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CANDELS: The progenitors of compact quiescent galaxies at z ~ 2



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Pérez González, Pablo Guillermo and otros, ... (2013) CANDELS: The progenitors of compact quiescent galaxies at z ~ 2. Astrophysical journal, 765 (2). ISSN 0004-637X

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/0004-637X/765/2/104


We combine high-resolution Hubble Space Telescope/WFC3 images with multi-wavelength photometry to track the evolution of structure and activity of massive (M_*> 10^10 M_☉) galaxies at redshifts z = 1.4-3 in two fields of the Cosmic Assembly Near-infrared Deep Extragalactic Legacy Survey. We detect compact, star-forming galaxies (cSFGs) whose number densities, masses, sizes, and star formation rates (SFRs) qualify them as likely progenitors of compact, quiescent, massive galaxies (cQGs) at z = 1.5-3. At z≲2, cSFGs present SFR = 100-200 M_☉ yr^–1, yet their specific star formation rates (sSFR ~ 10^–9 yr^–1) are typically half that of other massive SFGs at the same epoch, and host X-ray luminous active galactic nuclei (AGNs) 30 times (~30%) more frequently. These properties suggest that cSFGs are formed by gas-rich processes (mergers or disk-instabilities) that induce a compact starburst and feed an AGN, which, in turn, quench the star formation on dynamical timescales (few 10^8 yr). The cSFGs are continuously being formed at z = 2-3 and fade to cQGs down to z ~ 1.5. After this epoch, cSFGs are rare, thereby truncating the formation of new cQGs. Meanwhile, down to z = 1, existing cQGs continue to enlarge to match local QGs in size, while less-gas-rich mergers and other secular mechanisms shepherd (larger) SFGs as later arrivals to the red sequence. In summary, we propose two evolutionary tracks of QG formation: an early (z≲2), formation path of rapidly quenched cSFGs fading into cQGs that later enlarge within the quiescent phase, and a late-arrival (z≳2) path in which larger SFGs form extended QGs without passing through a compact state.

Item Type:Article
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© 2013 The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Artículo firmado por 37 autores.
Support for Program number HST-GO-12060 was provided by NASA through a grant from the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Incorporated, under NASA contract NAS5-26555. G.B. acknowledges support from NSF grant AST-08-08133. P.G.P.-G. acknowledges support from grant AYA2009-07723-E.

Uncontrolled Keywords:Star-forming galaxies; Active galactic nucleus; Supermassive black-holes; Hubble-space-telescope; Less-than 2; Extragalactic legacy survey; High-redshift galaxies; Mass-size relation; Stellar mass; Photometric redshift
Subjects:Sciences > Physics > Astrophysics
Sciences > Physics > Astronomy
ID Code:38403
Deposited On:05 Jul 2016 15:04
Last Modified:10 Dec 2018 15:05

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