HST Observations of the Host Galaxies of High Redshift Radio-Loud Quasars

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Session 59 -- General Properties of AGN
Oral presentation, Tuesday, 10, 1995, 10:00am - 11:30am

[59.04] HST Observations of the Host Galaxies of High Redshift Radio-Loud Quasars

M. D. Lehnert (IGPP/LLNL), W. van Bruegel (IGPP/LLNL), T. M. Heckman (JHU), G. K. Miley (Leiden)

Observations of radio-loud quasars at high redshifts are important in that they allow us to investigate the causes of the ``mass extinction'' of luminous quasars, the relationship between radio galaxies and radio-loud quasars, the conditions of the early universe, the interaction of radio plasma with the surrounding galactic material, and the evolution of the quasar environment with epoch. HST observations are crucial to resolving these issues in that it allows us to image the host galaxies and environments of high-z quasars at fractions of a present-day galaxy size ($<$ 1 kpc) and at similar angular resolutions as provided by the VLA. We imaged 5 high-redshift (z$\approx$2) radio-loud quasars using WFPC2 in the F555W broad-band filter and a narrow-band filter whose central wavelength corresponds to that of redshifted Ly$\alpha$. Our results agree with and extend previous ground-based results suggesting that the host galaxies are multi-component structures with complex morphologies, the individual components are generally very luminous, $\approx$$-$23 in F555W, and there seems to be an intimate relationship between the radio emission and the Ly$\alpha$ and rest-frame UV continuum emission.

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