Constraining the second half of reionization with the Lyman-$\beta$ forest
, , , , and .
(2019)cite arxiv:1912.05582Comment: 10 pages, 8 figures, 1 table. Submitted to MNRAS.

We present an analysis of the evolution of the Lyman-series forest into the epoch of reionization using cosmological radiative transfer simulations in a scenario where reionization ends late. We explore models with different midpoints of reionization and gas temperatures. We find that once the simulations have been calibrated to match the mean flux of the observed Lyman-$\alpha$ forest at $4 < z < 6$, they also naturally reproduce the distribution of effective optical depths of the Lyman-$\beta$ forest in this redshift range. We note that the tail of the largest optical depths that is most challenging to match corresponds to the long absorption trough of ULAS J0148+0600, which we have previously shown to be rare in our simulations. We consider the evolution of the Lyman-series forest out to higher redshifts, and show that future observations of the Lyman-$\beta$ forest at $z>6$ will discriminate between different reionization histories. The evolution of the Lyman-$\alpha$ and Lyman-$\gamma$ forests are less promising as a tool for pushing studies of reionization to higher redshifts due to the stronger saturation and foreground contamination, respectively.
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