Constraint on a variation of the proton-to-electron mass ratio from H2 absorption towards quasar Q2348−011

Authors

  • Julija Bagdonaite,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Physics and Astronomy, LaserLaB, VU University, De Boelelaan 1081, 1081 HV Amsterdam, the Netherlands
      E-mail: j.bagdonaite@vu.nl (JB); mmurphy@swin.edu.au (MTM); L.Kaper@uva.nl (LK); w.m.g.ubachs@vu.nl (WU)
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  • Michael T. Murphy,

    Corresponding author
    1. Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing, Swinburne University of Technology, Victoria 3122, Australia
      E-mail: j.bagdonaite@vu.nl (JB); mmurphy@swin.edu.au (MTM); L.Kaper@uva.nl (LK); w.m.g.ubachs@vu.nl (WU)
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  • Lex Kaper,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Physics and Astronomy, LaserLaB, VU University, De Boelelaan 1081, 1081 HV Amsterdam, the Netherlands
    2. Astronomical Institute Anton Pannekoek, Universiteit van Amsterdam, 1098 SJ Amsterdam, the Netherlands
      E-mail: j.bagdonaite@vu.nl (JB); mmurphy@swin.edu.au (MTM); L.Kaper@uva.nl (LK); w.m.g.ubachs@vu.nl (WU)
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  • Wim Ubachs

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Physics and Astronomy, LaserLaB, VU University, De Boelelaan 1081, 1081 HV Amsterdam, the Netherlands
      E-mail: j.bagdonaite@vu.nl (JB); mmurphy@swin.edu.au (MTM); L.Kaper@uva.nl (LK); w.m.g.ubachs@vu.nl (WU)
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E-mail: j.bagdonaite@vu.nl (JB); mmurphy@swin.edu.au (MTM); L.Kaper@uva.nl (LK); w.m.g.ubachs@vu.nl (WU)

ABSTRACT

Molecular hydrogen (H2) absorption features observed in the line of sight to Q2348−011 at redshift zabs≃ 2.426 are analysed for the purpose of detecting a possible variation of the proton-to-electron mass ratio μ≡mp/me. By its structure, Q2348−011 is the most complex analysed H2 absorption system at high redshift so far, featuring at least seven distinctly visible molecular velocity components. The multiple velocity components associated with each transition of H2 were modelled simultaneously by means of a comprehensive fitting method. The fiducial model resulted in Δμ/μ= (−0.68 ± 2.78) × 10−5, showing no sign that μ in this particular absorber is different from its current laboratory value. Although not as tight a constraint as other absorbers have recently provided, this result is consistent with the results from all previously analysed H2-bearing sightlines. Combining all such measurements yields a constraint of |Δμ/μ|≤ 10−5 for the redshift range z= 2–3.

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