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The WISE/SDSS-selected hyper-luminous quasar (WISSH) survey is an extensive multi-band observing program (from millimeter wavelengths to hard X-rays) to investigate the role of nuclear activity in SMBH-galaxy self-regulated growth via extended outflows. Our ongoing project is designed to accurately probe the relationship between nuclear and host galaxy ISM properties in a unique sample of ~ 90 quasars at the brightest end of the AGN luminosity function (i.e., bolometric luminosity > 8e13 Lsun), and at the peak of their number density (z~2.5-3.5). This OAR-led project involves more than twenty researchers from Italy and foreign institutions.

The most relevant results obtained to date by WISSH are:

– the  discovery of highly accreting (i.e., Eddington ratios of ~0.3-3), ten billion solar masses SMBHs producing extremely powerful (up to ~ 4% of the bolometric luminosity) ionized outflows;

– the co-existence of very intense star formation rates (SFR up to few thousands solar masses per year) and prodigious AGN luminosities;

– the relative X-ray weakness of WISSH quasars when compared to IR and optical properties, with respect to less powerful, well-studied AGN typically sampled in medium/deep survey fields. 

The WISSH project is based on ALMA, Herschel/SPIRE, WISE, ESO/SINFONI, ESO/X-Shooter, LBT/LUCI, 2MASS, SDSS, Chandra and XMM-Newton data. 

A first series of WISSH papers is planned for completion in 2016, i.e.,

M. Bischetti et al.  “Paper I. Powerful ionized outflows in hyper-luminous quasars”

S. Martocchia et al.  “Paper II. X-ray properties of hyper-luminous quasars”

F. Duras et al. “Paper III. Extreme AGN  power and star-formation rates“

G. Vietri et al. “Paper IV. Accretion and disk winds properties in the most luminous quasars“

L. Zappacosta et al. “Paper V. Variable broad emission line shifts” 

WISSH people at OAR: M. Bischetti,  A. Bongiorno, F. Duras, F. Fiore, S. Martocchia, E. Piconcelli, V. Testa, G. Vietri, L. Zappacosta.

Contact: Enrico Piconcelli (enrico.piconcelli@oa-roma.inaf.it)