The signature of dissipation in the mass-size relation: Are bulges simply spheroids wrapped in a disc?

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DOIResolve DOI: http://doi.org/10.1093/mnrasl/slu026
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TypeArticle
Journal titleMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters
ISSN1745-3925
Volume440
Issue1
PagesL66L70
Subjectgalaxies: bulges; galaxies: elliptical and lenticular; galaxies: evolution; NOx
AbstractThe relation between the stellar mass and size of a galaxy's structural subcomponents, such as discs and spheroids, is a powerful way to understand the processes involved in their formation. Using very large catalogues of photometric bulge+disc structural decompositions and stellar masses from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release Seven, we carefully define two large subsamples of spheroids in a quantitative manner such that both samples share similar characteristics with one important exception: the 'bulges' are embedded in a disc and the 'pure spheroids' are galaxies with a single structural component. Our bulge and pure spheroid subsample sizes are 76 012 and 171 243, respectively. Above a stellar mass of ̃1010M⊙, the mass-size relations of both subsamples are parallel to one another and are close to lines of constant surface mass density. However, the relations are offset by a factor of 1.4, which may be explained by the dominance of dissipation in their formation processes. Whereas the size-mass relation of bulges in discs is consistent with gas-rich mergers, pure spheroids appear to have been formed via a combination of 'dry' and 'wet' mergers.
Publication date
PublisherOxford University Press
LanguageEnglish
AffiliationNational Research Council Canada; National Science Infrastructure
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number21272944
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Record identifier3aa1d8d0-ceb1-4bb2-9f6f-c5bb8e7f8fa3
Record created2014-12-03
Record modified2016-05-09
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