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|A radio census of nuclear activity in nearby galaxies|
In order to determine the incidence of black hole accretion-drivennuclear activity in nearby galaxies, as manifested by their radioemission, we have carried out a high-resolution Multi-ElementRadio-Linked Interferometer Network (MERLIN) survey of LINERs andcomposite LINER/Hii galaxies from a complete magnitude-limited sample ofbright nearby galaxies (Palomar sample) with unknown arcsecond-scaleradio properties. There are fifteen radio detections, of which three arenew subarcsecond-scale radio core detections, all being candidate AGN.The detected galaxies supplement the already known low-luminosity AGN -low-luminosity Seyferts, LINERs and composite LINER/Hii galaxies - inthe Palomar sample. Combining all radio-detected Seyferts, LINERs andcomposite LINER/Hii galaxies (LTS sources), we obtain an overall radiodetection rate of 54% (22% of all bright nearby galaxies) and weestimate that at least ~50% (~20% of all bright nearby galaxies) aretrue AGN. The radio powers of the LTS galaxies allow the construction ofa local radio luminosity function. By comparing the luminosity functionwith those of selected moderate-redshift AGN, selected from the 2dF/NVSSsurvey, we find that LTS sources naturally extend the RLF of powerfulAGN down to powers of about 10 times that of Sgr A*.
|The X-ray emission properties and the dichotomy in the central stellar cusp shapes of early-type galaxies|
The Hubble Space Telescope has revealed a dichotomy in the centralsurface brightness profiles of early-type galaxies, which havesubsequently been grouped into two families: core, boxy, anisotropicsystems; and cuspy (`power-law'), discy, rotating ones. Here weinvestigate whether a dichotomy is also present in the X-ray propertiesof the two families. We consider both their total soft emission(LSX,tot), which is a measure of the galactic hot gascontent, and their nuclear hard emission (LHX,nuc), mostlycoming from Chandra observations, which is a measure of the nuclearactivity. At any optical luminosity, the highest LSX,totvalues are reached by core galaxies; this is explained by their beingthe central dominant galaxies of groups, subclusters or clusters, inmany of the logLSX,tot (ergs-1) >~ 41.5 cases.The highest LHX,nuc values, similar to those of classicalactive galactic nuclei (AGNs), in this sample are hosted only by core orintermediate galaxies; at low luminosity AGN levels, LHX,nucis independent of the central stellar profile shape. The presence ofoptical nuclei (also found by HST) is unrelated to the level ofLHX,nuc, even though the highest LHX,nuc are allassociated with optical nuclei. The implications of these findings forgalaxy evolution and accretion modalities at the present epoch arediscussed.
|A dichotomy in the orientation of dust and radio jets in nearby low-power radio galaxies|
We examine the properties of central dust in nearby quiescent and activeearly-type galaxies. The active galaxies are low-power radio galaxieswith Fanaroff & Riley type I or I/II radio jets. We focus on (a) thecomparison of the dust distributions in the active and quiescent galaxysamples; and (b) the relation between the radio jet and dustorientations. Our main observational conclusions are: (i) in line withprevious studies, the dust detection rate is higher in radio-jetgalaxies than in non radio-jet galaxies; (ii) radio galaxies contain ahigher fraction of regular dust “ellipses” compared toquiescent galaxies which contain more often irregular dustdistributions; (iii) the morphology, size and orientation of dustellipses and lanes in quiescent early-types and active early-types withkpc-scale radio jets is very similar; (iv) dust ellipses are alignedwith the major axis of the galaxy, dust lanes do not show a preferredalignment except for large (>kpc) dust lanes which are aligned withthe minor axis of the galaxy; and (v) as projected on the sky, jets donot show a preferred orientation relative to the galaxy major axis (andhence dust ellipses), but jets are preferentially perpendicular to dustlanes. We show that the dust ellipses are consistent with being nearlycircular thin disks viewed at random viewing angles. The lanes arelikely warped dust structures, which may be in the process of settlingdown to become regular disks or are being perturbed by anon-gravitational force. We use the observed dust-jet orientations toconstrain the three-dimensional angle θDJ between jetand dust. For dust-lane galaxies, the jet is approximately perpendicularto the dust structure, while for dust-ellipse galaxies there is a muchwider distribution of θDJ. We discuss two scenariosthat could explain the dust/jet/galaxy orientation dichotomy. If lanesare indeed settling, then the jet orientation apparently is roughlyaligned with the angular momentum of the dust before it settles. Iflanes are perturbed by a jet-related force, it appears that it causesthe dust to move out of its equilibrium plane in the galaxy into a planewhich is perpendicular to the jet.
|Nuclear activity and the dynamics of elliptical galaxies|
This Letter looks for any correlation between the internal dynamics ofelliptical galaxies and the relatively mild nuclear activity found inmany such systems. We show that there is such a relation in the sensethat the active ellipticals tend to be significantly less rotationallysupported than their inactive cousins. The correlation can partly berelated to the galaxies' luminosities: the brightest galaxies tend to bemore active and less rotationally supported. However, even at lowerluminosities the active and inactive galaxies seem to havesystematically different dynamics. This variation suggests that thereare significant large-scale structural differences between active andinactive elliptical galaxies, and hence that the existence of both typesof system cannot just be the result of random sporadic nuclear activity.
|The Halo Mass Distribution of Field and Cluster Early-Type Galaxies|
We describe an ongoing program to study the halo kinematics of a broadsample of early-type galaxies using integrated light measurementsobtained with the Hobby-Eberly and Gemini Telescopes.The Hobby-Eberly Telescope is operated by McDonald Observatory on behalfof the University of Texas at Austin, The Pennsylvania State University,Stanford University, Ludwid-Maximilians-Universit at Munchen, andGeorg-August-Universitat Gottingen.Part of this project is based on observations obtained at the GeminiObservatory, which is operated by AURA, INC., under a cooperativeagreement with the NSF on behalf of the Gemini Partnership: The NSF(USA), PPARC (UK), NRC (Canada), CONICYT (Chile), ARC (Australia), CNPq(Brazil) and CONICET (Argentina ).
|K-band Properties of Galaxy Clusters and Groups: Brightest Cluster Galaxies and Intracluster Light|
We investigate the near-infrared K-band properties of the brightestcluster galaxies (BCGs) in a sample of 93 X-ray galaxy clusters andgroups, using data from the Two Micron All Sky Survey. Our clustersample spans a factor of 70 in mass, making it sensitive to any clustermass-related trends. We derive the cumulative radial distribution forthe BCGs in the ensemble and find that 70% of the BCGs are centered inthe cluster to within 5% of the virial radius r200; thisquantifies earlier findings that BCG position coincides with the clustercenter as defined by the X-ray emission peak. We study the correlationsbetween the luminosity of the BCGs (Lb) and the mass and theluminosity of the host clusters, finding that BCGs in more massiveclusters are more luminous than their counterparts in less massivesystems and that the BCGs become less important in the overall clusterlight (L200) as cluster mass increases. By examining a largesample of optically selected groups, we find that these correlationshold for galactic systems less massive than our clusters(<3×1013 Msolar). From the differencesbetween luminosity functions in high- and low-mass clusters, we arguethat BCGs grow in luminosity mainly by merging with other luminousgalaxies as the host clusters grow hierarchically; the decreasing BCGluminosity fraction (Lb/L200) with cluster massindicates that the rate of luminosity growth in BCGs is slow compared tothe rate at which clusters acquire galaxy light from the field or othermerging clusters. Utilizing the observed correlation between the clusterluminosity and mass and a merger tree model for cluster formation, weestimate that the amount of intracluster light (ICL) increases withcluster mass; our calculations suggest that in 1015Msolar clusters more than 50% of total stellar mass is inICL, making the role of ICL very important in the evolution andthermodynamic history of clusters. The cluster baryon fractionaccounting for the ICL is in good agreement with the value derived fromcosmic microwave background observations. The inclusion of ICL reducesthe discrepancy between the observed cluster cold baryon fraction andthat found in hydrodynamical simulations. Based on the observed ironabundance in the intracluster medium, we find that the ICL predicted byour model, together with the observed galaxy light, match the ironmass-to-light ratio expected from simple stellar population models,provided that the Salpeter initial mass function is adopted. The ICLalso makes it easier to produce the ``iron excess'' found in the centralregions of cool-core clusters.
|Revised Rates of Stellar Disruption in Galactic Nuclei|
We compute rates of tidal disruption of stars by supermassive blackholes in galactic nuclei, using downwardly revised black hole massesfrom the MBH-σ relation. In galaxies with steep nucleardensity profiles, which dominate the overall event rate, the disruptionfrequency varies inversely with assumed black hole mass. We compute atotal rate for nondwarf galaxies of ~10-5 yr-1Mpc-3, about a factor of 10 higher than in earlier studies.Disruption rates are predicted to be highest in nucleated dwarfgalaxies, assuming that such galaxies contain black holes. Monitoring ofa rich galaxy cluster for a few years could rule out the existence ofintermediate-mass black holes in dwarf galaxies.
|Hubble Space Telescope Observations of cD Galaxies and Their Globular Cluster Systems|
We have used WFPC2 on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) to obtain F450Wand F814W images of four cD galaxies (NGC 541 in Abell 194, NGC 2832 inAbell 779, NGC 4839 in Abell 1656, and NGC 7768 in Abell 2666) in therange 5400 km s-1<~cz<~8100 km s-1. For NGC541, the HST data are supplemented by ground-based B and I imagesobtained with FORS1 on the Very Large Telescope. We present surfacebrightness and color profiles for each of the four galaxies, confirmingtheir classification as cD galaxies. Isophotal analyses reveal thepresence of subarcsecond-scale dust disks in the nuclei of NGC 541 andNGC 7768. Despite the extreme nature of these galaxies in terms ofspatial extent and luminosity, our analysis of their globular cluster(GC) systems reveals no anomalies in terms of specific frequencies,metallicity gradients, average metallicities, or the metallicity offsetbetween the globular clusters and the host galaxy. We show that thelatter offset appears roughly constant at Δ[Fe/H]~0.8 dex forearly-type galaxies spanning a luminosity range of roughly 4 orders ofmagnitude. We combine the globular cluster metallicity distributionswith an empirical technique described in a series of earlier papers toinvestigate the form of the protogalactic mass spectrum in these cDgalaxies. We find that the observed GC metallicity distributions areconsistent with those expected if cD galaxies form through thecannibalism of numerous galaxies and protogalactic fragments that formedtheir stars and globular clusters before capture and disruption.However, the properties of their GC systems suggest that dynamicalfriction is not the primary mechanism by which these galaxies areassembled. We argue that cD's instead form rapidly, via hierarchicalmerging, prior to cluster virialization.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASAcontract NAS 5-26555Based in part on observations obtained at the European SouthernObservatory, for VLT program 68.D-0130(A).
|X-ray scaling properties of early-type galaxies|
We present an analysis of 39 X-ray luminous early-type galaxies observedwith the ROSAT PSPC. Using multicomponent spectral and spatial fits tothese data, we have measured halo abundance, temperature, luminosity andsurface brightness profile. We compare these measurements to similarresults from galaxy groups and clusters, fitting a number of relationscommonly used in the study of these larger objects. In particular, wefind that the σ-TX relation for our sample is similarto that reported for clusters, consistent with βspec= 1,and that the LX-TX relation has a steep slope(gradient 4.8 +/- 0.7) comparable with that found for galaxy groups.Assuming isothermality, we construct three-dimensional models of ourgalaxies, allowing us to measure gas entropy. We find no correlationbetween gas entropy and system mass, but do find a trend forlow-temperature systems to have reduced gas fractions. We conclude thatthe galaxies in our sample are likely to have developed their haloesthrough galaxy winds, influenced by their surrounding environment.
|Infrared Observations of Galaxies in the Local Universe. II. 391 Calibrated Images with Photometric and Structural Measurements|
This paper presents empirical results from a deep imaging survey ofgalaxies in the local universe at the J and Ks wavelengths.Three hundred ninety-one images have been obtained and calibrated usingthe same camera and filter set with the Steward Observatory 1.6 m KuiperTelescope on Mount Bigelow and the 2.3 m Bok Telescope on Kitt Peak. Thelimiting magnitude is typically 22 mag arcsec-1 at J and 21mag arcsec-1 at Ks. The central surfacebrightness, apparent magnitudes, sizes, scale lengths, and inclinationsare tabulated from measurements made using these data. The purpose ofthis paper is to provide basic near-infrared data on a variety of galaxytypes.
|Tidally Triggered Star Formation in Close Pairs of Galaxies. II. Constraints on Burst Strengths and Ages|
Galaxy-galaxy interactions rearrange the baryons in galaxies and triggersubstantial star formation; the aggregate effects of these interactionson the evolutionary histories of galaxies in the universe are poorlyunderstood. We combine B- and R-band photometry and optical spectroscopyto estimate the strengths and timescales of bursts of triggered starformation in the centers of 190 galaxies in pairs and compact groups.Based on an analysis of the measured colors and EW(Hα), wecharacterize the preexisting and triggered populations separately. Thebest-fitting burst scenarios assume stronger reddening corrections forline emission than for the continuum and continuous star formationlasting for >~100 Myr. The most realistic scenarios require aninitial mass function that is deficient in the highest mass stars. Thecolor of the preexisting stellar population is the most significantsource of uncertainty. Triggered star formation contributessubstantially (probably >~50%) to the R-band flux in the centralregions of several galaxies; tidal tails do not necessarily accompanythis star formation. Many of the galaxies in our sample have bluercenters than outskirts, suggesting that pre- or nonmerger interactionsmay lead to evolution along the Hubble sequence. These objects wouldappear blue and compact at higher redshifts; the older, redder outskirtsof the disks would be difficult to detect. Our data indicate thatgalaxies with larger separations on the sky contain weaker, and probablyolder, bursts of star formation on average. However, confirmation ofthese trends requires further constraints on the colors of the olderstellar populations and on the reddening for individual galaxies.
|Lensing and the Centers of Distant Early-Type Galaxies|
Gravitational lensing provides a unique probe of the inner 10-1000 pc ofdistant galaxies (z~0.2-1). Theoretical studies have predicted that eachstrong lens system should have a faint image near the center of the lensgalaxy, which should, in principle, be visible in radio lenses but hasnever been detected. We study the predicted ``core'' images using modelsderived from the stellar distributions in nearby early-type galaxies. Wefind that realistic lens galaxies produce a remarkably wide range ofcore images, with magnifications spanning some 6 orders of magnitude.More concentrated galaxies produce fainter core images, although notwith any model-independent relation between the galaxy properties andthe core images. Some real galaxies have diffuse cores that should yieldbright core images (magnification μcore>~0.1), but morecommon are galaxies that yield faint core images(μcore<~0.001). Thus, stellar mass distributions aloneare probably concentrated enough to explain the lack of observed coreimages. Observational sensitivity may need to improve by an order ofmagnitude before detections of core images become common. Two-imagelenses should tend to have brighter core images than four-image lenses,so they will be the better targets for finding core images andexploiting these tools for studying the central mass distributions ofdistant galaxies.
|The X-Ray Properties of Nearby Abell Clusters from the ROSAT All-Sky Survey: The Sample and Correlations with Optical Properties|
We present an analysis of the X-ray emission for a complete sample of288 Abell clusters spanning the redshift range 0.016<=z<=0.09 fromthe ROSAT All-Sky Survey. This sample is based on our 20 cm VLA surveyof nearby Abell clusters. We find an X-ray detection rate of 83%. Wereport cluster X-ray fluxes and luminosities and two different fluxratios indicative of the concentration and extent of the emission. Weexamine correlations between the X-ray luminosity, Abell richness, andBautz-Morgan and Rood-Sastry cluster morphologies. We find a strongcorrelation between LX and cluster richness coupled with adependence on the optical morphological type. These results areconsistent with the observed scatter between X-ray luminosity andtemperature and a large fraction of cooling flows. For each clusterfield, we also report the positions, peak X-ray fluxes, and flux ratiosof all X-ray peaks above 3 σ significance within a box of2×2h-175 Mpc centered on Abell's position.
|Hubble Space Telescope Imaging of Brightest Cluster Galaxies|
We used the Hubble Space Telescope Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 toobtain I-band images of the centers of 81 brightest cluster galaxies(BCGs), drawn from a volume-limited sample of nearby BCGs. The imagesshow a rich variety of morphological features, including multiple ordouble nuclei, dust, stellar disks, point-source nuclei, and centralsurface brightness depressions. High-resolution surface brightnessprofiles could be inferred for 60 galaxies. Of those, 88% havewell-resolved cores. The relationship between core size and galaxyluminosity for BCGs is indistinguishable from that of Faber et al.(published in 1997, hereafter F97) for galaxies within the sameluminosity range. However, the core sizes of the most luminous BCGs fallbelow the extrapolation of the F97 relationshiprb~L1.15V. A shallower relationship,rb~L0.72V, fits both the BCGs and thecore galaxies presented in F97. Twelve percent of the BCG sample lacks awell-resolved core; all but one of these BCGs have ``power law''profiles. Some of these galaxies have higher luminosities than anypower-law galaxy identified by F97 and have physical upper limits onrb well below the values observed for core galaxies of thesame luminosity. These results support the idea that the centralstructure of early-type galaxies is bimodal in its physical propertiesbut also suggest that there exist high-luminosity galaxies withpower-law profiles (or unusually small cores). The BCGs in the lattercategory tend to fall at the low end of the BCG luminosity function andtend to have low values of the quantity α (the logarithmic slopeof the metric luminosity as a function of radius, at 10 kpc). Sincetheoretical calculations have shown that the luminosities andα-values of BCGs grow with time as a result of accretion, thissuggests a scenario in which elliptical galaxies evolve from power-lawprofiles to core profiles through accretion and merging. This isconsistent with theoretical scenarios that invoke the formation ofmassive black hole binaries during merger events. More generally, theprevalence of large cores in the great majority of BCGs, which arelikely to have experienced several generations of galaxy merging,underscores the role of a mechanism that creates and preserves cores insuch merging events.Based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope,obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated bythe Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., underNASA contract NAS 5-26555. These observations are associated withproposal 8683.
|A comparison of stellar populations in galaxy spheroids across a wide range of Hubble types|
We present line-strengths and kinematics from the central regions of 32galaxies with Hubble types ranging from E to Sbc. Spectral indices,based on the Lick system, are measured in the optical and near-infrared(NIR). The 24 indices measured, in conjunction with models of theeffects of varying abundance ratios, permit the breaking ofage/metallicity degeneracy, and allow estimation of enhancements inspecific light elements (particularly C and Mg). The large range ofHubble types observed allows direct comparison of line-strengths in thecentres of early-type galaxies (E and S0) with those in spiral bulges,free from systematic differences that have plagued comparisons ofresults from different studies. Our sample includes field and Virgocluster galaxies. For early-type galaxies our data are consistent withpreviously reported trends of Mg2 and Mgb with velocitydispersion. In spiral bulges we find trends in all indices with velocitydispersion. We estimate luminosity-weighted ages, metallicities andheavy-element abundance ratios (enhancements) from optical indices.These show that bulges are less enhanced in light (α-capture)elements and have lower average age than early-type galaxies. Trendsinvolving age and metallicity also differ sharply between early and latetypes. An anticorrelation exists between age and metallicity in earlytypes, while, in bulges, metallicity is correlated with velocitydispersion. We consider the implications of these findings for models ofthe formation of these galaxies. We find that primordial collapse modelsof galaxy formation are ruled out by our observations, while severalpredictions of hierarchical clustering (merger) models are confirmed.
|A catalogue and analysis of local galaxy ages and metallicities|
We have assembled a catalogue of relative ages, metallicities andabundance ratios for about 150 local galaxies in field, group andcluster environments. The galaxies span morphological types from cD andellipticals, to late-type spirals. Ages and metallicities were estimatedfrom high-quality published spectral line indices using Worthey &Ottaviani (1997) single stellar population evolutionary models. Theidentification of galaxy age as a fourth parameter in the fundamentalplane (Forbes, Ponman & Brown 1998) is confirmed by our largersample of ages. We investigate trends between age and metallicity, andwith other physical parameters of the galaxies, such as ellipticity,luminosity and kinematic anisotropy. We demonstrate the existence of agalaxy age-metallicity relation similar to that seen for local galacticdisc stars, whereby young galaxies have high metallicity, while oldgalaxies span a large range in metallicities. We also investigate theinfluence of environment and morphology on the galaxy age andmetallicity, especially the predictions made by semi-analytichierarchical clustering models (HCM). We confirm that non-clusterellipticals are indeed younger on average than cluster ellipticals aspredicted by the HCM models. However we also find a trend for the moreluminous galaxies to have a higher [Mg/Fe] ratio than the lowerluminosity galaxies, which is opposite to the expectation from HCMmodels.
|Nuclear Cusps and Cores in Early-Type Galaxies as Relics of Binary Black Hole Mergers|
We present an analysis of the central cusp slopes and core parameters ofearly-type galaxies using a large database of surface brightnessprofiles obtained from Hubble Space Telescope observations. We examinethe relation between the central cusp slopes, core parameters, and blackhole masses in early-type galaxies, in light of two models that attemptto explain the formation of cores and density cusps via the dynamicalinfluence of black holes. Contrary to the expectations fromadiabatic-growth models, we find that the cusp slopes do not steepenwith increasing black hole mass fraction. Moreover, a comparison ofkinematic black hole mass measurements with the masses predicted by theadiabatic models shows that they overpredict the masses by a factor of~3. Simulations involving binary black hole mergers predict that boththe size of the core and the central mass deficit correlate with thefinal black hole mass. These relations are qualitatively supported bythe present data.
|Evolution of Star-forming and Active Galaxies in Nearby Clusters|
We have used optical spectroscopy to investigate the active galaxypopulations in a sample of 20 nearby Abell clusters. The targets wereidentified on the basis of 1.4 GHz radio emission, which identifies themas either active galactic nuclei (AGNs) or galaxies forming stars atrates comparable to or greater than that of the Milky Way. The spectrawere used to characterize the galaxies via their emission and absorptionfeatures. The spectroscopy results reveal a significant population ofstar-forming galaxies with large amounts of nuclear dust extinction.This extinction eliminates bluer emission lines such as [O II] from thespectra of these galaxies, meaning their star formation could easily beoverlooked in studies that focus on such features. Around 20% of thecluster star-forming galaxies have spectra of this type. The radialdistributions of active galaxies in clusters show a strong segregationbetween star-forming galaxies and AGNs, with star-forming galaxiesbroadly distributed and AGNs preferentially in the cluster cores. Theradial distribution of the dusty star-forming galaxies is more centrallyconcentrated than the star-forming galaxies in general, which arguesthat they are a consequence of some cluster environmental effect.Furthermore, we note that such galaxies may be identified using their4000 Å break strengths. We find that discrepancies in reportedradio luminosity functions for AGNs are likely the result ofclassification differences. There exists a large population of clustergalaxies whose radio fluxes, far-infrared fluxes, and optical magnitudessuggest their radio emission may be powered by stars yet whose spectralack emission lines. Understanding the nature of these galaxies iscritical to assessing the importance of AGNs in the radio luminosityfunction at low luminosities. We also find that regardless of thispopulation, the crossover point where the radio luminosity function iscomposed equally of star-forming galaxies and AGNs occurs at lowerluminosities in clusters than in the field. This is likely a simpleconsequence of the reduction in star formation in cluster galaxies andthe morphological mix in clusters compared with the field.Based in part on observations obtained with the Apache Point Observatory(APO) 3.5 m telescope, which is owned and operated by the AstrophysicalResearch Consortium.
|Bar Galaxies and Their Environments|
The prints of the Palomar Sky Survey, luminosity classifications, andradial velocities were used to assign all northern Shapley-Ames galaxiesto either (1) field, (2) group, or (3) cluster environments. Thisinformation for 930 galaxies shows no evidence for a dependence of barfrequency on galaxy environment. This suggests that the formation of abar in a disk galaxy is mainly determined by the properties of theparent galaxy, rather than by the characteristics of its environment.
|The UZC-SSRS2 Group Catalog|
We apply a friends-of-friends algorithm to the combined Updated ZwickyCatalog and Southern Sky Redshift Survey to construct a catalog of 1168groups of galaxies; 411 of these groups have five or more members withinthe redshift survey. The group catalog covers 4.69 sr, and all groupsexceed the number density contrast threshold, δρ/ρ=80. Wedemonstrate that the groups catalog is homogeneous across the twounderlying redshift surveys; the catalog of groups and their membersthus provides a basis for other statistical studies of the large-scaledistribution of groups and their physical properties. The medianphysical properties of the groups are similar to those for groupsderived from independent surveys, including the ESO Key Programme andthe Las Campanas Redshift Survey. We include tables of groups and theirmembers.
|A catalogue and analysis of X-ray luminosities of early-type galaxies|
We present a catalogue of X-ray luminosities for 401 early-typegalaxies, of which 136 are based on newly analysed ROSAT PSPC pointedobservations. The remaining luminosities are taken from the literatureand converted to a common energy band, spectral model and distancescale. Using this sample we fit the LX:LB relationfor early-type galaxies and find a best-fit slope for the catalogue of~2.2. We demonstrate the influence of group-dominant galaxies on the fitand present evidence that the relation is not well modelled by a singlepower-law fit. We also derive estimates of the contribution to galaxyX-ray luminosities from discrete-sources and conclude that they provideLdscr/LB~=29.5ergs-1LBsolar-1. Wecompare this result with luminosities from our catalogue. Lastly, weexamine the influence of environment on galaxy X-ray luminosity and onthe form of the LX:LB relation. We conclude thatalthough environment undoubtedly affects the X-ray properties ofindividual galaxies, particularly those in the centres of groups andclusters, it does not change the nature of whole populations.
|Structural evolution in elliptical galaxies: the age-shape relation|
We test the hypothesis that the apparent axial ratio of an ellipticalgalaxy is correlated with the age of its stellar population. We findthat old ellipticals (with estimated ages t>7.5Gyr) are rounder onaverage than younger ellipticals. The statistical significance of thisshape difference is greatest at small radii; a Kolmogorov-Smirnov testcomparing the axial ratios of the two populations at R=Re/16yields a statistical significance greater than 99.96 per cent. Therelation between age and apparent shape is linked to the core/power-lawsurface brightness profile dichotomy. Core ellipticals have olderstellar populations, on average, than power-law ellipticals and arerounder in their inner regions. Our findings are consistent with ascenario in which power-law ellipticals are formed in gas-rich mergers,while core ellipticals form in dissipationless mergers, with coresformed and maintained by the influence of a binary black hole.
|Black hole demographics from the M•-σ relation|
We analyse a sample of 32 galaxies for which a dynamical estimate of themass of the hot stellar component, Mbulge, is available. Foreach of these galaxies, we calculate the mass of the central black hole,M•, using the tight empirical correlation betweenM• and bulge stellar velocity dispersion. The frequencyfunction N[log(M•Mbulge)] is reasonably welldescribed as a Gaussian with~-2.90 and standarddeviation ~0.45 the implied mean ratio of black hole mass to bulge massis a factor of ~5 smaller than generally quoted in the literature. Wepresent marginal evidence for a lower, average black hole mass fractionin more massive galaxies. The total mass density in black holes in thelocal Universe is estimated to be ~5×105MsolarMpc-3, consistent withthat inferred from high-redshift (z~2) active galactic nuclei.
|The Radio Galaxy Populations of Nearby Northern Abell Clusters|
We report on the use of the NRAO VLA Sky Survey (NVSS) to identify radiogalaxies in 18 nearby Abell clusters. The listings extend from the coresof the clusters out to radii of 3 h-175 Mpc, whichcorresponds to 1.5 Abell radii and approximately 4 orders of magnitudein galaxy density. To create a truly useful catalog, we have collectedoptical spectra for nearly all of the galaxies lacking public velocitymeasurements. Consequently, we are able to discriminate between thoseradio galaxies seen in projection on the cluster and those that are inactuality cluster members. The resulting catalog consists of 329 clusterradio galaxies plus 138 galaxies deemed foreground or backgroundobjects, and new velocity measurements are reported for 273 of theseradio galaxies. The motivation for the catalog is the study of galaxyevolution in the cluster environment. The radio luminosity function is apowerful tool in the identification of active galaxies, as it isdominated by star-forming galaxies at intermediate luminosities andactive galactic nuclei (AGNs) at higher luminosities. The flux limit ofthe NVSS allows us to identify AGNs and star-forming galaxies down tostar formation rates less than 1 Msolar yr-1. Thissensitivity, coupled with the all-sky nature of the NVSS, allows us toproduce a catalog of considerable depth and breadth. In addition tothese data, we report detected infrared fluxes and upper limits obtainedfrom IRAS data. It is hoped that this database will prove useful in anumber of potential studies of the effect of environment on galaxyevolution. Based in part on observations obtained with the Apache PointObservatory 3.5 m telescope, which is owned and operated by theAstrophysical Research Consortium (ARC).
|Using Pulsars to Detect Massive Black Hole Binaries via Gravitational Radiation: Sagittarius A* and Nearby Galaxies|
Pulsar timing measurements can be used to detect gravitational radiationfrom massive black hole binaries. The ~106 day quasi-periodic fluxvariations in Sagittarius A* (Sgr A*) at radio wavelengths reported byZhao, Bower, & Goss may be due to binarity of the massive black holethat is presumed to be responsible for the radio emission. A 106 dayequal-mass binary black hole is unlikely based on its short inspirallifetime and other arguments. Nevertheless the reportedquasi-periodicity has led us to consider whether the long-wavelengthgravitational waves from a conjectured binary might be detected inpresent or future precision timing of millisecond pulsars. While presenttiming cannot reach the level expected for an equal-mass binary, weestimate that future efforts could. This inquiry has led us to furtherconsider the detection of binarity in the massive black holes now beingfound in nearby galaxies. For orbital periods of ~2000 day where thepulsar timing measurements are most precise, we place upper limits onthe mass ratio of binaries as small as 0.06.
|The LX-σ Relation for Galaxies and Clusters of Galaxies|
We demonstrate that individual elliptical galaxies and clusters ofgalaxies form a continuous X-ray luminosity-velocity dispersion(LX-σ) relation. Our samples of 280 clusters and 57galaxies have LX~σ4.4 andLX~σ10, respectively. This unifiedLX-σ relation spans 8 orders of magnitude inLX and is fully consistent with the observed and theoreticalluminosity-temperature scaling laws. Our results support the notion thatgalaxies and clusters of galaxies are the luminous tracers of similardark matter halos.
|The Infrared Surface Brightness Fluctuation Hubble Constant|
We measured infrared surface brightness fluctuation (SBF) distances toan isotropically distributed sample of 16 distant galaxies withredshifts reaching 10,000 km s-1 using the near-IR camera andmultiobject spectrometer (NICMOS) on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST).The excellent spatial resolution, very low background, and brightness ofthe IR fluctuations yielded the most distant SBF measurements to date.Twelve nearby galaxies were also observed and used to calibrate theF160W (1.6 μm) SBF distance scale. Of these, three have Cepheidvariable star distances measured with HST and eleven have optical I-bandSBF distance measurements. A distance modulus of 18.5 mag to the LargeMagellanic Cloud was adopted for this calibration. We present the F160WSBF Hubble diagram and find a Hubble constant H0=76+/-1.3 (1σ statistical) +/-6 (systematic) km s-1Mpc-1. This result is insensitive to the velocity model usedto correct for local bulk motions. Restricting the fit to the six mostdistant galaxies yields the smallest value of H0=72+/-2.3 kms-1 Mpc-1 that is consistent with the data. This6% decrease in the Hubble constant is consistent with the hypothesisthat the Local Group inhabits an underdense region of the universe, butis also consistent with the best-fit value of H0=76 kms-1 Mpc-1 at the 1.5 σ level. Based onobservations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtained at theSpace Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by AURA, Inc.,under NASA contract NAS 5-26555.
|Spectroscopic constraints on the stellar population of elliptical galaxies in the Coma cluster|
Near-infrared spectra for a sample of 31 elliptical galaxies in the Comacluster are obtained. The galaxies are selected to be ellipticals (nolenticulars), with a large spatial distribution, covering both the coreand outskirts of the cluster (i.e. corresponding to regions with largedensity contrasts). COsp (2.3-μm) absorption indices,measuring the contribution from intermediate-age red giant andsupergiant stars to the near-infrared light of the ellipticals, are thenestimated. It is found that the strength of COsp features inelliptical galaxies increases from the core (r<0.2°) to theoutskirts (r>0.2°) of the Coma cluster. Using the Mg2strengths, it is shown that the observed effect is not caused bymetallicity and is mostly caused by the presence of a younger population(giant and supergiant stars) in ellipticals in the outskirts(low-density region) of the cluster. Using the COsp features,the origin of the scatter on the near-infrared Fundamental Plane (therelation between the effective diameter, effective surface brightnessand velocity dispersion) of elliptical galaxies is studied. Correctingthis relation for contributions from the red giant and supergiant stars,the rms scatter reduces from 0.077 to 0.073dex. Although measurable, thecontribution from these intermediate-age stars to the scatter on thenear-infrared Fundamental Plane of ellipticals is only marginal. Arelation is found between the COsp and V-K colours ofellipticals, corresponding to a slope of 0.036+/-0.016, significantlyshallower than that from the Mg2-(V-K) relation. This isstudied using stellar synthesis models.
|The IRAS PSCz dipole|
We use the PSCz IRAS galaxy redshift survey to analyse the cosmologicalgalaxy dipole out to a distance of 300h-1Mpc. The masked areais filled in three different ways, first by sampling the whole sky atrandom, secondly by using neighbouring areas to fill a masked region,and thirdly using a spherical harmonic analysis. The method of treatmentof the mask is found to have a significant effect on the finalcalculated dipole. The conversion from redshift space to real space isaccomplished by using an analytical model of the cluster and voiddistribution, based on 88 nearby groups, 854 clusters and 163 voids,with some of the clusters and all of the voids found from the PSCz database. The dipole for the whole PSCz sample appears to have convergedwithin a distance of 200h-1Mpc and yields a value forβΩ0.6b0.750.11-0.08, consistent with earlier determinations from IRAS samples bya variety of methods. For b=1, the 2σ range forΩ0 is 0.43-1.02. The direction of the dipole is within13° of the cosmic microwave background (CMB) dipole, the mainuncertainty in direction being associated with the masked area behindthe Galactic plane. The improbability of further major contributions tothe dipole amplitude coming from volumes larger than those surveyed heremeans that the question of the origin of the CMB dipole is essentiallyresolved.
|The black hole mass-galaxy age relation|
We present evidence that there is a significant correlation between thefraction of the mass of a galaxy that lies in its central black hole andthe age of the galactic stellar population. Since the absorption-lineindices that are used to estimate the age are luminosity-weighted, theyessentially measure the time since the last significant episode of starformation in the galaxy. The existence of this correlation is consistentwith several theories of galaxy formation, including the currentlyfavoured hierarchical picture of galaxy evolution, which predicts justsuch a relation between the black hole mass and the time since the lastburst of merger-induced star formation. It is not consistent with modelsin which the massive black hole is primordial, and hence uncoupled fromthe stellar properties of the galaxy.
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