Naveen A. Reddy

University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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Publications (94)377.34 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The TMT Detailed Science Case describes the transformational science that the Thirty Meter Telescope will enable. Planned to begin science operations in 2024, TMT will open up opportunities for revolutionary discoveries in essentially every field of astronomy, astrophysics and cosmology, seeing much fainter objects much more clearly than existing telescopes. Per this capability, TMT's science agenda fills all of space and time, from nearby comets and asteroids, to exoplanets, to the most distant galaxies, and all the way back to the very first sources of light in the Universe. More than 150 astronomers from within the TMT partnership and beyond offered input in compiling the new 2015 Detailed Science Case. The contributing astronomers represent the entire TMT partnership, including the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), the Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA), the National Astronomical Observatories of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (NAOC), the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ), the University of California, the Association of Canadian Universities for Research in Astronomy (ACURA) and US associate partner, the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA).
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    ABSTRACT: We present results on the dust attenuation curve of z~2 galaxies using early observations from the MOSFIRE Deep Evolution Field (MOSDEF) survey. Our sample consists of 224 star-forming galaxies with nebular spectroscopic redshifts in the range z= 1.36-2.59 and high S/N measurements of, or upper limits on, the H-alpha and H-beta emission lines obtained with Keck/MOSFIRE. We construct composite SEDs of galaxies in bins of specific SFR and Balmer optical depth in order to directly constrain the dust attenuation curve from the UV through near-IR for typical star-forming galaxies at high redshift. Our results imply an attenuation curve that is very similar to the SMC extinction curve at wavelengths redward of 2500 Angstroms. At shorter wavelengths, the shape of the curve is identical to that of the Calzetti relation, but with a lower normalization (R_V). Hence, the new attenuation curve results in SFRs that are ~20% lower, and log stellar masses that are 0.16 dex lower, than those obtained with the Calzetti attenuation curve. Moreover, we find that the difference in the reddening---and the total attenuation---of the ionized gas and stellar continuum correlates strongly with SFR, such that for dust-corrected SFRs larger than 20 Msun/yr assuming a Chabrier IMF, the nebular emission lines suffer an increasing degree of obscuration relative to the continuum. A simple model that can account for these trends is one in which the UV through optical stellar continuum is dominated by a population of less reddened stars, while the nebular line and bolometric luminosities become increasingly dominated by dustier stellar populations for galaxies with large SFRs, as a result of the increased dust enrichment that accompanies such galaxies. Consequently, UV- and SED-based SFRs may underestimate the total SFR at even modest levels of ~20 Msun/yr. [Abridged]
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    ABSTRACT: We use a sample of 262 spectroscopically confirmed star-forming galaxies at redshifts $2.08\leq z\leq 2.51$ to compare H$\alpha$, UV, and IR star-formation-rate diagnostics and to investigate the dust properties of the galaxies. At these redshifts, the H$\alpha$ line shifts to the $K_{s}$-band. By comparing $K_{s}$-band photometry to underlying stellar population model fits to other UV, optical, and near-infrared data, we infer the H$\alpha$ flux for each galaxy. We obtain the best agreement between H$\alpha$- and UV-based SFRs if we assume that the ionized gas and stellar continuum are reddened by the same value and that the Calzetti attenuation curve is applied to both. Aided with MIPS 24$\mu$m data, we find that an attenuation curve steeper than the Calzetti curve is needed to reproduce the observed IR/UV ratios of galaxies younger than 100 Myr. Furthermore, using the bolometric star-formation rate inferred from the UV and mid-IR data (SFR$_{IR}$+SFR$_{UV}$), we calculated the conversion between the H$\alpha$ luminosity and SFR to be $(7.5\pm1.3) \times 10^{-42}$ for a Salpeter IMF, which is consistent with the Kennicutt (1998) conversion. The derived conversion factor is independent of any assumption of the dust correction and is robust to stellar population model uncertainties.
    The Astrophysical Journal 03/2015; 804(2). DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/804/2/149 · 6.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present results from the MOSFIRE Deep Evolution Field (MOSDEF) survey on rest-frame optical active galactic nucleus (AGN) identification and completeness at z ~ 2.3. With our sample of 50 galaxies and 10 X-ray and IR-selected AGNs with measured Hβ, [O III], Hα, and N II emission lines, we investigate the location of AGNs in the BPT, MEx (mass-excitation), and CEx (color-excitation) diagrams. We find that th BPT diagram works well to identify AGNs at z ~ 2.3 and that the z ~ 0 AGN/star-forming galaxy classifications do not need to shift substantially at z ~ 2.3 to robustly separate these populations. However, the MEx diagram fails to identify all of the AGN identified in the BPT diagram, and the CEx diagram is substantially contaminated at high redshift. We further show that AGN samples selected using the BPT diagram have selection biases in terms of both host stellar mass and stellar population, in that AGNs in low mass and/or high specific star formation rate galaxies are difficult to identify using the BPT diagram. These selection biases become increasingly severe at high redshift, such that optically selected AGN samples at high redshift will necessarily be incomplete. We also find that the gas in the narrow-line region appears to be more enriched than gas in the host galaxy for at least some MOSDEF AGNs. However, AGNs at z ~ 2 are generally less enriched than local AGNs with the same host stellar mass.
    The Astrophysical Journal 03/2015; 801(1). DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/801/1/35 · 6.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In this paper we present the MOSFIRE Deep Evolution Field (MOSDEF) survey. The MOSDEF survey aims to obtain moderate-resolution (R=3000-3650) rest-frame optical spectra (~3700-7000 Angstrom) for ~1500 galaxies at 1.37<z<3.80 in three well-studied CANDELS fields: AEGIS, COSMOS, and GOODS-N. Targets are selected in three redshift intervals: 1.37<z<1.70, 2.09<z<2.61, and 2.95<z<3.80, down to fixed H_AB (F160W) magnitudes of 24.0, 24.5 and 25.0, respectively, using the photometric and spectroscopic catalogs from the 3D-HST survey. We target both strong nebular emission lines (e.g., [OII], Hbeta, [OIII], 5008, Halpha, [NII], and [SII]) and stellar continuum and absorption features (e.g., Balmer lines, Ca-II H and K, Mgb, 4000 Angstrom break). Here we present an overview of our survey, the observational strategy, the data reduction and analysis, and the sample characteristics based on spectra obtained during the first 24 nights. To date, we have completed 21 masks, obtaining spectra for 591 galaxies. For ~80% of the targets we identify and measure multiple emission or absorption lines. In addition, we confirm 55 additional galaxies, which were serendipitously detected. The MOSDEF galaxy sample includes unobscured star-forming, dusty star-forming, and quiescent galaxies and spans a wide range in stellar mass (~10^9-10^11.5 Msol) and star formation rate (~0-10^4 Msol/yr). The spectroscopically confirmed sample is roughly representative of an H-band limited galaxy sample at these redshifts. With its large sample size, broad diversity in galaxy properties, and wealth of available ancillary data, MOSDEF will transform our understanding of the stellar, gaseous, metal, dust, and black hole content of galaxies during the time when the universe was most active.
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    ABSTRACT: We study the Lyα profiles of 36 spectroscopically detected Lyα-emitters (LAEs) at z ~ 2-3, using Keck MOSFIRE to measure systemic redshifts and velocity dispersions from rest-frame optical nebular emission lines. The sample has a median optical magnitude , and ranges from to , corresponding to rest-frame UV absolute magnitudes M UV –22 to M UV > –18.2. Dynamical masses range from M dyn < 1.3 × 108M ☉ to M dyn = 6.8 × 109M ☉, with a median value of M dyn = 6.3 × 108M ☉. Thirty of the 36 Lyα emission lines are redshifted with respect to the systemic velocity with at least 1σ significance, and the velocity offset with respect to systemic Δv Lyα is correlated with the -band magnitude, M UV, and the velocity dispersion measured from nebular emission lines with >3σ significance: brighter galaxies with larger velocity dispersions tend to have larger values of Δv Lyα. We also make use of a comparison sample of 122 UV-color-selected galaxies at z ~ 2, all with Lyα emission and systemic redshifts measured from nebular emission lines. Using the combined LAE and comparison samples for a total of 158 individual galaxies, we find that Δv Lyα is anti-correlated with the Lyα equivalent width with 7σ significance. Our results are consistent with a scenario in which the Lyα profile is determined primarily by the properties of the gas near the systemic redshift; in such a scenario, the opacity to Lyα photons in lower mass galaxies may be reduced if large gaseous disks have not yet developed and if the gas is ionized by the harder spectrum of young, low metallicity stars.
    The Astrophysical Journal 10/2014; 795(1):33. DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/795/1/33 · 6.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present results on the excitation properties of z~2.3 galaxies using early observations from the MOSFIRE Deep Evolution Field (MOSDEF) Survey. With its coverage of the full suite of strongrest-frame optical emission lines, MOSDEF provides an unprecedented view of the rest-frame optical spectra of a representative sample of distant star-forming galaxies. We investigate the locations of z~2.3 MOSDEF galaxies in multiple emission-line diagnostic diagrams. These include the [OIII]/Hb vs. [NII]/Ha (O3N2) and [OIII]/Hb vs. [SII]/Ha (O3S2) "BPT" diagrams, as well as the O_32 vs. R_23 (O32R23) excitation diagram. We recover the well-known offset in the star-forming sequence of high-redshift galaxies in the O3N2 BPT diagram relative to Sloan Digital Sky Survey star-forming galaxies. However, the shift for our rest-frame optically selected sample is less significant than for rest-frame-UV selected and emission-line selected galaxies at z~2. Furthermore, we find that the offset is mass-dependent, only appearing within the low-mass half of the z~2.3 MOSDEF sample, where galaxies are shifted towards higher [NII]/Ha at fixed [OIII]/Hb. Within the O3S2 and O32R23 diagrams, we find that z~2.3 galaxies are distributed like local ones, and therefore attribute the shift in the O3N2 BPT diagram to elevated N/O abundance ratios among lower-mass (M_*<10^10 M_sun) high-redshift galaxies. The variation in N/O ratios calls into question the use at high redshift of oxygen abundance indicators based on nitrogen lines, but the apparent invariance with redshift of the excitation sequence in the O32R23 diagram paves the way for using the combination of O_{32 and R_23 as an unbiased metallicity indicator over a wide range in redshift. This indicator will allow for an accurate characterization of the shape and normalization of the mass-metallicity relationship over more than 10 Gyr.
    The Astrophysical Journal 09/2014; 801(2). DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/801/2/88 · 6.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present results from the MOSFIRE Deep Evolution Field (MOSDEF) survey on rest-frame optical AGN identification and completeness at z~2.3. With our sample of 50 galaxies and 10 X-ray and IR-selected AGN with measured H-beta, [OIII], H-alpha, and [NII] emission lines, we investigate the location of AGN in the BPT, MEx (mass-excitation), and CEx (color-excitation) diagrams. We find that the BPT diagram works well to identify AGN at z~2.3 and that the z~0 AGN/star-forming galaxy classifications do not need to shift substantially at z~2.3 to robustly separate these populations. However, the MEx diagram likely suffers from contamination from star-forming galaxies at high redshift and fails to identify all of the AGN identified in the BPT diagram. The CEx diagram does not work well at high redshift. We further show that AGN samples selected using the BPT diagram have strong selection biases in terms of both host stellar mass and stellar population, in that AGN in low mass and/or high specific star formation rate galaxies can not be identified using the BPT diagram at either low or high redshift. These selection biases become increasingly severe at high redshift, such that optically-selected AGN samples at high redshift will necessarily be incomplete. We also find that the gas in the narrow-line region appears to be more enriched than gas in the host galaxy for at least some MOSDEF AGN. However, AGN at z~2 are generally less enriched than local AGN with the same host stellar mass.
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    ABSTRACT: We study the Lya profiles of 36 Lya-emitters (LAEs) at z~2-3, taking advantage of the sensitivity and efficiency of Keck MOSFIRE to measure systemic redshifts from rest-frame optical nebular emission lines. The galaxies were selected via narrowband imaging of their Lya emission, and have spectroscopic measurements of their Lya profiles from Keck LRIS. The LAE sample has a median optical magnitude R = 26.0, and ranges from R = 23 to R > 27, corresponding to rest-frame UV absolute magnitudes M_UV = -22 to M_UV > -18.2. The vast majority of Lya emission lines in this sample are redshifted with respect to the systemic velocity, and the velocity offset with respect to systemic dv_Lya is correlated with R-band magnitude, M_UV, and the velocity dispersion measured from nebular emission lines with >3 sigma significance: brighter galaxies with larger velocity dispersions tend to have larger values of dv_Lya. We also make use of a comparison sample of 122 UV-color-selected R < 25.5 galaxies at z~2, all with Lya emission and systemic redshifts measured from nebular emission lines. Using the combined LAE and comparison samples for a total of 158 individual galaxies, we find that dv_Lya is anti-correlated with the Lya equivalent width with 7 sigma significance. Our results are consistent with a scenario in which the Lya profile is determined primarily by the properties of the gas near the systemic redshift; in such a scenario, the opacity to Lya photons in lower mass galaxies may be reduced if large gaseous disks have not yet developed and if the gas is ionized by the harder spectrum of young, low metallicity stars. [Abridged]
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    ABSTRACT: We present results on the z~2.3 mass-metallicity relation (MZR) using early observations from the MOSFIRE Deep Evolution Field (MOSDEF) survey. We use an initial sample of 87 star-forming galaxies with spectroscopic coverage of H\beta, [OIII]\lambda 5007, H\alpha, and [NII]\lambda 6584 rest-frame optical emission lines, and estimate the gas-phase oxygen abundance based on the N2 and O3N2 strong-line indicators. We find a positive correlation between stellar mass and metallicity among individual z~2.3 galaxies using both the N2 and O3N2 indicators. We also measure the emission-line ratios and corresponding oxygen abundances for composite spectra in bins of stellar mass. Among composite spectra, we find a monotonic increase in metallicity with increasing stellar mass, offset ~0.15-0.3 dex below the local MZR. When the sample is divided at the median star-formation rate (SFR), we do not observe significant SFR dependence of the z~2.3 MZR among either individual galaxies or composite spectra. We furthermore find that z~2.3 galaxies have metallicities ~0.1 dex lower at a given stellar mass and SFR than is observed locally. This offset suggests that high-redshift galaxies do not fall on the local "fundamental metallicity relation" among stellar mass, metallicity, and SFR, and may provide evidence of a phase of galaxy growth in which the gas reservoir is built up due to inflow rates that are higher than star-formation and outflow rates. However, robust conclusions regarding the gas-phase oxygen abundances of high-redshift galaxies await a systematic reappraisal of the application of locally calibrated metallicity indicators at high redshift.
    The Astrophysical Journal 08/2014; 799(2). DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/799/2/138 · 6.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present initial results of a large near-IR spectroscopic survey covering the 15 fields of the Keck Baryonic Structure Survey (KBSS) using the recently-commissioned MOSFIRE instrument on the Keck 1 10m telescope. We focus on 179 galaxies with redshifts 2.0 < z < 2.6, most of which have high-quality MOSFIRE spectra in both H and K-band atmospheric windows, allowing sensitive measurements of [OIII]4960,5008, H-beta, [NII]6585, and H-alpha emission lines. We show unambiguously that the locus of z~2.3 galaxies in the "BPT" nebular diagnostic diagram exhibits an almost entirely disjoint, yet similarly tight, relationship between the line ratios [NII]/Halpha and [OIII]/Hbeta as compared to local galaxies. We argue that the offset of the z~2.3 BPT locus relative to that at z~0 is caused primarily by higher excitation (driven by both higher ionization parameter and harder stellar ionizing radiation field) than applies to most local galaxies. Also unlike nearby counterparts, a z~2.3 galaxy's position along the BPT locus is surprisingly insensitive to gas-phase O/H. The observed emission line ratios are most easily reproduced by models in which the stellar ionizing radiation field has Teff=50000-60000 K, gas-phase O/H in the range 0.2 < Z/Zsun < 1.0, and gas-phase N/O close to solar. Such high sustained Teff are not easily produced by standard population synthesis models, but are expected if massive binaries and/or rapid stellar rotation are important for the evolution of main sequence O-stars in typical high-redshift galaxies. We assess the applicability of commonly-used strong line indices for estimating gas-phase metallicities of high redshift galaxies, as well as their likely systematic biases. The empirical correlation between M* and inferred metallicity (the "MZR") at z~2.3 is as tight as for local galaxy samples, but is offset to lower metallicity (at all M*) by ~0.35 dex (abridged)
    The Astrophysical Journal 05/2014; 795(2). DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/795/2/165 · 6.28 Impact Factor
  • Irene Shivaei, N. Reddy
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    ABSTRACT: From a unique sample of 262 UV-selected galaxies with spectroscopic redshifts at z˜2 and rest-UV through Spitzer/IRAC near-IR photometry, we investigate their star-formation rates and dust attenuation based on multiple diagnostics. The sample includes galaxies at redshifts 2.08≤z≤2.51, where H-alpha falls in the K-band, and where the H-alpha flux can be estimated by comparing the K-band photometry to stellar population model fits to the UV- to near-IR photometry. This technique has the advantage of being immune to uncertain corrections for slit loss that can affect spectroscopic measurements of H-alpha. Comparing the H-alpha SFRs with those from the UV shows a general agreement between the two tracers if we assume that the nebular lines are attenuated by the same amount as the stellar continuum. We use the H-alpha, UV, and Spitzer/MIPS 24 micron data (where available) to examine the bolometric SFRs and recipes for dust corrections at high redshift.
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    ABSTRACT: The MOSFIRE Deep Evolution Field (MOSDEF) survey is using the MOSFIRE instrument on the Keck I telescope to obtain more than 1700 rest-frame optical spectra of galaxies from redshift 1.5 to 3.6 over four years. We are using the first 200 spectra to investigate the prevalence of outflows measured in emission in broad components of the nebular emission lines. We create stacks of galaxies based on properties such as star formation rate, stellar mass, and star formation rate surface density (controlling for the presence of AGNs) in order to study how outflow strength depends on these factors. Additionally, we will stack spectra by redshift to understand how outflows change over time. We will present the results of two component (narrow and broad) fits to the nebular emission and compare to theoretical predictions of outflow efficiency.
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    ABSTRACT: We present Keck/MOSFIRE observations of the role of environment in the formation of galaxies at z~2. Using K-band spectroscopy of H-alpha and [N II] emission lines, we have analyzed the metallicities of galaxies within and around a z=2.3 protocluster discovered in the HS1700+643 field. Our main sample consists of 23 protocluster and 20 field galaxies with estimates of stellar masses and gas-phase metallicities based on the N2 strong-line metallicity indicator. With these data we have examined the mass-metallicity relation (MZR) with respect to environment at z~2. We find that field galaxies follow the well-established trend between stellar mass and metallicity, such that more massive galaxies have larger metallicities. The protocluster galaxies, however, do not exhibit a dependence of metallicity on mass, with the low-mass protocluster galaxies showing an enhancement in metallicity compared to field galaxies spanning the same mass range. A comparison with galaxy formation models suggests that the mass-dependent environmental trend we observed can be qualitatively explained in the context of the recycling of "momentum-driven" galaxy wind material. Accordingly, winds are recycled on a shorter timescale in denser environments, leading to an enhancement in metallicity at fixed mass for all but the most massive galaxies. Future hydrodynamical simulations of z~2 overdensities matching the one in the HS1700 field will be crucial for understanding the origin of the observed environmental trend in detail.
    The Astrophysical Journal 06/2013; 774(2). DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/774/2/130 · 6.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present results from a survey for z~2.85 Lyman-Continuum (LyC) emission in the HS1549+1933 field and place constraints on the amount of ionizing radiation escaping from star-forming galaxies. Using a custom narrowband filter (NB3420) tuned to wavelengths just below the Lyman limit at z>=2.82, we probe the LyC spectral region of 49 Lyman break galaxies (LBGs) and 91 Lya-emitters (LAEs) spectroscopically confirmed at z>=2.82. Four LBGs and seven LAEs are detected in NB3420. Using V-band data probing the rest-frame non-ionizing UV, we observe that many NB3420-detected galaxies exhibit spatial offsets between their LyC and non-ionizing UV emission and are characterized by extremely blue NB3420-V colors, corresponding to low ratios of non-ionizing to ionizing radiation (F_UV/F_LyC) that are in tension with current stellar population synthesis models. We measure average values of F_UV/F_LyC for our LBG and LAE samples, correcting for foreground galaxy contamination and HI absorption in the IGM. We find (F_UV/F_LyC)_corr^LBG=82 +/- 45 and (F_UV/F_LyC)_corr^LAE=7.4 +/- 3.6. These flux-density ratios correspond respectively to relative LyC escape fractions of f_esc,rel^LBG=5-8% and f_esc,rel^LAE=18-49%, absolute LyC escape fractions of f_esc^LBG=1-2% and f_esc^LAE=5-15%, and a comoving LyC emissivity from star-forming galaxies of 8.8-15.0 x 10^24 ergs/s/Hz/Mpc^3. In order to study the differential properties of galaxies with and without LyC detections, we analyze narrowband Lya imaging and rest-frame near-infrared imaging, finding that while LAEs with LyC detections have lower Lya equivalent widths on average, there is no substantial difference in the rest-frame near-infrared colors of LBGs or LAEs with and without LyC detections. These preliminary results are consistent with an orientation-dependent model where LyC emission escapes through cleared paths in a patchy ISM.
    The Astrophysical Journal 06/2013; 779(1). DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/779/1/65 · 6.28 Impact Factor
  • Irene Shivaei, N. Reddy
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    ABSTRACT: We use a unique sample of 262 star-forming galaxies selected during the epoch of peak cosmic star formation to infer star-formation rates and dust reddening, and to investigate the validity of the local star-formation calibrations at high redshift. The sample contains galaxies at redshifts 2.08<z<2.51, where the K-band photometry is affected by H-alpha. By comparing the K-band photometry to the underlying stellar population model fit to the optical and IRAC data, we are able to infer an H-alpha flux for each galaxy. These H-alpha fluxes are combined with UV continuum and Spitzer/MIPS 24 micron measurements in order to examine the bolometric star-formation rates and dust attenuation. We discuss the comparison of these three complementary star-formation rate indicators in the context of the star-formation histories of the galaxies, and the implications for inferring star-formation rates and reddening at high redshift.
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    ABSTRACT: We use stellar population synthesis modeling to analyze the host-galaxy properties of a sample of 33 UV-selected, narrow-lined active galactic nuclei (AGNs) at z {approx} 2-3. In order to quantify the contribution of AGN emission to host galaxy broadband spectral energy distributions (SEDs), we use the subsample of 11 AGNs with photometric coverage spanning from rest-frame UV through near-IR wavelengths. Modeling the SEDs of these objects with a linear combination of stellar population and AGN templates, we infer the effect of the AGN on derived stellar population parameters. We also estimate the typical bias in derived stellar populations for AGNs lacking rest-frame near-IR wavelength coverage, and develop a method for inferring the true host-galaxy properties. We compare AGN host-galaxy properties to those of a sample of UV-selected, star-forming non-AGNs in the same redshift range, including a subsample carefully matched in stellar mass. Although the AGNs have higher masses and star-formation rates than the full non-active sample, their stellar population properties are consistent with those of the mass-selected sample, suggesting that the presence of an AGN is not connected with the cessation of star formation activity in star-forming galaxies at z {approx} 2-3. We suggest that a correlation between M {sub BH} and galaxy stellar mass is already in place at this epoch. Assuming a roughly constant Eddington ratio for AGNs at all stellar masses, we are unable to detect the AGNs in low-mass galaxies because they are simply too faint.
    The Astrophysical Journal 11/2012; 760(1). DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/760/1/74 · 6.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This document summarizes the results of a community-based discussion of the potential science impact of the Mayall+BigBOSS highly multiplexed multi-object spectroscopic capability. The KPNO Mayall 4m telescope equipped with the DOE- and internationally-funded BigBOSS spectrograph offers one of the most cost-efficient ways of accomplishing many of the pressing scientific goals identified for this decade by the "New Worlds, New Horizons" report. The BigBOSS Key Project will place unprecedented constraints on cosmological parameters related to the expansion history of the universe. With the addition of an open (publicly funded) community access component, the scientific impact of BigBOSS can be extended to many important astrophysical questions related to the origin and evolution of galaxies, stars, and the IGM. Massive spectroscopy is the critical missing ingredient in numerous ongoing and planned ground- and space-based surveys, and BigBOSS is unique in its ability to provide this to the US community. BigBOSS data from community-led projects will play a vital role in the education and training of students and in maintaining US leadership in these fields of astrophysics. We urge the NSF-AST division to support community science with the BigBOSS multi-object spectrograph through the period of the BigBOSS survey in order to ensure public access to the extraordinary spectroscopic capability.
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    ABSTRACT: Although grand-design spiral galaxies are relatively common in the local Universe, only one has been spectroscopically confirmed to lie at redshift z > 2 (HDFX 28; z = 2.011); and it may prove to be a major merger that simply resembles a spiral in projection. The rarity of spirals has been explained as a result of disks being dynamically 'hot' at z > 2 (refs 2-5), which may instead favour the formation of commonly observed clumpy structures. Alternatively, current instrumentation may simply not be sensitive enough to detect spiral structures comparable to those in the modern Universe. At z < 2, the velocity dispersion of disks decreases, and spiral galaxies are more numerous by z ≈ 1 (refs 7, 13-15). Here we report observations of the grand-design spiral galaxy Q2343-BX442 at z = 2.18. Spectroscopy of ionized gas shows that the disk is dynamically hot, implying an uncertain origin for the spiral structure. The kinematics of the galaxy are consistent with a thick disk undergoing a minor merger, which can drive the formation of short-lived spiral structure. A duty cycle of <100 Myr for such tidally induced spiral structure in a hot massive disk is consistent with its rarity.
    Nature 07/2012; 487(7407):338-40. DOI:10.1038/nature11256 · 42.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We analyze rest-frame optical morphologies and gas-phase kinematics as traced by rest-frame far-UV and optical spectra for a sample of 204 star forming galaxies in the redshift range z ~ 2-3 drawn from the Keck Baryonic Structure Survey (KBSS). We find that spectroscopic properties and gas-phase kinematics are closely linked to morphology: compact galaxies with semi-major axis radii r <~ 2 kpc are substantially more likely than their larger counterparts to exhibit LyA in emission. Although LyA emission strength varies widely within galaxies of a given morphological type, all but one of 19 galaxies with LyA equivalent width W_LyA > 20 Angstroms have compact and/or multiple-component morphologies with r <= 2.5 kpc. The velocity structure of absorption lines in the galactic continuum spectra also varies as a function of morphology. Galaxies of all morphological types drive similarly strong outflows (as traced by the blue wing of interstellar absorption line features), but the outflows of larger galaxies are less highly ionized and exhibit larger optical depth at the systemic redshift that may correspond to a decreasing efficiency of feedback in evacuating gas from the galaxy. This v ~ 0 km/s gas is responsible both for shifting the mean absorption line redshift and attenuating W_LyA (via a longer resonant scattering path) in galaxies with larger rest-optical half light radii. In contrast to galaxies at lower redshifts, there is no evidence for a correlation between outflow velocity and inclination, suggesting that outflows from these puffy and irregular systems may be poorly collimated. (Abbrev.)
    The Astrophysical Journal 06/2012; 759(1). DOI:10.1088/0004-637X/759/1/29 · 6.28 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

5k Citations
377.34 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2012–2014
    • University of Toronto
      • Dunlap Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics
      Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 2011–2014
    • University of California, Riverside
      • Department of Physics and Astronomy
      Riverside, California, United States
  • 2008–2012
    • National Optical Astronomy Observatory
      Tucson, Arizona, United States
  • 2003–2008
    • California Institute of Technology
      • • Department of Astronomy
      • • Spitzer Science Center
      Pasadena, California, United States
  • 2005
    • Pennsylvania State University
      • Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics
      University Park, Maryland, United States
  • 2001
    • University of Massachusetts Amherst
      • Department of Astronomy
      Amherst Center, Massachusetts, United States
  • 1999
    • University of Texas at Austin
      Austin, Texas, United States