2,429 research outputs found

    A Unified Model for the Evolution of Galaxies and Quasars

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    We incorporate a simple scheme for the growth of supermassive black holes into semi-analytic models that follow the formation and evolution of galaxies in a cold dark matter dominated Universe. We assume that supermassive black holes are formed and fuelled during major mergers. If two galaxies of comparable mass merge, their central black holes coalesce and a few percent of the gas in the merger remnant is accreted by the new black hole over a timescale of a few times 10^7 years. With these simple assumptions, our model not only fits many aspects of the observed evolution of galaxies, but also reproduces quantitatively the observed relation between bulge luminosity and black hole mass in nearby galaxies, the strong evolution of the quasar population with redshift and the relation between the luminosities of nearby quasars and those of their host galaxies. The strong decline in the number density of quasars from z=2 to z=0 is due to the combination of three effects: i) a decrease in the merging rate, ii) a decrease in the amount of cold gas available to fuel black holes, and iii) an increase in the timescale for gas accretion. In a LCDM cosmology the predicted decline in the total content of cold gas in galaxies is consistent with that inferred from observations of damped Lyman-alpha systems. Our results strongly suggest that the evolution of supermassive black holes, quasars and starbursts is inextricably linked to the hierarchical build-up of galaxies.Comment: 30 pages, Latex, 18 figures included, submitted to MNRA

    The Ages of Elliptical Galaxies in a Merger Model

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    The tightness of the observed colour-magnitude and Mg2_{2}- velocity dispersion relations for elliptical galaxies has often been cited as an argument against a picture in which ellipticals form by the merging of spiral disks. A common view is that merging would mix together stars of disparate ages and produce a large scatter in these relations. Here I use semi-analytic models of galaxy formation to derive the distribution of the mean ages, colours and metallicities of the stars in elliptical galaxies formed by mergers in a flat CDM universe. It is seen that most of the stars in ellipticals form at relatively high redshift (z > 1.9) and that the predicted scatter in the colour-magnitude and Mg_2 - sigma relations falls within observational bounds. I conclude that the apparent homogeneity in the properties of the stellar populations of ellipticals is not inconsistent with a merger scenario for the origin of these systems.Comment: latex file, figures available upon reques

    The scale-dependence of relative galaxy bias: encouragement for the halo model description

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    We investigate the relationship between the colors, luminosities, and environments of galaxies in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey spectroscopic sample, using environmental measurements on scales ranging from 0.2 to 6 Mpc/h. We find: (1) that the relationship between color and environment persists even to the lowest luminosities we probe (absolute magnitude in the r band of about -14 for h=1); (2) at luminosities and colors for which the galaxy correlation function has a large amplitude, it also has a steep slope; and (3) in regions of a given overdensity on small scales (1 Mpc/h), the overdensity on large scales (6 Mpc/h) does not appear to relate to the recent star formation history of the galaxies. Of these results, the last has the most immediate application to galaxy formation theory. In particular, it lends support to the notion that a galaxy's properties are related only to the mass of its host dark matter halo, and not to the larger scale environment.Comment: submitted to ApJ; full resolution figures and slide material available at http://cosmo.nyu.edu/blanton/scale_density.htm

    HI and Star Formation Properties of Massive Galaxies: First Results from the GALEX Arecibo SDSS Survey

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    The GALEX Arecibo SDSS Survey (GASS) is an ambitious program designed to investigate the cold gas properties of massive galaxies, a challenging population for HI studies. Using the Arecibo radio telescope, GASS is gathering high-quality HI-line spectra for an unbiased sample of ~1000 galaxies with stellar masses greater than 10^10 Msun and redshifts 0.025 < z < 0.05, uniformly selected from the SDSS spectroscopic and GALEX imaging surveys. The galaxies are observed until detected or until a low gas mass fraction limit (1.5-5%) is reached. We present initial results based on the first Data Release, which consists of ~20% of the final GASS sample. We use this data set to explore the main scaling relations of HI gas fraction with galaxy structure and NUV-r colour, and show our best fit plane describing the relation between gas fraction, stellar mass surface density and NUV-r colour. Interesting outliers from this plane include gas-rich red sequence galaxies that may be in the process of regrowing their disks, as well as blue, but gas-poor spirals.Comment: 4 pages, 2 figures. To appear in "Hunting for the Dark: The Hidden Side of Galaxy Formation", Malta, 19-23 Oct. 2009, eds. V.P. Debattista & C.C. Popescu, AIP Conf. Se

    Infalling Faint [OII] Emitters in Abell 851. I. Spectroscopic Confirmation of Narrowband-Selected Objects

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    We report on a spectroscopic confirmation of narrowband-selected [OII] emitters in Abell 851 catalogued by Martin et al. (2000). The optical spectra obtained from the Keck I Low Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (LRIS) and Keck II Deep Imaging Multi-Object Spectrograph (DEIMOS) have confirmed [OII]3727 emission in narrowband-selected cluster [OII] candidates at a 85% success rate for faint (i <~ 25) blue (g-i < 1) galaxies. The rate for the successful detection of [OII] emission is a strong function of galaxy color, generally proving the efficacy of narrowband [OII] search supplemented with broadband colors in selecting faint cluster galaxies with recent star formation. Balmer decrement-derived reddening measurements show a high degree of reddening [E(B-V) >~ 0.5] in a significant fraction of this population. Even after correcting for dust extinction, the [OII]/Ha line flux ratio for the high-E(B-V) galaxies remains generally lower by a factor of ~2 than the mean [OII]/Ha ratios reported by the studies of nearby galaxies. The strength of [OII] equivalent width shows a negative trend with galaxy luminosity while the Ha equivalent width does not appear to depend as strongly on luminosity. This in part is due to the high amount of reddening observed in luminous galaxies. Furthermore, emission line ratio diagnostics show that AGN-like galaxies are abundant in the high luminosity end of the cluster [OII]-emitting sample, with only moderately strong [OII] equivalent widths, consistent with a scenario of galaxy evolution connecting AGNs and suppression of star-forming activity in massive galaxies.Comment: 11 pages (LaTeX emulateapj), 8 figures, to appear in ApJ. A version with high resolution figures available from the lead autho

    The Massive End of the Stellar Mass Function

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    We derive average flux corrections to the \texttt{Model} magnitudes of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) galaxies by stacking together mosaics of similar galaxies in bins of stellar mass and concentration. Extra flux is detected in the outer low surface brightness part of the galaxies, leading to corrections ranging from 0.05 to 0.32 mag for the highest stellar mass galaxies. We apply these corrections to the MPA-JHU (Max-Planck Institute for Astrophysics - John Hopkins University) stellar masses for a complete sample of half a million galaxies from the SDSS survey to derive a corrected galaxy stellar mass function at z=0.1z=0.1 in the stellar mass range 9.5<log⁥(M∗/M⊙)<12.09.5<\log(M_\ast/M_\odot)<12.0. We find that the flux corrections and the use of the MPA-JHU stellar masses have a significant impact on the massive end of the stellar mass function, making the slope significantly shallower than that estimated by Li \& White (2009), but steeper than derived by Bernardi et al. (2013). This corresponds to a mean comoving stellar mass density of galaxies with stellar masses log⁥(M∗/M⊙)≄11.0\log(M_\ast/M_\odot) \ge 11.0 that is a factor of 3.36 larger than the estimate by Li \& White (2009), but is 43\% smaller than reported by Bernardi et al. (2013).Comment: 11 pages, 8 figures, Accepted to MNRA

    Ionized Gas in Damped Lyman Alpha Protogalaxies: II. Comparison Between Models and the Kinematic Data

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    We test semi-analytic models for galaxy formation with accurate kinematic data of damped Lyman alpha protogalaxies (DLAs) presented in the companion paper I. The models envisage centrifugally supported exponential disks at the centers of dark matter halos which are filled with ionized gas undergoing radial infall to the disks. The halo masses are drawn from cross-section weighted mass distributions predicted by CDM cosmogonies, or by the null hypothesis (TF model) that the dark matter mass distribution has not evolved since z ~ 3. In our models, C IV absorption lines detected in DLAs arise in infalling ionized clouds while the low-ion absorption lines arise from neutral gas in the disks. Using Monte Carlo methods we find: (a) The CDM models are incompatible with the low-ion statistics at more than 99% confidence whereas some TF models cannot be excluded at more than 88% confidence. (b) Both CDM and TF models agree with the observed distribution of C IV velocity widths. (c) The CDM models generate differences between the mean velocities of C IV and low ion profiles in agreement with the data, while the TF model produces differences in the means that are too large. (d) Both CDM and TF models produce ratios of C IV to low-ion velocity widths that are too large. (e) Both CDM and TF models generate C IV versus low-ion cross-correlation functions incompatible with the data. While it is possible to select model parameters resulting in consistency with the data, the disk-halo configuration assumed in both cosmogonies still does not produce significant overlap in velocity space between C IV low-ion velocity profiles. We conjecture that including angular momentum of the infalling clouds will increase the overlap between C IV and low-ion profiles.Comment: 18 pages, 12 Figures, Accepted for publication in the Dec. 20 issue of the Astrophysical Journa

    The correlation between black hole mass and bulge velocity dispersion in hierarchical galaxy formation models

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    Recent work has demonstrated that there is a tight correlation between the mass of a black hole and the velocity dispersion of the bulge of its host galaxy. We show that the model of Kauffmann & Haehnelt, in which bulges and supermassive black holes both form during major mergers, produces a correlation between M_bh and sigma with slope and scatter comparable to the observed relation. In the model, the M_bh - sigma relation is significantly tighter than the correlation between black hole mass and bulge luminosity or the correlation between bulge luminosity and velocity dispersion. There are two reasons for this: i) the gas masses of bulge progenitors depend on the velocity dispersion but not on the formation epoch of the bulge, whereas the stellar masses of the progenitors depend on both; ii) mergers between galaxies move black holes along the observed M_bh - sigma relation, even at late times when the galaxies are gas-poor and black holes grow mainly by merging of pre-existing black holes. We conclude that the small scatter in the observed M_bh - sigma relation is consistent with a picture in which bulges and black holes form over a wide range in redshift.Comment: 5 pages, LaTeX, 3 postscript figures included; submitted to MNRA

    Modelling SCUBA sources in a Lambda-CDM cosmology: hot starbursts or cold extended galactic dust?

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    Previous modelling has demonstrated that it is difficult to reproduce the SCUBA source counts within the framework of standard hierarchical structure formation models if the sources are assumed to be the high-redshift counterparts of local ultra-luminous infrared galaxies with dust temperatures in the range 40-60 K. Here, we show that the counts are more easily reproduced in a model in which the bulk of the sub-millimetre emission comes from extended, cool (20-25 K) dust in objects with star formation rates of 50-100 solar masses per year. The low temperatures imply typical sizes of about 1 (S_{850}/1mJy})^{1/2} arcsec, a factor two to three larger than those predicted using starburst-like spectral energy distributions. Low dust temperatures also imply a ratio of optical/UV to 850-micron flux which is 30-100 times smaller, for the same optical depth, than expected for objects with a hot, starburst-like SED. This may help explain the small overlap between SCUBA sources and Lyman-break galaxies.Comment: 9 pages; 9 figures; published version, minor changes to the origina

    The Excess Far-Infrared Emission of AGN in the Local Universe

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    We have cross-correlated the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) second data release spectroscopic galaxy sample with the IRAS faint-source catalogue (FSC). Optical emission line ratios are used to classify the galaxies with reliable IRAS 60 and 100 microns detections into AGN and normal star-forming galaxies. We then create subsamples of normal galaxies and AGN that are very closely matched in terms of key physical properties such as stellar mass, redshift, size, concentration and mean stellar age (as measured by absorption line indicators in the SDSS spectra). We then quantify whether there are systematic differences between the IR luminosities of the galaxies and the AGN in the matched subsamples. We find that the AGN exhibit a significant excess in far-IR emission relative to the star-forming galaxies in our sample. The excesses at 60 and 100 microns are 0.21 +/- 0.03 dex and 0.12 +/- 0.035 dex in log[L(60)/M*] and log[L(100)/M*], respectively. We then discuss whether the far-IR excess is produced by radiation from the active nucleus that is absorbed by dust or alternatively, by an extra population of young stars that is not detectable at optical wavelengths.Comment: 12 pages, 14 figures, accepted by MNRA
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