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|Investigating the Andromeda stream - I. Simple analytic bulge-disc-halo model for M31|
This paper is the first in a series which studies interactions betweenM31 and its satellites, including the origin of the giant southernstream. We construct accurate yet simple analytic models for thepotential of the M31 galaxy to provide an easy basis for the calculationof orbits in M31's halo. We use a Navarro, Frenk and White (NFW) darkhalo, an exponential disc, a Hernquist bulge, and a central black holepoint mass to describe the galaxy potential. We constrain the parametersof these functions by comparing to existing surface-brightness,velocity-dispersion, and rotation-curve measurements of M31. Ourdescription provides a good fit to the observations, and agrees wellwith more sophisticated modelling of M31. While in many respects theparameter set is well constrained, there is substantial uncertainty inthe outer halo potential and a near-degeneracy between the disc and halocomponents, producing a large, nearly two-dimensional allowed region inparameter space. We limit the allowed region using theoreticalexpectations for the halo concentration, baryonic content, and stellarmass-to-light ratio (M/LR), finding a smaller region wherethe parameters are physically plausible. Our proposed mass model for M31has Mbulge= 3.2 × 1010Msolar,Mdisc= 7.2 × 1010Msolar, andM200= 7.1 × 1011Msolar, withuncorrected (for internal and foreground extinction) mass-to-lightratios of M/LR= 3.9 and 3.3 for the bulge and disc,respectively. We present some illustrative test-particle orbits for theprogenitor of the stellar stream in our galaxy potential, highlightingthe effects of the remaining uncertainty in the disc and halo masses.
|Toward a census of variable stars in northern local group dwarf irregular galaxies .|
Dwarf galaxies in the local group provide a unique astrophysicallaboratory. In particular, they allow us to probe pulsating (and other)variable stars in low-metallicity environments with abundances belowthat of the SMC. Our observing program, described in detail by C.Gössl's contribution, yields a large number of intrinsically brightvariable stars that can serve as probes of the stellar population andstar formation history of these galaxies. Most prominent are pulsationvariables like Miras (LPVs) and delta Cep stars, but we also find othertypes of variable stars, e.g. RV Tauri stars, irregular red variablesetc. We present a preliminary census for the three galaxies DDO 216, LeoA and GR8.
|Using delta Cep stars to study northern dwarf irregular galaxies of the Local Group .|
Dwarf galaxies in the Local Group provide a unique astrophysicallaboratory. Despite their proximity some of these systems still lack areliable distance determination as well as studies of their stellarcontent and star formation history. We present first results of oursurvey of variable stars in a sample of six Local Group dwarf irregulargalaxies. We describe observational strategies and data reduction, anddiscuss the lightcurves of newly found and rediscovered delta Cep starsin DDO 216, Leo A and GR8. Based on these data, we present newly derivedindependent Cepheid distances. Other variable stars found in our surveyare discussed in a related article of this volume (Snigula et al.).
|Stellar structure of the dwarf irregular galaxy DDO 216|
Observations with the 6-mBTA telescope and archival Hubble SpaceTelescope data were used for the photometry of stars in the dwarfedge-on irregular galaxy DDO 216 (Peg DIG). We determined the change inthe number density of stars of various ages along the major and minoraxes of the galaxy. We found that the young stars of the galaxyconcentrate toward the center, while its old stars, red giants, form anextended thick disk 5 kpc in diameter and 2 kpc in thickness around thegalaxy.
|Star Formation in the Nearby Universe: The Ultraviolet and Infrared Points of View|
This work presents the main ultraviolet (UV) and far-infrared (FIR)properties of two samples of nearby galaxies selected from the GALEX(λ=2315 Å, hereafter NUV) and IRAS (λ=60 μm)surveys, respectively. They are built in order to obtain detection atboth wavelengths for most of the galaxies. Star formation rate (SFR)estimators based on the UV and FIR emissions are compared. Systematicdifferences are found between the SFR estimators for individual galaxiesbased on the NUV fluxes corrected for dust attenuation and on the totalIR luminosity. A combined estimator based on NUV and IR luminositiesseems to be the best proxy over the whole range of values of SFR.Although both samples present similar average values of the birthrateparameter b, their star-formation-related properties are substantiallydifferent: NUV-selected galaxies tend to show larger values of b forlower masses, SFRs, and dust attenuation, supporting previous scenariosof star formation history (SFH). Conversely, about 20% of theFIR-selected galaxies show high values of b, SFR, and NUV attenuation.These galaxies, most of them being LIRGs and ULIRGs, break down thedownsizing picture of SFH; however, their relative contribution per unitvolume is small in the local universe. Finally, the cosmic SFR densityof the local universe is estimated in a consistent way from the NUV andIR luminosities.
|On Extending the Mass-Metallicity Relation of Galaxies by 2.5 Decades in Stellar Mass|
We report 4.5 μm luminosities for 27 nearby (D<~5 Mpc) dwarfirregular galaxies measured with the Spitzer Infrared Array Camera. Wehave constructed the 4.5 μm luminosity-metallicity (L-Z) relation for25 dwarf galaxies with secure distance and interstellar medium oxygenabundance measurements. The 4.5 μm L-Z relation is12+log(O/H)=(5.78+/-0.21)+(-0.122+/-0.012)M[4.5], whereM[4.5] is the absolute magnitude at 4.5 μm. The dispersionin the near-infrared L-Z relation is smaller than the correspondingdispersion in the optical L-Z relation. The subsequently derived stellarmass-metallicity (M*-Z) relation is12+log(O/H)=(5.65+/-0.23)+(0.298+/-0.030)logM*, and extendsthe SDSS M*- Z relation to lower mass by about 2.5 dex. Wefind that the dispersion in the M*-Z relation is similar over5 orders of magnitude in stellar mass, and that the relationship betweenstellar mass and interstellar medium metallicity is similarly tight fromhigh-mass to low-mass systems. We find a larger scatter at low mass inthe relation between effective yield and total baryonic mass. In fact,there are a few dwarf galaxies with large yields, which is difficult toexplain if galactic winds are ubiquitous in dwarf galaxies. The lowscatter in the L-Z and M*-Z relationships are difficult tounderstand if galactic superwinds or blowout are responsible for the lowmetallicities at low mass or luminosity. Naively, one would expect anever increasing scatter at lower masses, which is not observed.
|Hot Dust and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon Emission at Low Metallicity: A Spitzer Survey of Local Group and Other Nearby Dwarf Galaxies|
We present Spitzer 4.5 and 8.0 μm imaging of 15 Local Group andnearby dwarf galaxies. We find that the diffuse 8 μm emission isspatially correlated with regions of active star formation. Our samplespans a range of >1 dex in nebular metallicity and 3 orders ofmagnitude in current star formation rate, allowing us to examine thedependence of emission from hot dust and PAHs on these parameters. Wedetect prominent diffuse 8 μm emission from the four most luminousgalaxies in the sample (IC 1613, IC 5152, NGC 55, and NGC 3109) and onlyvery low surface brightness emission from four others (DDO 216, SextansA, Sextans B, and WLM). These are the first spatially resolved images ofdiffuse 8 μm emission from such low-metallicity objects[12+log(O/H)~7.5]. We observe correlations of this emission with thecurrent star formation rate and the nebular metallicity of thesegalaxies. However, we also see evidence suggesting that other processesmay also have a significant effect on the generation of this emission.These systems all have evidence for old and intermediate-age starformation; thus, the lack of diffuse 8 μm emission cannot beattributed to low galaxy ages. Also, winds cannot explain the paucity ofthis emission, since high-resolution imaging of the neutral gas in theseobjects shows no evidence of blowout. We propose that the lack ofdiffuse 8 μm emission in low-metallicity systems may be due to thedestruction of dust grains by supernova shocks, assuming a longtimescale to regrow dust. It is likely that the observed weak emissionis at least partly due to a general absence of dust (including PAHs), inagreement with their low metallicities.
|Fossils of Reionization in the Local Group|
We use a combination of high-resolution gas dynamics simulations ofhigh-redshift dwarf galaxies and dissipationless simulations of a MilkyWay-sized halo to estimate the expected abundance and spatialdistribution of the dwarf satellite galaxies that formed most of theirstars around z~8, evolving only little since then. Such galaxies can beconsidered ``fossils'' of the reionization era, and studying theirproperties could provide a direct window into the early,pre-reionization stages of galaxy formation. We show that ~5%-15% of theobjects existing at z~8 do indeed survive until the present in a MilkyWay-like environment without significant evolution. This implies that itis plausible that the fossil dwarf galaxies do exist in the Local Group.Because such galaxies form their stellar systems early during the periodof active merging and accretion, they should have a spheroidalmorphology regardless of their current distance from the host galaxy.Their observed counterparts should therefore be identified among thedwarf spheroidal galaxies. We show that both the expected luminosityfunction and the spatial distribution of dark matter halos that arelikely to host fossil galaxies agree reasonably well with the observeddistributions of the luminous (LV>~106Lsolar) Local Group fossil candidates near the host galaxy(d<~200 kpc). However, the predicted abundance is substantiallylarger (by a factor of 2-3) for fainter galaxies(LV<106 Lsolar) at larger distances(d>~300 kpc). We discuss several possible explanations for thisdiscrepancy.
|Oxygen and Nitrogen in Leo A and GR 8|
We present elemental abundances for multiple H II regions in Leo A andGR 8 obtained from long-slit optical spectroscopy of these two nearbylow-luminosity dwarf irregular galaxies. As expected from theirluminosities, and in agreement with previous observations, the derivedoxygen abundances are extremely low in both galaxies. Highsignal-to-noise ratio (S/N) observations of a planetary nebula in Leo Ayield 12+log(O/H)=7.30+/-0.05 semiempirical calculations of the oxygenabundance in four H II regions in Leo A indicate12+log(O/H)=7.38+/-0.10. These results confirm that Leo A has one of thelowest ISM metal abundances of known nearby galaxies. Based on resultsfrom two H II regions with high S/N measurements of the weak [O III]λ4363 line, the mean oxygen abundance of GR 8 is12+log(O/H)=7.65+/-0.06 using ``empirical'' and ``semiempirical''methods, similar abundances are derived for six other GR 8 H II regions.Similar to previous results in other low-metallicity galaxies, the meanlog(N/O)=-1.53+/-0.09 for Leo A and -1.51+/-0.07 for GR 8. There is noevidence of significant variations in either O/H or N/O in the H IIregions. The metallicity-luminosity relation for nearby (D<5 Mpc)dwarf irregular galaxies with measured oxygen abundances has a meancorrelation of 12+log(O/H)=5.67MB-0.151MB, with adispersion in oxygen about the relationship of σ=0.21. Theseobservations confirm that gas-rich, low-luminosity galaxies haveextremely low elemental abundances in the ionized gas phase of theirinterstellar media. Although Leo A has one of the lowest metalabundances of known nearby galaxies, detection of tracers of an olderstellar population (RR Lyrae variable stars, horizontal branch stars,and a well-populated red giant branch) indicate that it is not a newlyformed galaxy, as has been proposed for some other similarlow-metallicity star-forming galaxies.
|Masses of the local group and of the M81 group estimated from distortions in the local velocity field|
Based on high precision measurements of the distances to nearby galaxieswith the Hubble telescope, we have determined the radii of the zerovelocity spheres for the local group, R0 =0.96±0.03Mpc, and for the group of galaxies around M 81/M 82,0.89±0.05Mpc. These yield estimates of MT =(1.29±0.14)· 1012 Mȯ and(1.03±0.17)· 1012 Mȯ,respectively, for the total masses of these groups. The R0method allows us to determine the mass ratios for the two brightestmembers in both groups, as well. By varying the position of the centerof mass between the two principal members of a group to obtain minimalscatter in the galaxies on a Hubble diagram, we find mass ratios of0.8:1.0 for our galaxy and Andromeda and 0.54:1.00 for the M82 and M81galaxies, in good agreement with the observed ratios of the luminositiesof these galaxies.
|Weak redshift discretisation in the Local Group of galaxies?|
We discuss the distribution of radial velocities of galaxies belongingto the Local Group. Two independent samples of galaxies as well asseveral methods of reduction from the heliocentric to the galactocentricradial velocities are explored. We applied the power spectrum analysisusing the Hann function as a weighting method, together with thejackknife error estimation. We performed a detailed analysis of thisapproach. The distribution of galaxy redshifts seems to be non-random.An excess of galaxies with radial velocities of 24 kms-1 and 36 km s-1 is detected, but theeffect is statistically weak. Only one peak for radial velocities of 24 km s-1 seems to be confirmed at the confidence levelof 95%.
|The Dwarf Satellites of M31 and the Galaxy|
The satellite systems of M31 and the Galaxy are compared. It is notedthat all five of the suspected stripped dwarf spheroidal (dSph) cores ofM31's companions are located within a projected distance of 40 kpc fromthe nucleus of this galaxy, whereas the normal dSph companions to thisobject have distances >40 kpc from the center of M31. All companionswithin 200 kpc25 kpc) satellites.
|Mid-Infrared Images of Stars and Dust in Irregular Galaxies|
We present mid-IR to optical properties of 22 representative irregulargalaxies: 18 irregular (Im) galaxies, 3 blue compact dwarfs, and 1Magellanic-type spiral galaxy. The mid-IR is based on images from theSpitzer Space Telescope archives. The 3.6 and 4.5 μm bands and theUBVJHK images are used to examine disk morphology and the integrated andazimuthally averaged magnitudes and colors of stars. The nonstellarcontribution to the 4.5 μm images is used to trace hot dust. The 5.8and 8.0 μm images reveal emission from hot dust and polycyclicaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and both may contribute to thesepassbands, although we refer to the nonstellar emission as PAH emission.We compare the 8.0 μm images to Hα. Im galaxies have no hiddenbars, and those with double-exponential optical light profiles have thesame at mid-IR. Most galaxies have similar optical and mid-IR scalelengths. Four galaxies have super star clusters that are not visible atoptical bands. Galaxies with higher area-normalized star formation rateshave more dust and PAH emission relative to starlight. Hot dust and PAHemission is found mostly in high surface brightness H II regions,implying that massive stars are the primary source of heating. Galaxieswith intense, widespread star formation have more extended PAH emission.The ratio of PAH to Hα emission is not constant on small scales.PAHs are associated with shells and giant filaments, so they are notdestroyed during shell formation.This work is based in part on archival data obtained with the SpitzerSpace Telescope, which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory,California Institute of Technology, under a contract with NASA.
|Neutral Hydrogen Clouds Near Early-Type Dwarf Galaxies of the Local Group|
Parkes neutral hydrogen 21 cm line (H I) observations of thesurroundings of nine early-type Local Group dwarfs are presented. Wedetected numerous H I clouds in the general direction of those dwarfs,and these clouds are often offset from the optical center of thegalaxies. Although all the observed dwarfs, except Antlia, occupyphase-space regions where the high-velocity cloud (HVC) density is wellabove average, the measured offsets are smaller than one would expectfrom a fully random cloud distribution. Possible association is detectedfor 11 of the 16 investigated clouds, while for two galaxies, Sextansand Leo I, no H I was detected. The galaxies in which H I clouds werefound not to coincide with the optical yet have a significantprobability of being associated are the Sculptor dwarf, Tucana, LGS 3,Cetus, and Fornax. If the clouds are indeed associated, these galaxieshave H I masses of MHI=2×105,2×106, 7×105, 7×105,and 1×105 Msolar, respectively. However,neither ram pressure nor tidal stripping can easily explain the offsets.In some cases, large offsets are found where ram pressure should be theleast effective.
|A Survey of Local Group Galaxies Currently Forming Stars. I. UBVRI Photometry of Stars in M31 and M33|
We present UBVRI photometry obtained from Mosaic images of M31 and M33using the Kitt Peak National Observatory 4 m telescope. We describe ourdata reduction and automated photometry techniques in some detail, as wewill shortly perform a similar analysis of other Local Group galaxies.The present study covered 2.2 deg2 along the major axis ofM31 and 0.8 deg2 on M33, chosen so as to include all of theregions currently active in forming massive stars. We calibrated ourdata using photometry from the Lowell 1.1 m telescope, and this externalmethod resulted in millimagnitude differences in the photometry ofoverlapping fields, providing some assurance that our photometry isreliable. The final catalog contains 371,781 and 146,622 stars in M31and M33, respectively, where every star has a counterpart in (at least)the B, V, and R passbands. Our survey goes deep enough to achieve 1%-2%photometry at 21 mag (corresponding to stars more massive than 20Msolar) and achieves <10% errors at U~B~V~R~I~23 mag.Although our typical seeing was only modest (0.8"-1.4", with median1.0") by some standards, we find excellent correspondence between ourcatalog sources and those we see in our Hubble Space Telescope ACS datafor OB48, a crowded region in M31. We compare our final photometry withthat of others and find good agreement with the CCD catalog of M31 starsby Magnier et al., although our study covers twice the area and goesabout 2 mag deeper. There is also excellent agreement with the CCD``DIRECT'' surveys of M31 and M33. The photographic studies of othersfare less well, particularly at the faint end in V, where accuratebackground subtraction is needed for good photometry. We providecross-references to the stars confirmed as members by spectroscopy andcompare the locations of these to the complete set in color-magnitudediagrams. While follow-up spectroscopy is needed for many projects, wedemonstrate the success of our photometry in being able to distinguishM31/M33 members from foreground Galactic stars. Finally, we present theresults of a single night of spectroscopy on the WIYN 3.5 m telescope,examining the brightest likely members of M31. The spectra identify 34newly confirmed members, including B-A supergiants, the earliest O starknown in M31, and two new luminous blue variable candidates whosespectra are similar to that of P Cygni.Based in part on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble SpaceTelescope, obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which isoperated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy(AURA), Inc., under NASA contract NAS5-26555. These observations areassociated with program GO-9794.
|The Anisotropic Distribution of M31 Satellite Galaxies: A Polar Great Plane of Early-type Companions|
The highly anisotropic distribution and apparent alignment of theGalactic satellites in polar great planes begs the question of howcommon such distributions are. The satellite system of M31 is the onlynearby system for which we currently have sufficiently accuratedistances to study the three-dimensional satellite distribution. Wepresent the spatial distribution of the 15 currently known M31companions in a coordinate system centered on M31 and aligned with itsdisk. Through a detailed statistical analysis we show that the fullsatellite sample describes a plane that is inclined by -56° withrespect to the poles of M31 and has an rms height of 100 kpc. At 88% thestatistical significance of this plane is low, and it is unlikely tohave a physical meaning. We note that the great stellar stream foundnear Andromeda is inclined to this plane by 7°. Most of the M31satellites are found within <+/-40° of M31's disk; i.e., there islittle evidence for a Holmberg effect. If we confine our analysis toearly-type dwarfs, we find a best-fit polar plane within 5°-7°from the pole of M31. This polar great plane has a statisticalsignificance of 99.7% and includes all dSphs (except for And II), M32,NGC 147, and PegDIG. The rms distance of these galaxies from the polarplane is 16 kpc. The nearby spiral M33 has a distance of only ~3 kpcfrom this plane, which points toward the M81 group. We discuss theanisotropic distribution of M31's early-type companions in the frameworkof three scenarios, namely, as remnants of the breakup of a largerprogenitor, as a tracer of a prolate dark matter halo, and as a tracerof collapse along large-scale filaments. The first scenario requiresthat the breakup must have occurred at very early times and that thedwarfs continued to form stars thereafter to account for their stellarpopulation content and luminosity-metallicity relation. The thirdscenario seems to be plausible, especially when considering the apparentalignment of our potential satellite filament with several nearbygroups. The current data do not permit us to rule out any of thescenarios. Orbit information is needed to test the physical reality ofthe polar plane and of the different scenarios in more detail.
|Towards a phylogenetic analysis of galaxy evolution: a case study with the dwarf galaxies of the Local Group|
Context: .The Hubble tuning-fork diagram has always been the preferredscheme for classifying galaxies. It is based only on morphology. Incontrast, biologists have long taken the genealogical relatedness ofliving entities into account for classification purposes. Aims:.Assuming branching evolution of galaxies as a "descent withmodification", we show here that the concepts and tools of phylogeneticsystematics that are widely used in biology can be heuristicallytransposed to the case of galaxies. Methods: .This approach,which we call "astrocladistics", is applied to dwarf galaxies of theLocal Group and provides the first evolutionary tree for realgalaxies. Results: .The trees that we present here are solidenough to support the existence of a hierarchical organisation in thediversity of dwarf galaxies of the Local Group. They also show thatthese galaxies all stem from a common ancestral kind of object. We findthat some kinds of dIrrs are progenitors of both dSphs and other kindsof dIrrs. We also identify three evolutionary groups, each one with itsown characteristics and own evolution. Conclusions: .The presentwork opens a new way to analysing galaxy evolution and a path towards anew systematics of galaxies. Work on other galaxies in the Universe isin progress.
|Imaging resources for the GTC: the Local Group Census|
The Local Group Census is a narrowband imaging survey aimed atcataloguing the emission-line populations in the galaxies of the LocalGroup. Data, which were obtained using the Wide Field Camera of the 2.5mIsaac Newton Telescope, are available to the whole astronomicalcommunity, resulting in a valuable imaging resource for follow-upspectroscopy with the GTC.
|A Dynamical Model for the Orbit of the Andromeda Galaxy M31 and the Origin of the Local Group of Galaxies|
We propose a new model for the origin and evolution of the Local Groupof Galaxies (LGG) that naturally explains the formation of theMagellanic Clouds and their large orbital angular momenta around theGalaxy. The basic idea is that an off-center hydrodynamical collisionoccurred some 10Gyr ago between the primordial Andromeda galaxy (M31)and a similar Galaxy, and compressed the halo gas to form the LGG dwarfgalaxies, including the Magellanic Clouds. New-born dwarf galaxies canbe expected to locate on the orbital plane of these two massivegalaxies. We reexamined the two-dimensional sky distribution of the LGGmembers, and confirmed an early idea that they align along two similargreat circles. The planes of these circles are approximately normal tothe line joining the present position of the Sun and the galacticcenter. We made a distribution map of these objects, and found awell-defined plane of finite thickness. Thus we could determine theorbital elements of M31 relative to the Galaxy by reproducing thewell-studied dynamics of the LMC and the SMC around the Galaxy. Theexpected proper motion of M31 is (μl, μb) =(38 ± 16 μas yr-1, -49 ± 5 μasyr-1).
|Star formation histories in local group dwarf galaxies [review article]|
I review observations made with the Hubble Space Telescope which haveimproved our view of both recent (ages ⩽1 Gyr) and ancient (ages⩾1 Gyr) star formation histories in dwarf galaxies. The method ofreconstructing recent star formation histories has been well tested, andnow the major challenge is to build a large database of suitableobservations of nearby dwarf irregular galaxies. With the exception ofthe dSph companions of our Galaxy, questions concerning the ancient starformation histories of nearby galaxies are stymied by a lack of suitablydeep imaging observations. The few observations which do exist providetantalizing evidence of strong evolution in star formation rates. Thisevolution is likely due to environmental effects, and we may be seeingevidence of the effects of reionization on the star formation historiesof dwarf galaxies. Due to its wide field of view and its excellentimaging resolution, the proposed model for SNAP could solve theseproblems.
|The galaxy luminosity function from MR=-25 to MR=-9|
Redshift surveys such as the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) have givena very precise measurement of the galaxy luminosity function down toabout MR=-17 (~MB=-16). Fainter absolutemagnitudes cannot be probed because of the flux limit required forspectroscopy. Wide-field surveys of nearby groups using mosaic CCDs onlarge telescopes are able to reach much fainter absolute magnitudes,about MR=-10. These diffuse, spiral-rich groups are thoughtto be typical environments for galaxies, so their luminosity functionsshould be the same as the field luminosity function. The luminosityfunction of the groups at the bright end (MR < -17) islimited by Poisson statistics and is far less precise than that derivedfrom redshift surveys. Here we combine the results of the SDSS and thesurveys of nearby groups, and we supplement the results with studies ofLocal Group galaxies in order to determine the galaxy luminosityfunction over the entire range -25 < MR < -9. Theaverage logarithmic slope of the field luminosity function betweenMR=-19 and MR=-9 is α=-1.26, although asingle power law is a poor fit to the data over the entire magnituderange. We also determine the luminosity function of galaxy clusters anddemonstrate that it is different from the field luminosity function at ahigh level of significance; there are many more dwarf galaxies inclusters than in the field, due to a rise in the cluster luminosityfunction of α~-1.6 between MR=-17 andMR=-14.
|Distances and metallicities for 17 Local Group galaxies|
We have obtained Johnson V and Gunni photometry for a large number ofLocal Group galaxies using the Isaac Newton Telescope Wide Field Camera(INT WFC). The majority of these galaxies are members of the M31subgroup and the observations are deep enough to study the top fewmagnitudes of the red giant branch in each system. We previouslymeasured the location of the tip of the red giant branch (TRGB) forAndromeda I, Andromeda II and M33 to within systematic uncertainties oftypically <0.05 mag. As the TRGB acts as a standard candle in old,metal-poor stellar populations, we were able to derive distances to eachof these galaxies. Here we derive TRGB distances to the giant spiralgalaxy M31 and 13 additional dwarf galaxies - NGC 205, 185, 147,Pegasus, WLM, LGS3, Cetus, Aquarius, And III, V, VI, VII and the newlydiscovered dwarf spheroidal And IX. The observations for each of thedwarf galaxies were intentionally taken in photometric conditions. Inaddition to the distances, we also self-consistently derive the medianmetallicity of each system from the colour of their red giant branches.This allows us to take into account the small metallicity variation ofthe absolute I magnitude of the TRGB. The homogeneous nature of our dataand the identical analysis applied to each of the 17 Local Groupgalaxies ensures that these estimates form a reliable set of distanceand metallicity determinations that are ideal for comparative studies ofLocal Group galaxy properties.
|The Stellar Structure of Irregular Galaxies. Face-on Galaxies|
Stellar photometry of nearby irregular galaxies of the Local Group isused to identify and study the young and old stellar populations ofthese galaxies. An analysis of the spatial distributions of stars ofdifferent ages in face-on galaxies shows that the young stellarpopulations in irregular galaxies are concentrated toward the center,and form local inhomogeneities in star-forming regions, while the oldstellar populationsred giantsform extended structuresaround the irregular galaxies. The sizes of these structures exceed thevisible sizes of the galaxies at the 25m2 isophote by a factor of two tothree. The surface density of the red giants decreases exponentiallyfrom the center toward the edge, similar to the disk components inspiral galaxies.
|The Distance and Metallicity of the Newly Discovered, Nearby Irregular Galaxy HIZSS 3|
HIZSS 3 is an H I source in the Zone of Avoidance. Its radiocharacteristics are consistent with it being a previously unknown,nearby (~1.8 Mpc), low-mass dwarf irregular (dIrr) galaxy. Opticalobservations have shown that it contains a modest H II region, but theyfailed to reveal a resolved stellar population. New spectroscopicobservations of the H II region obtained at the MMT Observatory arepresented here. They are used to derive the line-of-sight extinction[E(B-V)=1.41+/-0.04] and gas metallicity (logO/H+12~7.8) of the H IIregion. New near-IR imaging observations obtained at the ESO Very LargeTelescope are also presented here. These images clearly reveal theresolved stellar population of HIZSS 3 for the first time. NarrowbandPaβ images of the H II region are used in combination withpreviously published Hα data to obtain an independentline-of-sight extinction estimate: E(B-V)=1.32+/-0.04. The adoptedforeground extinction is E(B-V)=1.36+/-0.06. Using the K-band luminosityfunction and K,J-K color-magnitude diagram, the apparent magnitude andcolor of the tip of the red giant branch are derived. In turn, theseparameters are combined with the adopted foreground extinction toestimate the distance (1.69+/-0.07 Mpc) and mean red giant branchmetallicity ([Fe/H]=-0.5+/-0.1). As an ensemble, these new observationssignificantly strengthen the conclusion that HIZSS 3 is a newlydiscovered low-mass dIrr galaxy lurking behind the Milky Way in theoutskirts of the Local Group.The optical spectroscopic observations reported here were obtained atthe MMT Observatory, a joint facility of the Smithsonian Institution andthe University of Arizona. The near-IR imaging observations reportedhere were collected at the European Southern Observatory, Cerro Paranal,Chile, within observing program 271.B-5047.
|Light and Motion in the Local Volume|
Using high-quality data on 149 galaxies within 10 Mpc, I find nocorrelation between luminosity and peculiar velocity at all. There is nounequivocal sign on scales of 1-2 Mpc of the expected gravitationaleffect of the brightest galaxies, in particular infall toward groups, orof infall toward the supergalactic plane on any scale. Either darkmatter is not distributed in the same way as luminous matter in thisregion, or peculiar velocities are not due to fluctuations in mass. Thesensitivity of peculiar velocity studies to the background model ishighlighted.
|The Local Group and Other Neighboring Galaxy Groups|
Over the last few years, rapid progress has been made in distancemeasurements for nearby galaxies based on the magnitude of stars on thetip of the red giant branch. Current CCD surveys with the Hubble SpaceTelescope (HST) and large ground-based telescopes bring ~10% accuratedistances for roughly a hundred galaxies within 5 Mpc. The new data ondistances to galaxies situated in (and around) the nearest groups-theLocal Group, M81 Group, Cen A/M83 Group, IC 342/Maffei Group, Sculptorfilament, and Canes Venatici cloud-allowed us to determine their totalmass from the radius of the zero-velocity surface, R0, whichseparates a group as bound against the homogeneous cosmic expansion. Thevalues of R0 for the virialized groups turn out to be closeeach other, in the range of 0.9-1.3 Mpc. As a result, the total massesof the groups are close to each other, as well, yielding total mass toblue luminosity ratios of 10-40 MsolarL-1solar. The new total mass estimates are 3-5times lower than old virial mass estimates of these groups. Becauseabout half of galaxies in the Local volume belong to such loose groups,the revision of the amount of dark matter (DM) leads to a low localdensity of matter, Ωm~=0.04, which is comparable withthe global baryonic fraction Ωb but much lower than theglobal density of matter, Ωm=0.27. To remove thediscrepancy between the global and local quantities ofΩm, we assume the existence of two different DMcomponents: (1) compact dark halos around individual galaxies and (2) anonbaryonic dark matter ``ocean'' with ΩDM1~=0.07 andΩDM2~=0.20, respectively.Based in part on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble SpaceTelescope, obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which isoperated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy,Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555.
|The standard candle aspect of carbon stars|
This paper represents the second part of our effort to summarise variousaspects of our homogeneous survey of carbon stars in nearby galaxies.Here we investigate the relationships between the size of the C starpopulations and the luminosity of the parent galaxies. We also explorethe constancy of < M_I> for various metallicities and propertiesof the parent galaxies. We conclude that C stars are a viable standardcandle for galaxies large enough to contain one hundred or more C stars.The application of narrow-band filters limits, however, the use of Cstars as standard candles to no more than ~2 Mpc with currentlyavailable ground-based telescopes. Near-IR photometry from spaceobservations can significantly push the limit of detectability of Cstars thus making them an interesting alternative to the TRGB method.
|The calibration of the metallicity versus C/M relation|
This paper presents a critical reassessment of the C/M ratio in theLocal Group galaxies that have been surveyed by us in the last fewyears. We update distances, reddenings and metallicities with particularcare to obtain coherent values for each galaxy. A new equation for thebolometric correction of M stars in terms of their (R-I) colours isobtained from Bessell et al. (1998) data. We present a criticaldiscussion on the colour - spectral type relation for M stars whichreveals a dramatic lack of reliable data for late M stars. Finally, weshow that - when homogeneous data are used - the log(C/M0+) is wellcorrelated to the [Fe/H] of the parent galaxy.
|Effects of episodic gas infall on the chemical abundances in galaxies|
The chemical evolution of galaxies that undergo an episode of massiveand rapid accretion of metal-poor gas is investigated with models usingboth simplified and detailed nucleosynthesis recipes. The rapid decreaseof the oxygen abundance during infall is followed by a slower evolutionwhich leads back to the closed-box relation, thus forming a loop in theN/O-O/H diagram. For large excursions from the closed-box relation, themass of the infalling material needs to be substantially larger than thegas remaining in the galaxy, and the accretion rate should be largerthan the star formation rate. We apply this concept to the encounter ofhigh velocity clouds with galaxies of various masses, finding that theobserved properties of these clouds are indeed able to cause substantialeffects not only in low mass galaxies, but also in the partial volumesin large massive galaxies that would be affected by the collision.Numerical models with detailed nucleosynthesis prescriptions areconstructed. We assume star formation timescales and scaled yields thatdepend on the galactic mass, and which are adjusted to reproduce theaverage relations of gas fraction, oxygen abundance, and effectiveoxygen yield observed in irregular and spiral galaxies. The resultingexcursions in the N/O-O/H diagram due to a single accretion eventinvolving a high velocity cloud are found to be appreciable, which couldthus provide a contribution to the large scatter in the N/O ratio foundamong irregular galaxies. Nonetheless, the N/O-O/H diagram remains animportant indicator for stellar nucleosynthesis.
|Eclipsing binaries as precise standard candles|
Double-lined eclipsing binaries provide the most direct method foraccurate distance determinations to Local Group galaxies. Theobservations needed to apply the method can now be obtained, and a largenumber of new candidates are available. Recent results show that anaccuracy of about 3% can now realistically be reached. With existing andfuture interferometric and astrometric facilities, the method mightbecome completely scale independent. It bridges those reaching fartherout in the Universe, e.g. based on Cepheids, and thereby provides uniquepossibilities for their precise calibration.
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