1,982 research outputs found

    Oxygen Gas Abundances at z~1.4: Implications for the Chemical Evolution History of Galaxies

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    The 1<z<2 redshift window hosts the peak of the star formation and metal production rates. Studies of the metal content of the star forming galaxies at these epochs are however sparse. We report VLT-ISAAC near-infrared spectroscopy for a sample of five [OII]-selected, M_B,AB<-21.5, z~1.4 galaxies, by which we measured Hbeta and [OIII]5007 emission line fluxes from J-band spectra, and Halpha line fluxes plus upper limits for [NII]6584 fluxes from H-band spectra. The z~1.4 galaxies are characterized by the high [OIII]/[OII] line ratios, low extinction and low metallicity that are typical of lower luminosity CADIS galaxies at 0.4<z<0.7, and of more luminous Lyman Break Galaxies at z~3, but not seen in CFRS galaxies at 0.4<z<0.9. This type of spectrum (e.g., high [OIII]/[OII]) is seen in progressively more luminous galaxies as the redshift increases. These spectra are caused by a combination of high ionisation parameter q and lower [O/H]. Pegase2 chemical evolution models are used to relate the observed metallicities and luminosities of z~1.4 galaxies to galaxy samples at lower and higher redshift. Not surpringsingly, we see a relationship between redshift and inferred chemical age. We suppose that the metal-enriched reservoirs of star forming gas that we are probing at intermediate redshifts are being mostly consumed to build up both the disk and the bulge components of spiral galaxies. Finally, our analysis of the metallicity-luminosity relation at 0<z<1.5 suggests that the period of rapid chemical evolution may take place progressively in lower mass systems as the universe ages. These results are consistent with a ``downsizing'' type picture in the sense that particular signatures (e.g., high [OIII]/[OII] or low [O/H]) are seen in progressively more luminous (massive) systems at higher redshifts.Comment: Accepted for publication in Ap

    The Extended Emission-Line Region of 4C 37.43

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    We have explored the nature of the extended emission-line region around the z=0.37 quasar 4C 37.43, using extensive ground-based and HST imaging and spectroscopy. The velocity field of the ionized gas shows gradual gradients within components but large jumps between components, with no obvious global organization. The HST [O III] image shows radial linear features on the east side of the QSO that appear to mark the edges of an ionization cone. Concentrating on the bright emission peaks ~4\arcsec$ east of the quasar, we find through modeling that we require at least two density regimes contributing significantly to the observed emission-line spectrum: one with a density of ~2 cm^-3, having essentially unity filling factor, and one with a density of ~500 cm^-3, having a very small (~10^-5) filling factor. Because the temperatures of these two components are similar, they cannot be in pressure equilibrium, and there is no obvious source of confinement for the dense regions. We estimate that the dense regions will dissipate on timescales <~10^4 years and therefore need to be continuously regenerated, most likely by shocks. Because we know that some QSOs, at least, begin their lives in conjunction with merger-driven massive starbursts in their host galaxies, an attractive interpretation is that the extended emission region comprises gas that has been expelled as a result of tidal forces during the merger and is now being shocked by the galactic superwind from the starburst. This picture is supported by the observed distribution of the ionized gas, the presence of velocities ranging up to ~700 km s^{-1}, and the existence of at least two QSOs having similarly luminous and complex extended emission regions that are known to have ultra-luminous IR galaxy hosts with current or recent starbursts.Comment: 22 pages, incl. 7 figures; to be published in The Astrophysical Journal, 572 (June 20, 2002 issue

    Tensor polarizability and dispersive quantum measurement of multilevel atoms

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    Optimally extracting information from measurements performed on a physical system requires an accurate model of the measurement interaction. Continuously probing the collective spin of an Alkali atom cloud via its interaction with an off-resonant optical probe is an important example of such a measurement where realistic modeling at the quantum level is possible using standard techniques from atomic physics. Typically, however, tutorial descriptions of this technique have neglected the multilevel structure of realistic atoms for the sake of simplification. In this paper we account for the full multilevel structure of Alkali atoms and derive the irreducible form of the polarizability Hamiltonian describing a typical dispersive quantum measurement. For a specific set of parameters, we then show that semiclassical predictions of the theory are consistent with our experimental observations of polarization scattering by a polarized cloud of laser-cooled Cesium atoms. We also derive the signal-to-noise ratio under a single measurement trial and use this to predict the rate of spin-squeezing with multilevel Alkali atoms for arbitrary detuning of the probe beam.Comment: Significant corrections to theory and data. Full quality figures and other information available from http://minty.caltech.edu/papers.ph

    A multi-particle model of the 3C 48 host

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    The first successful multi-particle model for the host of the well-known quasi-stellar object (QSO) 3C 48 is reported. It shows that the morphology and the stellar velocity field of the 3C 48 host can be reproduced by the merger of two disk galaxies. The conditions of the interaction are similar to those used for interpreting the appearance of the ''Antennae'' (NGC 4038/39) but seen from a different viewing angle. The model supports the controversial hypothesis that 3C 48A is the second nucleus of a merging galaxy, and it suggests a simple solution for the problem of the missing counter tidal tail.Comment: 5 pages, 5 figures, accepted for publication in A&
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