Cosmological tests with the FSRQ gamma-ray luminosity function

Houdun Zeng, Fulvio Melia, Li Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The extensive catalogue of gamma-ray selected flat-spectrum radio quasars (FSRQs) produced by Fermi during a four-year survey has generated considerable interest in determining their gamma-ray luminosity function (GLF) and its evolution with cosmic time. In this paper, we introduce the novel idea of using this extensive database to test the differential volume expansion rate predicted by two specific models, the concordance ∧ cold darkmatter (∧CDM) and Rh = ct cosmologies. For this purpose, we use two well-studied formulations of the GLF, one based on pure luminosity evolution (PLE) and the other on a luminosity-dependent density evolution (LDDE). Using a Kolmogorov-Smirnov test on one-parameter cumulative distributions (in luminosity, redshift, photon index and source count), we confirm the results of earlier works showing that these data somewhat favour LDDE over PLE; we show that this is the case for both ∧CDM and Rh = ct. Regardless of which GLF one chooses, however, we also show that model selection tools very strongly favour Rh = ct over ∧CDM. We suggest that such population studies, though featuring a strong evolution in redshift, may none the less be used as a valuable independent check of other model comparisons based solely on geometric considerations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3094-3103
Number of pages10
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016


  • Cosmology: theory
  • Gamma-rays: general
  • Large-scale structure of Universe
  • Methods: statistical
  • Quasars: general

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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