John P. Blakeslee

National Research Council Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

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Publications (298)1127.01 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: We explore the environmental dependence of star formation timescales in low mass galaxies using the [$\alpha$/Fe] abundance ratio as an evolutionary clock. We present integrated [$\alpha$/Fe] measurements for 11 low mass ($M_\star \sim 10^9~M_\odot$) early-type galaxies (ETGs) with a large range of cluster-centric distance in the Virgo Cluster. We find a gradient in [$\alpha$/Fe], where the galaxies closest to the cluster center (the cD galaxy, M87) have the highest values. This trend is driven by galaxies within a projected radius of 0.4~Mpc (0.26 times the virial radius of Virgo~A), all of which have super-solar [$\alpha$/Fe]. Galaxies in this mass range exhibit a large scatter in the [$\alpha$/Fe]--$\sigma$ diagram, and do not obviously lie on an extension of the relation defined by massive ETGs. In addition, we find a correlation between [$\alpha$/Fe] and globular cluster specific frequency ($S_N$), suggesting that low-mass ETGs that formed their stars over a short period of time, were also efficient at forming massive star clusters. The innermost low-mass ETGs in our sample have [$\alpha$/Fe] values comparable to that of M87, implying that environment is the controlling factor for star formation timescales in dense regions. These low-mass galaxies could be the surviving counterparts of the objects that have already been accreted into the halo of M87, and may be the link between present-day low-mass galaxies and the old, metal-poor, high-[$\alpha$/Fe], high-$S_N$ stellar populations seen in the outer halos of massive ETGs.
    Preview · Article · Dec 2015
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    ABSTRACT: We present new deep photometry of the globular cluster system (GCS) around NGC 6166, the central supergiant galaxy in Abell 2199. HST data from the ACS and WFC3 cameras in F475W, F814W are used to determine the spatial distribution of the GCS, its metallicity distribution function (MDF), and the dependence of the MDF on galactocentric radius and on GC luminosity. The MDF is extremely broad, with the classic red and blue subpopulations heavily overlapped, but a double-Gaussian model can still formally match the MDF closely. The spatial distribution follows a Sersic-like profile detectably to a projected radius of at least $R_{gc} = 250$ kpc. To that radius, the total number of clusters in the system is N_{GC} = 39000 +- 2000, the global specific frequency is S_N = 11.2 +- 0.6, and 57\% of the total are blue, metal-poor clusters. The GCS may fade smoothly into the Intra-Cluster Medium of A2199; we see no clear transition from the core of the galaxy to the cD halo or the ICM. The radial distribution, projected ellipticity, and mean metallicity of the red (metal-richer) clusters match the halo light extremely well for R > 15 kpc, both of them varying as \sigma_{MRGC} ~ \sigma_{light} ~ R^-1.8. By comparison, the blue (metal-poor) GC component has a much shallower falloff \sigma_{MPGC} ~ R^-1.0 and a more nearly spherical distribution. This strong difference in their density distributions produces a net metallicity gradient in the GCS as a whole that is primarily generated by the population gradient. With NGC 6166 we appear to be penetrating into a regime of high enough galaxy mass and rich enough environment that the bimodal two-phase description of GC formation is no longer as clear or effective as it has been in smaller galaxies.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2015 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: We present catalogs of globular cluster (GC) candidates for 43 galaxies from the ACS Fornax Cluster survey, a program designed to carry out imaging of early-type members of the Fornax cluster using the Advanded Camera for Surveys (ACS) on board the Hubble Space Telescope. The procedure to select bona fide GC candidates from the full list of detections is based on model-based clustering methods, similar to those adopted for a survey of 100 galaxies in the Virgo cluster, the ACS Virgo Cluster Survey. For each detected source, we measure its position, magnitudes in the F475W (≈Sloan g) and F850LP (≈Sloan z) bandpasses, half-light radii obtained by fitting point-spread function-convolved King models to the observed light distribution, and an estimate of the probabilty that each cataloged source is a GC. These measurements are presented for 9136 sources, of which 6275 have , and are thus likely GCs. © 2015. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2015 · The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series
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    ABSTRACT: In this work we present CO(1-0) and CO(2-1) observations of a pilot sample of 15 early-type galaxies (ETGs) drawn from the MASSIVE galaxy survey, a volume-limited integral-field spectroscopic study of the most massive ETGs ($M_* >10^{11.5}M_\odot$) within 108 Mpc. These objects were selected because they showed signs of an interstellar medium and/or star formation. A large amount of gas ($>$2$\times$10$^8$ M$_{\odot}$) is present in 10 out of 15 objects, and these galaxies have gas fractions higher than expected based on extrapolation from lower mass samples. We tentatively interpret this as evidence that stellar mass loss and hot halo cooling may be starting to play a role in fuelling the most massive galaxies. These MASSIVE ETGs seem to have lower star-formation efficiencies (SFE=SFR/M$_{\rm H2}$) than spiral galaxies, but the SFEs derived are consistent with being drawn from the same distribution found in other lower mass ETG samples. This suggests that the SFE is not simply a function of stellar mass, but that local, internal processes are more important for regulating star formation. Finally we used the CO line profiles to investigate the high-mass end of the Tully-Fisher relation (TFR). We find that there is a break in the slope of the TFR for ETGs at high masses (consistent with previous studies). The strength of this break correlates with the stellar velocity dispersion of the host galaxies, suggesting it is caused by additional baryonic mass being present in the centre of massive ETGs. We speculate on the root cause of this change and its implications for galaxy formation theories.
    Preview · Article · Oct 2015 · Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
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    ABSTRACT: We use imaging from the Next Generation Virgo cluster Survey (NGVS) to present a comparative study of ultra-compact dwarf (UCD) galaxies associated with three prominent Virgo sub-clusters: those centered on the massive, red-sequence galaxies M87, M49 and M60. We show how UCDs can be selected with high completeness using a combination of half-light radius and location in color-color diagrams ($u^*iK_s$ or $u^*gz$). Although the central galaxies in each of these sub-clusters have nearly identical luminosities and stellar masses, we find large differences in the sizes of their UCD populations, with M87 containing ~3.5 and 7.8 times more UCDs than M49 and M60, respectively. The relative abundance of UCDs in the three regions scales in proportion to sub-cluster mass, as traced by X-ray gas mass, total gravitating mass, number of globular clusters, and number of nearby galaxies. We find that the UCDs are predominantly blue in color, with ~85% of the UCDs having colors similar to blue GCs and stellar nuclei of dwarf galaxies. We present evidence that UCDs surrounding M87 and M49 may follow a morphological sequence ordered by the prominence of their outer, low surface brightness envelope, ultimately merging with the sequence of nucleated low-mass galaxies, and that envelope prominence correlates with distance from either galaxy. Our analysis provides evidence that tidal stripping of nucleated galaxies is an important process in the formation of UCDs.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2015 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: We present a kinematic analysis of the globular cluster systems and diffuse stellar light of four intermediate luminosity (sub-$L^{\ast}$) early-type galaxies in the Virgo cluster based on Gemini/GMOS data. Our galaxy sample is fainter ($-23.8<M_K<-22.7$) than most previous studies, nearly doubling the number of galaxies in this magnitude range that now have GC kinematics. The data for the diffuse light extends to $4R_e$, and the data for the globular clusters reaches 8--$12R_e$. We find that the kinematics in these outer regions are all different despite the fact that these four galaxies have similar photometric properties, and are uniformly classified as "fast rotators" from their stellar kinematics within $1R_e$. The globular cluster systems exhibit a wide range of kinematic morphology. The rotation axis and amplitude can change between the inner and outer regions, including a case of counter-rotation. This difference shows the importance of wide-field kinematic studies, and shows that stellar and GC kinematics can change significantly as one moves beyond the inner regions of galaxies. Moreover, the kinematics of the globular cluster systems can differ from that of the stars, suggesting that the formation of the two populations are also distinct.
    Full-text · Article · May 2015 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: We present new calibrations of the near-infrared surface brightness fluctuation (SBF) distance method for the F110W (J) and F160W (H) bandpasses of the Wide Field Camera 3 Infrared Channel (WFC3/IR) on the Hubble Space Telescope. The calibrations are based on data for 16 early-type galaxies in the Virgo and Fornax clusters observed with WFC3/IR and are provided as functions of both the optical (g-z) and near-infrared (J-H) colors. The scatter about the linear calibration relations for the luminous red galaxies in the sample is approximately 0.10 mag, or 5% in distance. Our results imply that the distance to any suitably bright elliptical galaxy can be measured with this precision out to about 80 Mpc in a single-orbit observation with WFC3/IR, making this a remarkably powerful instrument for extragalactic distances. The calibration sample also includes much bluer and lower-luminosity galaxies than previously used for IR SBF studies, revealing interesting population differences that cause the calibration scatter to increase for dwarf galaxies.
    Full-text · Article · May 2015 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: We use our Galactic Globular Cluster Catalog (G2C2) photometry for 111 Galactic globular clusters (GC) in g and z, as well as r and i photometry for a subset of 60 GCs and u photometry for 22 GCs, to determine the structural parameters assuming King (1962) models. In general, the resulting core radii are in good comparison with the current literature values. However, our half-light radii are slightly lower than the literature. The concentrations (and therefore also the tidal radii) are poorly constrained mostly because of the limited radial extent of our imaging. Therefore, we extensively discuss the effects of a limited field-of-view on the derived parameters using mosaicked SDSS data, which do not suffer from this restriction. We also illustrate how red giant branch (RGB) stars in cluster cores can stochastically induce artificial peaks in the surface brightness profiles. The issues related to these bright stars are scrutinised based on both our photometry and simulated clusters. We also examine colour gradients and find that the strongest central colour gradients are caused by central RGB stars and thus not representative for the cluster light or colour distribution. We recover the known relation between the half-light radius and the Galactocentric distance in the g-band, but find a lower slope for redder filters. We did not find a correlation between the scatter on this relation and other cluster properties. We find tentative evidence for a correlation between the half-light radii and the [Fe/H], with metal-poor GCs being larger than metal-rich GCs. However, we conclude that this trend is caused by the position of the clusters in the Galaxy, with metal-rich clusters being more centrally located.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2015 · Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
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    ABSTRACT: We present Gemini GMOS-IFU data of eight compact low-mass early-type galaxies (ETGs) in the Virgo cluster. We analyse their stellar kinematics, stellar population, and present two-dimensional maps of these properties covering the central 5"x 7" region. We find a large variety of kinematics: from non- to highly-rotating objects, often associated with underlying disky isophotes revealed by deep images from the Next Generation Virgo Cluster Survey. In half of our objects, we find a centrally-concentrated younger and more metal-rich stellar population. We analyze the specific stellar angular momentum through the lambdaR parameter and find six fast-rotators and two slow-rotators, one having a thin counter-rotating disk. We compare the local galaxy density and stellar populations of our objects with those of 39 more extended low-mass Virgo ETGs from the SMAKCED survey and 260 massive ($M>10^{10}$\Msun) ETGs from the A3D sample. The compact low-mass ETGs in our sample are located in high density regions, often close to a massive galaxy and have, on average, older and more metal-rich stellar populations than less compact low-mass galaxies. We find that the stellar population parameters follow lines of constant velocity dispersion in the mass-size plane, smoothly extending the comparable trends found for massive ETGs. Our study supports a scenario where low-mass compact ETGs have experienced long-lived interactions with their environment, including ram-pressure stripping and gravitational tidal forces, that may be responsible for their compact nature.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2015 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: We examine stellar population gradients in ~100 massive early type galaxies spanning 180 < sigma* < 370 km/s and M_K of -22.5 to -26.5 mag, observed as part of the MASSIVE survey (Ma et al. 2014). Using integral-field spectroscopy from the Mitchell Spectrograph on the 2.7m telescope at McDonald Observatory, we create stacked spectra as a function of radius for galaxies binned by their stellar velocity dispersion, stellar mass, and group richness. With excellent sampling at the highest stellar mass, we examine radial trends in stellar population properties extending to beyond twice the effective radius (~2.5 R_e). We examine radial trends in age, metallicity, and in the abundance ratios of Mg, C, N, and Ca, and discuss the implications for star formation histories and elemental yields. When weighted to a fixed physical radius of 3-6 kpc (the likely size of the galaxy cores formed at high redshift) stellar age and [Mg/Fe] increase with increasing sigma* and depend only weakly on stellar mass, as we might expect if denser galaxies form their central cores earlier and faster. If we instead focus on trends weighted towards R_e, the trends in abundance and abundance ratio weaken, as might be expected if the stars at large radius were accreted by smaller galaxies. Finally, we show that when controlling for sigma*, there are only very subtle differences in stellar population properties or gradients as a function of group richness; even at large radius internal properties matter more than environment in determining star formation history.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2015 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: The origin of ultra-compact dwarfs (UCDs)--objects larger and more massive than typical globular clusters (GCs), but more compact than typical dwarf galaxies--has been hotly debated in the 15 years since their discovery. Even whether UCDs should be considered galactic in origin, or simply the most extreme GCs, is not yet settled. We present the dynamical properties of 97 spectroscopically confirmed UCDs (rh >~10 pc) and 911 GCs associated with central cD galaxy of the Virgo cluster, M87. Our UCDs, of which 89% have M_star > ~2X10^6 M_sun and 92% are as blue as the classic blue GCs, nearly triple the sample of previous confirmed Virgo UCDs, providing by far the best opportunity for studying the global dynamics of a UCD system. We found that (1) UCDs have a surface number density profile that is shallower than that of the blue GCs in the inner ~ 70 kpc and as steep as that of the red GCs at larger radii; (2) UCDs exhibit a significantly stronger rotation than the GCs, and the blue GCs seem to have a velocity field that is more consistent with that of the surrounding dwarf ellipticals than with that of UCDs; (3) UCDs have a radially increasing orbital anisotropy profile, and are tangentially-biased at radii < ~ 40 kpc and radially-biased further out. In contrast, the blue GCs become more tangentially-biased at larger radii beyond ~ 40 kpc; (4) GCs with M_star > 2X10^6 M_sun have rotational properties indistinguishable from the less massive ones, suggesting that it is the size, instead of mass, that differentiates UCDs from GCs as kinematically distinct populations. We conclude that most UCDs in M87 are not consistent with being merely the most luminous and extended examples of otherwise normal GCs. The radially-biased orbital structure of UCDs at large radii is in general agreement with the "tidally threshed dwarf galaxy" scenario.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2015 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: Using Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Advanced Camera for Surveys/Wide Field Camera data we present the photometry and spatial distribution of resolved stellar populations in the outskirts of NGC 2915, a blue compact dwarf with an extended H i disc. These observations reveal an elliptical distribution of red giant branch stars, and a clumpy distribution of main-sequence stars that correlate with the H i gas distribution. We constrain the upper-end initial mass function (IMF) and determine the star formation law (SFL) in this field, using the observed main-sequence stars and an assumed constant star formation rate. Previously published Hα observations of the field, which show one faint H ii region, are used to provide further constraints on the IMF. We find that the main-sequence luminosity function analysis alone results in a best-fitting IMF with a power-law slope α = −2.85 and upper-mass limit $\rm M_u = 60\,\mathrm{M}_{\odot }$. However, if we assume that all Hα emission is confined to H ii regions then the upper-mass limit is restricted to $\rm M_u \lesssim 20\, \mathrm{M}_{\odot }$. For the luminosity function fit to be correct, we have to discount the Hα observations implying significant diffuse ionized gas or escaping ionizing photons. Combining the HST photometry with H i imaging, we find the SFL has a power-law index N = 1.53 ± 0.21. Applying these results to the entire outer H i disc indicates that it contributes 11–28 per cent of the total recent star formation in NGC 2915, depending on whether the IMF is constant within the disc or varies from the centre to the outer region.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2014 · Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
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    ABSTRACT: We present the first results from our HST Brightest Cluster Galaxy (BCG) survey of seven central supergiant cluster galaxies and their globular cluster (GC) systems. We measure a total of 48000 GCs in all seven galaxies, representing the largest single GC database. We find that a log-normal shape accurately matches the observed luminosity function (LF) of the GCs down to the GCLF turnover point, which is near our photometric limit. In addition, the LF has a virtually identical shape in all seven galaxies. Our data underscore the similarity in the formation mechanism of massive star clusters in diverse galactic environments. At the highest luminosities (log L > 10^7 L_Sun) we find small numbers of "superluminous" objects in five of the galaxies; their luminosity and color ranges are at least partly consistent with those of UCDs (Ultra-Compact Dwarfs). Lastly, we find preliminary evidence that in the outer halo (R > 20 kpc), the LF turnover point shows a weak dependence on projected distance, scaling as L_0 ~ R^-0.2, while the LF dispersion remains nearly constant.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2014 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: We analyzed the Einstein radius, $\theta_E$, in our sample of SL2S galaxy groups, and compared it with $R_A$ (the distance from the arcs to the center of the lens), using three different approaches: 1.- the velocity dispersion obtained from weak lensing assuming a Singular Isothermal Sphere profile ($\theta_{E,I}$), 2.- a strong lensing analytical method ($\theta_{E,II}$) combined with a velocity dispersion-concentration relation derived from numerical simulations designed to mimic our group sample, 3.- strong lensing modeling ($\theta_{E,III}$) of eleven groups (with four new models presented in this work) using HST and CFHT images. Finally, $R_A$ was analyzed as a function of redshift $z$ to investigate possible correlations with L, N, and the richness-to-luminosity ratio (N/L). We found a correlation between $\theta_{E}$ and $R_A$, but with large scatter. We estimate $\theta_{E,I}$ = (2.2 $\pm$ 0.9) + (0.7 $\pm$ 0.2)$R_A$, $\theta_{E,II}$ = (0.4 $\pm$ 1.5) + (1.1 $\pm$ 0.4)$R_A$, and $\theta_{E,III}$ = (0.4 $\pm$ 1.5) + (0.9 $\pm$ 0.3)$R_A$ for each method respectively. We found a weak evidence of anti-correlation between $R_A$ and $z$, with Log$R_A$ = (0.58$\pm$0.06) - (0.04$\pm$0.1)$z$, suggesting a possible evolution of the Einstein radius with $z$, as reported previously by other authors. Our results also show that $R_A$ is correlated with L and N (more luminous and richer groups have greater $R_A$), and a possible correlation between $R_A$ and the N/L ratio. Our analysis indicates that $R_A$ is correlated with $\theta_E$ in our sample, making $R_A$ useful to characterize properties like L and N (and possible N/L) in galaxy groups. Additionally, we present evidence suggesting that the Einstein radius evolves with $z$.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2014 · Astronomy and Astrophysics
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    ABSTRACT: We report on a large-scale study of the distribution of globular clusters (GCs) throughout the Virgo cluster, based on photometry from the Next Generation Virgo Cluster Survey, a large imaging survey covering Virgo's primary subclusters to their virial radii. Using the g', (g'-i') color-magnitude diagram of unresolved and marginally-resolved sources, we constructed 2-D maps of the GC distribution. We present the clearest evidence to date showing the difference in concentration between red and blue GCs over the extent of the cluster, where the red (metal-rich) GCs are largely located around the massive early-type galaxies, whilst the blue (metal-poor) GCs have a more extended spatial distribution, with significant populations present beyond 83' (215 kpc) along the major axes of M49 and M87. The GC distribution around M87 and M49 shows remarkable agreement with the shape, ellipticity and boxiness of the diffuse light surrounding both galaxies. We find evidence for spatial enhancements of GCs surrounding M87 that may be indicative of recent interactions or an ongoing merger history. We compare the GC map to the locations of Virgo galaxies and the intracluster X-ray gas, and find good agreement between these baryonic structures. The Virgo cluster contains a total population of 67300$\pm$14400 GCs, of which 35% are located in M87 and M49 alone. We compute a cluster-wide specific frequency S_N,CL=$2.8\pm0.7$, including Virgo's diffuse light. The GC-to-baryonic mass fraction is e_b=$5.7\pm1.1\times10^{-4} $and the GC-to-total cluster mass formation efficiency is e_t=$2.9\pm0.5\times10^{-5}$, values slightly lower than, but consistent with, those derived for individual galactic halos. Our results show that the production of the complex structures in the unrelaxed Virgo cluster core (including the diffuse intracluster light) is an ongoing process.(abridged)
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: We study the dynamics of the giant elliptical galaxy M87 from the central to the outermost regions with the made-to-measure (M2M) method. We use a new catalogue of 922 globular cluster line-of- sight velocities extending to a projected radius of 180 kpc (equivalent to 25 M87 effective radii), and SAURON integral field unit data within the central 2.4 kpc. 263 globular clusters, mainly located beyond 40 kpc, are newly observed by the Next Generation Virgo Survey (NGVS). For the M2M modelling, the gravitational potential is taken as a combination of a luminous matter potential with a constant stellar mass-to-light ratio and a dark matter potential modelled as a logarithmic potential. Our best dynamical model returns a stellar mass-to-light ratio in the I band of M/LI = 6.0(+ -0.3) M_sun/L_sun with a dark matter potential scale velocity of 591(+ -50) km/s and scale radius of 42(+ -10) kpc. We determine the total mass of M87 within 180 kpc to be (1.5 + - 0.2) 10^13 M_sun. The mass within 40 kpc is smaller than previous estimates determined using globular cluster kinematics that did not extend beyond 45 kpc. With our new globular cluster velocities at much larger radii, we see that globular clusters around 40 kpc show an anomalously large velocity dispersion which affected previous results. The mass we derived is in good agreement with that inferred from ROSAT X-ray observation out to 180 kpc. Within 30 kpc our mass is also consistent with that inferred from Chandra and XMM-Newton X-ray observations, while within 120 kpc it is about 20% smaller. The model velocity dispersion anisotropy beta parameter for the globular clusters in M87 is small, varying from -0.2 at the centre to 0.2 at 40 kpc, and gradually decreasing to zero at 120 kpc.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: Massive early-type galaxies represent the modern-day remnants of the earliest major star formation episodes in the history of the universe. These galaxies are central to our understanding of the evolution of cosmic structure, stellar populations, and supermassive black holes, but the details of their complex formation histories remain uncertain. To address this situation, we have initiated the MASSIVE Survey, a volume-limited, multi-wavelength, integral-field spectroscopic (IFS) and photometric survey of the structure and dynamics of the ~100 most massive early-type galaxies within a distance of 108 Mpc. This survey probes a stellar mass range M* > 10^{11.5} Msun and diverse galaxy environments that have not been systematically studied to date. Our wide-field IFS data cover ~two effective radii of individual galaxies, and for a subset of them, we are acquiring additional IFS observations on sub-arcsecond scales with adaptive optics. Dynamical orbit modeling of the combined data will allow us to simultaneously determine the stellar, black hole, and dark matter halo masses. The goals of the project are to constrain the black hole scaling relations at high masses, investigate systematically the stellar initial mass function and dark matter distribution in massive galaxies, and probe the late-time assembly of ellipticals through stellar population and kinematical gradients. In the present work, we describe the MASSIVE sample selection, discuss the structural and environmental properties of the selected galaxies, and provide an overview of our basic observational program and science goals.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014 · The Astrophysical Journal
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    ABSTRACT: We combined new near-infrared VLT/HAWK-I data of the globular clusters (GCs) in the isolated edge-on S0 galaxy NGC 3115 with optical and spectroscopic ones taken from the literature, with the aim of analyzing the multiband GC color distributions. A recent study from the SLUGGS survey has shown that the GCs in this galaxy follow a bimodal distribution of Ca II triplet indices. Thus, NGC 3115 presents a critical example of a GC system with multiple, distinct, metallicity subpopulations, and this may argue against the "projection" scenario, which posits that the ubiquitous color bimodality mainly results from nonlinearities in the color-metallicity relations. Using optical, NIR, and spectroscopic data, we found strong and consistent evidence of index bimodality, which independently confirms the metallicity bimodality in NGC 3115 GCs. At the same time, we also found evidence for some color-color nonlinearity. Taken in the broader context of previous studies, the multicolor consistency of the GC bimodality in NGC 3115 suggests that in cases where GC systems exhibit clear differences between their optical and optical-NIR color distributions (as in some giant ellipticals), the apparent inconsistencies most likely result from nonlinearities in the color-metallicity relations.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2014 · Astronomy and Astrophysics
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    ABSTRACT: We present g' and z' aperture photometry for 96 Galactic globular clusters, making this the largest homogeneous catalogue of photometry for these objects in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) filter system. For a subset of 56 clusters, we also provide photometry in r' and i'. We carry out comparisons with previous photometry as well as with the SDSS data set. The data will be useful for a series of applications in Galactic and extragalactic astrophysics. Future papers will analyse the colour-metallicity relation, colour-magnitude diagrams and structural parameters. The compilation of results based on this data set will be collected in the Galactic Globular Cluster Catalog (G2C2).
    No preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
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    ABSTRACT: The NGVS-IR project (Next Generation Virgo Survey - Infrared) is a contiguous near-infrared imaging survey of the Virgo cluster of galaxies. It complements the optical wide-field survey of Virgo (NGVS). The current state of NGVS-IR consists of Ks-band imaging of 4 deg^2 centered on M87, and J and Ks-band imaging of 16 deg^2 covering the region between M49 and M87. In this paper, we present the observations of the central 4 deg^2 centered on Virgo's core region. The data were acquired with WIRCam on the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope and the total integration time was 41 hours distributed in 34 contiguous tiles. A survey-specific strategy was designed to account for extended galaxies while still measuring accurate sky brightness within the survey area. The average 5\sigma limiting magnitude is Ks=24.4 AB mag and the 50% completeness limit is Ks=23.75 AB mag for point source detections, when using only images with better than 0.7" seeing (median seeing 0.54"). Star clusters are marginally resolved in these image stacks, and Virgo galaxies with \mu_Ks=24.4 AB mag arcsec^-2 are detected. Combining the Ks data with optical and ultraviolet data, we build the uiK color-color diagram which allows a very clean color-based selection of globular clusters in Virgo. This diagnostic plot will provide reliable globular cluster candidates for spectroscopic follow-up campaigns needed to continue the exploration of Virgo's photometric and kinematic sub-structures, and will help the design of future searches for globular clusters in extragalactic systems. Equipped with this powerful new tool, future NGVS-IR investigations based on the uiK diagram will address the mapping and analysis of extended structures and compact stellar systems in and around Virgo galaxies.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2014 · The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series

Publication Stats

12k Citations
1,127.01 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2008-2015
    • National Research Council Canada
      • Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory
      Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    • University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo
      • Department of Physics
      Hilo, Hawaii, United States
  • 2006-2015
    • Washington State University
      • Department of Physics and Astronomy
      پولمن، واشینگتن, Washington, United States
  • 2013-2014
    • Peking University
      • Department of Astronomy
      Peping, Beijing, China
  • 2010-2011
    • Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
      • Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory
      Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2005-2011
    • University of California, Santa Cruz
      • Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics
      Santa Cruz, California, United States
    • European Southern Observatory
      Arching, Bavaria, Germany
  • 2009
    • University of Texas - Pan American
      • Department of Physics and Geology
      Edinburg, Texas, United States
    • Vanderbilt University
      • Department of Physics and Astronomy
      Nashville, Michigan, United States
  • 1992-2009
    • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
      • Department of Physics
      Cambridge, MA, United States
  • 2001-2008
    • Johns Hopkins University
      • Department of Physics and Astronomy
      Baltimore, MD, United States
  • 2000-2008
    • Durham University
      • Department of Physics
      Durham, ENG, United Kingdom
  • 1997-2008
    • California Institute of Technology
      • Department of Astronomy
      Pasadena, CA, United States
  • 2007
    • The Astronomical Observatory of Brera
      Merate, Lombardy, Italy
    • The Ohio State University
      • Department of Astronomy
      Columbus, Ohio, United States
  • 2002-2007
    • Leiden University
      • Leiden Observartory
      Leyden, South Holland, Netherlands