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|The AMIGA sample of isolated galaxies. II. Morphological refinement|
We present a refinement of the optical morphologies for galaxies in theCatalog of Isolated Galaxies that forms the basis of the AMIGA (Analysisof the interstellar Medium of Isolated GAlaxies) project. Uniformreclassification using the digitized POSS II data benefited from thehigh resolution and dynamic range of that sky survey. Comparison withindependent classifications made for an SDSS overlap sample of more than200 galaxies confirms the reliability of the early vs. late-typediscrimination and the accuracy of spiral subtypes within Δ T =1-2. CCD images taken at the Observatorio de Sierra Nevada were alsoused to solve ambiguities in early versus late-type classifications. Aconsiderable number of galaxies in the catalog (n = 193) are flagged forthe presence of nearby companions or signs of distortion likely due tointeraction. This most isolated sample of galaxies in the local Universeis dominated by two populations: 1) 82% are spirals (Sa-Sd) with thebulk being luminous systems with small bulges (63% between types Sb-Sc)and 2) a significant population of early-type E-S0 galaxies (14%). Mostof the types later than Sd are low luminosity galaxies concentrated inthe local supercluster where isolation is difficult to evaluate. Thelate-type spiral majority of the sample spans a luminosity rangeMB-corr = -18 to -22 mag. Few of the E/S0 population are moreluminous than -21.0 marking the absence of the often-sought superL* merger (e.g. fossil elliptical) population. The rarity ofhigh luminosity systems results in a fainter derived M* forthis population compared to the spiral optical luminosity function(OLF). The E-S0 population is from 0.2 to 0.6 mag fainter depending onhow the sample is defined. This marks the AMIGA sample as unique amongsamples that compare early and late-type OLFs separately. In othersamples, which always involve galaxies in higher density environments,M^*_E/S0 is almost always 0.3-0.5 mag brighter than M^*_S, presumablyreflecting a stronger correlation between M* andenvironmental density for early-type galaxies.
|Very Isolated Early-Type Galaxies|
We use the Karachentseva Catalogue of Very Isolated Galaxies toinvestigate a candidate list of more than 100 very isolated early-typegalaxies. Broadband imaging and low-resolution spectroscopy areavailable for a large fraction of these candidates and result in asample of 102 very isolated early-type galaxies, including 65 elliptical(E) and 37 S0 galaxies. Many of these systems are quite luminous, andthe resulting optical luminosity functions of the E and early-type(E+S0) galaxies show no statistical differences when compared toluminosity functions dominated by group and cluster galaxies. However,whereas S0 galaxies outnumber E galaxies 4:1 in the CfA survey, isolatedE outnumber S0 galaxies by nearly 2:1. We conclude that very isolatedelliptical galaxies show no evidence of a different formation and/orevolution process compared to those formed in groups or clusters, butthat most S0 galaxies are formed by a mechanism (e.g., gas stripping)that occurs only in groups and rich clusters. Our luminosity functionresults for elliptical galaxies are consistent with very isolatedelliptical galaxies being formed by merger events, in which nocompanions remain. Chandra observations were proposed specifically totest the merger hypothesis for isolated elliptical galaxies. However,this program has resulted in the observation of only one isolatedearly-type galaxy, the S0 KIG 284, which was not detected at a limitwell below that expected for a remnant group of galaxies. Therefore, thehypothesis remains untested that very isolated elliptical galaxies arethe remains of a compact group of galaxies that have completely merged.
|Revised positions for CIG galaxies|
We present revised positions for the 1051 galaxies belonging to theKarachentseva Catalog of Isolated Galaxies (CIG). New positions werecalculated by applying SExtractor to the Digitized Sky Survey CIG fieldswith a spatial resolution of 1 arcsper 2. We visually checked theresults and for 118 galaxies had to recompute the assigned positions dueto complex morphologies (e.g. distorted isophotes, undefined nuclei,knotty galaxies) or the presence of bright stars. We found differencesbetween older and newer positions of up to 38 arcsec with a mean valueof 2 arcsper 96 relative to SIMBAD and up to 38 arcsec and 2 arcsper 42respectively relative to UZC. Based on star positions from the APMcatalog we determined that the DSS astrometry of five CIG fields has amean offset in (alpha , delta ) of (-0 arcsper 90, 0 arcsper 93) with adispersion of 0 arcsper 4. These results have been confirmed using the2MASS All-Sky Catalog of Point Sources. The intrinsic errors of ourmethod combined with the astrometric ones are of the order of 0 arcsper5.Full Table 1 is only available in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (184.108.40.206) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/411/391
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