Matthew G. Walker

Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States

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Publications (31)200.75 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: We combine the equations of motion that govern the dynamics of galaxies in the local volume with Bayesian techniques in order to fit orbits to published distances and velocities of galaxies within 3 Mpc. We find a Local Group (LG) mass $2.1^{+0.7}_{-0.6}\times 10^{12}{\rm M}_\odot$ that is consistent with the combined dynamical masses of M31 and the Milky Way, and a mass ratio $1.29^{+0.24}_{-0.16}$ that rules out models where M31 is more massive than our Galaxy with $\sim 95%$ confidence. The Milky Way's circular velocity at the solar radius is relatively high, $251\pm 23 {\rm km s}^{-1}$, which helps to reconcile the mass derived from the local Hubble flow with the larger value suggested by the `timing argument'. Adopting {\it Planck}'s bounds on $\Omega_\Lambda$ yields a (local) Hubble constant $H_0=67\pm 5{\rm km s}^{-1}{\rm Mpc}^{-1}$ which is consistent with the value found on cosmological scales. Restricted N-body experiments show that substructures tend to fall onto the LG along the Milky Way-M31 axis, where the quadrupole attraction is maximum. Tests against mock data indicate that neglecting this effect slightly overestimates the LG mass without biasing the rest of model parameters. We also show that both the time-dependence of the LG potential and the cosmological constant have little impact on the observed local Hubble flow.
    05/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: We generate stellar distribution functions (DFs) in triaxial haloes in order to examine the reliability of slopes $\Gamma\equiv \Delta {\rm log} M / \Delta {\rm log} r$ inferred by applying mass estimators of the form $M\propto R_e\sigma^2$ (i.e. assuming spherical symmetry, where $R_e$ and $\sigma$ are luminous effective radius and global velocity dispersion, respectively) to two stellar sub-populations independently tracing the same gravitational potential. The DFs take the form $f(E)$, are dynamically stable, and are generated within triaxial potentials corresponding directly to subhaloes formed in cosmological dark-matter-only simulations of Milky Way and galaxy cluster haloes. Additionally, we consider the effect of different tracer number density profiles (cuspy and cored) on the inferred slopes of mass profiles. For the isotropic DFs considered here, we find that halo triaxiality tends to introduce an anti-correlation between $R_e$ and $\sigma$ when estimated for a variety of viewing angles. The net effect is a negligible contribution to the systematic error associated with the slope of the mass profile, which continues to be dominated by a bias toward greater overestimation of masses for more-concentrated tracer populations. We demonstrate that simple mass estimates for two distinct tracer populations can give reliable (and cosmologically meaningful) lower limits for $\Gamma$, irrespective of the degree of triaxiality or shape of the tracer number density profile.
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 03/2013; 433(1). · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We calculate the energy that baryons must inject in cold dark matter (CDM) haloes in order to remove centrally-divergent DM cusps on scales relevant to observations of dwarf spheroidal galaxies (dSphs). We estimate that the CDM haloes often associated with the Milky Way's dSphs (M_vir/M_\odot \sim 10^{9-10}) require \Delta E/erg \sim 10^{53-55} in order to form cores on scales comparable to the luminous size of these galaxies. While supernova type II (SNeII) explosions can in principle generate this energy, the actual contribution is limited by the low star formation efficiency implied by the abundance of luminous satellites. Considering that CDM's well-known `core/cusp' and `missing satellite' problems place opposing demands on star formation efficiencies, existing observational evidences for large cores in the most luminous dSphs require that CDM models invoke some combination of the following: (i) efficient (of order unity) coupling of SNeII energy into dark matter particles, (ii) star formation histories peaking at unexpectedly high redshifts (z>6), (iii) a top-heavy stellar IMF, and/or (iv) substantial satellite disruption or other stochastic effects to ease the substructure abundance constraints. Our models show that the tension between CDM problems on small scales would increase if cored DM profiles were to be found in fainter dwarves.
    The Astrophysical Journal Letters 07/2012; 759(2). · 6.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Kinematic surveys of the dwarf spheroidal (dSph) satellites of the Milky Way are revealing tantalising hints about the structure of dark matter (DM) haloes at the low-mass end of the galaxy luminosity function. At the bright end, modelling of spiral galaxies has shown that their rotation curves are consistent with the hypothesis of a Universal Rotation Curve whose shape is supported by a cored dark matter halo. In this paper, we investigate whether the internal kinematics of the Milky Way dSphs are consistent with the particular cored DM distributions which reproduce the properties of spiral galaxies. Although the DM densities in dSphs are typically almost two orders of magnitude higher than those found in (larger) disk systems, we find consistency between dSph kinematics and Burkert DM haloes whose core radii r0 and central densities {\rho}0 lie on the extrapolation of the scaling law seen in spiral galaxies: log {\rho}0 \simeq {\alpha} log r0 + const with 0.9 < {\alpha} < 1.1. We similarly find that the dSph data are consistent with the relation between {\rho}0 and baryon scale length seen in spiral galaxies. While the origin of these scaling relations is unclear, the finding that a single DM halo profile is consistent with kinematic data in galaxies of widely varying size, luminosity and Hubble Type is important for our understanding of observed galaxies and must be accounted for in models of galaxy formation.
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 11/2011; · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    Matthew G. Walker, Jorge Peñarrubia
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    ABSTRACT: We introduce a method for measuring the slopes of mass profiles within dwarf spheroidal (dSph) galaxies directly from stellar spectroscopic data and without adopting a dark matter halo model. Our method combines two recent results: 1) spherically symmetric, equilibrium Jeans models imply that the product of halflight radius and (squared) stellar velocity dispersion provides an estimate of the mass enclosed within the halflight radius of a dSph stellar component, and 2) some dSphs have chemo-dynamically distinct stellar \textit{sub}components that independently trace the same gravitational potential. We devise a statistical method that uses measurements of stellar positions, velocities and spectral indices to distinguish two dSph stellar subcomponents and to estimate their individual halflight radii and velocity dispersions. For a dSph with two detected stellar subcomponents, we obtain estimates of masses enclosed at two discrete points in the same mass profile, immediately defining a slope. Applied to published spectroscopic data, our method distinguishes stellar subcomponents in the Fornax and Sculptor dSphs, for which we measure slopes $\Gamma\equiv \Delta \log M / \Delta \log r=2.61_{-0.37}^{+0.43}$ and $\Gamma=2.95_{-0.39}^{+0.51}$, respectively. These values are consistent with 'cores' of constant density within the central few-hundred parsecs of each galaxy and rule out `cuspy' Navarro-Frenk-White (NFW) profiles ($d\log M/d\log r \leq 2$ at all radii) with significance $\ga 96%$ and $\ga 99%$, respectively. Tests with synthetic data indicate that our method tends systematically to overestimate the mass of the inner stellar subcomponent to a greater degree than that of the outer stellar subcomponent, and therefore to underestimate the slope $\Gamma$ (implying that the stated NFW exclusion levels are conservative).
    The Astrophysical Journal 08/2011; 742(1). · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We use analytical and N-body methods to examine the survival of wide stellar binaries against repeated encounters with dark substructures orbiting in the dark matter haloes of dwarf spheroidal galaxies (dSphs). Our models adopt cosmologically-motivated conditions wherein dSphs are dark-matter dominated systems that form hierarchically and orbit about a host galaxy. Our analytical estimates show that wide binaries are disrupted at a rate that is proportional to the local density of dark substructures averaged over the life-time of the binary population. The fact that external tides can efficiently strip dark substructures from the outskirts of dSphs implies that the present number and distribution of binaries is strongly coupled with the mass evolution of individual galaxies. Yet we show that for the range of dynamical masses and Galactocentric distances spanned by Milky Way dSphs, a truncation in the separation function at a_max <~ 0.1 pc is expected in all these galaxies. An exception may be the Sagittarius dSph, which has lost most of is dark matter envelope to tides and is close to full disruption. Our simulations indicate that at separations larger than a_max the perturbed binary distribution scales as dN/da \propto a^{-2.1} independently of the mass and density of substructures. These results may be used to determine whether the binary separation function found in dwarf galaxies is compatible with the scale-free hierarchical picture that envisions the existence of dark substructures in all galactic haloes. We show that the ACS camera on board of the Hubble telescope may be able to test this prediction in dSphs at heliocentric distances <100 kpc, even if the binary fraction amounts only 10% of the stellar population. Comment: 8 pages, 6 figures, submitted to MNRAS
    05/2010;
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    ABSTRACT: We consider dark masses measured from kinematic tracers at discrete radii in galaxies for which baryonic contributions to overall potentials are either subtracted or negligible. Recent work indicates that rotation curves due to dark matter (DM) halos at intermediate radii in spiral galaxies are remarkably similar, with a mean rotation curve given by $\log_{10}[V_{c,\mathrm{DM}}/(\mathrm{km s^{-1}})]=1.47_{-0.19}^{+0.15}+0.5\log_{10}[r/\mathrm{kpc}]$. Independent studies show that while estimates of the dark mass of a given dwarf spheroidal (dSph) galaxy are robust only near the half-light radius, data from the Milky Way's (MW's) dSph satellites are consistent with a narrow range of mass profiles. Here we combine published constraints on the dark halo masses of spirals and dSphs and include available measurements of low surface brightness galaxies for additional comparison. We find that most measured MW dSphs lie on the extrapolation of the mean rotation curve due to DM in spirals. The union of MW-dSph and spiral data appears to follow a mass-radius relation of the form $M_{\mathrm{DM}}(r)/M_{\odot}=200_{-120}^{+200}(r/\mathrm{pc})^2$, or equivalently a constant acceleration $g_{\mathrm{DM}}=3_{-2}^{+3}\times 10^{-9}\mathrm{cm s^{-2}}$, spanning $0.02\la r \la 75$ kpc. Evaluation at specific radii immediately generates two results from the recent literature: a common mass for MW dSphs at fixed radius and a constant DM central surface density for galaxies ranging from MW dSphs to spirals. However, recent kinematic measurements indicate that M31's dSph satellites are systematically less massive than MW dSphs of similar size. Such deviations from what is otherwise a surprisingly uniform halo relation presumably hold clues to individual formation and evolutionary histories. Comment: ApJL in press (minor edits to text in order to match version in press)
    The Astrophysical Journal Letters 04/2010; · 6.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present the first results of a comprehensive HST study of the star-formation history of Fornax dSph, based on WFPC2 imaging of 7 Fornax fields. Our observations reach the oldest main-sequence turnoffs, allowing us to address fundamental questions of dwarf galaxy evolution, such as the spatial variations in the stellar content, and whether the old stellar population is made up of stars formed in a very early burst or the result of a more continuous star formation.
    Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union 04/2010; 5(S262):353-354.
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    ABSTRACT: (Abridged) We use N-body simulations to study the effects that a divergent (i.e. "cuspy") dark matter (DM) profile introduces on the tidal evolution of dwarf spheroidal galaxies (dSphs). Our models assume cosmologically-motivated initial conditions where dSphs are DM-dominated systems on eccentric orbits about a host galaxy composed of a dark halo and a baryonic disc. We find that the resilience of dSphs to tidal stripping is extremely sensitive to the halo cuspiness; whereas dwarfs with a cored profile can be easily destroyed by the host disc, those with cusps always retain a bound remnant. For a given halo profile the evolution of the structural parameters as driven by tides is controlled solely by the total amount of mass lost. This information is used to construct a semi-analytic code that simulates the hierarchical build-up of spiral galaxies assuming different halo profiles and disc masses. We find that tidal encounters with discs tend to decrease the average mass of satellites at all galactocentric radii. Interestingly, satellites accreted before re-ionization (z>6), which may be singled out by anomalous metallicity patterns, survive only if haloes are cuspy. We show that the size-mass relation established from Milky Way (MW) dwarfs strongly supports the presence of cusps in the majority of these systems, as cored models systematically underestimate the masses of the known Ultra-Faint dSphs. Our models also indicate that a massive M31 disc may explain why many of its dSphs fall below the size-mass relationship derived from MW dSphs. We use our models to constrain the mass threshold below which star formation is suppressed in DM haloes, finding that luminous satellites must be accreted with masses above 10^8--10^9 M_sol in order to explain the size-mass relation observed in MW dwarfs. Comment: 17 pages, 14 figures, MNRAS accepted after minor revision
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 02/2010; · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    The Astrophysical Journal 02/2010; 710(1). · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    Jorge Penarrubia, Matthew G. Walker, Gerard Gilmore
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    ABSTRACT: We use N-body simulations to study the tidal evolution of globular clusters (GCs) in dwarf spheroidal (dSph) galaxies. Our models adopt a cosmologically motivated scenario in which the dSph is approximated by a static NFW halo with a triaxial shape. For a large set of orbits and projection angles we examine the spatial and velocity distribution of stellar debris deposited during the complete disruption of stellar clusters. Our simulations show that such debris appears as shells, isolated clumps and elongated over-densities at low surface brightness (>26 mag/arcsec^2), reminiscent of substructure observed in several MW dSphs. Such features arise from the triaxiality of the galaxy potential and do not dissolve in time. Stellar over-densities reported in several MW dSphs may thus be the telltale evidence of dark matter haloes being triaxial in shape. We explore a number of kinematic signatures that would help to validate (or falsify) this scenario. The mean angular momentum of the cluster debris associated with box and resonant orbits, which are absent in spherical potentials, is null. As a result, we show that the line-of-sight velocity distribution may exhibit a characteristic "double-peak" depending on the oriention of the viewing angle with respect to the progenitor's orbital plane. Kinematic surveys of dSphs may help to detect and identify substructures associated with the disruption of stellar clusters, as well as to address the shape of the dark matter haloes in which dSphs are embedded. Comment: 4 pages, 2 figures, to be published in the proceedings of "Hunting for the Dark: The Hidden Side of Galaxy Formation", Malta, 19-23 Oct. 2009, eds. V.P. Debattista & C.C. Popescu, AIP Conf. Ser., in press
    01/2010;
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    ABSTRACT: A signal from decaying dark matter (DM) can be unambiguously distinguished from spectral features of astrophysical or instrumental origin by studying its spatial distribution. We demonstrate this approach by examining the recent claim of 0912.0552 regarding the possible DM origin of the 2.5 keV line in Chandra observations of the Milky Way satellite known as Willman 1. Our conservative strategy is to adopt a relatively large dark mass for Willman 1 and relatively small dark masses for the comparison objects. We analyze archival observations by XMM-Newton of M31 and Fornax dwarf spheroidal galaxy (dSph) and Chandra observations of Sculptor dSph. By performing a conservative analysis of X-ray spectra, we show the absence of a DM decay line with parameters consistent with those of 0912.0552. For M31, the observations of the regions between 10 and 20 kpc from the center, where the uncertainties in the DM distribution are minimal, make a strong exclusion at the level above 10sigma. The minimal estimate for the amount of DM in the central 40 kpc of M31 is provided by the model of 0912.4133, assuming the stellar disk's mass to light ratio ~8 and almost constant DM density within a core of 28 kpc. Even in this case one gets an exclusion at 5.7sigma from central region of M31 whereas modeling all processed data from M31 and Fornax produces more than 14sigma exclusion. Therefore, despite possible systematic uncertainties, we exclude the possibility that the spectral feature at ~2.5 keV found in 0912.0552 is a DM decay line. We conclude, however, that the search for DM decay line, although demanding prolonged observations of well-studied dSphs, M31 outskirts and other similar objects, is rather promising, as the nature of a possible signal can be checked. An (expected) non-observation of a DM decay signal in the planned observations of Willman 1 should not discourage further dedicated observations. Comment: 16 pages, 8 figures; journal version; analysis of additional data from M31 outskirts and comments on arXiv:1001.4055 are added
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 01/2010; · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We apply the Jeans equation to estimate masses for eight of the brightest dwarf spheroidal (dSph) galaxies. For Fornax, the dSph with the largest kinematic data set, we obtain a model-independent constraint on the maximum circular velocity, V max = 20+4 –3 km s–1. Although we obtain only lower limits of V max 10 km s–1 for the remaining dSphs, we find that in all cases the enclosed mass at the projected half-light radius is well constrained and robust to a wide range of halo models and velocity anisotropies. We derive a simple analytic formula that estimates M(r half) accurately with respect to results from the full Jeans analysis. Applying this formula to the entire population of Local Group dSphs with published kinematic data, we demonstrate a correlation such that M(r half) r 1.4±0.4 half, or in terms of the mean density interior to the half-light radius, ρ r –1.6±0.4 half. This relation is driven by the fact that the dSph data exhibit a correlation between global velocity dispersion and half-light radius. We argue that tidal forces are unlikely to have introduced this relation, but tides may have increased the scatter and/or altered the slope. While the data are well described by mass profiles ranging over a factor of 2 in normalization (V max ~ 10-20 km s–1), we consider the hypothesis that all dSphs are embedded within a "universal" dark matter halo. We show that in addition to the power law M r 1.4, viable candidates include a cuspy "Navarro-Frenk-White" halo with V max ~ 15 km s–1 and scale radius r 0 ~ 800 pc, as well as a cored halo with V max ~ 13 km s–1 and r 0 ~ 150 pc. Finally, assuming that their measured velocity dispersions accurately reflect their masses, the smallest dSphs now allow us to resolve dSph densities at radii as small as a few tens of pc. At these small scales, we find mean densities as large as ρ 5 M ☉ pc–3 (200 GeV cm–3).
    The Astrophysical Journal 09/2009; 704(2):1274. · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: (abridged) We apply the Jeans equation to estimate masses for eight of the brightest dSph galaxies. For Fornax we obtain a model-independent constraint on the maximum-circular velocity, Vmax=18_{-3}^{+5} km/s. Although we obtain only lower-limits of Vmax > 10 km/s for the remaining dSphs, we find that in all cases the enclosed mass at the projected half-light radius is well constrained and robust to a wide range of halo models and velocity anisotropies. We derive a simple analytic formula that estimates M(rhalf) accurately with respect to results from the full Jeans analysis. Applying this formula to the entire population of Local Group dSphs, we demonstrate a correlation such that M(rhalf)\propto rhalf^{1.4\pm 0.4}, or in terms of the mean density interior to the half-light radius, \propto rhalf^{-1.6\pm 0.4}. This relation is driven by the fact that the dSph data exhibit a correlation between global velocity dispersion and half-light radius. We argue that tidal forces are unlikely to have introduced this relation, but tides may have increased the scatter and/or altered the slope. While the data are well described by mass profiles ranging over a factor of < 2 in normalization (Vmax ~ 10-20 km/s), we consider the hypothesis that all dSphs are embedded within a "universal" dark matter halo. We show that in addition to the power law M\propto r^{1.4}, viable candidates include a cuspy "NFW" halo with Vmax ~ 15 km/s and scale radius r_0 ~ 800 pc, as well as a cored halo with Vmax ~ 13 km/s and r_0 ~ 150 pc. Finally, assuming that their measured velocity dispersions accurately reflect their masses, the smallest dSphs now allow us to resolve dSph densities at radii as small as a few tens of pc. At these small scales we find mean densities as large as <\rho> ~ 5 Msun/pc^3 (200 GeV/cm^3). Comment: Replacement provides corrections to values of half-light radii adopted for eight classical dSphs, including revised tables and figures (conclusions are unchanged). Erratum submitted to ApJ and posted at http://www.ast.cam.ac.uk/~walker/erratum.pdf
    The Astrophysical Journal 06/2009; · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    Jorge Penarrubia, Matthew G. Walker, Gerard Gilmore
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    ABSTRACT: We use N-body simulations to study the tidal evolution of globular clusters (GCs) in dwarf spheroidal (dSph) galaxies. Our models adopt a cosmologically motivated scenario in which the dSph is approximated by a static NFW halo with a triaxial shape. We apply our models to five GCs spanning three orders of magnitude in stellar density and two in mass, chosen to represent the properties exhibited by the five GCs of the Fornax dSph. We show that only the object representing Fornax's least dense GC (F1) can be fully disrupted by Fornax's internal tidal field--the four denser clusters survive even if their orbits decay to the centre of Fornax. For a large set of orbits and projection angles we examine the spatial and velocity distribution of stellar debris deposited during the complete disruption of an F1-like GC. Our simulations show that such debris appears as shells, isolated clumps and elongated over-densities at low surface brightness (>26 mag/arcsec^2), reminiscent of substructure observed in several MW dSphs. Such features arise from the triaxiality of the galaxy potential and do not dissolve in time. The kinematics of the debris depends strongly on the progenitor's orbit. Debris associated with box and resonant orbits does not display stream motions and may appear "colder"/"hotter" than the dSph's field population if the viewing angle is perpendicular/parallel to progenitor's orbital plane. In contrast, debris associated with loop orbits shows a rotational velocity that may be detectable out to few kpc from the galaxy centre. Chemical tagging that can distinguish GC debris from field stars may reveal whether the merger of GCs contributed to the formation of multiple stellar components observed in dSphs. Comment: accepted by MNRAS, 22 pages
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 05/2009; · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Thanks to instrumental advances, new, very large kinematic data sets for nearby dwarf spheroidal (dSph) galaxies are on the horizon. A key aim of these data sets is to help determine the distribution of dark matter in these galaxies. Past analyses have generally relied on specific dynamical models or highly restrictive dynamical assumptions. We describe a new, nonparametric analysis of the kinematics of nearby dSph galaxies designed to take full advantage of the future large data sets. The method takes as input the projected positions and radial velocities of stars known to be members of the galaxies but does not use any parametric dynamical model or the assumption that the mass distribution follows that of the visible matter. The problem of estimating the radial mass distribution M(r) (the mass within the true radius r) is converted into a problem of estimating a regression function nonparametrically. From the Jeans equation we show that the unknown regression function is subject to fundamental shape restrictions, which we exploit in our analysis using statistical techniques borrowed from isotonic estimation and spline smoothing. Simulations indicate that M(r) can be estimated to within a factor of 2 or better with samples as small as 1000 stars over almost the entire radial range sampled by the kinematic data. The technique is applied to a sample of 181 stars in the Fornax dSph galaxy. We show that the galaxy contains a significant, extended dark halo some 10 times more massive than its baryonic component. Although applied here to dSph kinematics, this approach can be used in the analysis of any kinematically hot stellar system in which the radial velocity field is discretely sampled.
    The Astrophysical Journal 12/2008; 626(1):145. · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We describe results from a new ground-based monitoring campaign on NGC 5548, the best-studied reverberation-mapped AGN. We find that it was in the lowest luminosity state yet recorded during a monitoring program, namely L5100 = 4.7 × 1042 ergs s-1. We determine a rest-frame time lag between flux variations in the continuum and the Hβ line of 6.3 days. Combining our measurements with those of previous campaigns, we determine a weighted black hole mass of MBH = 6.54 × 107 M☉ based on all broad emission lines with suitable variability data. We confirm the previously discovered virial relationship between the time lag of emission lines relative to the continuum and the width of the emission lines in NGC 5548, which is the expected signature of a gravity-dominated broad-line region. Using this lowest luminosity state, we extend the range of the relationship between the luminosity and the time lag in NGC 5548 and measure a slope that is consistent with α = 0.5, the naive expectation for the broad-line region for an assumed form of r Lα. This value is also consistent with the slope recently determined by Bentz et al. for the population of reverberation-mapped AGNs as a whole.
    The Astrophysical Journal 12/2008; 662(1):205. · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present new observations leading to an improved black hole mass estimate for the Seyfert 1 galaxy NGC 4593 as part of a reverberation-mapping campaign conducted at the MDM Observatory. Cross-correlation analysis of the Hβ emission-line light curve with the optical continuum light curve reveals an emission-line time delay of τcent = 3.73 ± 0.75 days. By combining this time delay with the Hβ line width, we derive a central black hole mass of MBH = (9.8 ± 2.1) × 106 M☉, an improvement in precision of a factor of several over past results.
    The Astrophysical Journal 12/2008; 653(1):152. · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We have undertaken a new ground-based monitoring campaign to improve the estimates of the mass of the central black hole in NGC 4151. We measure the lag time of the broad Hβ line response compared to the optical continuum at 5100 Å and find a lag of 6.6 days. We combine our data with the recent reanalysis of UV emission lines by Metzroth and coworkers to calculate a weighted mean of the black hole mass, MBH = (4.57) × 107 M. The absolute calibration of the black hole mass is based on normalization of the AGN black hole mass-stellar velocity dispersion (MBH-σ*) relationship to that of quiescent galaxies by Onken and coworkers. The scatter in the MBH-σ* relationship suggests that reverberation-mapping-based mass measurements are typically uncertain by a factor of 3-4.
    The Astrophysical Journal 12/2008; 651(2):775. · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present multifiber echelle radial velocity results for 551 stars in the Sextans dwarf spheroidal galaxy and identify 294 stars as probable Sextans members. The projected velocity dispersion profile of the binned data remains flat to a maximum angular radius of 30'. We introduce a nonparametric technique for estimating the projected velocity dispersion surface and use this to search for kinematic substructure. Our data do not confirm previous reports of a kinematically distinct stellar population at the Sextans center. Instead we detect a region near the Sextans core radius that is kinematically colder than the overall Sextans sample with 95% confidence.
    The Astrophysical Journal 12/2008; 642(1):L41. · 6.73 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

834 Citations
200.75 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2011–2012
    • Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
      Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2008–2010
    • University of Cambridge
      • Institute of Astronomy
      Cambridge, England, United Kingdom
    • University of California, Irvine
      • Department of Physics and Astronomy
      Irvine, CA, United States
  • 2007–2008
    • University of Michigan
      • Department of Astronomy
      Ann Arbor, MI, United States