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A gamma-ray determination of the Universe’s star formation history

S. Abdollahi M. Ackermann W.B. Atwood L. Baldini J. Ballet 1 G. Barbiellini D. Bastieri J. Becerra Gonzalez R. Bellazzini E. Bissaldi R.D. Blandford E.D. Bloom R. Bonino E. Bottacini S. Buson J. Bregeon 2 P. Bruel 3 R. Buehler R.A. Cameron R. Caputo P.A. Caraveo E. Cavazzuti E. Charles S. Chen C.C. Cheung G. Chiaro S. Ciprini J. Cohen-Tanugi 2 L.R. Cominsky J. Conrad D. Costantin S. Cutini F. d'Ammando F. de Palma S.W. Digel N. Di Lalla M. Di Mauro L. Di Venere C. Favuzzi S.J. Fegan 3 A. Franckowiak Y. Fukazawa S. Funk P. Fusco G. Gallardo Romero F. Gargano D. Gasparrini N. Giglietto F. Giordano M. Giroletti D. Green I.A. Grenier 1 L. Guillemot 4, 5 S. Guiriec D.H. Hartmann E. Hays D. Horan 3 G. Jóhannesson D. Kocevski M. Kuss S. Larsson L. Latronico J. Li F. Longo F. Loparco B. Lott 6 M.N. Lovellette P. Lubrano G.M. Madejski J.D. Magill S. Maldera A. Manfreda L. Marcotulli M.N. Mazziotta J.E. Mcenery M. Meyer P.F. Michelson T. Mizuno M.E. Monzani A. Morselli I.V. Moskalenko M. Negro E. Nuss 2 R. Ojha N. Omodei M. Orienti E. Orlando J.F. Ormes M. Palatiello D. Paneque J.S. Perkins M. Persic M. Pesce-Rollins V. Petrosian F. Piron 2 T.A. Porter J.R. Primack G. Principe S. Rainò R. Rando M. Razzano S. Razzaque A. Reimer O. Reimer P.M. Saz Parkinson C. Sgrò E.J. Siskind G. Spandre P. Spinelli D.J. Suson H. Tajima M. Takahashi J.B. Thayer L. Tibaldo 7 D.F. Torres E. Torresi G. Tosti A. Tramacere E. Troja J. Valverde 3 G. Vianello M. Vogel K. Wood G. Zaharijas
Abstract : The light emitted by all galaxies over the history of the Universe produces the extragalactic background light (EBL) at ultraviolet, optical, and infrared wavelengths. The EBL is a source of opacity for $\gamma$ rays via photon-photon interactions, leaving an imprint in the spectra of distant $\gamma$-ray sources. We measure this attenuation using {739} active galaxies and one gamma-ray burst detected by the {\it Fermi} Large Area Telescope. This allows us to reconstruct the evolution of the EBL and determine the star-formation history of the Universe over 90\% of cosmic time. Our star-formation history is consistent with independent measurements from galaxy surveys, peaking at redshift $z\sim2$. Upper limits of the EBL at the epoch of re-ionization suggest a turnover in the abundance of faint galaxies at $z\sim 6$.
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S. Abdollahi, M. Ackermann, W.B. Atwood, L. Baldini, J. Ballet, et al.. A gamma-ray determination of the Universe’s star formation history. Science, 2018, 362 (6418), pp.1031-1034. ⟨10.1126/science.aat8123⟩. ⟨hal-01991332⟩

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