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          Institute: MPI für Astronomie     Collection: Publikationen_mpia     Display Documents



ID: 693701.0, MPI für Astronomie / Publikationen_mpia
Millijansky radio variability in SDSS Stripe 82
Authors:Hodge, J. A.; Becker, R. H.; White, R. L.; Richards, G. T.
Date of Publication (YYYY-MM-DD):2013
Title of Journal:The Astrophysical Journal
Volume:769
Issue / Number:2
Start Page:id. 125 (19 pp)
Audience:Not Specified
Abstract / Description:We report on a blind survey for extragalactic radio variability that was carried out by comparing two epochs of data from the Faint Images of the Radio Sky at Twenty centimeters survey with a third epoch from a new 1.4 GHz survey of SDSS Stripe 82. The three epochs are spaced seven years apart and have an overlapping area of 60 deg2. We uncover 89 variable sources down to the millijansky level, 75 of which are newly identified, and we find no evidence for transient phenomena. This new sample of variable sources allows us to infer an upper limit to the mean characteristic timescale of active galactic nucleus radio variability of 14 yr. We find that only 1% of extragalactic sources have fractional variability f var > 3, while 44% of Galactic sources vary by this much. The variable sample contains a larger fraction of quasars than a comparable non-variable control sample, though the majority of the variable sources appear to be extended galaxies in the optical. This implies that either quasars are not the dominant contributor to the variability of the sample, or that the deep optical data allow us to detect the host galaxies of some low-z quasars. We use the new, higher resolution data to report on the morphology of the variable sources. Finally, we show that the fraction of sources that are variable remains constant or increases at low flux densities. This may imply that next generation radio surveys with telescopes like Australian Square Kilometer Array Pathfinder and MeerKAT will see a constant or even increasing fraction of variable sources down into the sub-millijansky regime.
Free Keywords:quasars: general; radio continuum: galaxies; surveys
External Publication Status:published
Document Type:Article
Communicated by:N. N.
Affiliations:MPI für Astronomie
Identifiers:ISSN:0004-637X
URL:http://cdsads.u-strasbg.fr/abs/2013ApJ...769..125H
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