The Sloan Digital Sky Survey Reverberation Mapping Project: Sample Characterization

Yue Shen, Patrick B. Hall, Keith Horne, Guangtun Zhu, Ian McGreer, Torben Simm, Jonathan R. Trump, Karen Kinemuchi, W. N. Brandt, Paul J. Green, C. J. Grier, Hengxiao Guo, Luis C. Ho, Yasaman Homayouni, Linhua Jiang, Jennifer I.Hsiu Li, Eric Morganson, Patrick Petitjean, Gordon T. Richards, Donald P. SchneiderD. A. Starkey, Shu Wang, Ken Chambers, Nick Kaiser, Rolf Peter Kudritzki, Eugene Magnier, Christopher Waters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

110 Scopus citations


We present a detailed characterization of the 849 broad-line quasars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Reverberation Mapping (SDSS-RM) project. Our quasar sample covers a redshift range of 0.1 < z < 4.5 and is flux-limited to i PSF < 21.7 without any other cuts on quasar properties. The main sample characterization includes: (1) spectral measurements of the continuum and broad emission lines for individual objects from the coadded first-season spectroscopy in 2014, (2) identification of broad and narrow absorption lines in the spectra, and (3) optical variability properties for continuum and broad lines from multi-epoch spectroscopy. We provide improved systemic redshift estimates for all quasars and demonstrate the effects of the signal-to-noise ratio on the spectral measurements. We compile measured properties for all 849 quasars along with supplemental multi-wavelength data for subsets of our sample from other surveys. The SDSS-RM sample probes a diverse range in quasar properties and shows well-detected continuum and broad-line variability for many objects from first-season monitoring data. The compiled properties serve as the benchmark for follow-up work based on SDSS-RM data. The spectral fitting tools are made public along with this work.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number34
JournalAstrophysical Journal, Supplement Series
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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