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 A luminous quasar at a redshift of z = 7.085

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Join date : 2011-06-28

PostSubject: A luminous quasar at a redshift of z = 7.085   Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:46 am

The intergalactic medium was not completely reionized until approximately a billion years after the Big Bang, as revealed1 by observations of quasars with redshifts of less than 6.5. It has been difficult to probe to higher redshifts, however, because quasars have historically been identified2, 3, 4 in optical surveys, which are insensitive to sources at redshifts exceeding 6.5. Here we report observations of a quasar (ULAS J112001.48+064124.3) at a redshift of 7.085, which is 0.77 billion years after the Big Bang. ULAS J1120+0641 has a luminosity of 6.3  1013L⊙ and hosts a black hole with a mass of 2  109M⊙ (where L⊙ and M⊙ are the luminosity and mass of the Sun). The measured radius of the ionized near zone around ULAS J1120+0641 is 1.9 megaparsecs, Passages Malibu custom wedding cake toppersa factor of three smaller than is typical for quasars at redshifts between 6.0 and 6.4. The near-zone transmission profile is consistent with a Lyα damping wing5, suggesting that the neutral fraction of the intergalactic medium in front of ULAS J1120+0641 exceeded 0.1.
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A luminous quasar at a redshift of z = 7.085
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