C. Maraston

University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth, England, United Kingdom

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Publications (100)278.67 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: MaNGA (Mapping Nearby Galaxies at Apache Point Observatory) is a SDSS-IV survey that will obtain spatially resolved spectroscopy from 3600 \AA\ to 10300 \AA\ for a representative sample of over 10000 nearby galaxies. In this paper we present the analysis of nebular emission line properties using observations of 14 galaxies obtained with P-MaNGA, a prototype of the MaNGA instrument. By using spatially resolved diagnostic diagrams we find extended star formation in galaxies that are centrally dominated by Seyfert/LINER-like emission, illustrating that galaxy characterisations based on single fibre spectra are necessarily incomplete. We observe extended (up to $\rm 1 R_{e}$) LINER-like emission in the central regions of three galaxies. We make use of the $\rm EW(H \alpha)$ to argue that the observed emission is consistent with ionisation from hot evolved stars. Using stellar population indices we conclude that galactic regions which are ionised by a Seyfert/LINER-like radiation field are also devoid of recent star formation, presenting older and/or more metal rich stellar populations. We find that low mass galaxies show a positive correlation between metallicity and star formation rate (SFR) surface density, as in less massive systems both metallicity and SFR are highest in galaxy centres. In more massive galaxies we observe a weakening of this correlation, because the central regions are devoid of recent star formation. We further study the relation between N/O vs O/H on resolved scales. We find that regions within individual galaxies, at given N/O, are spread towards lower metallicities, deviating from the sequence defined by galactic central regions, as traced by Sloan 3'' fibre spectra. We suggest that the observed dispersion can be interpreted as tracing gas flows in galaxies: infalls of pristine gas and/or the effect of a galactic fountain.
    10/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Over the past 18 months we have revisited the science requirements for a multi-object spectrograph (MOS) for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT). These efforts span the full range of E-ELT science and include input from a broad cross-section of astronomers across the ESO partner countries. In this contribution we summarise the key cases relating to studies of high-redshift galaxies, galaxy evolution, and stellar populations, with a more expansive presentation of a new case relating to detection of exoplanets in stellar clusters. A general requirement is the need for two observational modes to best exploit the large (>40 sq. arcmin) patrol field of the E-ELT. The first mode ('high multiplex') requires integrated-light (or coarsely resolved) optical/near-IR spectroscopy of >100 objects simultaneously. The second ('high definition'), enabled by wide-field adaptive optics, requires spatially-resolved, near-IR of >10 objects/sub-fields. Within the context of the conceptual study for an ELT-MOS called MOSAIC, we summarise the top-level requirements from each case and introduce the next steps in the design process.
    06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Galaxy masses play a fundamental role in our understanding of structure formation models. This review addresses the variety and reliability of mass estimators that pertain to stars, gas, and dark matter. The different sections on masses from stellar populations, dynamical masses of gas-rich and gas-poor galaxies, with some attention paid to our Milky Way, and masses from weak and strong lensing methods, all provide review material on galaxy masses in a self-consistent manner.
    09/2013; 86.
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    ABSTRACT: The Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) has been in operation since 2000 April. This paper presents the tenth public data release (DR10) from its current incarnation, SDSS-III. This data release includes the first spectroscopic data from the Apache Point Observatory Galaxy Evolution Experiment (APOGEE), along with spectroscopic data from the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) taken through 2012 July. The APOGEE instrument is a near-infrared R~22,500 300-fiber spectrograph covering 1.514--1.696 microns. The APOGEE survey is studying the chemical abundances and radial velocities of roughly 100,000 red giant star candidates in the bulge, bar, disk, and halo of the Milky Way. DR10 includes 178,397 spectra of 57,454 stars, each typically observed three or more times, from APOGEE. Derived quantities from these spectra (radial velocities, effective temperatures, surface gravities, and metallicities) are also included.DR10 also roughly doubles the number of BOSS spectra over those included in the ninth data release. DR10 includes a total of 1,507,954 BOSS spectra, comprising 927,844 galaxy spectra; 182,009 quasar spectra; and 159,327 stellar spectra, selected over 6373.2 square degrees.
    The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series 07/2013; 211(2). · 14.14 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Dark Energy Survey (DES) will be unprecedented in its ability to probe exceptionally large cosmic volumes to relatively faint optical limits. Primarily designed for the study of comparatively low redshift (z<2) galaxies with the aim of constraining dark energy, an intriguing byproduct of the survey will be the identification of massive (>10^(12.0) M_sun) galaxies at z>~4. This will greatly improve our understanding of how galaxies form and evolve. By both passively evolving the low redshift mass function and extrapolating the observed high redshift mass function, we find that such galaxies should be rare but nonetheless present at early times, with predicted number densities of ~0.02 deg^-2. The unique combination of depth and coverage that DES provides will allow the identification of such galaxies should they exist - potentially identifying hundreds of such sources. We then model possible high redshift galaxies and determine their detectability using the DES filter sets and depths. We model sources with a broad range stellar properties and find that for these galaxies to be detected they must be either sufficiently young, high mass and/or relatively dust free (E(B-V)<0.45) - with these parameters jointly affecting each galaxy's detectability. We also propose colour-colour selection criteria for the identification of both pristine and dusty sources and find that, although contamination fractions will be high, the most reliable candidate massive high redshift galaxies are likely to be identifiable in the DES data through prioritisation of colour-selected sources.
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 06/2013; · 5.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Galaxy And Mass Assembly (GAMA) survey is a multiwavelength photometric and spectroscopic survey, using the AAOmega spectrograph on the Anglo-Australian Telescope to obtain spectra for up to ~300000 galaxies over 280 square degrees, to a limiting magnitude of r_pet < 19.8 mag. The target galaxies are distributed over 0<z<0.5 with a median redshift of z~0.2, although the redshift distribution includes a small number of systems, primarily quasars, at higher redshifts, up to and beyond z=1. The redshift accuracy ranges from sigma_v~50km/s to sigma_v~100km/s depending on the signal-to-noise of the spectrum. Here we describe the GAMA spectroscopic reduction and analysis pipeline. We present the steps involved in taking the raw two-dimensional spectroscopic images through to flux-calibrated one-dimensional spectra. The resulting GAMA spectra cover an observed wavelength range of 3750<lambda<8850 A at a resolution of R~1300. The final flux calibration is typically accurate to 10-20%, although the reliability is worse at the extreme wavelength ends, and poorer in the blue than the red. We present details of the measurement of emission and absorption features in the GAMA spectra. These measurements are characterised through a variety of quality control analyses detailing the robustness and reliability of the measurements. We illustrate the quality of the measurements with a brief exploration of elementary emission line properties of the galaxies in the GAMA sample. We demonstrate the luminosity dependence of the Balmer decrement, consistent with previously published results, and explore further how Balmer decrement varies with galaxy mass and redshift. We also investigate the mass and redshift dependencies of the [NII]/Halpha vs [OIII]/Hbeta spectral diagnostic diagram, commonly used to discriminate between star forming and nuclear activity in galaxies.
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 01/2013; 430(3). · 5.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Distributed as an Instant Email Notice Supernovae Credential Certification: Masao Sako (masao@sas.upenn.edu) Subjects: Optical, Supernovae Referred to by ATel #: 4725, 4741, 4800, 4826 First SN Discoveries from the Dark Energy Survey The Dark Energy Survey (DES) report the discovery of the first set of supernovae (SN) from the project. Images were observed as part of the DES Science Verification phase using the newly-installed 570-Megapixel Dark Energy Camera on the CTIO Blanco 4-m telescope by observers J. Annis, E. Buckley-Geer, and H. Lin. SN observations are planned throughout the observing campaign on a regular cadence of 4-6 days in each of the ten 3-deg2 fields in the DES griz filters. The SN candidates are named according to the season and field in which they were discovered. We adopt the convention -- DES{season}{field}{index} -- where {season} is the year pertaining to the beginning of each observing season, {field} denotes one of the ten SN search fields (E1,E2,S1,S2,X1,X2,X3,C1,C2,C3) in Elais-S1 (E), Stripe 82 (S), XMM-LSS (X) and CDF-S (C), and {index} is one or more lower-case letters starting from a-z, then aa-az, and so on. The DES SN Survey strategy is described in Bernstein et al. (2012, ApJ, 753, 152). Spectroscopic classifications were performed by the OzDES collaboration from spectra (350-900 nm) obtained at the Anglo-Australian Telescope with AAOmega-2dF observed by C. Lidman, R. Sharp, and S. A. Uddin. Classifications were performed using Superfit (Howell et al 2002, BAAS, 34, 1256) or SNID (Blondin & Tonry, 2007, ApJ, 666, 1024). Redshifts measured from narrow galaxy lines are quoted to 3 significant figures. Those measured from broad SN features are quoted to 2 significant figures. SN phases are based on both the optical spectra and multi-band light curves at the time of the spectroscopic measurements. Name | RA(J2000) | Dec(J2000) | Discovery date (UT) | Discovery r mag| Spectrum date (UT) | redshift | type | phase DES12C1a | 03:38:54.5 | -27:32:28.2 | 2012 Dec 07 | 22.0 | 2012 Dec 13 | 0.303 | Ia | near max DES12C1b | 03:35:05.8 | -26:45:53.9 | 2012 Dec 07 | 20.9 | 2012 Dec 13 | 0.243 | Ia | near max DES12C2a | 03:41:13.1 | -28:59:37.9 | 2012 Dec 04 | 21.5 | 2012 Dec 14 | 0.21 | Ia | near max
    The Astronomer's Telegram. 12/2012;
  • pasp. 10/2012; 124:1135-1136.
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    ABSTRACT: We perform a spectroscopic analysis of 492,450 galaxy spectra from the first two years of observations of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey-III/Baryonic Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) collaboration. This data set has been released in the ninth SDSS data release, the first public data release of BOSS spectra. We show that the typical signal-to-noise ratio of BOSS spectra is sufficient to measure stellar velocity dispersion and emission line fluxes for individual objects. The typical velocity dispersion of a BOSS galaxy is 240 km/s, with an accuracy of better than 30 per cent for 93 per cent of BOSS galaxies. The distribution in velocity dispersion is redshift independent between redshifts 0.15 and 0.7, which reflects the survey design targeting massive galaxies with an approximately uniform mass distribution in this redshift interval. The majority of BOSS galaxies lack detectable emission lines. We analyse the emission line properties and present diagnostic diagrams using the emission lines [OII], Hβ, [OIII], Halpha, and [NII] (detected in about 4 per cent of the galaxies). We show that the emission line properties are strongly redshift dependent and that there is a clear correlation between observed frame colours and emission line properties. Within in the low-z sample around 0.15 < z < 0.3, half of the emission-line galaxies have LINER-like emission line ratios, followed by Seyfert-AGN dominated spectra, and only a small fraction of a few per cent are purely star forming galaxies. AGN and LINER-like objects, instead, are less prevalent in the high-z sample around 0.4 < z < 0.7, where more than half of the emission line objects are star forming. This is a pure selection effect caused by the non-detection of weak Hβ emission lines in the BOSS spectra. Finally, we show that star forming, AGN and emission line free galaxies are well separated in the g - r vs r - i target selection diagram.
    Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union 08/2012; 8(S295).
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    ABSTRACT: We perform a spectroscopic analysis of 492,450 galaxy spectra from the first two years of observations of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey-III/Baryonic Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) collaboration. This data set has been released in the ninth SDSS data release, the first public data release of BOSS spectra. We show that the typical signal-to-noise ratio of BOSS spectra is sufficient to measure stellar velocity dispersion and emission line fluxes for individual objects. The typical velocity dispersion of a BOSS galaxy is 240 km/s, with an accuracy of better than 30 per cent for 93 per cent of BOSS galaxies. The distribution in velocity dispersion is redshift independent between redshifts 0.15 and 0.7, which reflects the survey design targeting massive galaxies with an approximately uniform mass distribution in this redshift interval. The majority of BOSS galaxies lack detectable emission lines. We analyse the emission line properties and present diagnostic diagrams using the emission lines [OII], Hbeta, [OIII], Halpha, and [NII] (detected in about 4 per cent of the galaxies). We show that the emission line properties are strongly redshift dependent and that there is a clear correlation between observed frame colours and emission line properties. Within in the low-z sample around 0.15<z<0.3, half of the emission-line galaxies have LINER-like emission line ratios, followed by Seyfert-AGN dominated spectra, and only a small fraction of a few per cent are purely star forming galaxies. AGN and LINER-like objects, instead, are less prevalent in the high-z sample around 0.4<z<0.7, where more than half of the emission line objects are star forming. This is a pure selection effect caused by the non-detection of weak Hbeta emission lines in the BOSS spectra. Finally, we show that star forming, AGN and emission line free galaxies are well separated in the g-r vs r-i target selection diagram.
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 07/2012; 431(2). · 5.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present the Spitzer Extragalactic Representative Volume Survey (SERVS), an 18 square degrees medium-deep survey at 3.6 and 4.5 microns with the post-cryogenic Spitzer Space Telescope to ~2 microJy (AB=23.1) depth of five highly observed astronomical fields (ELAIS-N1, ELAIS-S1, Lockman Hole, Chandra Deep Field South and XMM-LSS). SERVS is designed to enable the study of galaxy evolution as a function of environment from z~5 to the present day, and is the first extragalactic survey both large enough and deep enough to put rare objects such as luminous quasars and galaxy clusters at z>1 into their cosmological context. SERVS is designed to overlap with several key surveys at optical, near- through far-infrared, submillimeter and radio wavelengths to provide an unprecedented view of the formation and evolution of massive galaxies. In this paper, we discuss the SERVS survey design, the data processing flow from image reduction and mosaicing to catalogs, as well as coverage of ancillary data from other surveys in the SERVS fields. We also highlight a variety of early science results from the survey.
    06/2012;
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    ABSTRACT: We study the morphology and size of the luminous and massive galaxies at 0.3<z<0.7 targeted in the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) using publicly available Hubble Space Telescope (HST) imaging, and catalogues, from the COSMic Origins Survey (COSMOS). Our sample (240 objects) provides a unique opportunity to check the visual morphology of these galaxies which were targeted based solely on stellar population modelling. (1 data file).
    VizieR Online Data Catalog. 06/2012;
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    ABSTRACT: We obtain constraints on cosmological parameters from the spherically averaged redshift-space correlation function of the CMASS Data Release 9 (DR9) sample of the Baryonic Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS). We combine this information with additional data from recent CMB, SN and BAO measurements. Our results show no significant evidence of deviations from the standard flat-Lambda CDM model, whose basic parameters can be specified by Omega_m = 0.285 +- 0.009, 100 Omega_b = 4.59 +- 0.09, n_s = 0.96 +- 0.009, H_0 = 69.4 +- 0.8 km/s/Mpc and sigma_8 = 0.80 +- 0.02. The CMB+CMASS combination sets tight constraints on the curvature of the Universe, with Omega_k = -0.0043 +- 0.0049, and the tensor-to-scalar amplitude ratio, for which we find r < 0.16 at the 95 per cent confidence level (CL). These data show a clear signature of a deviation from scale-invariance also in the presence of tensor modes, with n_s <1 at the 99.7 per cent CL. We derive constraints on the fraction of massive neutrinos of f_nu < 0.049 (95 per cent CL), implying a limit of sum m_nu < 0.51 eV. We find no signature of a deviation from a cosmological constant from the combination of all datasets, with a constraint of w_DE = -1.033 +- 0.073 when this parameter is assumed time-independent, and no evidence of a departure from this value when it is allowed to evolve as w_DE(a) = w_0 + w_a (1 - a). The achieved accuracy on our cosmological constraints is a clear demonstration of the constraining power of current cosmological observations.
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 03/2012; 425(1). · 5.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We explore the benefits of using a passively evolving population of galaxies to measure the evolution of the rate of structure growth between z=0.25 and z=0.65 by combining data from the SDSS-I/II and SDSS-III surveys. The large-scale linear bias of a population of dynamically passive galaxies, which we select from both surveys, is easily modeled. Knowing the bias evolution breaks degeneracies inherent to other methodologies, and decreases the uncertainty in measurements of the rate of structure growth and the normalization of the galaxy power-spectrum by up to a factor of two. If we translate our measurements into a constraint on sigma_8(z=0) assuming a concordance cosmological model and General Relativity (GR), we find that using a bias model improves our uncertainty by a factor of nearly 1.5. Our results are consistent with a flat Lambda Cold Dark Matter model and with GR.
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 03/2012; 424(3). · 5.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: SDSS-III/BOSS will take spectra of about 1.5 million massive galaxies up to redshift 0.7, providing a rich data set for galaxy evolution studies. In this talk I present the results from the spectroscopic analysis of 500, 000 galaxy spectra from the first two years of observations. We show that the typical signal-to-noise ratio of BOSS spectra is sufficient to make measurements of stellar velocity dispersion and emission line fluxes. The typical velocity dispersion of a BOSS galaxy is 250 km/s independent of redshift, which reflects the survey design targeting massive galaxies with a uniform mass distribution at all redshifts. As expected, the majority of BOSS galaxies are emission line free, and the fraction of galaxies with a significant detection of weak emission lines is small (about 5 per cent). We show that galaxies at z > 0.4 whose emission lines are produced by star formation activity have blue observed g-r colours and are well separated in the target selection colour-colour space. From stacked spectra we derive chemical element abundance ratios of BOSS galaxies up to z 0.7 through the comparison of measured absorption line indices with stellar population model predictions, and discuss their evolution with redshift. The Science, Technology and Facilities Council (UK) is acknowledged for support.
    01/2012;
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    ABSTRACT: We present Hubble Space Telescope and simultaneous Swift X-ray telescope observations of the strongest candidate intermediate mass black hole ESO 243-49 HLX-1. Fitting the spectral energy distribution from X-ray to near-infrared wavelengths showed that the broadband spectrum is not consistent with simple and irradiated disc models, but is well described by a model comprised of an irradiated accretion disc plus a stellar population with a mass ~1E6 Msun. The age of the population cannot be uniquely constrained, with both very young and very old stellar populations allowed. However, the very old solution requires excessively high levels of disc reprocessing and an extremely small disc, leading us to favour the young solution with an age of ~13 Myr. In addition, the presence of dust lanes and the lack of any nuclear activity from X-ray observations of the host galaxy lead us to propose that a gas-rich minor merger may have taken place less than ~200 Myr ago. Such a merger event would explain the presence of the intermediate mass black hole and support a young stellar population.
    The Astrophysical Journal Letters 10/2011; 747(1). · 5.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Ultra Steep Spectrum (USS) radio sources have been successfully used to select powerful radio sources at high redshifts (z>~2). Typically restricted to large-sky surveys and relatively bright radio flux densities, it has gradually become possible to extend the USS search to sub-mJy levels, thanks to the recent appearance of sensitive low-frequency radio facilities. Here a first detailed analysis of the nature of the faintest USS sources is presented. By using Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope and Very Large Array radio observations of the Lockman Hole at 610 MHz and 1.4 GHz, a sample of 58 USS sources, with 610 MHz integrated fluxes above 100 microJy, is assembled. Deep infrared data at 3.6 and 4.5 micron from the Spitzer Extragalactic Representative Volume Survey (SERVS) is used to reliably identify counterparts for 48 (83%) of these sources, showing an average total magnitude of [3.6](AB)=19.8 mag. Spectroscopic redshifts for 14 USS sources, together with photometric redshift estimates, improved by the use of the deep SERVS data, for a further 19 objects, show redshifts ranging from z=0.1 to z=2.8, peaking at z~0.6 and tailing off at high redshifts. The remaining 25 USS sources, with no redshift estimate, include the faintest [3.6] magnitudes, with 10 sources undetected at 3.6 and 4.5 micron (typically [3.6]>22-23 mag, from local measurements), which suggests the likely existence of higher redshifts among the sub-mJy USS population. The comparison with the Square Kilometre Array Design Studies Simulated Skies models indicate that Fanaroff-Riley type I radio sources and radio-quiet Active Galactic Nuclei may constitute the bulk of the faintest USS population, and raises the possibility that the high efficiency of the USS technique for the selection of high redshift sources remains even at the sub-mJy level.
    The Astrophysical Journal 08/2011; 743. · 6.28 Impact Factor
  • apjs. 08/2011; 195:26.
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    ABSTRACT: Infrared-faint radio sources (IFRSs) are a rare class of objects which are relatively bright at radio wavelengths but very faint at infrared and optical wavelengths. Here we present sensitive near-infrared observations of a sample of these sources taken as part of the Spitzer Extragalactic Representative Volume Survey. Nearly all the IFRSs are undetected at a level of ~1 μJy in these new deep observations, and even the detections are consistent with confusion with unrelated galaxies. A stacked image implies that the median flux density is S 3.6 μm ~ 0.2 μJy or less, giving extreme values of the radio-infrared flux density ratio. Comparison of these objects with known classes of object suggests that the majority are probably high-redshift radio-loud galaxies, possibly suffering from significant dust extinction.
    The Astrophysical Journal 07/2011; 736(1):55. · 6.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We address the fundamental question of matching the rest-frame K-band luminosity function (LF) of galaxies over the Hubble time using semi-analytic models after modification of the stellar population modelling. We include the Maraston evolutionary synthesis models, which feature a higher contribution by the thermally pulsating asymptotic giant branch (TP-AGB) stellar phase, into three different semi-analytic models, namely the De Lucia and Blaizot version of the Munich model, morgana and the Menci model. We leave all other input physics and parameters unchanged. We find that the modification of the stellar population emission can solve the mismatch between models and the observed rest-frame K-band luminosity from the brightest galaxies derived from UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey data at high redshift. For all explored semi-analytic models, this holds at the redshifts – between 2 and 3 – where the discrepancy was recently pointed out. The reason for the success is that at these cosmic epochs the model galaxies have the right age (∼1 Gyr) to contain a well-developed TP-AGB phase, which makes them redder without the need of changing their mass or age. We have also computed a version of the Munich model using the Charlot and Bruzual models that adopt the Marigo TP-AGB prescription and find the same result as that with the Maraston models. At the same time, the known overestimation of the faint end is enhanced in the K band when including the TP-AGB contribution. At lower redshifts (z < 2) some of the explored models deviate from the data. This is due to short merging time-scales and inefficient ‘radio-mode’ active galactic nucleus feedback. Our results show that a strong evolution in mass predicted by hierarchical models is compatible with no evolution on the bright end of the K-band LF from z= 3 to the local universe. This means that, at high redshifts and contrary to what is commonly accepted, K-band emission is not necessarily a good tracer of galaxy mass.
    Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 06/2011; 415(4):3571 - 3579. · 5.52 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

3k Citations
278.67 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2002–2013
    • University of Portsmouth
      • Institute of Cosmology and Gravitation ICG
      Portsmouth, England, United Kingdom
  • 2011
    • Institut de Radioastronomie Millimétrique
      Grenoble, Rhône-Alpes, France
    • University of Colorado at Boulder
      • Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences
      Boulder, Colorado, United States
  • 2009
    • Yale University
      • Department of Physics
      New Haven, CT, United States
  • 2005–2008
    • University of Oxford
      • Department of Physics
      Oxford, England, United Kingdom
  • 2003–2006
    • Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics
      Arching, Bavaria, Germany
  • 1998
    • University of Bologna
      Bolonia, Emilia-Romagna, Italy