Dying of the light: An X-Ray fading cold quasar at z ∼ 0.405

Kevin C. Cooke, Allison Kirkpatrick, Michael Estrada, Hugo Messias, Alessandro Peca, Nico Cappelluti, Tonima Tasnim Ananna, Jason Brewster, Eilat Glikman, Stephanie La Massa, T. K.Daisy Leung, Jonathan R. Trump, Tracey Jane Turner, C. Megan Urry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Cold quasars are a rare subpopulation observed to host unobscured, X-ray luminous active galactic nuclei (AGN) while also retaining a cold gas supply fueling high star formation rates. These objects are interpreted as AGN early in their evolution. We present new SOFIA HAWC+ far-infrared observations, far-ultraviolet to far-infrared (FUV-FIR) photometry, and optical spectroscopy to characterize the accretion and star formation behavior in a cold quasar at z ∼ 0.405 (CQ 4479). CQ 4479 is a starburst galaxy with a predominantly young stellar population and a high gas mass fraction of ∼50%-70%. The AGN component has yet to become the dominant component of the FIR emission. We also find AGN bolometric luminosity that varies as a function of observation method and AGN region probed. Finally, we identify a candidate outflow feature corroborating the hypothesis that cold quasars have energetic feedback. This object presents an intriguing look into the early stages of AGN feedback and probes the rare phase where an AGN and cold gaseous component coexist.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number106
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Nov 10 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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