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The luminosity function of quasars and its evolution: A comparison of optically selected quasars and quasars found in radio catalogs

Abstract

The luminosity function of quasars and its evolution are discussed, based on comparison of available data on optically selected quasars and quasars found in radio catalogs. It is assumed that the red shift of quasars is cosmological and the results are expressed in the framework of the Lambda = 0, Q sub Q = 1 cosmological model. The predictions of various density evolution laws are compared with observations of an optically selected sample of quasars and quasar samples from radio catalogs. The differences between the optical luminosity functions, the red shift distributions and the radio to optical luminosity ratios of optically selected quasars and radio quasars rule out luminosity functions where there is complete absence of correlation between radio and optical luminosities. These differences also imply that Schmidt's (1970) luminosity function, where there exists a statistical correlation between radio and optical luminosities, although may be correct for high red shift objects, disagrees with observation at low red shifts. These differences can be accounted for by postulating existence of two classes (1 and 2) of objects

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