New Discoveries and Surprises Revealed through SALT Spectroscopy of the Unclassified Fermi-LAT Sources
2017 October 09
2017 November 15
The Fermi Space Telescope has detected 1444 objects which in the Fermi-3LAC catalogue are associated with extra-galactic sources (above galactic latitudes of b>10 degrees. While most are already associated with Flat Spectrum Radio Quasars (FSRQs) and BL Lacs, a significant fraction are associated with blazar-like sources that remain unclassified . We have undertaken optical spectroscopy and photometry of a selection of these sources from South African based telescopes. Optical spectroscopy has been used to classify these sources into FSRQs and BL Lac type objects as well as establish their redshifts. Photometric observations have searched for intraday and short--term variability in these sources. The results for four sources, 2FGL J0044.7-3702, 2FGL J0201.5-6626, 2FGL J0644.2-671 and 2FGL J0730.6-6607 are presented. In addition, long--term optical monitoring of known and candidate TeV blazars is being performed with the Watcher Robotic Telescope and a new photometric pipeline is being developed to allow for automated alerts of flaring sources which may be used to trigger follow-up observations. The preliminary results from this pipeline for PKS 1510-089 during 2015 are presented.