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The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasar Catalog: Sixteenth Data Release

Lyke, Brad W.; Higley, Alexandra N.; McLane, J.N.; Schurhammer, Danielle P.; Myers, Adam D.; Ross, Ashley J.; Dawson, Kyle; Chabanier, Solène; Martini, Paul; Busca, Nicolás G.; Mas des Bourboux, Hélion du; Salvato, Mara; Streblyanska, Alina; Zarrouk, Pauline; Burtin, Etienne; Anderson, Scott F.; Bautista, Julian; Bizyaev, Dmitry; Brandt, W.N.; Brinkmann, Jonathan; Brownstein, Joel R.; Comparat, Johan; Green, Paul; Macorra, Axel de la; Gutiérrez, Andrea Muñoz; Hou, Jiamin; Newman, Jeffrey A.; Palanque-Delabrouille, Nathalie; Pâris, Isabelle; Percival, Will J.; Petitjean, Patrick; Rich, James; Rossi, Graziano; Schneider, Donald P.; Smith, Alexander; Vivek, M.; Weaver, Benjamin Alan

The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasar Catalog: Sixteenth Data Release Thumbnail


Brad W. Lyke

Alexandra N. Higley

J.N. McLane

Danielle P. Schurhammer

Adam D. Myers

Ashley J. Ross

Kyle Dawson

Solène Chabanier

Paul Martini

Nicolás G. Busca

Hélion du Mas des Bourboux

Mara Salvato

Alina Streblyanska

Etienne Burtin

Scott F. Anderson

Julian Bautista

Dmitry Bizyaev

W.N. Brandt

Jonathan Brinkmann

Joel R. Brownstein

Johan Comparat

Paul Green

Axel de la Macorra

Andrea Muñoz Gutiérrez

Jiamin Hou

Jeffrey A. Newman

Nathalie Palanque-Delabrouille

Isabelle Pâris

Will J. Percival

Patrick Petitjean

James Rich

Graziano Rossi

Donald P. Schneider

Alexander Smith

M. Vivek

Benjamin Alan Weaver


We present the final Sloan Digital Sky Survey IV (SDSS-IV) quasar catalog from Data Release 16 of the extended Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (eBOSS). This catalog comprises the largest selection of spectroscopically confirmed quasars to date. The full catalog includes two subcatalogs (the current versions are DR16Q_v4 and DR16Q_Superset_v3 at a "superset" of all SDSS-IV/eBOSS objects targeted as quasars containing 1,440,615 observations and a quasar-only catalog containing 750,414 quasars, including 225,082 new quasars appearing in an SDSS data release for the first time, as well as known quasars from SDSS-I/II/III. We present automated identification and redshift information for these quasars alongside data from visual inspections for 320,161 spectra. The quasar-only catalog is estimated to be 99.8% complete with 0.3%–1.3% contamination. Automated and visual inspection redshifts are supplemented by redshifts derived via principal component analysis and emission lines. We include emission-line redshifts for Hα, Hβ, Mg ii, C iii], C iv, and Lyα. Identification and key characteristics generated by automated algorithms are presented for 99,856 broad absorption-line quasars and 35,686 damped Lyman alpha quasars. In addition to SDSS photometric data, we also present multiwavelength data for quasars from the Galaxy Evolution Explorer, UKIDSS, the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, FIRST, ROSAT/2RXS, XMM-Newton, and Gaia. Calibrated digital optical spectra for these quasars can be obtained from the SDSS Science Archive Server.


Lyke, B. W., Higley, A. N., McLane, J., Schurhammer, D. P., Myers, A. D., Ross, A. J., …Weaver, B. A. (2020). The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Quasar Catalog: Sixteenth Data Release. Astrophysical Journal Supplement, 250(1), Article 8.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jul 13, 2020
Online Publication Date Aug 27, 2020
Publication Date 2020-09
Deposit Date Oct 7, 2020
Publicly Available Date Oct 7, 2020
Journal Astrophysical Journal Supplement
Print ISSN 0067-0049
Electronic ISSN 1538-4365
Publisher American Astronomical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 250
Issue 1
Article Number 8


Published Journal Article (4.8 Mb)

Copyright Statement
© 2020. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.

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