The link between the masses and central stellar populations of S0 galaxies



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Bedregal, A. G. and Aragón Salamanca, A. and Merrifield, M. R. and Cardiel López, Nicolás (2008) The link between the masses and central stellar populations of S0 galaxies. Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 387 (2). pp. 660-676. ISSN 0035-8711

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Using high signal-to-noise ratio VLT/FORS2 long-slit spectroscopy, we have studied the properties of the central stellar populations and dynamics of a sample of S0 galaxies in the Fornax cluster. The central absorption-line indices in these galaxies correlate well with the central velocity dispersions (sigma(0)) in accordance with what previous studies found for elliptical galaxies. However, contrary to what it is usually assumed for cluster ellipticals, the observed correlations seem to be driven by systematic age and alpha-element abundance variations, and not changes in overall metallicity. We also found that the observed scatter in the index-sigma(0) relations can be partially explained by the rotationally supported nature of these systems. Indeed, even tighter correlations exist between the line indices and the maximum circular velocity of the galaxies. This study suggests that the dynamical mass is the physical property driving these correlations, and for S0 galaxies such masses have to be estimated assuming a large degree of rotational support. The observed trends imply that the most massive S0s have the shortest star formation time-scales and the oldest stellar populations.

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This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. © 2008 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2008 RAS. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved. This work was based on observations made with ESO telescopes at Paranal Observatory under programme ID 070.A-0332. This publication makes use of data products from the Two Micron All Sky Survey, which is a joint project of the University of Massachusetts and the Infrared Processing and Analysis Center/California Institute of Technology, funded by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the National Science Foundation.

Uncontrolled Keywords:Elliptic galaxies; Globular-clusters; Coma cluster; Velocity dispersion; Absorption features; Fundamental plane; Color-magnitude; Ionized-gas; Ii emission; Indexes
Subjects:Sciences > Physics > Astrophysics
Sciences > Physics > Astronomy
Sciences > Physics > Atmospheric physics
ID Code:28213
Deposited On:06 Feb 2015 10:05
Last Modified:10 Dec 2018 15:05

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