We present measurements of the Baryon Acoustic Oscillation (BAO) scale in redshift-space using the clustering of quasars. We consider a sample of 147 000 quasars from the extended Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (eBOSS) distributed over 2044 square degrees with redshifts 0.8 < z < 2.2 and measure their spherically averaged clustering in both configuration and Fourier space. Our observational data set and the 1400 simulated realizations of the data set allow us to detect a preference for BAO that is greater than 2.8σ. We determine the spherically averaged BAO distance to z = 1.52 to 3.8 per cent precision: DV(z = 1.52) = 3843 ± 147(rd/rd, fid)Mpc. This is the first time the location of the BAO feature has been measured between redshifts 1 and 2. Our result is fully consistent with the prediction obtained by extrapolating the Planck flat ΛCDM best-fitting cosmology. All of our results are consistent with basic large-scale structure (LSS) theory, confirming quasars to be a reliable tracer of LSS, and provide a starting point for numerous cosmological tests to be performed with eBOSS quasar samples. We combine our result with previous, independent, BAO distance measurements to construct an updated BAO distance-ladder. Using these BAO data alone and marginalizing over the length of the standard ruler, we find ΩΛ > 0 at 6.6σ significance when testing a ΛCDM model with free curvature.
- cosmology: observations
- dark energy
- distance scale
- large-scale structure of Universe