A 10 deg2 Lyman α survey at z=8.8 with spectroscopic follow-up:strong constraints on the luminosity function and implications for other surveys

Matthee, Jorryt J. A. and Sobral, David and Swinbank, A. M. and Smail, Ian and Best, P. N. and Kim, Jae Woo and Franx, Marijn and Milvang-Jensen, Bo and Fynbo, Johan (2014) A 10 deg2 Lyman α survey at z=8.8 with spectroscopic follow-up:strong constraints on the luminosity function and implications for other surveys. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 440 (3). pp. 2375-2387. ISSN 0035-8711

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Abstract

Candidate galaxies at redshifts of z ~ 10 are now being found in extremely deep surveys, probing very small areas. As a consequence, candidates are very faint, making spectroscopic confirmation practically impossible. In order to overcome such limitations, we have undertaken the CF-HiZELS survey, which is a large-area, medium-depth near-infrared narrow-band survey targeted at z = 8.8 Lyman α (Lyα) emitters (LAEs) and covering 10 deg2 in part of the SSA22 field with the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT). We surveyed a comoving volume of 4.7 × 106 Mpc3 to a Lyα luminosity limit of 6.3 × 1043 erg s-1. We look for Lyα candidates by applying the following criteria: (i) clear emission-line source, (ii) no optical detections (ugriz from CFHTLS), (iii) no visible detection in the optical stack (ugriz > 27), (iv) visually checked reliable NBJ and J detections and (v) J - K ≤ 0. We compute photometric redshifts and remove a significant amount of dusty lower redshift line-emitters at z ~ 1.4 or 2.2. A total of 13 Lyα candidates were found, of which two are marked as strong candidates, but the majority have very weak constraints on their spectral energy distributions. Using follow-up observations with SINFONI/VLT, we are able to exclude the most robust candidates as LAEs. We put a strong constraint on the Lyα luminosity function at z ~ 9 and make realistic predictions for ongoing and future surveys. Our results show that surveys for the highest redshift LAEs are susceptible of multiple contaminations and that spectroscopic follow-up is absolutely necessary.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/3100/3103
Subjects:
ID Code:
77717
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
15 Jan 2016 09:42
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
09 Sep 2020 03:01