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Astron. Astrophys. 339, L13-L16 (1998)

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Letter to the Editor

Detection of the lensing galaxy in HE 2149-2745 *

Sebastian Lopez, Olaf Wucknitz and Lutz Wisotzki

Hamburger Sternwarte, Universität Hamburg, Gojenbergsweg 112, D-21029 Hamburg, Germany (e-mail: slopez@hs.uni-hamburg.de)

Received 13 August 1998 / Accepted 14 September 1998


We have obtained new BVR -band images of the gravitationally lensed QSO pair HE 2149-2745 A,B (QSO redshift [FORMULA]; angular separation [FORMULA]), under [FORMULA] seeing conditions. Subtraction of a scaled point-spread-function reveals an extended object of angular size comparable to [FORMULA], and R magnitude of 20.4 lying between and equidistant to the QSOs. The geometry of the system leads us to interpret this object as the lensing agent responsible for the double QSO images. A fit to the galaxy surface brightness profile indicates an elliptical galaxy, which is further supported by the absence of Mg ii in absorption. The lensing galaxy is not detected in B and V. We discuss possible lens models for this geometry constrained by our observations and consequences for the mass and redshift of the lens.

Key words: quasars: individual: HE 2149 – 2745 – quasars: general – gravitational lensing

* Based on observations made at the European Southern Observatory, La Silla. Chile

Send offprint requests to: S. Lopez

© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1998

Online publication: September 30, 1998