on the EBL evolution from γ-ray observations by reconstructing the EBL level in four redshift ranges, up to z ∼ 2.5. The approach implemented in this paper, carefully addressing the question of the modeling of the intrinsic emission at the source, can serve as a solid stepping stone for studies of hundreds of high-quality spectra acquired by next-generation γ-ray instruments.
Key words: astroparticle physics / galaxies: active / cosmology: observations / diffuse radiation / gamma rays: galaxies
© B. Biasuzzi et al. 2019
Open Access article, published by EDP Sciences, under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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