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Title: Quenching or Bursting: Star Formation Acceleration—A New Methodology for Tracing Galaxy Evolution

Abstract

We introduce a new methodology for the direct extraction of galaxy physical parameters from multiwavelength photometry and spectroscopy. We use semianalytic models that describe galaxy evolution in the context of large-scale cosmological simulation to provide a catalog of galaxies, star formation histories, and physical parameters. We then apply models of stellar population synthesis and a simple extinction model to calculate the observable broadband fluxes and spectral indices for these galaxies. We use a linear regression analysis to relate physical parameters to observed colors and spectral indices. The result is a set of coefficients that can be used to translate observed colors and indices into stellar mass, star formation rate, and many other parameters, including the instantaneous time derivative of the star formation rate, which we denote the Star Formation Acceleration (SFA), We apply the method to a test sample of galaxies with GALEX photometry and SDSS spectroscopy, deriving relationships between stellar mass, specific star formation rate, and SFA. We find evidence for a mass-dependent SFA in the green valley, with low-mass galaxies showing greater quenching and higher-mass galaxies greater bursting. We also find evidence for an increase in average quenching in galaxies hosting an active galactic nucleus. A simple scenariomore » in which lower-mass galaxies accrete and become satellite galaxies, having their star-forming gas tidally and/or ram-pressure stripped, while higher-mass galaxies receive this gas and react with new star formation, can qualitatively explain our results.« less

Authors:
; ;  [1];  [2];  [3]
  1. California Institute of Technology, MC 405-47, 1200 East California Boulevard, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States)
  2. Observatorio do Valongo, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Ladeira Pedro Antonio, 43, Saude, Rio de Janeiro-RJ 20080-090 (Brazil)
  3. Department of Astronomy, Columbia University, New York, NY 10027 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22663523
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal; Journal Volume: 842; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; ACCELERATION; CATALOGS; EXTRACTION; GALAXIES; MASS; PHOTOMETRY; QUENCHING; REGRESSION ANALYSIS; SATELLITES; SIMULATION; SPECTROSCOPY; STARS; ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION

Citation Formats

Martin, D. Christopher, Darvish, Behnam, Seibert, Mark, Gonçalves, Thiago S., and Schiminovich, David. Quenching or Bursting: Star Formation Acceleration—A New Methodology for Tracing Galaxy Evolution. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/AA71A9.
Martin, D. Christopher, Darvish, Behnam, Seibert, Mark, Gonçalves, Thiago S., & Schiminovich, David. Quenching or Bursting: Star Formation Acceleration—A New Methodology for Tracing Galaxy Evolution. United States. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/AA71A9.
Martin, D. Christopher, Darvish, Behnam, Seibert, Mark, Gonçalves, Thiago S., and Schiminovich, David. Sat . "Quenching or Bursting: Star Formation Acceleration—A New Methodology for Tracing Galaxy Evolution". United States. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/AA71A9.
@article{osti_22663523,
title = {Quenching or Bursting: Star Formation Acceleration—A New Methodology for Tracing Galaxy Evolution},
author = {Martin, D. Christopher and Darvish, Behnam and Seibert, Mark and Gonçalves, Thiago S. and Schiminovich, David},
abstractNote = {We introduce a new methodology for the direct extraction of galaxy physical parameters from multiwavelength photometry and spectroscopy. We use semianalytic models that describe galaxy evolution in the context of large-scale cosmological simulation to provide a catalog of galaxies, star formation histories, and physical parameters. We then apply models of stellar population synthesis and a simple extinction model to calculate the observable broadband fluxes and spectral indices for these galaxies. We use a linear regression analysis to relate physical parameters to observed colors and spectral indices. The result is a set of coefficients that can be used to translate observed colors and indices into stellar mass, star formation rate, and many other parameters, including the instantaneous time derivative of the star formation rate, which we denote the Star Formation Acceleration (SFA), We apply the method to a test sample of galaxies with GALEX photometry and SDSS spectroscopy, deriving relationships between stellar mass, specific star formation rate, and SFA. We find evidence for a mass-dependent SFA in the green valley, with low-mass galaxies showing greater quenching and higher-mass galaxies greater bursting. We also find evidence for an increase in average quenching in galaxies hosting an active galactic nucleus. A simple scenario in which lower-mass galaxies accrete and become satellite galaxies, having their star-forming gas tidally and/or ram-pressure stripped, while higher-mass galaxies receive this gas and react with new star formation, can qualitatively explain our results.},
doi = {10.3847/1538-4357/AA71A9},
journal = {Astrophysical Journal},
number = 1,
volume = 842,
place = {United States},
year = {Sat Jun 10 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Sat Jun 10 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}
  • We measure the evolution of the stellar mass function (SMF) from z = 0-1 using multi-wavelength imaging and spectroscopic redshifts from the PRism MUlti-object Survey (PRIMUS) and the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). From PRIMUS we construct an i < 23 flux-limited sample of {approx}40, 000 galaxies at z = 0.2-1.0 over five fields totaling Almost-Equal-To 5.5 deg{sup 2}, and from the SDSS we select {approx}170, 000 galaxies at z = 0.01-0.2 that we analyze consistently with respect to PRIMUS to minimize systematic errors in our evolutionary measurements. We find that the SMF of all galaxies evolves relatively little sincemore » z = 1, although we do find evidence for mass assembly downsizing; we measure a Almost-Equal-To 30% increase in the number density of {approx}10{sup 10} M{sub sun} galaxies since z Almost-Equal-To 0.6, and a {approx}< 10% change in the number density of all {approx}> 10{sup 11} M{sub sun} galaxies since z Almost-Equal-To 1. Dividing the sample into star-forming and quiescent using an evolving cut in specific star formation rate, we find that the number density of {approx}10{sup 10} M{sub sun} star-forming galaxies stays relatively constant since z Almost-Equal-To 0.6, whereas the space density of {approx}> 10{sup 11} M{sub sun} star-forming galaxies decreases by Almost-Equal-To 50% between z Almost-Equal-To 1 and z Almost-Equal-To 0. Meanwhile, the number density of {approx}10{sup 10} M{sub sun} quiescent galaxies increases steeply toward low redshift, by a factor of {approx}2-3 since z Almost-Equal-To 0.6, while the number of massive quiescent galaxies remains approximately constant since z Almost-Equal-To 1. These results suggest that the rate at which star-forming galaxies are quenched increases with decreasing stellar mass, but that the bulk of the stellar mass buildup within the quiescent population occurs around {approx}10{sup 10.8} M{sub sun}. In addition, we conclude that mergers do not appear to be a dominant channel for the stellar mass buildup of galaxies at z < 1, even among massive ({approx}> 10{sup 11} M{sub sun}) quiescent galaxies.« less
  • We exploit the vastly increased sensitivity of the Expanded Very Large Array to study the radio continuum and polarization properties of the post-starburst, dwarf irregular galaxy IC 10 at 6 cm, at a linear resolution of {approx}50 pc. We find close agreement between radio continuum and H{alpha} emission, from the brightest H II regions to the weaker emission in the disk. A quantitative analysis shows a strictly linear correlation, where the thermal component contributes 50% to the total radio emission, the remainder being due to a non-thermal component with a surprisingly steep radio spectral index of between -0.7 and -1.0more » suggesting substantial radiation losses of the cosmic-ray electrons. We confirm and clearly resolve polarized emission at the 10%-20% level associated with a non-thermal superbubble, where the ordered magnetic field is possibly enhanced due to the compression of the expanding bubble. A fraction of the cosmic-ray electrons has likely escaped because the measured radio emission is a factor of three lower than what is suggested by the H{alpha}-inferred star formation rate.« less
  • We present an analysis of an H {sub 160}-selected photometric catalog of galaxies in the Hubble Ultra-Deep Field, using imaging from the WFC3/IR camera on the Hubble Space Telescope in combination with archival ultraviolet, optical, and near-infrared imaging. Using these data, we measure the spectral energy distributions of ∼1500 galaxies to a limiting H {sub 160} magnitude of 27.8, from which we fit photometric redshifts and stellar population estimates for all galaxies with well-determined Spitzer IRAC fluxes, allowing for the determination of the cumulative mass function within the range 1 < z < 6. By selecting samples of galaxies atmore » a constant cumulative number density, we are able to explore the coevolution of stellar masses and star formation rates (SFRs) for progenitor galaxies and their descendants from z ∼ 6. We find a steady increase in the SFRs of galaxies at constant number density from z ∼ 6 to z ∼ 3, accompanied by gradually declining specific star formation rates (sSFRs) during this same period. The peak epoch of star formation is also found to shift to later times for galaxies with increasing number densities, in agreement with the expectations from cosmic downsizing. The observed SFRs can fully account for the mass growth to z ∼ 2 among galaxies with cumulative number densities greater than 10{sup –3.5} Mpc{sup –3}. For galaxies with a lower constant number density (higher mean mass), we find the observed stellar masses are ∼three times greater than that which may be accounted for by the observed star formation alone at late times, implying that growth from mergers plays an important role at z < 2. We additionally observe a decreasing sSFR, equivalent to approximately one order of magnitude, from z ∼ 6 to z ∼ 2 among galaxies with number densities less than 10{sup –3.5} Mpc{sup –3}, along with significant evidence that at any redshift the sSFR is higher for galaxies at higher number density. The combination of these findings can qualitatively explain the previous findings of a specific star formation rate plateau at high redshift. Tracing the evolution of the fraction of quiescent galaxies for samples matched in cumulative number density over this redshift range, we find no unambiguous examples of quiescent galaxies at z > 4.« less
  • Recent observations suggested that star formation quenching in galaxies is related to galaxy structure. Here we propose a new mechanism to explain the physical origin of this correlation. We assume that while quenching is maintained in quiescent galaxies by a feedback mechanism, cooling flows in the hot halo gas can still develop intermittently. We study cooling flows in a large suite of around 90 hydrodynamic simulations of an isolated galaxy group, and find that the flow development depends significantly on the gravitational potential well in the central galaxy. If the galaxy's gravity is not strong enough, cooling flows result inmore » a central cooling catastrophe, supplying cold gas and feeding star formation to galactic bulges. When the bulge grows prominent enough, compressional heating starts to offset radiative cooling and maintains cooling flows in a long-term hot mode without producing a cooling catastrophe. Our model thus describes a self-limited growth channel for galaxy bulges and naturally explains the connection between quenching and bulge prominence. In particular, we explicitly demonstrate that M{sub ∗}/R{sub eff}{sup 1.5} is a good structural predictor of quenching. We further find that the gravity from the central supermassive black hole also affects the bimodal fate of cooling flows, and we predict a more general quenching predictor to be M{sub bh}{sup 1.6}M{sub ∗}/R{sub eff}{sup 1.5}, which may be tested in future observational studies.« less
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