Formation and evolution of dwarf early-type galaxies in the Virgo cluster I. Internal kinematics

Astronomy and Astrophysics (Impact Factor: 4.48). 11/2010; 526. DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201015344
Source: arXiv

ABSTRACT We present new medium resolution kinematic data for a sample of 21 dwarf early-type galaxies (dEs) mainly in the Virgo cluster, obtained with the WHT and INT telescopes at the Roque de los Muchachos Observatory (La Palma, Spain). These data are used to study the origin of the dwarf elliptical galaxy population inhabiting clusters. We confirm that dEs are not dark matter dominated galaxies, at least up to the half-light radius. We also find that the observed galaxies in the outer parts of the cluster are mostly rotationally supported systems with disky morphological shapes. Rotationally supported dEs have rotation curves similar to those of star forming galaxies of similar luminosity and follow the Tully-Fisher relation. This is expected if dE galaxies are the descendant of low luminosity star forming systems which recently entered the cluster environment and lost their gas due to a ram pressure stripping event, quenching their star formation activity and transforming into quiescent systems, but conserving their angular momentum. Comment: 24 pages, 15 figures and 7 tables. Replaced to match the journal version

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    Astronomische Nachrichten 06/2012; 333(5‐6). DOI:10.1002/asna.201211691 · 1.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We study the role of the environment on galaxy evolution using a sample of 868 galaxies in the Virgo cluster and in its surrounding regions selected from the GUViCS Survey with the purpose of understanding the origin of the red sequence in dense environments. We collected multifrequency data covering the whole electromagnetic spectrum for most of the galaxies. We identify the different dynamical substructures composing the Virgo cluster and we calculate the local density of galaxies using different methods. We then study the distribution of galaxies belonging to the red sequence, the green valley, and the blue cloud within the different cluster substructures. Our analysis indicates that all the most massive galaxies are slow rotators and are the dominant galaxies of the different cluster substructures generally associated with a diffuse X-ray emission. They are probably the result of major merging events that occurred at early epochs. Slow rotators of lower stellar mass are also preferentially located within the different high-density substructures of the cluster. They are virialised within the cluster, thus Virgo members since its formation. They have been shaped by gravitational perturbations occurring within the infalling groups that later formed the cluster. On the contrary, low-mass star-forming systems are extremely rare in the inner regions of the Virgo cluster A, where the density of the intergalactic medium is at its maximum. Our ram pressure stripping models consistently indicate that these star-forming systems can be rapidly deprived of their interstellar medium during their interaction with the intergalactic medium. The lack of gas quenches their star formation activity transforming them into quiescent dwarf ellipticals. This mild transformation does not perturb the kinematic properties of these galaxies which still have rotation curves typical of star-forming systems.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 07/2014; 570. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201424419 · 4.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present spatially resolved kinematics and global stellar populations and mass-to-light ratios for a sample of 39 dwarf early-type (dE) galaxies in the Virgo cluster studied as part of the SMAKCED stellar absorption-line spectroscopy and imaging survey. This sample is representative of the early-type population in the absolute magnitude range -19.0 < M_r < -16.0. For each dE, we measure the rotation curve and velocity dispersion profile and fit an analytic function to the rotation curve. We study the significance of the departure of the rotation curve from the best fit analytic function (poorly fit) and of the difference between the approaching and receding sides of the rotation curve (asymmetry). We find that 62 +/- 8 % (23 out of the 39) of the dEs have a significant anomaly in their rotation curve. Analysis of the images reveals photometric anomalies for most galaxies. However, there is no clear correlation between the significance of the photometric and kinematic anomalies. We measure age-sensitive and metallicity-sensitive Lick spectral indices and find a wide range of ages and metallicities. We also find that 4 dEs have emission partially filling in the Balmer absorption lines. Finally, we estimate the total masses and dark matter fractions of the dEs. They have a median total mass and dark matter fraction within the Re of log Me = 9.1 +/- 0.2 and f_DM = 46 +/- 18 %. We plot several scaling relations and show that dEs seem to be the bridge between massive early-type and dwarf spheroidal galaxies.
    The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series 10/2014; 215(2). DOI:10.1088/0067-0049/215/2/17 · 16.24 Impact Factor

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