Volume 655, November 2021
|Number of page(s)||13|
|Published online||25 November 2021|
Jetted radio-quiet quasars at z > 5
INAF–Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera, via E. Bianchi 46, 23807 Merate, LC, Italy
2 INAF–Istituto di Radioastronomia, via P. Gobetti 101, 40129 Bologna, Italy
3 University of Bologna, Department of Physics and Astronomy, via P. Gobetti 93, 40129 Bologna, Italy
Accepted: 16 September 2021
We report on the JVLA observations of three high-redshift active galactic nuclei (AGNs) that have black hole masses estimated to be among the largest known. Two of them, SDSS J0100+2802 and SDSS J0306+1853 at redshift 6.326 and 5.363, respectively, are radio-quiet AGNs according to the classic definition, while the third (B2 1023+25 at z = 5.284) is a powerful blazar. The JVLA data clearly show a radio structure in the first source and a radio emission with a relatively steep radio spectrum in the second one, indicating the presence of a radio jet and a diffuse component. Therefore, being radio-quiet does not exclude the presence of a powerful relativistic jet, which has important consequences on population studies and on the ratio between jetted and non-jetted AGNs. We can estimate the viewing angle of these jets, and this allows us to find, albeit with some uncertainty, the density of black holes with a mass in excess of 1010 M⊙ at high redshifts. We found that their density in jetted AGNs is very large in the redshift bin 5–6 and comparable with the overall AGN population of the same optical luminosity. Jets might thus play a crucial role in the fast formation and evolution of the most massive black holes in the early Universe. They are more common than what is expected from wide radio surveys with milliJansky flux sensitivity. Deeper JVLA or very-long-baseline interferometry observations are key to discovering a possible relativistic jet population hiding in plain sight at very high redshift. The discovery of powerful relativistic jets associated with the most massive black holes in the early Universe revives the question: is the jet instrumental for a rapid growth of the black hole or, instead, is the black hole mass the main driver for the jet formation?
Key words: quasars: general / galaxies: jets / galaxies: nuclei / galaxies: active / accretion / accretion disks
© ESO 2021
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