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Discovery of a dual AGN at z ≃ 3.3 with 20 kpc separation

Husemann, B.; Worseck, G.; Arrigoni Battaia, F.; Shanks, T.

Discovery of a dual AGN at z ≃ 3.3 with 20 kpc separation Thumbnail


B. Husemann

G. Worseck

F. Arrigoni Battaia

T. Shanks


A prediction of the current paradigm of the hierarchical assembly of galaxies is the presence of supermassive dual black holes at separations of a few kpc or less. In this context, we report the detection of a narrow-line emitter within the extended Lyα nebula (~120 kpc diameter) of the luminous radio-quiet quasi-stellar object (QSO) LBQS 0302–0019 at z = 3.286. We identify several high-ionization narrow emission lines (He II, C IV, C III) associated with this point-like source, which we have named “Jil”, which is only ~20 kpc (2.̋9) away from the QSO in projection. Emission-line diagnostics confirm that the source is likely powered by photoionization of an obscured active galactic nucleus (AGN) three orders of magnitude fainter than the QSO. The system represents the tightest unobscured/obscured dual AGN currently known at z > 3, highlighting the power of MUSE to detect these elusive systems.


Husemann, B., Worseck, G., Arrigoni Battaia, F., & Shanks, T. (2018). Discovery of a dual AGN at z ≃ 3.3 with 20 kpc separation. Astronomy & Astrophysics, 610, Article L7.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 13, 2018
Online Publication Date Feb 20, 2018
Publication Date Feb 20, 2018
Deposit Date Mar 15, 2018
Publicly Available Date Mar 16, 2018
Journal Astronomy and astrophysics.
Print ISSN 0004-6361
Electronic ISSN 1432-0746
Publisher EDP Sciences
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 610
Article Number L7


Published Journal Article (668 Kb)

Copyright Statement
Reproduced with permission from Astronomy & Astrophysics, © ESO 2018

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