An empirical connection between the ultraviolet color of early-type galaxies and the stellar initial mass function



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Zaritsky, Dennis and Gil de Paz, Armando and Bouquin, Alexandre Y. K. (2014) An empirical connection between the ultraviolet color of early-type galaxies and the stellar initial mass function. Astrophysical journal letters, 780 (1). ISSN 2041-8205

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Using new UV magnitudes for a sample of early-type galaxies (ETGs) with published stellar mass-to-light ratios, Υ_*, we find a correlation between UV color and Υ_* that is tighter than those previously identified between Υ_* and either the central stellar velocity dispersion, metallicity, or alpha enhancement. The sense of the correlation is that galaxies with larger Υ_* are bluer in the UV. We conjecture that differences in the lower mass end of the stellar initial mass function (IMF) are related to the nature of the extreme horizontal branch populations that are generally responsible for the UV flux in ETGs. If so, then UV color can be used to identify ETGs with particular IMF properties and to estimate Υ_*.

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© 2014. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved. D.Z. acknowledges financial support from NASA ADAP NNX12AE27G and NSF AST-1311326, and NYU CCPP for its hospitality during long-term visits. The authors acknowledge the support from the FP7 Marie Curie Actions of the European Commission, via the Initial Training Network DAGAL under REA grant agreement PITN-GA-2011-289313. This research has made use of the NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database (NED), which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under contract with NASA.

Uncontrolled Keywords:Elliptic galaxies; Evolution-explorer; Star-formation; Systematic variation; Magellanic-cloud; Virgo cluster; Binary model; Population; Sequence; Spectra
Subjects:Sciences > Physics > Astrophysics
Sciences > Physics > Astronomy
ID Code:35017
Deposited On:14 Jan 2016 13:49
Last Modified:10 Dec 2018 15:05

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