Home     To Survive in the Universe    
    Why to Inhabit     Top Contributors     Astro Photo     The Collection     Forum     Blog New!     FAQ     Login  

NGC 7626



Upload your image

DSS Images   Other Images

Related articles

HI content in galaxies in loose groups
Gas deficiency in cluster spirals is well known and ram-pressurestripping is considered the main gas removal mechanism. In some compactgroups too gas deficiency is reported. However, gas deficiency in loosegroups is not yet well established. Lower dispersion of the membervelocities and the lower density of the intragroup medium in small loosegroups favour tidal stripping as the main gas removal process in them.Recent releases of data from the HI Parkes All-Sky Survey (HIPASS) andcatalogues of nearby loose groups with associated diffuse X-ray emissionhave allowed us to test this notion. In this paper, we address thefollowing questions: (i) do galaxies in groups with diffuse X-rayemission statistically have lower gas content compared to the ones ingroups without diffuse X-ray emission? (ii) does HI deficiency vary withthe X-ray luminosity, LX, of the loose group in a systematicway? We find that (i) galaxies in groups with diffuse X-ray emission, onaverage, are HI deficient, and have lost more gas compared to those ingroups without X-ray emission; the latter are found not to havesignificant HI deficiency; (ii) no systematic dependence of the HIdeficiency with LX is found. Ram-pressure-assisted tidalstripping and evaporation by thermal conduction are the two possiblemechanisms to account for this excess gas loss.

The Warped Nuclear Disk of Radio Galaxy 3C 449
Among radio galaxies containing nuclear dust disks, the bipolar jet axisis generally observed to be perpendicular to the disk major axis. The FRI radio source 3C 449 is an outlier to this statistical majority, as itpossesses a nearly parallel jet/disk orientation on the sky. We examinethe 600 pc dusty disk in this galaxy with images from the Hubble SpaceTelescope. We find that a 1.6 μm/0.7 μm color map of the diskexhibits a twist in its isocolor contours (isochromes). We model thecolor map by integrating galactic starlight through an absorptive diskand find that the anomalous twist in the isochromes can be reproduced inthe model with a vertically thin, warped disk. The model predicts thatthe disk is nearly perpendicular to the jet axis within 100 pc of thenucleus. We discuss physical mechanisms capable of causing such a warp.We show that precessional models or a torque on the disk arising from apossible binary black hole in the AGN causes precession on a timescalethat is too long to account for the predicted disk morphology. However,we estimate that the pressure in the X-ray-emitting interstellar mediumis large enough to perturb the disk, and we argue that jet-drivenanisotropy in the excited ISM may be the cause of the warp. In this way,the warped disk in 3C 449 may be a new manifestation of feedback from anactive galactic nucleus.

The Complex X-Ray Morphology of NGC 7618: A Major Group-Group Merger in the Local Universe?
We present results from a short Chandra ACIS-S observation of NGC 7618,the dominant central galaxy of a nearby (z=0.017309, d=74.1 Mpc) group.We detect a sharp surface brightness discontinuity 14.4 kpc north of thenucleus subtending an angle of 130° with an X-ray tail extending ~70kpc in the opposite direction. The temperature of the gas inside andoutside the discontinuity is 0.79+/-0.03 and 0.81+/-0.07 keV,respectively. There is marginal evidence for a discontinuous change inthe elemental abundance (Zinner=0.65+/-0.25,Zouter=0.17+/-0.21 at 90% confidence), suggesting that thismay be an ``abundance'' front. Fitting a two-temperature model to theASCA GIS spectrum of the NGC 7618/UGC 12491 pair shows the presence of asecond, much hotter (T=~2.3 keV) component. We consider severalscenarios for the origin of the edge and the tail, including a radiolobe/IGM interaction, nonhydrostatic ``sloshing,'' equal-mass merger andcollision, and ram pressure stripping. In the last case, we consider thepossibility that NGC 7618 is falling into UGC 12491 or that both groupsare falling into a gas-poor cluster potential. There are significantproblems with the first two models, however, and we conclude that thediscontinuity and tail are most likely the result of ram pressurestripping of the NGC 7618 group, as it falls into a larger dark matterpotential.

A Chandra Survey of Early-Type Galaxies. I. Metal Enrichment in the Interstellar Medium
We present a Chandra study of the emission-weighted metal abundances in28 early-type galaxies, spanning ~3 orders of magnitude in X-rayluminosity (LX). We report constraints for Fe, O, Ne, Mg, Si,S, and Ni. We find no evidence of the very subsolar Fe abundance(ZFe) historically reported, confirming a trend in recentobservations of bright galaxies and groups, nor do we find anycorrelation between ZFe and luminosity. Excepting one case,the ISM is single-phase, indicating that multitemperature fits foundwith ASCA reflected temperature gradients that we resolve with Chandra.We find no evidence that ZFe (ISM) is substantially lowerthan the stellar metallicity estimated from simple stellar populationmodels. In general, these quantities are similar, which is inconsistentwith galactic wind models and recent hierarchical chemical enrichmentsimulations. Our abundance ratio constraints imply that 66%+/-11% of theISM Fe was produced in SNe Ia, similar to the solar neighborhood,indicating similar enrichment histories for elliptical galaxies and theMilky Way. Although these values are sensitive to the considerablesystematic uncertainty in the supernova yields, they are in agreementwith observations of more massive systems. This indicates considerablehomology in the enrichment process operating from cluster scales tolow-to-intermediate-LX galaxies. The data uniformly exhibitlow ZO/ZMg ratios, which have been reported insome clusters, groups, and galaxies. This is inconsistent with standardSN II metal yield calculations and may indicate an additional source ofenrichment, such as Population III hypernovae.

Understanding the Nuclear Gas Dispersion in Early-Type Galaxies in the Context of Black Hole Demographics
The majority of nearby early-type galaxies contain detectable amounts ofemission-line gas at their centers. The nuclear gas kinematics form avaluable diagnostic of the central black hole (BH) mass. Here we analyzeand model Hubble Space Telescope STIS observations of a sample of 27galaxies; 16 Fanaroff-Riley Type I radio galaxies and 11 (more) normalearly-type galaxies. We focus here on what can be learned from thenuclear velocity dispersion (line width) of the gas as a complement tothe many studies dealing with gas rotation velocities. We find that thedispersion in a STIS aperture of ~0.1"-0.2" generally exceeds thelarge-scale stellar velocity dispersion of the galaxy. This isqualitatively consistent with the presence of central BHs but raises thequestions of whether the excess gas dispersion is of gravitational ornongravitational origin and whether the implied BH masses are consistentwith our current understanding of BH demography (as predicted by theM-σ relation between BH mass and stellar velocity dispersion). Toaddress this we construct purely gravitational axisymmetric dynamicalmodels for the gas, both thin-disk models and models with more generalaxis ratios and velocity anisotropies. For the normal galaxies thenuclear gas dispersions are adequately reproduced assuming disks aroundthe BHs with masses that follow the M-σ relation. In contrast, thegas dispersions observed for the radio galaxies generally exceed thosepredicted by any of the models. We attribute this to the presence ofnongravitational motions in the gas that are similar to or larger thanthe gravitational motions. The nongravitational motions are presumablydriven by the active galactic nucleus (AGN), but we do not find arelation between the radiative output of the AGN and thenongravitational dispersion. Given the uncertainties about the dynamicalstate of the gas, it is not possible to uniquely determine the BH massfor each galaxy from its nuclear gas dispersion. However, for the sampleas a whole the observed dispersions do not provide evidence forsignificant deviations from the M-σ relation.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASAcontract NAS5-26555.

The X-ray emission properties and the dichotomy in the central stellar cusp shapes of early-type galaxies
The Hubble Space Telescope has revealed a dichotomy in the centralsurface brightness profiles of early-type galaxies, which havesubsequently been grouped into two families: core, boxy, anisotropicsystems; and cuspy (`power-law'), discy, rotating ones. Here weinvestigate whether a dichotomy is also present in the X-ray propertiesof the two families. We consider both their total soft emission(LSX,tot), which is a measure of the galactic hot gascontent, and their nuclear hard emission (LHX,nuc), mostlycoming from Chandra observations, which is a measure of the nuclearactivity. At any optical luminosity, the highest LSX,totvalues are reached by core galaxies; this is explained by their beingthe central dominant galaxies of groups, subclusters or clusters, inmany of the logLSX,tot (ergs-1) >~ 41.5 cases.The highest LHX,nuc values, similar to those of classicalactive galactic nuclei (AGNs), in this sample are hosted only by core orintermediate galaxies; at low luminosity AGN levels, LHX,nucis independent of the central stellar profile shape. The presence ofoptical nuclei (also found by HST) is unrelated to the level ofLHX,nuc, even though the highest LHX,nuc are allassociated with optical nuclei. The implications of these findings forgalaxy evolution and accretion modalities at the present epoch arediscussed.

Dark matter in early-type galaxies: dynamical modelling of IC 1459, IC 3370, NGC 3379 and NGC 4105
We analyse long-slit spectra of four early-type galaxies which extendfrom ~1 to 3 effective radii: IC 1459; IC 3370; NGC 3379 and NGC 4105.We have extracted the full line-of-sight velocity distribution (in thecase of NGC 3379 we also used data from the literature), which we modelusing the two-integral approach. Using two-integral modelling, we findno strong evidence for dark haloes, but the fits suggest thatthree-integral modelling is necessary. We also find that the inferredconstant mass-to-light ratio in all the four cases is typical forearly-type galaxies. Finally, we also discuss the constraints on themass-to-light ratio, which can be obtained using X-ray haloes in thecase of IC 1459, NGC 3379 and NGC 4105, and compare the estimated valueswith the predictions from the dynamical modelling.

Group, field and isolated early-type galaxies - II. Global trends from nuclear data
We have derived ages, metallicities and enhanced-element ratios[α/Fe] for a sample of 83 early-type galaxies essentially ingroups, the field or isolated objects. The stellar-population propertiesderived for each galaxy correspond to the nuclear re/8aperture extraction. The median age found for Es is 5.8+/-0.6 Gyr andthe average metallicity is +0.37+/-0.03 dex. For S0s, the median age is3.0+/-0.6 Gyr and [Z/H]= 0.53+/-0.04 dex. We compare the distribution ofour galaxies in the Hβ-[MgFe] diagram with Fornax galaxies. Ourelliptical galaxies are 3-4 Gyr younger than Es in the Fornax cluster.We find that the galaxies lie in a plane defined by [Z/H]= 0.99logσ0- 0.46 log(age) - 1.60, or in linear terms Z~σ0× (age) -0.5. More massive (largerσ0) and older galaxies present, on average, large[α/Fe] values, and therefore must have undergone shorterstar-formation time-scales. Comparing group against field/isolatedgalaxies, it is not clear that environment plays an important role indetermining their stellar-population history. In particular, ourisolated galaxies show ages differing by more than 8 Gyr. Finally weexplore our large spectral coverage to derive log(O/H) metallicity fromthe Hα and NIIλ6584 and compare it with model-dependent[Z/H]. We find that the O/H abundances are similar for all galaxies, andwe can interpret it as if most chemical evolution has already finishedin these galaxies.

Mass-to-light ratio gradients in early-type galaxy haloes
Owing to the fact that the near future should see a rapidly expandingset of probes of the halo masses of individual early-type galaxies, weintroduce a convenient parameter for characterizing the halo masses fromboth observational and theoretical results:∇lΥ, the logarithmic radial gradient of themass-to-light ratio. Using halo density profiles from Λ-cold darkmatter (CDM) simulations, we derive predictions for this gradient forvarious galaxy luminosities and star formation efficienciesɛSF. As a pilot study, we assemble the available∇lΥ data from kinematics in early-type galaxies- representing the first unbiased study of halo masses in a wide rangeof early-type galaxy luminosities - and find a correlation betweenluminosity and ∇lΥ, such that the brightestgalaxies appear the most dark-matter dominated. We find that thegradients in most of the brightest galaxies may fit in well with theΛCDM predictions, but that there is also a population of faintergalaxies whose gradients are so low as to imply an unreasonably highstar formation efficiency ɛSF > 1. This difficultyis eased if dark haloes are not assumed to have the standard ΛCDMprofiles, but lower central concentrations.

Group, field and isolated early-type galaxies - I. Observations and nuclear data
This is the first paper of a series on the investigation of stellarpopulation properties and galaxy evolution of an observationallyhomogeneous sample of early-type galaxies in groups, field and isolatedgalaxies.Here we present high signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) long-slit spectroscopyof 86 nearby elliptical and S0 galaxies. Eight of them are isolated,selected according to a rigorous criterion, which guarantees a genuinelow-density subsample. The present survey has the advantage of coveringa larger wavelength range than normally found in the literature, whichincludes [OIII]λ5007 and Hα, both lines important foremission correction. Among the 86 galaxies with S/N >= 15 (perresolution element, for re/8 central aperture), 57 have theirHβ-index corrected for emission (the average correction is 0.190Åin Hβ) and 42 galaxies reveal [OIII]λ5007 emission,of which 16 also show obvious Hα emission. Most of the galaxies inthe sample do not show obvious signs of disturbances nor tidal featuresin the morphologies, although 11 belong to the Arp catalogue of peculiargalaxies; only three of them (NGC 750, 751 and 3226) seem to be stronglyinteracting. We present the measurement of 25 central line-strengthindices calibrated to the Lick/IDS system. Kinematic information isobtained for the sample. We analyse the line-strength index versusvelocity dispersion relations for our sample of mainly low-densityenvironment galaxies, and compare the slope of the relations withcluster galaxies from the literature. Our main findings are that theindex-σ0 relations presented for low-density regionsare not significantly different from those of cluster E/S0s. The slopeof the index-σ0 relations does not seem to change forearly-type galaxies of different environmental densities, but thescatter of the relations seems larger for group, field and isolatedgalaxies than for cluster galaxies.

The stellar populations of low-luminosity active galactic nuclei - III. Spatially resolved spectral properties
In a recently completed survey of the stellar population properties oflow-ionization nuclear emission-line regions (LINERs) and LINER/HIItransition objects (TOs), we have identified a numerous class ofgalactic nuclei which stand out because of their conspicuous108-9 yr populations, traced by high-order Balmer absorptionlines and other stellar indices. These objects are called `young-TOs',because they all have TO-like emission-line ratios. In this paper weextend this previous work, which concentrated on the nuclear properties,by investigating the radial variations of spectral properties inlow-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGNs). Our analysis is based onhigh signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) long-slit spectra in the 3500-5500Å interval for a sample of 47 galaxies. The data probe distancesof typically up to 850 pc from the nucleus with a resolution of ~100 pc(~1 arcsec) and S/N ~ 30. Stellar population gradients are mapped by theradial profiles of absorption-line equivalent widths and continuumcolours along the slit. These variations are further analysed by meansof a decomposition of each spectrum in terms of template galaxiesrepresentative of very young (<=107 yr), intermediate age(108-9 yr) and old (1010 yr) stellar populations.This study reveals that young-TOs also differ from old-TOs andold-LINERs in terms of the spatial distributions of their stellarpopulations and dust. Specifically, our main findings are as follows.(i) Significant stellar population gradients are found almostexclusively in young-TOs. (ii) The intermediate age population ofyoung-TOs, although heavily concentrated in the nucleus, reachesdistances of up to a few hundred pc from the nucleus. Nevertheless, thehalf width at half-maximum of its brightness profile is more typically100 pc or less. (iii) Objects with predominantly old stellar populationspresent spatially homogeneous spectra, be they LINERs or TOs. (iv)Young-TOs have much more dust in their central regions than otherLLAGNs. (v) The B-band luminosities of the central <~1 Gyr populationin young-TOs are within an order of magnitude of MB=-15,implying masses of the order of ~107-108Msolar. This population was 10-100 times more luminous in itsformation epoch, at which time young massive stars would have completelyoutshone any active nucleus, unless the AGN too was brighter in thepast.

On the Relation between Circular Velocity and Central Velocity Dispersion in High and Low Surface Brightness Galaxies
In order to investigate the correlation between the circular velocityVc and the central velocity dispersion of the spheroidalcomponent σc, we analyzed these quantities for a sampleof 40 high surface brightness (HSB) disk galaxies, eight giant lowsurface brightness (LSB) spiral galaxies, and 24 elliptical galaxiescharacterized by flat rotation curves. Galaxies have been selected tohave a velocity gradient <=2 km s-1 kpc-1 forR>=0.35R25. We used these data to better define theprevious Vc-σc correlation for spiralgalaxies (which turned out to be HSB) and elliptical galaxies,especially at the lower end of the σc values. We findthat the Vc-σc relation is described by alinear law out to velocity dispersions as low as σc~50km s-1, while in previous works a power law was adopted forgalaxies with σc>80 km s-1. Ellipticalgalaxies with Vc based on dynamical models or directlyderived from the H I rotation curves follow the same relation as the HSBgalaxies in the Vc-σc plane. On the otherhand, the LSB galaxies follow a different relation, since most of themshow either higher Vc or lower σc withrespect to the HSB galaxies. This argues against the relevance of baryoncollapse to the radial density profile of the dark matter halos of LSBgalaxies. Moreover, if the Vc-σc relation isequivalent to one between the mass of the dark matter halo and that ofthe supermassive black hole, then these results suggest that the LSBgalaxies host a supermassive black hole (SMBH) with a smaller masscompared to HSB galaxies with an equal dark matter halo. On the otherhand, if the fundamental correlation of SMBH mass is with the halocircular velocity, then LSB galaxies should have larger black holemasses for a given bulge dispersion. Elliptical galaxies withVc derived from H I data and LSB galaxies were not consideredin previous studies.Based on observations made with European Southern Observatory telescopesat the Paranal Observatory under programs 67.B-0283, 69.B-0573, and70.B-0171.

The Ages of Elliptical Galaxies from Mid-Infrared Emission
The mid-infrared (10-20 μm) luminosity of elliptical galaxies isdominated by the integrated emission from circumstellar dust in redgiant stars. As a single stellar population evolves, the rate of dustymass loss from red giant stars decreases with time, so the mid-infraredluminosity should also decline with stellar age. To seek such acorrelation, we have used archival Infrared Space Observatory (ISO)observations to determine surface brightness profiles and central fluxesat 15 μm in 17 early-type galaxies for which stellar ages have beendetermined from optical spectral indices. The radial surface brightnessdistributions at 15 μm generally follow the stellar de Vaucouleursprofile, as expected. We find that the surface brightness ratioμ15μm/μIband is systematically higher inelliptical galaxies with ages <~5 Gyr and in galaxies that exhibitevidence of recent mergers. Within the accuracy of our observations,μ15μm/μIband shows no age dependence forages >~5 Gyr. The corresponding flux ratiosF15μm/FIband within apertures scaled to theeffective radius (Re/8) are proportional to theμ15μm/μIband ratios at larger galacticradii, indicating that no 15 μm emission is detected from centraldust clouds visible in optical images in some of our sample galaxies.Emission at 15 μm is observed in noncentral massive clouds of dustand cold gas in NGC 1316, an elliptical galaxy that is thought to havehad a recent merger. Recent Spitzer Space Telescope data also indicatethe presence of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) emission at 8μm. Several ellipticals have extended regions of 15 μm emissionthat have no obvious counterparts at other frequencies.

The Epochs of Early-Type Galaxy Formation as a Function of Environment
The aim of this paper is to set constraints on the epochs of early-typegalaxy formation through the ``archaeology'' of the stellar populationsin local galaxies. Using our models of absorption-line indices thataccount for variable abundance ratios, we derive ages, totalmetallicities, and element ratios of 124 early-type galaxies in high-and low-density environments. The data are analyzed by comparison withmock galaxy samples created through Monte Carlo simulations taking thetypical average observational errors into account, in order to eliminateartifacts caused by correlated errors. We find that all threeparameters, age, metallicity, and α/Fe ratio, are correlated withvelocity dispersion. We show that these results are robust againstrecent revisions of the local abundance pattern at high metallicities.To recover the observed scatter we need to assume an intrinsic scatterof about 20% in age, 0.08 dex in [Z/H], and 0.05 dex in [α/Fe].All low-mass objects withM*<~1010Msolar (σ<~130kms-1) show evidence for the presence of intermediate-agestellar populations with low α/Fe ratios. About 20% of theintermediate-mass objects with1010<~M*/Msolar<~1011[110<~σ/(kms-1)<~230 both elliptical andlenticular galaxies] must have either a young subpopulation or a bluehorizontal branch. On the basis of the above relationships, valid forthe bulk of the sample, we show that the Mg-σ relation is mainlydriven by metallicity, with similar contributions from the α/Feratio (23%) and age (17%). We further find evidence for an influence ofthe environment on the stellar population properties. Massive early-typegalaxies in low-density environments seem on average ~2 Gyr younger andslightly (~0.05-0.1 dex) more metal-rich than their counterparts inhigh-density environments. No offsets in the α/Fe ratios areinstead detected. With the aid of a simple chemical evolution model, wetranslate the derived ages and α/Fe ratios into star formationhistories. We show that most star formation activity in early-typegalaxies is expected to have happened between redshifts ~3 and 5 inhigh-density environments and between redshifts 1 and 2 in low-densityenvironments. We conclude that at least 50% of the total stellar massdensity must have already formed at z~1, in good agreement withobservational estimates of the total stellar mass density as a functionof redshift. Our results suggest that significant mass growth in theearly-type galaxy population below z~1 must be restricted to lessmassive objects, and a significant increase of the stellar mass densitybetween redshifts 1 and 2 should be present, caused mainly by the fieldgalaxy population. The results of this paper further imply the presenceof vigorous star formation episodes in massive objects at z~2-5 andevolved elliptical galaxies around z~1, both observationally identifiedas SCUBA galaxies and extremely red objects, respectively.

The Centers of Early-Type Galaxies with Hubble Space Telescope. V. New WFPC2 Photometry
We present observations of 77 early-type galaxies imaged with the PC1CCD of the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) WFPC2. ``Nuker-law'' parametricfits to the surface brightness profiles are used to classify the centralstructure into ``core'' or ``power-law'' forms. Core galaxies aretypically rounder than power-law galaxies. Nearly all power-law galaxieswith central ellipticities ɛ>=0.3 have stellar disks,implying that disks are present in power-law galaxies withɛ<0.3 but are not visible because of unfavorable geometry. Afew low-luminosity flattened core galaxies also have disks; these may betransition forms from power-law galaxies to more luminous core galaxies,which lack disks. Several core galaxies have strong isophote twistsinterior to their break radii, although power-law galaxies have interiortwists of similar physical significance when the photometricperturbations implied by the twists are evaluated. Central colorgradients are typically consistent with the envelope gradients; coregalaxies have somewhat weaker color gradients than power-law galaxies.Nuclei are found in 29% of the core galaxies and 60% of the power-lawgalaxies. Nuclei are typically bluer than the surrounding galaxy. Whilesome nuclei are associated with active galactic nuclei (AGNs), just asmany are not; conversely, not all galaxies known to have a low-level AGNexhibit detectable nuclei in the broadband filters. NGC 4073 and 4382are found to have central minima in their intrinsic starlightdistributions; NGC 4382 resembles the double nucleus of M31. In general,the peak brightness location is coincident with the photocenter of thecore to a typical physical scale of <1 pc. Five galaxies, however,have centers significantly displaced from their surrounding cores; thesemay be unresolved asymmetric double nuclei. Finally, as noted byprevious authors, central dust is visible in about half of the galaxies.The presence and strength of dust correlates with nuclear emission;thus, dust may outline gas that is falling into the central black hole.The prevalence of dust and its morphology suggest that dust clouds form,settle to the center, and disappear repeatedly on ~108 yrtimescales. We discuss the hypothesis that cores are created by thedecay of a massive black hole binary formed in a merger. Apart fromtheir brightness profiles, there are no strong differences between coregalaxies and power-law galaxies that demand this scenario; however, therounder shapes of core, their lack of disks, and their reduced colorgradients may be consistent with it.Based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope,obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated bythe Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA), Inc.,under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. These observations are associated withGO and GTO proposals 5236, 5446, 5454, 5512, 5943, 5990, 5999, 6099,6386, 6554, 6587, 6633, 7468, 8683, and 9107.

The HST view of the nuclear emission line region in low luminosity radio-galaxies
We study the properties of the emission line regions in two samples oflow luminosity radio-galaxies, while focusing on the Compact EmissionLine Region (CELR) revealed to be a characteristic feature of theseobjects by HST narrow-band imaging. We find a strong correlation betweenline and optical continuum nuclear emission, which suggests that theoptical cores (most likely of non-thermal origin) can be directlyassociated to the source of ionizing photons, i.e. that we are seeing ajet-ionized narrow line region. A photon budget argument indicates thatthe optical nuclear sources produce sufficient photon flux provided thatthe covering factor of the circum-nuclear gas is rather large, onaverage 0.3. Analysis of HST images and spectra suggests that the CELRmay take the form of a pc-scale, high filling factor structure, possiblyan optically thin torus. Estimates of the CELR mass lead to values assmall as 10{-}10^3 Mȯ, and photon counting sets a limitto the Broad Line Region mass of M_BLR < 10-2Mȯ. When considered together with the low accretion rateand the tenuous torus structure, a general paucity of gas in theinnermost regions of low luminosity radio-galaxies emerges as the maincharacterizing difference from more powerful Active Galactic Nuclei.

A sample of X-ray emitting normal galaxies from the BMW-HRI Catalogue
We obtained a sample of 143 normal galaxies with X-ray luminosity in therange 1038{-}1043 erg s-1 from thecross-correlation of the ROSAT HRI Brera Multi-scale Wavelet (BMW-HRI)Catalogue with the Lyon-Meudon Extragalactic Database (LEDA). We findthat the average X-ray properties of this sample are in good agreementwith those of other samples of galaxies in the literature. We selected acomplete flux limited serendipitous sample of 32 galaxies from which wederived the log N-log S distribution of normal galaxies in the fluxrange 1.1{-} 110 × 10-14 erg cm-2s-1. The resulting distribution is consistent with theEuclidean -1.5 slope. Comparisons with other samples, such as theExtended Medium Sensitivity Survey, the ROSAT All Sky Survey, theXMM-Newton/2dF survey, and the Chandra Deep Field Survey indicate thatthe log N -log S distribution of normal galaxies is consistent with aEuclidean slope over a flux range of about 6 decades.

Radio sources in low-luminosity active galactic nuclei. IV. Radio luminosity function, importance of jet power, and radio properties of the complete Palomar sample
We present the completed results of a high resolution radio imagingsurvey of all ( 200) low-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGNs) andAGNs in the Palomar Spectroscopic Sample of all ( 488) bright northerngalaxies. The high incidences of pc-scale radio nuclei, with impliedbrightness temperatures ≳107 K, and sub-parsec jetsargue for accreting black holes in ≳50% of all LINERs andlow-luminosity Seyferts; there is no evidence against all LLAGNs beingmini-AGNs. The detected parsec-scale radio nuclei are preferentiallyfound in massive ellipticals and in type 1 nuclei (i.e. nuclei withbroad Hα emission). The radio luminosity function (RLF) of PalomarSample LLAGNs and AGNs extends three orders of magnitude below, and iscontinuous with, that of “classical” AGNs. We find marginalevidence for a low-luminosity turnover in the RLF; nevertheless LLAGNsare responsible for a significant fraction of present day massaccretion. Adopting a model of a relativistic jet from Falcke &Biermann, we show that the accretion power output in LLAGNs is dominatedby the kinetic power in the observed jets rather than the radiatedbolometric luminosity. The Palomar LLAGNs and AGNs follow the samescaling between jet kinetic power and narrow line region (NLR)luminosity as the parsec to kilo-parsec jets in powerful radio galaxies.Eddington ratios {l_Edd} (=L_Emitted/L_Eddington) of≤10-1{-}10-5 are implied in jet models of theradio emission. We find evidence that, in analogy to Galactic black holecandidates, LINERs are in a “low/hard” state (gas poornuclei, low Eddington ratio, ability to launch collimated jets) whilelow-luminosity Seyferts are in a “high” state (gas richnuclei, higher Eddington ratio, less likely to launch collimated jets).In addition to dominating the radiated bolometric luminosity of thenucleus, the radio jets are energetically more significant thansupernovae in the host galaxies, and are potentially able to depositsufficient energy into the innermost parsecs to significantly slow thegas supply to the accretion disk.

A dichotomy in the orientation of dust and radio jets in nearby low-power radio galaxies
We examine the properties of central dust in nearby quiescent and activeearly-type galaxies. The active galaxies are low-power radio galaxieswith Fanaroff & Riley type I or I/II radio jets. We focus on (a) thecomparison of the dust distributions in the active and quiescent galaxysamples; and (b) the relation between the radio jet and dustorientations. Our main observational conclusions are: (i) in line withprevious studies, the dust detection rate is higher in radio-jetgalaxies than in non radio-jet galaxies; (ii) radio galaxies contain ahigher fraction of regular dust “ellipses” compared toquiescent galaxies which contain more often irregular dustdistributions; (iii) the morphology, size and orientation of dustellipses and lanes in quiescent early-types and active early-types withkpc-scale radio jets is very similar; (iv) dust ellipses are alignedwith the major axis of the galaxy, dust lanes do not show a preferredalignment except for large (>kpc) dust lanes which are aligned withthe minor axis of the galaxy; and (v) as projected on the sky, jets donot show a preferred orientation relative to the galaxy major axis (andhence dust ellipses), but jets are preferentially perpendicular to dustlanes. We show that the dust ellipses are consistent with being nearlycircular thin disks viewed at random viewing angles. The lanes arelikely warped dust structures, which may be in the process of settlingdown to become regular disks or are being perturbed by anon-gravitational force. We use the observed dust-jet orientations toconstrain the three-dimensional angle θDJ between jetand dust. For dust-lane galaxies, the jet is approximately perpendicularto the dust structure, while for dust-ellipse galaxies there is a muchwider distribution of θDJ. We discuss two scenariosthat could explain the dust/jet/galaxy orientation dichotomy. If lanesare indeed settling, then the jet orientation apparently is roughlyaligned with the angular momentum of the dust before it settles. Iflanes are perturbed by a jet-related force, it appears that it causesthe dust to move out of its equilibrium plane in the galaxy into a planewhich is perpendicular to the jet.

Peculiarities and populations in elliptical galaxies. II. Visual-near IR colours as population indices
As a complement to the data collected and discussed in Paper I of thisseries, 2MASS near-IR images have been used, in connection withavailable V light aperture photometry, to derive the colours V-J, V-K,J-H and J-K within the effective aperture A_e: nearly the same completesample of 110 E-type galaxies is treated. In Paper I these wereclassified, based on morphological criteria, into the ``peculiar'' (orPec) and ``normal'' (or Nop) subsamples. For the Nop subsample, thederived colour indices are tightly related to the galaxy masses, asmeasured by the central velocity dispersion σ0,although with rather small slopes as regards J-H and J-K. For the Pecsubsample, the V-J and V-K colours behave as UBV and line-indices: partof the objects show blue residuals from the appropriatecolour-σ0 regression, which is evidence of a youngerpopulation mixed with the ``normal'' one traced by the Nop regressions;the other shows no deviations from the Nop subsample. The distinctionamong Pec objects between the YP family (NGC 2865 type), and the NP one(NGC 3923 type), is statistically supported, and generally confirmed inspecific cases.Based in part on observations collected at the Observatoire deHaute-Provence.Table 4 is only available in electonic form at the CDS via anonymous ftpto cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/429/819

Nuclear activity and the dynamics of elliptical galaxies
This Letter looks for any correlation between the internal dynamics ofelliptical galaxies and the relatively mild nuclear activity found inmany such systems. We show that there is such a relation in the sensethat the active ellipticals tend to be significantly less rotationallysupported than their inactive cousins. The correlation can partly berelated to the galaxies' luminosities: the brightest galaxies tend to bemore active and less rotationally supported. However, even at lowerluminosities the active and inactive galaxies seem to havesystematically different dynamics. This variation suggests that thereare significant large-scale structural differences between active andinactive elliptical galaxies, and hence that the existence of both typesof system cannot just be the result of random sporadic nuclear activity.

Dark Matter in Galaxies: Observational overview
I review the observational side of the present state of the debate aboutthe dark matter in galaxies, with emphasis on the core/cusp problem inlow surface brightness galaxies, and the question of maximum /sub-maximum disks in spiral galaxies. Some remarks are made about thedwarf spheroidals around the Milky Way, and about elliptical galaxies.

The Stellar Populations of Low-Luminosity Active Galactic Nuclei. II. Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph Observations
We present a study of the stellar populations of low-luminosity activegalactic nuclei (LLAGNs). Our goal is to search for spectroscopicsignatures of young and intermediate-age stars and to investigate theirrelationship with the ionization mechanism in LLAGNs. The method used isbased on the stellar population synthesis of the optical continuum ofthe innermost (20-100 pc) regions in these galaxies. For this purpose,we have collected high spatial resolution optical (2900-5700 Å)STIS spectra of 28 nearby LLAGNs that are available in the Hubble SpaceTelescope archive. The analysis of these data is compared with a similaranalysis also presented here for 51 ground-based spectra of LLAGNs. Ourmain findings are as follows: (1) No features due to Wolf-Rayet starswere convincingly detected in the STIS spectra. (2) Young starscontribute very little to the optical continuum in the ground-basedaperture. However, the fraction of light provided by these stars ishigher than 10% in most of the weak-[O I] ([OI]/Hα<=0.25) LLAGNSTIS spectra. (3) Intermediate-age stars contribute significantly to theoptical continuum of these nuclei. This population is more frequent inobjects with weak than with strong [O I]. Weak-[O I] LLAGNs that haveyoung stars stand out for their intermediate-age population. (4) Most ofthe strong-[O I] LLAGNs have predominantly old stellar population. A fewof these objects also show a featureless continuum that contributessignificantly to the optical continuum. These results suggest that youngand intermediate-age stars do not play a significant role in theionization of LLAGNs with strong [O I]. However, the ionization inweak-[O I] LLAGNs with young and/or intermediate-age populations couldbe due to stellar processes. A comparison of the properties of theseobjects with Seyfert 2 galaxies that harbor a nuclear starburst suggeststhat weak-[O I] LLAGNs are the lower luminosity counterparts of theSeyfert 2 composite nuclei.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASAcontract NAS 5-26555. Based on observations made with the Nordic OpticalTelescope (NOT), operated on the island of La Palma jointly by Denmark,Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, in the Spanish Observatorio delRoque de los Muchachos of the Instituto de Astrofísica deCanarias.

The Stellar Populations of Low-Luminosity Active Galactic Nuclei. I. Ground-based Observations
We present a spectroscopic study of the stellar populations oflow-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGNs). Our main goal is todetermine whether the stars that live in the innermost (100 pc scale)regions of these galaxies are in some way related to the emission-lineproperties, which would imply a link between the stellar population andthe ionization mechanism. High signal-to-noise ratio, ground-basedlong-slit spectra in the 3500-5500 Å interval were collected for60 galaxies: 51 LINERs and LINER/H II transition objects, two starburstgalaxies, and seven nonactive galaxies. In this paper, the first of aseries, we (1) describe the sample; (2) present the nuclear spectra; (3)characterize the stellar populations of LLAGNs by means of an empiricalcomparison with normal galaxies; (4) measure a set of spectral indices,including several absorption-line equivalent widths and colorsindicative of stellar populations; and (5) correlate the stellar indiceswith emission-line ratios that may distinguish between possibleexcitation sources for the gas. Our main findings are as follows: (1)Few LLAGNs have a detectable young (<~107 yr) starburstcomponent, indicating that very massive stars do not contributesignificantly to the optical continuum. In particular, no features dueto Wolf-Rayet stars were convincingly detected. (2) High-order Balmerabsorption lines of H I (HOBLs), on the other hand, are detected in ~40%of LLAGNs. These features, which are strongest in108-109 yr intermediate-age stellar populations,are accompanied by diluted metal absorption lines and bluer colors thanother objects in the sample. (3) These intermediate-age populations arevery common (~50%) in LLAGNs with relatively weak [O I] emission([OI]/Hα<=0.25) but rare (~10%) in LLAGNs with stronger [O I].This is intriguing since LLAGNs with weak [O I] have been previouslyhypothesized to be ``transition objects'' in which both an AGN and youngstars contribute to the emission-line excitation. Massive stars, ifpresent, are completely outshone by intermediate-age and old stars inthe optical. This happens in at least a couple of objects whereindependent UV spectroscopy detects young starbursts not seen in theoptical. (4) Objects with predominantly old stars span the whole rangeof [O I]/Hα values, but (5) sources with significant young and/orintermediate-age populations are nearly all (~90%) weak-[O I] emitters.These new findings suggest a link between the stellar populations andthe gas ionization mechanism. The strong-[O I] objects are most likelytrue LLAGNs, with stellar processes being insignificant. However, theweak-[O I] objects may comprise two populations, one where theionization is dominated by stellar processes and another where it isgoverned by either an AGN or a more even mixture of stellar and AGNprocesses. Possible stellar sources for the ionization include weakstarbursts, supernova remnants, and evolved poststarburst populations.These scenarios are examined and constrained by means of complementaryobservations and detailed modeling of the stellar populations inforthcoming communications.Based on observations made with the Nordic Optical Telescope, operatedon the island of La Palma jointly by Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway,and Sweden, in the Spanish Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos ofthe Instituto de Astrofísica de Canárias.

Stacking Searches for Gamma-Ray Emission above 100 MeV from Radio and Seyfert Galaxies
The EGRET telescope on board Compton Gamma Ray Observatory detected morethan 60 sources of high-energy gamma radiation associated with activegalactic nuclei (AGNs). All but one of those belong to the blazarsubclass; the only exception is the nearby radio galaxy Centaurus A.Since there is no obvious reason other than proximity to expect Cen A tobe the only nonblazar AGN emitting in high-energy gamma rays, we haveutilized the ``stacking'' technique to search for emission above 100 MeVfrom two nonblazar AGN subclasses, radio galaxies and Seyfert galaxies.Maps of gamma-ray counts, exposure, and diffuse background have beencreated, then co-added in varying numbers based on sorts by redshift, 5GHz flux density, and optical brightness, and finally tested forgamma-ray emission. No detection significance greater than 2 σ hasbeen found for any subclass, sorting parameter, or number of objectsco-added. Monte Carlo simulations have also been performed to validatethe technique and estimate the significance of the results.

Optical nuclei of radio-loud AGN and the Fanaroff-Riley divide
We investigate the nature of the point-like optical nuclei that havebeen found in the centres of the host galaxies of a majority of radiogalaxies by the Hubble Space Telescope. We examine the evidence thatthese optical nuclei are relativistically beamed, and look fordifferences in the behaviour of the nuclei found in radio galaxies ofthe two Fanaroff-Riley types. We also attempt to relate this behaviourto the properties of the optical nuclei in their highly beamedcounterparts (the BL Lac objects and radio-loud quasars) as hypothesizedby the simple Unified Scheme. Simple model-fitting of the data suggeststhat the emission may be coming from a non-thermal relativistic jet. Itis also suggestive that the contribution from an accretion disk is notsignificant for the FRI objects and for the narrow-line radio galaxiesof FRII type, while it may be significant for the Broad-line objects,and consistent with the idea that the FRII optical nuclei seem to sufferfrom extinction due to an obscuring torus while the FRI optical nucleido not. These results are broadly in agreement with the Unified Schemefor radio-loud AGNs.Appendix C is only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.org

Peculiarities and populations in elliptical galaxies. I. An old question revisited
Morphological peculiarities, as defined from isophote asymmetries andnumber of detected shells, jets or similar features, have been estimatedin a sample of 117 E classified galaxies, and qualified by an ad hocΣ2 index. The overall frequency of ``peculiar'' objects(Pec subsample) is 32.5%. It decreases with the cosmic density of theenvironment, being minimal for the Virgo cluster, the densestenvironment in the sampled volume. This environmental effect is strongerfor galaxies with relatively large Σ2.The Pec subsample objects are compared with ``normal'' objects (Nopsubsample) as regards their basic properties. Firstly, theysystematically deviate from the Fundamental Plane and the Faber-Jacksonrelation derived for the Nop subsample, being too bright for their mass.Secondly, the dust content of galaxies, as estimated from IRAS fluxes,are similar in both subsamples. Third, the same is true of the frequencyof Kinematically Distinct cores (KDC), suggesting that KDC andmorphological peculiarities do not result from the same events in thehistory of E-galaxies.Using the Nop sample alone, we obtain very tight reference relationsbetween stellar population indicators (U-B, B-V, B-R, V-I,Mg2, Hβ, , Mgb) and the central velocitydispersion σ0. The discussion of the residuals of theserelations allows us to classify the Pec galaxies in two families i.e.the YP or NGC 2865 family, and the NP or NGC 3923 one. Galaxies in thefirst group show consistent evidence for a younger stellar populationmixed with the old one, in agreement with classical results (Schweizeret al. \cite{Schweizer1990}; Schweizer & Seitzer\cite{Schweizer1992}). The second group, however, has ``normal``, orreddish, populations. It is remarkable that a fraction (circa 40%) ofmorphologically perturbed objects do not display any signature of ayoung population, either because the event responsible for thepecularity is too ancient, or because it did not produce significantstar formation (or eventually that the young sub-population has highmetallicity).A preliminary attempt is made to interpret the populations of Pecobjects by combining a young Single Stellar Population with a Nopgalaxy, with only limited success, perhaps largely due to uncertaintiesin the SSP indices used.Based in part on observations collected at the Observatoire deHaute-Provence.Figures \ref{fig1}-\ref{fig3} are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.orgTable 10 is only available in electronic form at the CDS via anonymousftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/423/833

Near-infrared imaging of ellipticals: surface brightness profiles and photometry
We present near-infrared K-band imaging of a large sample of candidatemerger remnant galaxies and Hickson Compact Group ellipticals. We derivelight profile indices, effective radii and surface brightnesses, as wellas total K-band magnitudes. We find that the light distributions of themerger remnant candidates are consistent with those of `normal'ellipticals, and scatter around a mean profile index of (1/n) = 0.20.Many of our sample galaxies have surface brightness profiles that arenot well described by a de Vaucouleurs law (1/n= 0.25), and we discussthe implications of this on the derived total magnitudes. Comparing thetotal K magnitudes calculated by extrapolating a de Vaucouleurs profileand those derived using a generalized Sérsic form, we find that asignificant bias is introduced if the de Vaucouleurs law is not a gooddescription of the actual light profile.

Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph Spectroscopy of the Emission-Line Gas in the Nuclei of Nearby FR-I Galaxies
We present the results of the analysis of a set of medium-resolutionspectra, obtained by the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph on boardthe Hubble Space Telescope, of the emission-line gas present in thenuclei of a complete sample of 21 nearby, early-type galaxies with radiojets (the UGC FR-I Sample). For each galaxy nucleus we presentspectroscopic data in the region of Hα and the derived kinematics.We find that in 67% of the nuclei the gas appears to be rotating and,with one exception, the cases where rotation is not seen are eitherface-on or have complex central morphologies. We find that in 62% of thenuclei the fit to the central spectrum is improved by the inclusion of abroad component. The broad components have a mean velocity dispersion of1349+/-345 km s-1 and are redshifted from the narrow linecomponents (assuming an origin in Hα) by 486+/-443 kms-1.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASAcontract NAS 5-26555.

Lensing and the Centers of Distant Early-Type Galaxies
Gravitational lensing provides a unique probe of the inner 10-1000 pc ofdistant galaxies (z~0.2-1). Theoretical studies have predicted that eachstrong lens system should have a faint image near the center of the lensgalaxy, which should, in principle, be visible in radio lenses but hasnever been detected. We study the predicted ``core'' images using modelsderived from the stellar distributions in nearby early-type galaxies. Wefind that realistic lens galaxies produce a remarkably wide range ofcore images, with magnifications spanning some 6 orders of magnitude.More concentrated galaxies produce fainter core images, although notwith any model-independent relation between the galaxy properties andthe core images. Some real galaxies have diffuse cores that should yieldbright core images (magnification μcore>~0.1), but morecommon are galaxies that yield faint core images(μcore<~0.001). Thus, stellar mass distributions aloneare probably concentrated enough to explain the lack of observed coreimages. Observational sensitivity may need to improve by an order ofmagnitude before detections of core images become common. Two-imagelenses should tend to have brighter core images than four-image lenses,so they will be the better targets for finding core images andexploiting these tools for studying the central mass distributions ofdistant galaxies.

Submit a new article

Related links

  • - No Links Found -
Submit a new link

Member of following groups:

Observation and Astrometry data

Right ascension:23h20m42.60s
Aparent dimensions:2.57′ × 2.138′

Catalogs and designations:
Proper Names
NGC 2000.0NGC 7626

→ Request more catalogs and designations from VizieR