Recent Postings from Galactic

Chemical evolution of the bulge of M31: predictions about abundance ratios

We aim at reproducing the chemical evolution of the bulge of M31 by means of a detailed chemical evolution model, including radial gas flows coming from the disk. We study the impact of the initial mass function, the star formation rate and the time scale for bulge formation on the metallicity distribution function of stars. We compute several models of chemical evolution using the metallicity distribution of dwarf stars as an observational constraint for the bulge of M31. Then, by means of the model which best reproduces the metallicity distribution function, we predict the [X/Fe] vs. [Fe/H] relations for several chemical elements (O, Mg, Si, Ca, C, N). Our best model for the bulge of M31 is obtained by means of a robust statistical method and assumes a Salpeter initial mass function, a Schmidt-Kennicutt law for star formation with an exponent k=1.5, an efficiency of star formation of $\sim 15\pm 0.27\, Gyr^{-1}$, and an infall timescale of $\sim 0.10\pm 0.03$Gyr. Our results suggest that the bulge of M31 formed very quickly by means of an intense star formation rate and an initial mass function flatter than in the solar vicinity but similar to that inferred for the Milky Way bulge. The [$\alpha$/Fe] ratios in the stars of the bulge of M31 should be high for most of the [Fe/H] range, as is observed in the Milky Way bulge. These predictions await future data to be proven.

Deep Washington photometry of inconspicuous star cluster candidates in the Large Magellanic Cloud

We present deep Washington photometry of 45 poorly populated star cluster candidates in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC). We have performed a systematic study to estimate the parameters of the cluster candidates by matching theoretical isochrones to the cleaned and de-reddened cluster color-magnitude diagrams (CMDs). We were able to estimate the basic parameters for 33 clusters, out of which, 23 are identified as single clusters and 10 are found to be members of double clusters. Other 12 cluster candidates have been classified as possible clusters/asterisms. About 50$\%$ of the true clusters are in the 100-300 Myr age range, while some are older or younger. We have discussed the distribution of age, location, reddening with respect to field as well as size of true clusters. The sizes and masses of the studied sample are found to be similar to that of open clusters in the Milky Way. Our study adds to the lower end of cluster mass distribution in the LMC, suggesting that the LMC apart from hosting rich clusters also has formed small, less massive open clusters in the 100-300 Myr age range.

Deep Washington photometry of inconspicuous star cluster candidates in the Large Magellanic Cloud [Replacement]

We present deep Washington photometry of 45 poorly populated star cluster candidates in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC). We have performed a systematic study to estimate the parameters of the cluster candidates by matching theoretical isochrones to the cleaned and de-reddened cluster color-magnitude diagrams (CMDs). We were able to estimate the basic parameters for 33 clusters, out of which, 23 are identified as single clusters and 10 are found to be members of double clusters. Other 12 cluster candidates have been classified as possible clusters/asterisms. About 50% of the true clusters are in the 100-300 Myr age range, while some are older or younger. We have discussed the distribution of age, location, reddening with respect to field as well as size of true clusters. The sizes and masses of the studied sample are found to be similar to that of open clusters in the Milky Way. Our study adds to the lower end of cluster mass distribution in the LMC, suggesting that the LMC apart from hosting rich clusters also has formed small, less massive open clusters in the 100-300 Myr age range.

Dark matter inner slope and concentration in galaxies: from the Fornax dwarf to M87

We apply two new state-of-the-art methods that model the distribution of observed tracers in projected phase space to lift the mass / velocity anisotropy (VA) degeneracy and deduce constraints on the mass profiles of galaxies, as well as their VA. We first show how a distribution function based method applied to the satellite kinematics of otherwise isolated SDSS galaxies shows convincing observational evidence of age matching: red galaxies have more concentrated dark matter (DM) halos than blue galaxies of the same stellar or halo mass. Then, applying the MAMPOSSt technique to M87 (traced by its red and blue globular clusters) we find that very cuspy DM is favored, unless we release priors on DM concentration or stellar mass (leading to unconstrained slope). For the Fornax dwarf spheroidal (traced by its metal-rich and metal-poor stars), the inner DM slope is unconstrained, with weak evidence for a core if the stellar mass is fixed. This highlights how priors are crucial for DM modeling. Finally, we find that blue GCs around M87 and metal-rich stars in Fornax have tangential outer VA.

The gas inflow and outflow rate in star-forming galaxies at $z\sim1.4$

We try to constrain the gas inflow and outflow rate of star-forming galaxies at $z\sim1.4$ by employing a simple analytic model for the chemical evolution of galaxies. The sample is constructed based on a large near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopic sample observed with Subaru/FMOS. The gas-phase metallicity is measured from the [\ion{N}{2}]$\lambda$6584/H$\alpha$ emission line ratio and the gas mass is derived from the extinction corrected H$\alpha$ luminosity by assuming the Kennicutt-Schmidt law. We constrain the inflow and outflow rate from the least-$\chi^{2}$ fittings of the observed gas mass fraction, stellar mass, and metallicity with the analytic model. The joint $\chi^{2}$ fitting shows the best-fit inflow rate is $\sim1.8$ and the outflow rate is $\sim0.6$ in unit of star-formation rate (SFR). By applying the same analysis to the previous studies at $z\sim0$ and $z\sim2.2$, it is shown that the both inflow rate and outflow rate decrease with decreasing redshift, which implies the higher activity of gas flow process at higher redshift. The decreasing trend of the inflow rate from $z\sim2.2$ to $z\sim0$ agrees with that seen in the previous observational works with different methods, though the absolute value is generally larger than the previous works. The outflow rate and its evolution from $z\sim2.2$ to $z\sim0$ obtained in this work agree well with the independent estimations in the previous observational works.

Discovery of very high energy gamma-ray emission from the blazar 1ES 0033+595 by the MAGIC telescopes

The number of known very high energy (VHE) blazars is $\sim\,50$, which is very small in comparison to the number of blazars detected in other frequencies. This situation is a handicap for population studies of blazars, which emit about half of their luminosity in the $\gamma$-ray domain. Moreover, VHE blazars, if distant, allow for the study of the environment that the high-energy $\gamma$-rays traverse in their path towards the Earth, like the extragalactic background light (EBL) and the intergalactic magnetic field (IGMF), and hence they have a special interest for the astrophysics community. We present the first VHE detection of 1ES\,0033+595 with a statistical significance of 5.5\,$\sigma$. The VHE emission of this object is constant throughout the MAGIC observations (2009 August and October), and can be parameterized with a power law with an integral flux above 150 GeV of $(7.1\pm1.3)\times 10^{-12} {\mathrm{ph\,cm^{-2}\,s^{-1}}}$ and a photon index of ($3.8\pm0.7$). We model its spectral energy distribution (SED) as the result of inverse Compton scattering of synchrotron photons. For the study of the SED we used simultaneous optical R-band data from the KVA telescope, archival X-ray data by \textit{Swift} as well as \textit{INTEGRAL}, and simultaneous high energy (HE, $300$\,MeV~–~$10$\,GeV) $\gamma$-ray data from the \textit{Fermi} LAT observatory. Using the empirical approach of Prandini et al. (2010) and the \textit{Fermi}-LAT and MAGIC spectra for this object, we estimate the redshift of this source to be $0.34\pm0.08\pm0.05$. This is a relevant result because this source is possibly one of the ten most distant VHE blazars known to date, and with further (simultaneous) observations could play an important role in blazar population studies, as well as future constraints on the EBL and IGMF.

Stars older than the universe and possible mechanism of their creation

An impressive bulk of multiple astronomical observations indicates that there are plenty of objects in the universe with the age which cannot be explained by the conventional theory. A model is considered which successfully describes all these puzzling phenomena.

Around the Ring We Go: The Cold, Dense Ring of Molecular Gas in NGC 1614

We present high-resolution archival Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) CO J=3-2 and J=6-5 and HCO+ J=4-3 observations and new CARMA CO and 13CO J=1-0 observations of the luminous infrared galaxy NGC 1614. The high-resolution maps show the previously identified ring-like structure while the CO J=3-2 map shows extended emission that traces the extended dusty features. We combined these new observations with previously published Submillimeter Array CO and 13CO J=2-1 observations to constrain the physical conditions of the molecular gas at a resolution of 230 pc using a radiative transfer code and a Bayesian likelihood analysis. At several positions around the central ring-like structure, the molecular gas is cold (20-40 K) and dense (> 10^{3.0} cm^{-3}) . The only region that shows evidence of a second molecular gas component is the "hole" in the ring. The CO-to-13CO abundance ratio is found to be greater than 130, more than twice the local interstellar medium value. We also measure the CO-to-H_{2} conversion factor, alpha_{CO}, to range from 0.9 to 1.5 M_sol (K km/s pc^{2})^{-1}.

Identifying AGN's Balmer-Absorptions and stratified NLR kinematics in SDSS\.J112611.63+425246.4

Balmer absorption is a rare phenomenon in active galactic nuclei (AGNs). So far, only seven Balmer-absorption AGNs have been reported in literature. We here report the identification of SDSS\,J112611.63+425246 as a new Balmer-absorption AGN through our spectral analysis, and study the kinematics of its narrow emission-line region (NLR). We model the continuum by a linear combination of a starlight component, a powerlaw from the central AGN and the emission from the FeII complex. After the subtraction of the modeled continuum, each emission/absorption line is profiled by a sum of multi Gaussian functions. All the line shifts are determined with respect to the modeled starlight component. By using the host starlight as a reference for the local system, both H$\alpha$ and H$\beta$ show AGN’s absorptions with a blueshift of $\sim300\mathrm{km\ s^{-1}}$. We identify a strong anti-correlation between the inferred velocity shifts and ionization potential for various narrow emission lines, which suggests a stratified NLR kinematics. A de-accelerated outflow is implied for the inner NLR gas, while an accelerated inflow for the outer NLR gas. This complicated NLR kinematics additionally implies that AGN’s narrow emission lines, even for the low-ionized lines, might not be a reliable surrogate for the velocity of the local system.

Photometric Redshifts in the Hawaii-Hubble Deep Field-North (H-HDF-N)

We derive photometric redshifts (\zp) for sources in the entire ($\sim0.4$ deg$^2$) Hawaii-Hubble Deep Field-North (\hdfn) field with the EAzY code, based on point spread function-matched photometry of 15 broad bands from the ultraviolet (\bandu~band) to mid-infrared (IRAC 4.5 $\mu$m). Our catalog consists of a total of 131,678 sources. We evaluate the \zp~quality by comparing \zp~with spectroscopic redshifts (\zs) when available, and find a value of normalized median absolute deviation \sigm$=$0.029 and an outlier fraction of 5.5\% (outliers are defined as sources having $\rm |\zp – \zs|/(1+\zs) > 0.15$) for non-X-ray sources. More specifically, we obtain \sigm$=0.024$ with 2.7\% outliers for sources brighter than $R=23$~mag, \sigm$=0.035$ with 7.4\% outliers for sources fainter than $R=23$~mag, \sigm$=$0.026 with 3.9\% outliers for sources having $z<1$, and \sigm$=$0.034 with 9.0\% outliers for sources having $z>1$. Our \zp\ quality shows an overall improvement over an earlier \zp\ work that focused only on the central \hdfn\ area. We also classify each object as star or galaxy through template spectral energy distribution fitting and complementary morphological parametrization, resulting in 4959 stars and 126,719 galaxies. Furthermore, we match our catalog with the 2~Ms {\it Chandra} Deep Field-North main \xray~catalog. For the 462 matched non-stellar \xray~sources (281 having \zs), we improve their \zp~quality by adding three additional AGN templates, achieving \sigm$=0.035$ and an outlier fraction of 12.5\%. We make our catalog publicly available presenting both photometry and \zp, and provide guidance on how to make use of our catalog.

The Argo Simulation: II. The Early Build-up of the Hubble Sequence

The Hubble sequence is a common classification scheme for the structure of galaxies. Despite the tremendous usefulness of this diagnostic, we still do not fully understand when, where, and how this morphological ordering was put in place. Here, we investigate the morphological evolution of a sample of 22 high redshift ($z\geq3$) galaxies extracted from the Argo simulation. Argo is a cosmological zoom-in simulation of a group-sized halo and its environment. It adopts the same high resolution ($\sim10^4$ M$_\odot$, $\sim100$ pc) and sub-grid physical model that was used in the Eris simulation but probes a sub-volume almost ten times bigger with as many as 45 million gas and star particles in the zoom-in region. Argo follows the early assembly of galaxies with a broad range of stellar masses ($\log M_{\star}/{\rm M}_{\odot}\sim8-11$ at $z\simeq3$), while resolving properly their structural properties. We recover a diversity of morphologies, including late-type/irregular disc galaxies with flat rotation curves, spheroid dominated early-type discs, and a massive elliptical galaxy, already established at $z\sim3$. We identify major mergers as the main trigger for the formation of bulges and the steepening of the circular velocity curves. Minor mergers and non-axisymmetric perturbations (stellar bars) drive the bulge growth in some cases. The specific angular momenta of the simulated disc components fairly match the values inferred from nearby galaxies of similar $M_{\star}$ once the expected redshift evolution of disc sizes is accounted for. We conclude that morphological transformations of high redshift galaxies of intermediate mass are likely triggered by processes similar to those at low redshift and result in an early build-up of the Hubble sequence.

Physical Conditions in the X-ray Emission-line Gas in NGC 1068

We present a detailed, photoionization modeling analysis of XMM-Newton/Reflection Grating Spectrometer observations of the Seyfert 2 galaxy NGC 1068. The spectrum, previously analyzed by Kinkhabwala et al. (2002), reveals a myriad of soft-Xray emission lines, including those from H- and He-like carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and neon, and M- and L-shell iron. As noted in the earlier analysis, based on the narrowness of the radiative recombination continua, the electron temperatures in the emission-line gas are consistent with photoionization, rather than collisional ionization. The strengths of the carbon and nitrogen emission lines, relative to those of oxygen, suggest unusual elemental abundances, which we attribute to star-formation history of the host galaxy. Overall, the emission-lines are blue-shifted with respect to systemic, with radial velocities ~ 160 km/s, similar to that of [O III] 5007, and thus consistent with the kinematics and orientation of the optical emission-line gas and, hence, likely part of an AGN-driven outflow. We were able to achieve an acceptable fit to most of the strong emission-lines with a two-component photoionization model, generated with Cloudy. The two components have ionization parameters and column densities of logU = -0.05 and 1.22, and logN(H) = 20.85 and 21.2, and covering factors of 0.35 and 0.84, respectively. The total mass of the X-ray gas is roughly of an order of magnitude greater than the mass of ionized gas determined from optical and near-IR spectroscopy, which indicates that it may be the dominant component of the narrow line region. Furthermore, we suggest that the medium which produces the scattered/polarized optical emission in NGC~1068 possesses similar physical characteristics to those of the more highly-ionized of the X-ray model components.

Thickness of Stellar Disks in Early-type Galaxies

We suggest and verify a new photometric method enabling derivation of relative thickness of a galactic disk from two-dimensional surface-brightness distribution of the galaxy in the plane of the sky. The method is applied to images of 45 early-type (S0-Sb) galaxies with known radial exponential or double-exponential (with a flatter outer profile) surface-brightness distributions. The data in the r-band have been retrieved from the SDSS archive. Statistics of the estimated relative thicknesses of the stellar disks of early-type disk galaxies shows the following features. The disks of lenticular and early-type spiral galaxies have similar thicknesses. The presence of a bar results in only a slight marginal increase of the thickness. However, we have found a substantial difference between the thicknesses of the disks with a single-scaled exponential brightness profile and the disks that represent the inner segments of the Type III (antitruncated) profiles. The disks are significantly thicker in the former subsample than in the latter one. This may provide evidence for a surface-brightness distribution of a single-scaled exponential disk to be formed due to viscosity effects acting over the entire period of star formation in the disk.

Thermal and radiative AGN feedback : weak impact on star formation in high-redshift disk galaxy simulations

Active Galactic Nuclei (AGNs) release huge amounts of energy in their host galaxies, which, if the coupling is sufficient, can affect the interstellar medium (ISM). We use a high-resolution simulation ($\sim6$ pc) of a z $\sim2$ star-forming galaxy hosting an AGN, to study this not yet well-understood coupling. In addition to the often considered small-scale thermal energy deposition by the AGN, which is implemented in the simulation, we model long-range photo-ionizing AGN radiation in post-processing, and quantify the impact of AGN feedback on the ability of the gas to form stars. Surprisingly, even though the AGN generates powerful outflows, the impact of AGN heating and photo-ionization on instantaneous star formation is weak: the star formation rate decreases by a few percent at most, even in a quasar regime ($L_{bol}=10^{46.5}$ erg s$^{-1}$). Furthermore, the reservoirs of atomic gas that are expected to form stars on a 100 – 200 Myrs time scale are also marginally affected. Therefore, while the AGN-driven outflows can remove substantial amounts of gas in the long term, the impact of AGN feedback on the star formation efficiency in the ISM of high-redshift galaxies is marginal, even when long-range radiative effects are taken into account.

Are Spine--Sheath Polarization Structures in the Jets of Active Galactic Nuclei Associated with Helical Magnetic Fields? [Replacement]

One possible origin for polarization structures across jets of Active Galactic Nuclei (AGNs) with a central "spine" of orthogonal magnetic field and a "sheath" of longitudinal magnetic field along one or both edges of the jet is the presence of a helical jet magnetic field. Simultaneous Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) polarization observations of AGN displaying partial or full spine–sheath polarization structures were obtained at 4.6, 5.0, 7.9, 8.9, 12.9 and 15.4 GHz, in order to search for additional evidence for helical jet magnetic fields, such as transverse Faraday rotation gradients (due to the systematic change in the line-of-sight magnetic-field component across the jet). Results for eight sources displaying monotonic transverse Faraday rotation gradients with significances $\geq 3\sigma$ are presented here. Reversals in the directions of the transverse RM gradients with distance from the core or with time are detected in three of these AGNs. These can be interpreted as evidence for a nested helical magnetic field structure, with different directions for the azimuthal field component in the inner and outer regions of helical field. The results presented here support the idea that many spine–sheath polarization structures reflect the presence of helical magnetic fields being carried by these jets.

Are Spine--Sheath Polarization Structures in the Jets of Active Galactic Nuclei Associated with Helical Magnetic Fields?

One possible origin for polarization structures across jets of Active Galactic Nuclei (AGNs) with a central "spine" of orthogonal magnetic field and a "sheath" of longitudinal magnetic field along one or both edges of the jet is the presence of a helical jet magnetic field. Simultaneous Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) polarization observations of AGN displaying partial or full spine–sheath polarization structures were obtained at 4.6, 5.0, 7.9, 8.9, 12.9 and 15.4 GHz, in order to search for additional evidence for helical jet magnetic fields, such as transverse Faraday rotation gradients (due to the systematic change in the line-of-sight magnetic-field component across the jet). Results for eight sources displaying monotonic transverse Faraday rotation gradients with significances $\geq 3\sigma$ are presented here. Reversals in the directions of the transverse RM gradients with distance from the core or with time are detected in three of these AGNs. These can be interpreted as evidence for a nested helical magnetic field structure, with different directions for the azimuthal field component in the inner and outer regions of helical field. The results presented here support the idea that many spine–sheath polarization structures reflect the presence of helical magnetic fields being carried by these jets.

H I Kinematics of the Large Magellanic Cloud revisited : Evidence of possible infall and outflow

The neutral atomic Hydrogen (H I) kinematics of the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) is revisited in light of two new proper motion estimates. We analysed the intensity weighted H I velocity maps of the ATCA/Parkes and GASS data sets. We corrected the line of sight velocity field for the systemic, transverse, precession, and nutation motions of the disk using two recent proper motion estimates, and estimated the kinematic parameters of the H I disk. The value of position angle (PA) of kinematic major axis estimated using ATCA/Parkes data is found to be similar to the recent estimate of the PA using stellar tracers. The effect of precession and nutation in the estimation of PA is found to be significant. Using ATCA/Parkes data, most of the H I gas in the LMC is found to be located in the disk. We detected 12.1% of the data points as kinematic outliers. We identified the well-known Arm E, Arm S, Arm W, Arm B and a new stream, Outer Arm, as part of outlier components. The GASS data analysis brings out the velocity details of the Magellanic Bridge (MB) and its connection to the LMC disk. We find that the Arm B and the Outer Arm are connected to the MB. We detect high velocity gas in the western disk of the LMC and the south-west and southern parts of the MB. We proposed two models (in plane and out of plane) to explain the outlier gas. We suggest that the Arm B could be an infall feature, originating from the inner MB. The Arm E could be an outflow feature. We suggest possible outflows from the western LMC disk and south and south western MB, which could be due to ram pressure. The velocity pattern observed in the MB suggests that it is being sheared. We suggest that the various outliers identified in this study may be caused by a combination of tidal effects and hydrodynamical effect due to the motion of the LMC in the Milky Way (MW) halo.

On the dynamics of clouds in the broad-line region of AGNs with an ADAF atmosphere

We investigate orbital motion of spherical, pressure-confined clouds in the broad-line region (BLR) of active galactic nuclei (AGN). The combined influence of gravity of the central object and the non-isotropic radiation of the central source are taking into account. While most of the previous studies assume that the pressure of the intercloud gaseous component is proportional to a power-law function of the radial coordinate, we generalize it to a case where the external pressure depends on both the radial distance and the latitudinal angle. Our prescribed pressure profile determines the radius and the column density of BLR clouds as a function of their location. We also discuss about stability of the orbits and a condition for the existence of bound orbits is obtained. We found that BLR clouds tend to populate the equatorial regions more than other parts simply because of the stability considerations. Although this finding is obtained for a particular pressure profile, we think, this result is valid as long as the pressure distribution of the intercloud medium decreases from the equator to the pole.

The Void Galaxy Survey: Galaxy Evolution and Gas Accretion in Voids

Voids represent a unique environment for the study of galaxy evolution, as the lower density environment is expected to result in shorter merger histories and slower evolution of galaxies. This provides an ideal opportunity to test theories of galaxy formation and evolution. Imaging of the neutral hydrogen, central in both driving and regulating star formation, directly traces the gas reservoir and can reveal interactions and signs of cold gas accretion. For a new Void Galaxy Survey (VGS), we have carefully selected a sample of 59 galaxies that reside in the deepest underdensities of geometrically identified voids within the SDSS at distances of ~100 Mpc, and pursued deep UV, optical, Halpha, IR, and HI imaging to study in detail the morphology and kinematics of both the stellar and gaseous components. This sample allows us to not only examine the global statistical properties of void galaxies, but also to explore the details of the dynamical properties. We present an overview of the VGS, and highlight key results on the HI content and individually interesting systems. In general, we find that the void galaxies are gas rich, low luminosity, blue disk galaxies, with optical and HI properties that are not unusual for their luminosity and morphology. We see evidence of both ongoing assembly, through the gas dynamics between interacting systems, and significant gas accretion, seen in extended gas disks and kinematic misalignments. The VGS establishes a local reference sample to be used in future HI surveys (CHILES, DINGO, LADUMA) that will directly observe the HI evolution of void galaxies over cosmic time.

Source plane reconstruction of the giant gravitational arc in Abell 2667: a candidate Wolf-Rayet galaxy at z~1

We present a new analysis of HST, Spitzer telescope imaging and VLT imaging and spectroscopic data of a bright lensed galaxy at $z$=1.0334 in the lensing cluster Abell~2667. Using this high-resolution imaging we present an updated lens model that allows us to fully understand the lensing geometry and reconstruct the lensed galaxy in the source plane. This giant arc gives a unique opportunity to peer into the structure of a high-redshift disk galaxy. We find that the lensed galaxy of Abell 2667 is a typical spiral galaxy with morphology similar to the structure of its counterparts at higher redshift $z\sim 2$. The surface brightness of the reconstructed source galaxy in the z$_{850}$ band reveals the central surface brightness $I(0)=20.28\pm0.22$ mag arcsec$^{-2}$ and the characteristic radius $r_s=2.01\pm0.16$ kpc at redshift $z \sim 1$. The morphological reconstruction in different bands shows obvious negative radial color gradients for this galaxy. Moreover, the redder central bulge tends to contain a metal-rich stellar population, rather than being heavily reddened by dust due to high and patchy obscuration. We analyze the VIMOS/IFU spectroscopic data and find that, in the given wavelength range ($\sim 1800-3200$ \AA), the combined arc spectrum of the source galaxy is characterized by a strong continuum emission with strong UV absorption lines (FeII and MgII) and shows the features of a typical starburst Wolf-Rayet galaxy NGC5253. More specifically, we have measured the EWs of FeII and MgII lines in the Abell 2667 spectrum, and obtained similar values for the same wavelength interval of the NGC5253 spectrum. Marginal evidence for CIII] 1909 emission at the edge of the grism range further confirms our expectation.

Radio Monitoring Campaigns of Six Strongly Lensed Quasars

We observed six strongly lensed, radio-loud quasars (MG 0414+0534, CLASS B0712+472, JVAS B1030+074, CLASS B1127+385, CLASS B1152+199, and JVAS B1938+666) in order to identify systems suitable for measuring cosmological parameters using time delays between their multiple images. These systems are in standard two and four image configurations, with B1938 having a faint secondary pair of images. Two separate monitoring campaigns were carried out using the VLA and upgraded JVLA. Lightcurves were extracted for each individual lensed image and analyzed for signs of intrinsic variability. While it was not possible to measure time delays from these data, $\chi^2$-based and structure function tests found evidence for variability in a majority of the lightcurves. B0712 and B1030 had particularly strong variations, exhibiting linear flux trends. These results show that most of these systems should be targeted with followup monitoring campaigns, especially B0712 and B1030.

IFU observations of luminous type II AGN - I. Evidence for ubiquitous winds

We present observations of 17 luminous (log(L[O III]/L_Sun) > 8.7) local (z < 0.11) type II AGN. Our aim is to investigate the prevalence and nature of AGN driven outflows in these galaxies by combining kinematic and ionization diagnostic information. We use non-parametric methods (e.g. W80, the width containing 80% of the line flux) to assess the line widths in the central regions of our targets. The maximum values of W80 in each galaxy are in the range 400 – 1600 km/s, with a mean of 790 +- 90 km/s. Such high velocities are strongly suggestive that these AGN are driving ionized outflows. Multi-Gaussian fitting is used to decompose the velocity structure in our galaxies. 14/17 of our targets require 3 separate kinematic components in the ionized gas in their central regions. The broadest components of these fits have FWHM = 530 – 2520 km/s, with a mean value of 920 +- 50 km/s. By simultaneously fitting both the H{\beta}/[O III] and H{\alpha}/[N II] complexes we construct ionization diagnostic diagrams for each component. 13/17 of our galaxies show a significant (> 95 %) correlation between the [N II]/H{\alpha} ratio and the velocity dispersion of the gas. Such a correlation is the natural consequence of a contribution to the ionization from shock excitation and we argue that this demonstrates that the outflows from these AGN are directly impacting the surrounding ISM within the galaxies.

Relational Mechanics as a gauge theory: Machianization and dragging effect in galactic halos [Cross-Listing]

The elimination of absolute space from the body of mechanics is achieved by gauging translations and rotations in the kinetic energy of an isolated system. As a result, the gauge invariant Lagrangian leads to equations of motion that can be used in any frame. Nevertheless, there are privileged frames where Newton’s equations are valid, but they are determined by the matter distribution of the universe (Machianization). The relational equations of motion shows that there exists a dragging effect in galactic halos that contributes to the rotation curves. On the other hand, the absence of an absolute time is characteristic of parametrized systems, which are systems possessing an internal time. Parametrized systems with potentials that are proportional to inverse square distances are as well gauge invariant under scalings (shape-dynamics).

Turbulent Heating in Galaxy Clusters Brightest in X-rays

The hot, X-ray-emitting intracluster medium (ICM) is the dominant baryonic constituent of clusters of galaxies. In the cores of many clusters, radiative energy losses from the ICM occur on timescales significantly shorter than the age of the system. Unchecked, this cooling would lead to massive accumulations of cold gas and vigorous star formation, in contradiction to observations. Various sources of energy capable of compensating these cooling losses have been proposed, the most promising being heating by the supermassive black holes in the central galaxies through inflation of bubbles of relativistic plasma. Regardless of the original source of energy, the question of how this energy is transferred to the ICM has remained open. Here we present a plausible solution to this question based on deep Chandra X-ray observatory data and a new data-analysis method that enables us to evaluate directly the ICM heating rate due to the dissipation of turbulence. We find that turbulent heating is sufficient to offset radiative cooling and indeed appears to balance it locally at each radius – it might therefore be the key element in resolving the gas cooling problem in cluster cores and, more universally, in atmospheres of X-ray gas-rich systems.

Exposing Sgr tidal debris behind the Galactic disk with M giants selected in WISE$\cap$2MASS

We show that a combination of infrared photometry from WISE and 2MASS surveys can yield highly pure samples of M giant stars. We take advantage of the new WISE$\cap$2MASS M giant selection to trace the Sagittarius trailing tail behind the Galactic disk in the direction of the anti-centre. The M giant candidates selected via broad-band photometry are confirmed spectroscopically using AAOmega on the AAT in 3 fields around the extremity of the Sgr trailing tail in the Southern Galactic hemisphere. We demonstrate that at the Sgr longitude $\tilde \Lambda_{\odot} = 204^{\circ}$, the line-of-sight velocity of the trailing tail starts to deviate from the track of the Law & Majewski (2010) model, confirming the prediction of Belokurov et al. (2014). This discovery serves to substantiate the measurement of low differential orbital precession of the Sgr stream which in turn may imply diminished dark matter content within 100 kpc.

From blue star-forming to red passive: galaxies in transition in different environments

Exploiting a mass complete (M_*>10^(10.25)M_sun) sample at 0.03<z<0.11 drawn from the Padova Millennium Galaxy Group Catalog (PM2GC), we use the (U-B)_rf color and morphologies to characterize galaxies, in particular those that show signs of an ongoing or recent transformation of their star formation activity and/or morphology – green galaxies, red passive late types, and blue star-forming early types. Color fractions depend on mass and only for M_*<10^(10.7)M_sun on environment. The incidence of red galaxies increases with increasing mass, and, for M_*<10^(10.7)M_sun, decreases toward the group outskirts and in binary and single galaxies. The relative abundance of green and blue galaxies is independent of environment, and increases monotonically with galaxy mass. We also inspect galaxy structural parameters, star-formation properties, histories and ages and propose an evolutionary scenario for the different subpopulations. Color transformations are due to a reduction and suppression of SFR in both bulges and disks which does not noticeably affect galaxy structure. Morphological transitions are linked to an enhanced bulge-to-disk ratio due to the removal of the disk, not to an increase of the bulge. Our modeling suggests that green colors might be due to star formation histories declining with long timescales, as an alternative scenario to the classical "quenching" processes. Our results suggest that galaxy transformations in star formation activity and morphology depend neither on environment nor on being a satellite or the most massive galaxy of a halo. The only environmental dependence we find is the higher fast quenching efficiency in groups giving origin to post-starburst signatures.

The interplay between a galactic bar and a supermassive black hole: nuclear fueling in a sub-parsec resolution galaxy simulation

We study the connection between the large-scale dynamics and the gas fueling toward a central black hole via the analysis of a Milky Way-like simulation at sub-parsec resolution. This allows us to follow a set of processes at various scales (e.g., the triggering of inward gas motion towards inner resonances via the large-scale bar, the connection to the central black hole via mini spirals) in a self-consistent manner. This simulation provides further insights on the role of shear for the inhibition of star formation within the bar in regions with significant amount of gas. We also witness the decoupling of the central gas and nuclear cluster from the large-scale disc, via interactions with the black hole. This break of symmetry in the mass distribution triggers the formation of gas clumps organised in a time-varying 250 pc ring-like structure, the black hole being offset by about 70 pc from its centre. Some clumps form stars, while most get disrupted or merge. Supernovae feedback further creates bubbles and filaments, some of the gas being expelled to 100 pc or higher above the galaxy plane. This helps remove angular momentum from the gas, which gets closer to the central dark mass. Part of the gas raining down is being accreted, forming a 10~pc polar disc-like structure around the black hole, leading to an episode of star formation. This gives rise to multiple stellar populations with significantly different angular momentum vectors, and may lead to a natural intermittence in the fueling of the black hole.

Ultraluminous Infrared Galaxies in the AKARI All Sky Survey

We present a new catalog of 118 Ultraluminous Infrared Galaxies (ULIRGs) and one Hyperluminous Infrared Galaxy (HLIRG) by crossmatching AKARI all-sky survey with the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 10 (SDSS DR10) and the Final Data Release of the Two-Degree Field Galaxy Redshift Survey (2dFGRS). 40 of the ULIRGs and one HLIRG are new identifications. We find that ULIRGs are interacting pair galaxies or ongoing/post mergers. This is consistent with the widely accepted view: ULIRGs are major mergers of disk galaxies. We confirm the previously known positive trend between the AGN fraction and IR luminosity. We show that ULIRGs have a large off-set from the ‘main sequence’ up to z~1; their off-set from the z~2 ‘main sequence’ is relatively smaller. We find a consistent result with the previous studies showing that compared to local star forming SDSS galaxies of similar mass, local ULIRGs have lower oxygen abundances. We for the first time demonstrate that ULIRGs follow the fundamental metallicity relation (FMR). The scatter of ULIRGs around the FMR (0.09 dex – 0.5 dex) is comparable with the scatter of z~2-3 galaxies. Their optical colors show that ULIRGs are mostly blue galaxies and this agrees with previous findings. We provide the largest local (0.050 < z < 0.487) ULIRG catalog with stellar masses, SFRs, gas metallicities and optical colors. Our catalog provides us active galaxies analogous to high-z galaxies in the local Universe where they can be rigorously scrutinized.

Star formation around the mid-infrared bubble CN 148

We present a multi-wavelength study to analyse the star formation process associated with the mid-infrared bubble CN 148 (H II region G10.3-0.1), which harbors an O5V-O6V star. The arc-shaped distribution of molecular CO(2-1) emission, the cold dust emission, and the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon features trace a photodissociation region (PDR) around the H II region. We have identified 371 young stellar objects (YSOs) in the selected region and, interestingly, their spatial distribution correlates well with the PDR. 41% of these YSOs are present in 13 clusters, each having visual extinction larger than 16 mag. The clusters at the edges of the bubble (both northeast and southwest) are found to be relatively younger than the clusters located further away from the bubble. We also find that four 6.7 GHz methanol masers, two Extended Green Objects, an ultra-compact H II region, and a massive protostar candidate (as previously reported) are spatially positioned at the edges of the bubble. The existence of an apparent age gradient in YSO clusters and different early evolutionary stages of massive star formation around the bubble suggest their origin to be influenced by an H II region expanding into the surrounding interstellar medium. The data sets are suggestive of triggered star formation.

The Gaia-ESO Survey: {\alpha}-abundances of metal-poor stars

We performed a detailed study of the ratio of low-{\alpha} to high-{\alpha} stars in the Galactic halo as observed by the Gaia-ESO Survey. Using a sample of 381 metal-poor stars from the second internal data release, we found that the value of this ratio did not show evidence of systematic trends as a function of metallicity, surface gravity, Galactic latitude, Galactic longitude, height above the Galactic plane, and Galactocentric radius. We conclude that the {\alpha}-poor/{\alpha}-rich value of 0.28 $\pm$ 0.08 suggests that in the inner halo, the larger portion of stars were formed in a high star formation rate environment, and about 15% of the metal-poor stars originated from much lower star formation rate environments.

Discovery of a stellar tidal stream around the Whale galaxy, NGC 4631

We report the discovery of a giant stellar tidal stream in the halo of NGC 4631, a nearby edge-on spiral galaxy interacting with the spiral NGC 4656, in deep images taken with a 40-cm aperture robotic telescope. The stream has two components: a bridge-like feature extended between NGC 4631 and NGC 4656 (stream_SE) and an overdensity with extended features on the opposite side of the NGC 4631 disk (stream_NW). Together, these features extend more than 85 kpc and display a clear (g-r) colour gradient. The orientation of stream_SE relative to the orientations of NGC 4631 and NGC 4656 is not consistent with an origin from interaction between these two spirals, and is more likely debris from a satellite encounter. The stellar tidal features can be qualitatively reproduced in an N-body model of the tidal disruption of a single, massive dwarf satellite on a moderately eccentric orbit (e=0.6) around NGC 4631 over $\sim$ 3.5 Gyr, with a dynamical mass ratio (m1:m2) of ~40. Both modelling and inferences from the morphology of the streams indicate these are not associated with the complex HI tidal features observed between both spirals, which likely originate from a more recent, gas-rich accretion event. The detailed structure of stream_NW suggests it may contain the progenitor of the stream, in agreement with the N-body model. In addition, stream_NW is roughly aligned with two very faint dwarf spheroidal candidates. The system of dwarf galaxies and the tidal stream around NGC 4631 can provide an additional interesting case for exploring the anisotropy distribution of satellite galaxies recently reported in Local Group spiral galaxies by means of future follow-up observations.

Chemical modeling of water deuteration in IRAS16293-2422

IRAS 16293-2422 is a well studied low-mass protostar characterized by a strong level of deuterium fractionation. In the line of sight of the protostellar envelope, an additional absorption layer, rich in singly and doubly deuterated water has been discovered by a detailed multiline analysis of HDO. To model the chemistry in this source, the gas-grain chemical code Nautilus has been used with an extended deuterium network. For the protostellar envelope, we solve the chemical reaction network in infalling fluid parcels in a protostellar core model. For the foreground cloud, we explored several physical conditions (density, cosmic ionization rate, C/O ratio). The main results of the paper are that gas-phase abundances of H2O, HDO and D2O observed in the inner regions of IRAS16293-2422 are lower than those predicted by a 1D dynamical/chemical (hot corino) model in which the ices are fully evaporated. The abundance in the outer part of the envelope present chaotic profiles due to adsorption/evaporation competition, very different from the constant abundance assumed for the analysis of the observations. We also found that the large abundances of gas-phase H2O, HDO and D2O observed in the absorption layer are more likely explained by exothermic surface reactions rather than photodesorption processes.

Extended HCN and HCO$^{+}$ emission in the starburst galaxy M82

We mapped 3 mm continuum and line emission from the starburst galaxy M82 using the Combined Array for Research in Millimeter-wave Astronomy. We targeted the HCN, HCO$^{+}$, HNC, CS and HC$_{3}$N lines, but here we focus on the HCN and HCO$^{+}$ emission. The map covers a field of 1.2′ with a ~5" resolution. The HCN and HCO$^{+}$ observations are combined with single dish images. The molecular gas in M82 had been previously found to be distributed in a molecular disk, coincident with the central starburst, and a galactic scale outflow which originates in the central starburst. With the new short spacings-corrected maps we derive some of the properties of the dense molecular gas in the base of the outflow. From the HCN and HCO$^{+}$ J=(1-0) line emission, and under the assumptions of the gas being optically thin and in local thermodynamic equilibrium, we place lower limits to the amount of dense molecular gas in the base of the outflow. The lower limits are $7\times10^{6}$ $M_{\odot}$ and $21\times10^{6}$ $M_{\odot}$, or $\gtrsim2\%$ of the total molecular mass in the outflow. The kinematics and spatial distribution of the dense gas outside the central starburst suggests that it is being expelled through chimneys. Assuming a constant outflow velocity, the derived outflow rate of dense molecular gas is $\geq0.3$ $M_{\odot}$ yr$^{-1}$, which would lower the starburst lifetime by $\geq5\%$. The energy required to expel this mass of dense gas is $(1-10)\times10^{52}$ erg.

The almost ubiquitous association of 6.7 GHz methanol masers with dust

We report the results of 870-$\mu$m continuum observations, using the Large APEX Bolometer Camera (LABOCA), towards 77 class-II, 6.7-GHz methanol masers identified by the Methanol Multibeam (MMB) survey to map the thermal emission from cool dust towards these objects. These data complement a study of 630 methanol masers associated with compact dense clumps identified from the ATLASGAL survey. Compact dust emission is detected towards 70 sources, which implies a dust-association rate of 99% for the full MMB catalogue. Evaluation of the derived dust and maser properties leads us to conclude that the combined sample represents a single population tracing the same phenomenon. We find median clump masses of a few 10$^3$ M$\odot$ and that all but a handful of sources satisfy the mass-size criterion required for massive star formation. This study provides the strongest evidence of the almost ubiquitous association of methanol masers with massive, star-forming clumps. The fraction of methanol-maser associated clumps is a factor of ~2 lower in the outer Galaxy than the inner Galaxy, possibly a result of the lower metallicity environment of the former. We find no difference in the clump-mass and maser-luminosity distributions of the inner and outer Galaxy. The maser-pumping and clump-formation mechanisms are therefore likely to be relatively invariant to Galactic location. Finally, we use the ratio of maser luminosity and clump mass to investigate the hypothesis that the maser luminosity is a good indicator of the evolutionary stage of the embedded source, however, we find no evidence to support this.

Globular Cluster Systems in Brightest Cluster Galaxies: A Near-Universal Luminosity Function?

We present the first results from our HST Brightest Cluster Galaxy (BCG) survey of seven central supergiant cluster galaxies and their globular cluster (GC) systems. We measure a total of 48000 GCs in all seven galaxies, representing the largest single GC database. We find that a log-normal shape accurately matches the observed luminosity function (LF) of the GCs down to the GCLF turnover point, which is near our photometric limit. In addition, the LF has a virtually identical shape in all seven galaxies. Our data underscore the similarity in the formation mechanism of massive star clusters in diverse galactic environments. At the highest luminosities (log L > 10^7 L_Sun) we find small numbers of "superluminous" objects in five of the galaxies; their luminosity and color ranges are at least partly consistent with those of UCDs (Ultra-Compact Dwarfs). Lastly, we find preliminary evidence that in the outer halo (R > 20 kpc), the LF turnover point shows a weak dependence on projected distance, scaling as L_0 ~ R^-0.2, while the LF dispersion remains nearly constant.

The Narrow Line Region in 3D: mapping AGN feeding and feedback

Early studies of nearby Seyfert galaxies have led to the picture that the Narrow Line Region (NLR) is a cone-shaped region of gas ionized by radiation from a nuclear source collimated by a dusty torus, where the gas is in outflow. In this contribution, I discuss a 3D view of the NLR obtained via Integral Field Spectroscopy, showing that: (1) although the region of highest emission is elongated (and in some cases cone-shaped), there is also lower level emission beyond the "ionization cone", indicating that the AGN radiation leaks through the torus; (2) besides outflows, the gas kinematics include also rotation in the galaxy plane and inflows; (3) in many cases the outflows are compact and restricted to the inner few 100pc; we argue that these may be early stages of an outflow that will evolve to an open-ended, cone-like one. Inflows are observed in ionized gas in LINERs, and in warm molecular gas in more luminous AGN, being usually found on hundred of pc scales. Mass outflow rates in ionized gas are of the order of a few solar masses per year, while the mass inflow rates are of the order of tenths of solar masses per year. Mass inflow rates in warm molecular gas are ~4-5 orders of magnitude lower, but these inflows seem to be only tracers of more massive inflows in cold molecular gas that should be observable at mm wavelengths.

Instability of Magnetized Ionization Fronts Surrounding H II Regions

An ionization front (IF) surrounding an H II region is a sharp interface where a cold neutral gas makes transition to a warm ionized phase by absorbing UV photons from central stars. We investigate the instability of a plane-parallel D-type IF threaded by parallel magnetic fields, by neglecting the effects of recombination within the ionized gas. We find that weak D-type IFs always have the post-IF magnetosonic Mach number $\mathcal{M}_{\rm M2} \leq 1$. For such fronts, magnetic fields increase the maximum propagation speed of the IFs, while reducing the expansion factor $\alpha$ by a factor of $1+1/(2\beta_1)$ compared to the unmagnetized case, with $\beta_1$ denoting the plasma beta in the pre-IF region. IFs become unstable to distortional perturbations due to gas expansion across the fronts, exactly analogous to the Darrieus-Landau instability of ablation fronts in terrestrial flames. The growth rate of the IF instability is proportional linearly to the perturbation wavenumber as well as the upstream flow speed, and approximately to $\alpha^{1/2}$. The IF instability is stabilized by gas compressibility and becomes completely quenched when the front is D-critical. The instability is also stabilized by magnetic pressure when the perturbations propagate in the direction perpendicular to the fields. When the perturbations propagate in the direction parallel to the fields, on the other hand, it is magnetic tension that reduces the growth rate, completely suppressing the instability when $\mathcal{M}_{\rm M2}^2 < 2/(\beta_1 – 1)$. When the front experiences an acceleration, the IF instability cooperates with the Rayleigh-Taylor instability to make the front more unstable.

Early flattening of dark matter cusps in dwarf spheroidal galaxies

Simulations of the clustering of cold dark matter yield dark-matter halos that have central density cusps, but observations of totally dark-matter dominated dwarf spheroidal galaxies imply that they do not have cuspy central density profiles. We use analytic calculations and numerical modelling to argue that whenever stars form, central density cusps are likely to be erased. Gas that accumulates in the potential well of an initially cuspy dark-matter halo settles into a disc. Eventually the surface density of the gas exceeds the threshold for fragmentation into self-gravitating clouds. The clouds are massive enough to transfer energy to the dark-matter particles via dynamical friction on a short time-scale. The halo’s central cusp is heated to form a core with central logarithmic density slope gamma=0 before stellar feedback makes its impact. Since star formation is an inefficient process, the clouds are disrupted by feedback when only a small fraction of their mass has been converted to stars, and the dark matter dominates the final mass distribution.

Reconstructing the Accretion History of the Galactic Stellar Halo from Chemical Abundance Ratio Distributions

Observational studies of halo stars during the last two decades have placed some limits on the quantity and nature of accreted dwarf galaxy contributions to the Milky Way stellar halo by typically utilizing stellar phase-space information to identify the most recent halo accretion events. In this study we tested the prospects of using 2-D chemical abundance ratio distributions (CARDs) found in stars of the stellar halo to determine its formation history. First, we used simulated data from eleven "MW-like" halos to generate satellite template sets of 2-D CARDs of accreted dwarf satellites which are comprised of accreted dwarfs from various mass regimes and epochs of accretion. Next, we randomly drew samples of $\sim10^{3-4}$ mock observations of stellar chemical abundance ratios ([$\alpha$/Fe], [Fe/H]) from those eleven halos to generate samples of the underlying densities for our CARDs to be compared to our templates in our analysis. Finally, we used the expectation-maximization algorithm to derive accretion histories in relation to the satellite template set (STS) used and the sample size. For certain STS used we typically can identify the relative mass contributions of all accreted satellites to within a factor of 2. We also find that this method is particularly sensitive to older accretion events involving low-luminous dwarfs e.g. ultra-faint dwarfs – precisely those events that are too ancient to be seen by phase-space studies of stars and too faint to be seen by high-z studies of the early Universe. Since our results only exploit two chemical dimensions and near-future surveys promise to provide $\sim6-9$ dimensions, we conclude that these new high-resolution spectroscopic surveys of the stellar halo will allow us to recover its accretion history – and the luminosity function of infalling dwarf galaxies – across cosmic time.

Galactic Tides and the Shape and Orientation of Dwarf Galaxy Satellites

We use cosmological N-body simulations from the Aquarius Project to study the tidal effects of a dark matter halo on the shape and orientation of its substructure. Although tides are often assumed to enhance asphericity and to stretch subhaloes tangentially, these effects are short lived: as in earlier work, we find that subhaloes affected by tides become substantially more spherical and show a strong radial alignment toward the centre of the host halo. These results, combined with a semi-analytic model of galaxy formation, may be used to assess the effect of Galactic tides on the observed population of dwarf spheroidal (dSph) satellites of the Milky Way and Andromeda galaxies. If, as the model suggests, the relatively low dark matter content of luminous dSphs such as Fornax and Leo I is due to tidal stripping, then their gravitational potential must be substantially more spherical than that of more heavily dark matter-dominated systems such as Draco or Carina. The model also predicts a tidally-induced statistical excess of satellites whose major axis aligns with the direction to the central galaxy. We find tantalizing evidence of this in the M31 satellite population, which suggests that tides may have played an important role in its evolution.

HST Emission Line Galaxies at z ~ 2: The Mystery of Neon

We use near-IR grism spectroscopy from the Hubble Space Telescope to examine the strength of [Ne~III] 3869 relative to H-beta, [O~II] 3727 and [O~III] 5007 in 236 low mass (7.5 < log (Mstar/Msolar) < 10.5) star-forming galaxies in the redshift range 1.90 < z < 2.35. By stacking the data by stellar mass, we show that the [Ne~III]/[O~II] ratios of the z ~ 2 universe are marginally higher than those seen in a comparable set of local SDSS galaxies, and that [Ne~III]/[O~III] is enhanced by ~0.2 dex. We consider the possible explanations for this ~4-sigma result, including higher oxygen depletion out of the gas-phase, denser H~II regions, higher production of Ne22 via Wolf-Rayet stars, and the existence of a larger population of X-ray obscured AGN at z ~ 2 compared to z ~ 0. None of these simple scenarios, alone, are favored to explain the observed line ratios. We conclude by suggesting several avenues of future observations to further explore the mystery of enhanced [Ne~III] emission.

The Survey of Lines in M31 (SLIM): Investigating the Origins of [CII] Emission

The [CII] 158 micron line is one of the strongest emission lines observed in star-forming galaxies, and has been empirically measured to correlate with the star formation rate (SFR) globally and on ~kpc scales. However, due to the multi-phase origins of [CII], one might expect this relation to break down at small scales. We investigate the origins of [CII] emission by examining high spatial resolution observations of [CII] in M31, with the Survey of Lines in M31 (SLIM). We present five ~700×700 pc (3"x3") Fields mapping the [CII] emission, Halpha emission, combined with ancillary infrared (IR) data. We spatially separate star-forming regions from diffuse gas and dust emission on ~50 pc scales. We find that the [CII] – SFR correlation holds even at these scales, although the relation typically has a flatter slope than found at larger (~kpc) scales. While the Halpha emission in M31 is concentrated in the SFR regions, we find that a significant amount (~20-90%) of the [CII] emission comes from outside star-forming regions, and that the total IR (TIR) emission has the highest diffuse fraction of all SFR tracers. We find a weak correlation of the [CII]/TIR to dust color in each Field, and find a large scale trend of increasing [CII]/TIR with galactocentric radius. The differences in the relative diffuse fractions of [CII], Halpha and IR tracers are likely caused by a combination of energetic photon leakage from HII regions and heating by the diffuse radiation field arising from older (B-star) stellar populations. However, we find that by averaging our measurements over ~kpc scales, these effects are minimized, and the relation between [CII] and SFR found in other nearby galaxy studies is retrieved.

Insights into gas heating and cooling in the disc of NGC 891 from Herschel far-infrared spectroscopy

We present Herschel PACS and SPIRE spectroscopy of the most important far-infrared cooling lines in the nearby edge-on spiral galaxy, NGC 891: [CII] 158 $\mu$m, [NII] 122, 205 $\mu$m, [OI] 63, 145 $\mu$m, and [OIII] 88 $\mu$m. We find that the photoelectric heating efficiency of the gas, traced via the ([CII]+[OII]63)/$F_{\mathrm{TIR}}$ ratio, varies from a mean of 3.5$\times$10$^{-3}$ in the centre up to 8$\times$10$^{-3}$ at increasing radial and vertical distances in the disc. A decrease in ([CII]+[OII]63)/$F_{\mathrm{TIR}}$ but constant ([CII]+[OI]63)/$F_{\mathrm{PAH}}$ with increasing FIR colour suggests that polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) may become important for gas heating in the central regions. We compare the observed flux of the FIR cooling lines and total IR emission with the predicted flux from a PDR model to determine the gas density, surface temperature and the strength of the incident far-ultraviolet (FUV) radiation field, $G_{0}$. Resolving details on physical scales of ~0.6 kpc, a pixel-by-pixel analysis reveals that the majority of the PDRs in NGC 891′s disc have hydrogen densities of 1 < log ($n$/cm$^{-3}$) < 3.5 experiencing an incident FUV radiation field with strengths of 1.7 < log $G_0$ < 3. Although these values we derive for most of the disc are consistent with the gas properties found in PDRs in the spiral arms and inter-arm regions of M51, observed radial trends in $n$ and $G_0$ are shown to be sensitive to varying optical thickness in the lines, demonstrating the importance of accurately accounting for optical depth effects when interpreting observations of high inclination systems. With an empirical relationship between the MIPS 24 $\mu$m and [NII] 205 $\mu$m emission, we estimate an enhancement of the FUV radiation field strength in the far north-eastern side of the disc.

Exceptional AGN-driven turbulence inhibits star formation in the 3C 326N radio-galaxy

We detect bright [CII]158$\mu$m line emission from the radio galaxy 3C 326N at z=0.09, which shows weak star formation ($SFR<0.07$M$_{\odot}$~yr$^{-1}$) despite having strong H$_2$ line emission and $2\times 10^9$M$_{\odot}$ of molecular gas. The [CII] line is twice as strong as the 0-0S(1) 17$\mu$m H$_2$ line, and both lines are much in excess what is expected from UV heating. We combine infrared Spitzer and Herschel data with gas and dust modeling to infer the gas physical conditions. The [CII] line traces 30 to 50% of the molecular gas mass, which is warm (70<T<100K) and at moderate densities $700<n_{H}<3000$cm$^{-3}$. The [CII] line is broad with a blue-shifted wing, and likely to be shaped by a combination of rotation, outflowing gas, and turbulence. It matches the near-infrared H$_2$ and the Na D optical absorption lines. If the wing is interpreted as an outflow, the mass loss rate would be larger than 20M$_{\odot}$/yr, and the depletion timescale shorter than the orbital timescale ($10^8$yr). These outflow rates may be over-estimated because the stochastic injection of turbulence on galactic scales can contribute to the skewness of the line profile and mimic outflowing gas. We argue that the dissipation of turbulence is the main heating process of this gas. Cosmic rays can also contribute to the heating but they require an average gas density larger than the observational constraints. We show that strong turbulent support maintains a high gas vertical scale height (0.3-4kpc) in the disk and can inhibit the formation of gravitationally-bound structures at all scales, offering a natural explanation for the weakness of star formation in 3C 326N. To conclude, the bright [CII] line indicates that strong AGN jet-driven turbulence may play a key role in enhancing the amount of molecular gas (positive feedback) but yet can prevent star formation on galactic scales (negative feedback).

Spitzer/infrared spectrograph investigation of MIPSGAL 24 {\mu}m compact bubbles : Low resolution observations

We present Spitzer/IRS low resolution observations of 11 compact circumstellar bubbles from the MIPSGAL 24 {\mu}m Galactic Plane Survey. We find that this set of MIPSGAL bubbles (MBs) is divided into two categories, and that this distinction correlates with the morphologies of the MBs in the mid- IR. The four MBs with central sources in the mid-IR exhibit dust-rich, low excitation spectra, and their 24 {\mu}m emission is accounted for by the dust continuum. The seven MBs without central sources in the mid-IR have spectra dominated by high excitation gas lines (e.g., [O IV] 26.0 {\mu}m, [Ne V] 14.3 and 24.3 {\mu}m, [Ne III] 15.5 {\mu}m), and the [O IV] line accounts for 50 to almost 100% of the 24 {\mu}m emission in five of them. In the dust-poor MBs, the [Ne V] and [Ne III] line ratios correspond to high excitation conditions. Based on comparisons with published IRS spectra, we suggest that the dust-poor MBs are highly excited planetary nebulae with peculiar white dwarfs (e.g., [WR], novae) at their centers. The central stars of the four dust-rich MBs are all massive star candidates. Dust temperatures range from 40 to 100 K in the outer shells. We constrain the extinction along the lines of sight from the IRS spectra. We then derive distance, dust masses, and dust production rate estimates for these objects. These estimates are all consistent with the nature of the central stars. We summarize the identifications of MBs made to date and discuss the correlation between their mid-IR morphologies and natures. Candidate Be/B[e]/LBV and WR stars are mainly "rings" with mid-IR central sources, whereas PNe are mostly "disks" without mid-IR central sources. Therefore we expect that most of the 300 remaining unidentified MBs will be classified as PNe.

The Recent Evolution of Early-Type Galaxies as Seen in their Cold Gas

I present an overview of new observations of atomic and molecular gas in early-type galaxies, focusing on the Atlas3D project. Our data on stellar kinematics, age and metallicity, and ionized gas kinematics allow us to place the cold gas into the broader context of early-type galaxy assembly and star formation history. The cold gas data also provide valuable constraints for numerical simulations of early-type galaxies.

Selection of AGN candidates in the GOODS-South Field through SPITZER/MIPS 24 $\mu$m variability

We present a study of galaxies showing mid-infrared variability in data taken in the deepest Spitzer/MIPS 24 $\mu$m surveys in the GOODS-South field. We divide the dataset in epochs and subepochs to study the long-term (months-years) and the short-term (days) variability. We use a $\chi^2$-statistics method to select AGN candidates with a probability $\leq$ 1% that the observed variability is due to statistical errors alone. We find 39 (1.7% of the parent sample) sources that show long-term variability and 55 (2.2% of the parent sample) showing short-term variability. That is, 0.03 sources $\times$ arcmin$^{-2}$ for both, long-term and short-term variable sources. After removing the expected number of false positives inherent to the method, the estimated percentages are 1.0% and 1.4% of the parent sample for the long-term and short-term respectively. We compare our candidates with AGN selected in the X-ray and radio bands, and AGN candidates selected by their IR emission. Approximately, 50% of the MIPS 24 $\mu$m variable sources would be identified as AGN with these other methods. Therefore, MIPS 24 $\mu$m variability is a new method to identify AGN candidates, possibly dust obscured and low luminosity AGN, that might be missed by other methods. However, the contribution of the MIPS 24 $\mu$m variable identified AGN to the general AGN population is small ($\leq$ 13%) in GOODS-South.

Ram pressure statistics for bent tail radio galaxies

In this paper we use the MareNostrum Universe Simulation, a large scale, hydrodynamic, non-radiative simulation in combination with a simple abundance matching approach to determine the ram pressure statistics for bent radio sources (BRSs). The abundance matching approach allows us to determine the locations of all galaxies with stellar masses $> 10^{11} MSol$ in the simulation volume. Assuming ram pressure exceeding a critical value causes bent morphology, we compute the ratio of all galaxies exceeding the ram pressure limit (RPEX galaxies) relative to all galaxies in our sample. According to our model 50% of the RPEX galaxies at $z = 0$ are found in clusters with masses larger than $10^{14.5}MSol$ the other half resides in lower mass clusters. Therefore, the appearance of bent tail morphology alone does not put tight constraints on the host cluster mass. In low mass clusters, $M < 10^{14}MSol$, RPEX galaxies are confined to the central 500 kpc whereas in clusters of $> 10^{15}Msol$ they can be found at distances up to 1.5Mpc. Only clusters with masses $> 10^{15}MSol $ are likely to host more than one BRS. Both criteria may prove useful in the search for distant, high mass clusters.

A Multi-Transition Study of Molecules toward NGC 1068 based on High-Resolution Imaging Observations with ALMA

We present 0.8-mm band molecular images and spectra obtained with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) toward one of the nearest galaxies with an active galactic nucleus (AGN), NGC 1068. Distributions of CO isotopic species ($^{13}$CO and C$^{18}$O) $\it{J}$ = 3–2, CN $\it{N}$ = 3–2 and CS $\it{J}$ = 7–6 are observed toward the circumnuclear disk (CND) and a part of the starburst ring with an angular resolution of $\sim$1.$^{\prime\prime}$3 $\times$ 1.$^{\prime\prime}$2. The physical properties of these molecules and shock-related molecules such as HNCO, CH$_{3}$CN, SO, and CH$_{3}$OH detected in the 3-mm band were estimated using rotation diagrams under the assumption of local thermodynamic equilibrium. The rotational temperatures of the CO isotopic species and the shock-related molecules in the CND are, respectively, 14–22 K and upper limits of 20–40 K. Although the column densities of the CO isotopic species in the CND are only from one-fifth to one-third of that in the starburst ring, those of the shock-related molecules are enhanced by a factor of 3–10 in the CND. We also discuss the chemistry of each species, and compare the fractional abundances in the CND and starburst ring with those of Galactic sources such as cold cores, hot cores, and shocked molecular clouds in order to study the overall characteristics. We find that the abundances of shock-related molecules are more similar to abundances in hot cores and/or shocked clouds than to cold cores. The CND hosts relatively complex molecules, which are often associated with shocked molecular clouds or hot cores. Because a high X-ray flux can dissociate these molecules, they must also reside in regions shielded from X-rays.

Probing the Parsec-scale Accretion Flow of 3C 84 with Millimeter Polarimetry

We report the discovery of Faraday rotation toward radio source 3C 84, the active galactic nucleus in NGC1275 at the core of the Perseus Cluster. The rotation measure (RM), determined from polarization observations at wavelengths of 1.3 and 0.9 mm, is (8.7 +/- 2.3) x 10^5 radians/m^2, among the largest ever measured. The RM remained relatively constant over a 2 year period even as the intrinsic polarization position angle wrapped through a span of 300 degrees. The Faraday rotation is likely to originate either in the boundary layer of the radio jet from the nucleus, or in the accretion flow onto the central black hole. The accretion flow probably is disk-like rather than spherical on scales of less than a parsec, otherwise the RM would be even larger.


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