On the shapes and structures of high-redshift compact galaxies

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DOIResolve DOI: http://doi.org/10.1088/2041-8205/754/2/L24
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TypeArticle
Journal titleThe Astrophysical Journal Letters
ISSN2041-8205
Volume754
Issue2
Article numberL24
AbstractRecent deep Hubble Space Telescope WFC3 imaging suggests that a majority of compact quiescent massive galaxies at z 2 may contain disks. To investigate this claim, we have compared the ellipticity distribution of 31 carefully selected high-redshift massive quiescent compact galaxies to a set of mass-selected ellipticity and Sérsic index distributions obtained from two-dimensional structural fits to 40, 000 nearby galaxies from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. A Kolmogorov-Smirnov test shows that the distribution of ellipticities for the high-redshift galaxies is consistent with the ellipticity distribution of a similarly chosen sample of massive early-type galaxies. However, the distribution of Sérsic indices for the high-redshift sample is inconsistent with that of local early-type galaxies, and instead resembles that of local disk-dominated populations. The mismatch between the properties of high-redshift compact galaxies and those of both local early-type and disk-dominated systems leads us to conclude that the basic structures of high-redshift compact galaxies probably do not closely resemble those of any single local galaxy population. Any galaxy population analog to the high-redshift compact galaxies that exists at the current epoch is either a mix of different types of galaxies, or possibly a unique class of objects on their own. © 2012. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved..
Publication date
LanguageEnglish
AffiliationNational Research Council Canada (NRC-CNRC); NRC Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics (HIA-IHA)
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number21269340
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Record identifiera09f075b-b542-4b5e-b502-be5dd3439b8b
Record created2013-12-12
Record modified2016-07-18
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