Radial Distribution of Stars, Gas, and Dust in Sings Galaxies. II. Derived Dust Properties

The Astrophysical Journal (Impact Factor: 5.99). 08/2009; 701(2):1965. DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/701/2/1965
Source: arXiv


We present a detailed analysis of the radial distribution of dust properties in the SINGS sample, performed on a set of ultraviolet (UV), infrared (IR), and H I surface brightness profiles, combined with published molecular gas profiles and metallicity gradients. The internal extinction, derived from the total-IR (TIR)-to-far-UV (FUV) luminosity ratio, decreases with radius, and is larger in Sb-Sbc galaxies. The TIR-to-FUV ratio correlates with the UV spectral slope β, following a sequence shifted to redder UV colors with respect to that of starbursts. The star formation history (SFH) is identified as the main driver of this departure. Both L TIR/L FUV and β correlate well with metallicity, especially in moderately face-on galaxies. The relation shifts to redder colors with increased scatter in more edge-on objects. By applying physical dust models to our radial spectral energy distributions, we have derived radial profiles of the total dust mass surface density, the fraction of the total dust mass contributed by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and the intensity of the radiation field heating the grains. The dust profiles are exponential, their radial scale length being constant from Sb to Sd galaxies (only ~10% larger than the stellar scale length). Many S0/a-Sab galaxies have central depressions in their dust radial distributions. The PAH abundance increases with metallicity for 12 + log(O/H) < 9, and at larger metallicities the trend flattens and even reverses, with the SFH being a plausible underlying driver for this behavior. The dust-to-gas ratio is also well correlated with metallicity and therefore decreases with galactocentric radius. Although most of the total emitted IR power (especially in the outer regions of disks) is contributed by dust grains heated by diffuse starlight with a similar intensity as the local Milky Way radiation field, a small amount of the dust mass (~1%) is required to be exposed to very intense starlight in order to reproduce the observed fluxes at 24 μm, accounting for ~10% of the total integrated IR power.

Download full-text


Available from: Michele D. Thornley, Apr 08, 2014
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We present ultraviolet through far-infrared (FIR) surface brightness profiles for the 75 galaxies in the Spitzer Infrared Nearby Galaxies Survey (SINGS). The imagery used to measure the profiles includes Galaxy Evolution Explorer UV data, optical images from Kitt Peak National Observatory, Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, and Sloan Digital Sky Survey, near-IR data from Two Micron All Sky Survey, and mid- and FIR images from Spitzer. Along with the radial profiles, we also provide multi-wavelength asymptotic magnitudes and several nonparametric indicators of galaxy morphology: the concentration index (C 42), the asymmetry (A), the Gini coefficient (G), and the normalized second-order moment of the brightest 20% of the galaxy's flux (). In this paper, the first of a series, we describe the technical aspects regarding the surface photometry, and present a basic analysis of the global and structural properties of the SINGS galaxies at different wavelengths. The homogeneity in the acquisition, reduction, and analysis of the results presented here makes these data ideal for multiple unanticipated studies on the radial distribution of the properties of stars, dust, and gas in galaxies. Our radial profiles show a wide range of morphologies and multiple components (bulges, exponential disks, inner and outer disk truncations, etc.) that vary not only from galaxy to galaxy but also with wavelength for a given object. In the optical and near-IR, the SINGS galaxies occupy the same regions in the C 42-A-G- parameter space as other normal galaxies in previous studies. However, they appear much less centrally concentrated, more asymmetric, and with larger values of G when viewed in the UV (due to star-forming clumps scattered across the disk) and in the mid-IR (due to the emission of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons at 8.0 μm and very hot dust at 24 μm). In an accompanying paper by Muñoz-Mateos et al., we focus on the radial distribution of dust properties in the SINGS galaxies, providing a detailed analysis of the radial variation of the attenuation, the dust column density, the dust-to-gas ratio, the abundance of PAHs, and the intensity of the heating starlight.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2009 · The Astrophysical Journal
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The Tully-Fisher relation of spiral galaxies shows notable dependence on morphological types, with earlier type spirals having systematically lower luminosity at fixed maximum rotation velocity V max. This decrement of luminosity is more significant in shorter wavelengths. By modeling the rotation curve and stellar population of different morphological-type spiral galaxies in combination, we find that the V max of spiral galaxies is weakly dependent on the morphological type, whereas the difference of the stellar population originating from the bulge-disk composition effect mainly account for the morphological type dependence of the Tully-Fisher relation.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2009 · The Astrophysical Journal
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Compared to starburst galaxies, normal star-forming galaxies have been shown to display a much larger dispersion of the dust attenuation at fixed reddening through studies of the IRX-β diagram (the IR/UV ratio "IRX" versus the UV color "β"). To investigate the causes of this larger dispersion and attempt to isolate second parameters, we have used GALEX UV, ground-based optical, and Spitzer infrared imaging of eight nearby galaxies, and examined the properties of individual UV and 24 μm selected star-forming regions. We concentrated on star-forming regions, in order to isolate simpler star formation histories than those that characterize whole galaxies. We find that (1) the dispersion is not correlated with the mean age of the stellar populations; (2) a range of dust geometries and dust extinction curves are the most likely causes for the observed dispersion in the IRX-β diagram, (3) together with some potential dilution of the most recent star-forming population by older unrelated bursts, at least in the case of star-forming regions within galaxies; and (4) we also recover some general characteristics of the regions, including a tight positive correlation between the amount of dust attenuation and the metal content. Although generalizing our results to whole galaxies may not be immediate, the possibility of a range of dust extinction laws and geometries should be accounted for in the latter systems as well.
    Preview · Article · Nov 2009 · The Astrophysical Journal
Show more