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Broad Absorption Feature Detection in The Sixteenth SDSS Quasar Catalog (DR16Q)

Presentation #353.02 in the session “Computational Augmentation to Observations”.

Published onJan 11, 2021
Broad Absorption Feature Detection in The Sixteenth SDSS Quasar Catalog (DR16Q)

The final quasar catalog (DR16Q) from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey IV (SDSS-IV) extended Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (eBOSS) used automated algorithms to identify and characterize broad absorption features in quasar spectra. The full catalog is comprised of two files: a superset of 1,440,615 observations of objects targeted as quasars, and a quasar-only set of 750,414, including 225,082 new quasars that have not appeared in an SDSS data release before Data Release 16 (DR16). Identification and key characteristics generated by the automated algorithms were presented for 99,856 broad absorption-line quasars (BALs) and 35,686 damped Lyman alpha quasars (DLAs). A random sample of 10,000 spectra were selected, primarily from the eBOSS CORE targeting program, for visual inspection to confirm or correct automated classifications and redshifts of quasar spectra. We report on the successes and failures of the automated algorithms to detect the two primary categories of broad absorption features, BALs and DLAs, using the visually inspected random eBOSS sample. A summary of the full DR16Q catalog, including links to the catalog files and the paper, can be found at: This work was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, Office of High Energy Physics program under Award Number DE-SC0019022.


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