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Broad absorption-line (BAL) features in quasar spectra reveal an unambiguous signature of energetic outflows from central supermassive black holes, and thus, BAL quasars are prime targets for investigating the potential process of luminous quasar feedback on galaxies. We analyzed the rest-UV spectrum of an "overlapping trough" iron low-ionization broad absorption-line quasar (FeLoBAL) SDSS J135246.37+423923.5 using the novel spectral synthesis code SimBAL and discovered an extraordinarily fast and energetic BAL outflow. Our analysis revealed outflow velocities reaching ∼ -38,000 km s-1 with a velocity width of ∼ 10,000 km s-1, which is the largest FeLoBAL outflow velocity measured to date. The column density of the outflow gas is log NH ∼ 23.2 (cm-1) with the log kinetic luminosity logLKE ∼ 48.1 (erg s-1), which exceeds the bolometric luminosity of the quasar and is energetic enough to effectively drive quasar feedback. The energy estimate for the outflow is far greater than the estimates from any BAL object previously reported. The object also shows "anomalous reddening" and a significant scattered component that we were able to model with SimBAL. We found the first definitive case for radiation filtering in an additional zero-velocity absorption component that required an absorbed continuum to produce the particular absorption lines observed (Mg ii, Al iii, and Al ii) without also producing the high-ionization lines such as C iv.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Citation of this paper:

Choi, Hyunseop, Karen M. Leighly, Donald M. Terndrup, Sarah C. Gallagher, and Gordon T. Richards. ‘Discovery of a Remarkably Powerful Broad Absorption-Line Quasar Outflow in SDSS J135246.37+423923.5’. The Astrophysical Journal 891, no. 1 (3 March 2020): 53.

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