SKY-MAP.ORG
 Home Getting Started To Survive in the Universe News@Sky Astro Photo The Collection Forum Blog New! FAQ Press Login

# NGC 4689

Contents

### Images

DSS Images   Other Images

### Related articles

 A Virgo high-resolution Hα kinematical survey - II. The AtlasA catalogue of ionized gas velocity fields for a sample of 30 spiral andirregular galaxies of the Virgo cluster has been obtained by using 3Doptical data. The aim of this survey is to study the influence ofhigh-density environments on the gaseous kinematics of local clustergalaxies. Observations of the Hα line by means of Fabry-Perotinterferometry have been performed at the Canada-France-HawaiiTelescope, European Southern Observatory 3.6-m telescope, Observatoirede Haute-Provence 1.93-m telescope and Observatoire du montMégantic telescope at angular and spectral samplings from 0.4 to1.6arcsec and 7 to 16kms-1. A recently developed, automaticand adaptive spatial binning technique is used to reach a nearlyconstant signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) over the whole field of view,allowing us to keep a high spatial resolution in high-S/N regions andextend the detection of signal in low-S/N regions. This paper is part ofa series and presents the integrated emission-line and velocity maps ofthe galaxies. Both Hα morphologies and kinematics exhibit signs ofperturbations in the form of, for example, external filaments, inner andnuclear spiral- and ring-like structures, inner kinematical twists,kinematical decoupling of a nuclear spiral, streaming motions alongspiral arms and misalignment between kinematical and photometricorientation axes. Magnetic Fields in Starburst Galaxies and the Origin of the FIR-Radio CorrelationWe estimate minimum energy magnetic fields (Bmin) for asample of galaxies with measured gas surface densities, spanning morethan four orders of magnitude in surface density, from normal spirals toluminous starbursts. We show that the ratio of the minimum energymagnetic pressure to the total pressure in the ISM decreasessubstantially with increasing surface density. For the ultraluminousinfrared galaxy Arp 220, this ratio is ~10-4. Therefore, ifthe minimum energy estimate is applicable, magnetic fields in starburstsare dynamically weak compared to gravity, in contrast to normalstar-forming spiral galaxies. We argue, however, that rapid cooling ofrelativistic electrons in starbursts invalidates the minimum energyestimate. We assess a number of independent constraints on the magneticfield strength in starburst galaxies. In particular, we argue that theexistence of the FIR-radio correlation implies that the synchrotroncooling timescale for cosmic-ray electrons is much shorter than theirescape time from the galactic disk; this in turn implies that the truemagnetic field in starbursts is significantly larger thanBmin. The strongest argument against such large fields isthat one might expect starbursts to have steep radio spectra indicativeof strong synchrotron cooling, which is not observed. However, we showthat ionization and bremsstrahlung losses can flatten the nonthermalspectra of starburst galaxies even in the presence of rapid cooling,providing much better agreement with observed spectra. We furtherdemonstrate that ionization and bremsstrahlung losses are likely to beimportant in shaping the radio spectra of most starbursts at GHzfrequencies, thereby preserving the linearity of the FIR-radiocorrelation. We thus conclude that magnetic fields in starbursts aresignificantly larger than Bmin. We highlight severalobservations that can test this conclusion. A Comparison of Hα and Stellar Scale Lengths in Virgo and Field SpiralsThe scale lengths of the old stars and ionized gas distributions arecompared for similar samples of Virgo Cluster members and field spiralgalaxies via Hα and broad R-band surface photometry. While theR-band and Hα scale lengths are, on average, comparable for thecombined sample, we find significant differences between the field andcluster samples. While the Hα scale lengths of the field galaxiesare a factor of 1.14+/-0.07 longer, on average, than their R-band scalelengths, the Hα scale lengths of Virgo Cluster members are, onaverage, 20% smaller than their R-band scale lengths. Furthermore, inVirgo, the scale length ratios are correlated with the size of thestar-forming disk: galaxies with smaller overall Hα extents alsoshow steeper radial falloff of star formation activity. At the sametime, we find no strong trends in scale length ratio as a function ofother galaxy properties, including galaxy luminosity, inclination,morphological type, central R-band light concentration, or bar type. Ourresults for Hα emission are similar to other results for dustemission, suggesting that Hα and dust have similar distributions.The environmental dependence of the Hα scale length placesadditional constraints on the evolutionary process(es) that cause gasdepletion and a suppression of the star formation rate in clusters ofgalaxies. Abundance segregation in Virgo spiral galaxiesAims.To derive O/H, N/O, and S/O abundances of ion{H}{ii} regionslocated in nine Virgo spiral galaxies, as well as to verify what is thecause of the abundance segregation found. Methods: .We employedphotoionization models to reproduce observed emission-line intensitiesof ion{H}{ii} regions located in the galaxies considered. The abundancegradients obtained were interpreted using a grid of chemical evolutionmodels. Results: .Our models indicate that galaxies near to thecore of the Virgo cluster are overabundant in O/H, N/O, and S/O by about0.25 dex in comparison to the ones at the periphery. With one exception,models with upper stellar mass limit of Mu = 30-40Mȯ and age of the ionizing star cluster ranging from 1.5to 2.5 Myr were able to reproduce the observational data. Chemicalmodels indicate the collapse time-scale for inner regions of galaxiesnear to the Virgo core is larger than the one in galaxies located at theintermediate and peripheral positions in the cluster, what can be due tothe dense environment existing in Virgo Cluster core. The Schmidt Law at High Molecular DensitiesWe combined Hα and recent high-resolution12CO(J=1‑0) data to consider the quantitative relationbetween the gas mass and the star-formation rate, or the so-calledSchmidt law in nearby spiral galaxies at regions of high moleculardensity. The relation between the gas quantity and the star-formationrate has not been previously studied for high-density regions, but usinghigh-resolution CO data obtained at the Nobeyama Millimeter Array, wefound that the Schmidt law is valid at densities as high as 103Modotpc-2 for sample spiral galaxies, which is anorder of magnitude denser than what has been known to be the maximumdensity at which the empirical law holds for non-starburst galaxies.Furthermore, we obtained a Schmidt law index of N = 1.33 ± 0.09and a roughly constant star-formation efficiency over the entire disk,even within several hundred parsecs of the nucleus. These results implythat the physics of star formation does not change in the centralregions of spiral galaxies. Comparisons with starburst galaxies are alsogiven. We find a possible discontinuity in the Schmidt law betweennormal and starburst galaxies. The Distribution of Bar and Spiral Arm Strengths in Disk GalaxiesThe distribution of bar strengths in disk galaxies is a fundamentalproperty of the galaxy population that has only begun to be explored. Wehave applied the bar-spiral separation method of Buta and coworkers toderive the distribution of maximum relative gravitational bar torques,Qb, for 147 spiral galaxies in the statistically well-definedOhio State University Bright Galaxy Survey (OSUBGS) sample. Our goal isto examine the properties of bars as independently as possible of theirassociated spirals. We find that the distribution of bar strengthdeclines smoothly with increasing Qb, with more than 40% ofthe sample having Qb<=0.1. In the context of recurrent barformation, this suggests that strongly barred states are relativelyshort-lived compared to weakly barred or nonbarred states. We do notfind compelling evidence for a bimodal distribution of bar strengths.Instead, the distribution is fairly smooth in the range0.0<=Qb<0.8. Our analysis also provides a first look atspiral strengths Qs in the OSUBGS sample, based on the sametorque indicator. We are able to verify a possible weak correlationbetween Qs and Qb, in the sense that galaxies withthe strongest bars tend to also have strong spirals. Completing H I observations of galaxies in the Virgo clusterHigh sensitivity (rms noise  0.5 mJy) 21-cm H I line observationswere made of 33 galaxies in the Virgo cluster, using the refurbishedArecibo telescope, which resulted in the detection of 12 objects. Thesedata, combined with the measurements available from the literature,provide the first set of H I data that is complete for all 355 late-type(Sa-Im-BCD) galaxies in the Virgo cluster with mp ≤ 18.0mag. The Virgo cluster H I mass function (HIMF) that was derived forthis optically selected galaxy sample is in agreement with the HIMFderived for the Virgo cluster from the blind HIJASS H I survey and isinconsistent with the Field HIMF. This indicates that both in this richcluster and in the general field, neutral hydrogen is primarilyassociated with late-type galaxies, with marginal contributions fromearly-type galaxies and isolated H I clouds. The inconsistency betweenthe cluster and the field HIMF derives primarily from the difference inthe optical luminosity function of late-type galaxies in the twoenvironments, combined with the HI deficiency that is known to occur ingalaxies in rich clusters.Tables \ref{t1, \ref{sample_dat} and Appendix A are only available inelectronic form at http://www.edpsciences.org Structure and star formation in disk galaxies. III. Nuclear and circumnuclear Hα emissionFrom Hα images of a carefully selected sample of 57 relativelylarge, Northern spiral galaxies with low inclination, we study thedistribution of the Hα emission in the circumnuclear and nuclearregions. At a resolution of around 100 parsec, we find that the nuclearHα emission in the sample galaxies is often peaked, andsignificantly more often so among AGN host galaxies. The circumnuclearHα emission, within a radius of two kpc, is often patchy inlate-type, and absent or in the form of a nuclear ring in early-typegalaxies. There is no clear correlation of nuclear or circumnuclearHα morphology with the presence or absence of a bar in the hostgalaxy, except for the nuclear rings which occur in barred hosts. Thepresence or absence of close bright companion galaxies does not affectthe circumnuclear Hα morphology, but their presence does correlatewith a higher fraction of nuclear Hα peaks. Nuclear rings occur inat least 21% (±5%) of spiral galaxies, and occur predominantly ingalaxies also hosting an AGN. Only two of our 12 nuclear rings occur ina galaxy which is neither an AGN nor a starburst host. We confirm thatweaker bars host larger nuclear rings. The implications of these resultson our understanding of the occurrence and morphology of massive starformation, as well as non-stellar activity, in the central regions ofgalaxies are discussed. Bar-induced perturbation strengths of the galaxies in the Ohio State University Bright Galaxy Survey - IBar-induced perturbation strengths are calculated for a well-definedmagnitude-limited sample of 180 spiral galaxies, based on the Ohio StateUniversity Bright Galaxy Survey. We use a gravitational torque method,the ratio of the maximal tangential force to the mean axisymmetricradial force, as a quantitative measure of the bar strength. Thegravitational potential is inferred from an H-band light distribution byassuming that the M/L ratio is constant throughout the disc. Galaxiesare deprojected using orientation parameters based on B-band images. Inorder to eliminate artificial stretching of the bulge, two-dimensionalbar-bulge-disc decomposition has been used to derive a reliable bulgemodel. This bulge model is subtracted from an image, the disc isdeprojected assuming it is thin, and then the bulge is added back byassuming that its mass distribution is spherically symmetric. We findthat removing the artificial bulge stretch is important especially forgalaxies having bars inside large bulges. We also find that the massesof the bulges can be significantly overestimated if bars are not takeninto account in the decomposition.Bars are identified using Fourier methods by requiring that the phasesof the main modes (m= 2, m= 4) are maintained nearly constant in the barregion. With such methods, bars are found in 65 per cent of the galaxiesin our sample, most of them being classified as SB-type systems in thenear-infrared by Eskridge and co-workers. We also suggest that as muchas ~70 per cent of the galaxies classified as SAB-types in thenear-infrared might actually be non-barred systems, many of them havingcentral ovals. It is also possible that a small fraction of the SAB-typegalaxies have weak non-classical bars with spiral-like morphologies. Hα Morphologies and Environmental Effects in Virgo Cluster Spiral GalaxiesWe describe the various Hα morphologies of Virgo Cluster andisolated spiral galaxies and associate the Hα morphologies withthe types of environmental interactions that have altered the clustergalaxies. The spatial distributions of Hα and R-band emission areused to divide the star formation morphologies of the 52 Virgo Clusterspiral galaxies into several categories: normal (37%), anemic (6%),enhanced (6%), and (spatially) truncated (52%). Truncated galaxies arefurther subdivided on the basis of their inner star formation rates intotruncated/normal (37%), truncated/compact (6%), truncated/anemic (8%),and truncated/enhanced (2%). The fraction of anemic galaxies isrelatively small (6%-13%) in both environments, suggesting thatstarvation is not a major factor in the reduced star formation rates ofVirgo spiral galaxies. The majority of Virgo spiral galaxies have theirHα disks truncated (52%), whereas truncated Hα disks arerarer in isolated galaxies (12%). Most of the Hα-truncatedgalaxies have relatively undisturbed stellar disks and normal toslightly enhanced inner disk star formation rates, suggesting thatintracluster medium-interstellar medium (ICM-ISM) stripping is the mainmechanism causing the reduced star formation rates of Virgo spiralgalaxies. Several of the truncated galaxies are peculiar, with enhancedcentral star formation rates, disturbed stellar disks, and barlikedistributions of luminous H II complexes inside the central 1 kpc but nostar formation beyond, suggesting that recent tidal interactions orminor mergers have also influenced their morphology. Two highly inclinedHα-truncated spiral galaxies have numerous extraplanar H IIregions and are likely in an active phase of ICM-ISM stripping. Severalspiral galaxies have one-sided Hα enhancements at the outer edgeof their truncated Hα disks, suggesting modest local enhancementsin their star formation rates due to ICM-ISM interactions. Low-velocitytidal interactions and perhaps outer cluster H I accretion seem to bethe triggers for enhanced global star formation in four Virgo galaxies.These results indicate that most Virgo spiral galaxies experienceICM-ISM stripping, many experience significant tidal effects, and manyexperience both. A New Nonparametric Approach to Galaxy Morphological ClassificationWe present two new nonparametric methods for quantifying galaxymorphology: the relative distribution of the galaxy pixel flux values(the Gini coefficient or G) and the second-order moment of the brightest20% of the galaxy's flux (M20). We test the robustness of Gand M20 to decreasing signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) and spatialresolution and find that both measures are reliable to within 10% forimages with average S/N per pixel greater than 2 and resolutions betterthan 1000 and 500 pc, respectively. We have measured G andM20, as well as concentration (C), asymmetry (A), andclumpiness (S) in the rest-frame near-ultraviolet/optical wavelengthsfor 148 bright local normal'' Hubble-type galaxies (E-Sd) galaxies, 22dwarf irregulars, and 73 0.05 Inner-truncated Disks in GalaxiesWe present an analysis of the disk brightness profiles of 218 spiral andlenticular galaxies. At least 28% of disk galaxies exhibit innertruncations in these profiles. There are no significant trends oftruncation incidence with Hubble type, but the incidence among barredsystems is 49%, more than 4 times that for nonbarred galaxies. However,not all barred systems have inner truncations, and not allinner-truncated systems are currently barred. Truncations represent areal dearth of disk stars in the inner regions and are not an artifactof our selection or fitting procedures nor the result of obscuration bydust. Disk surface brightness profiles in the outer regions are wellrepresented by simple exponentials for both truncated and nontruncateddisks. However, truncated and nontruncated systems have systematicallydifferent slopes and central surface brightness parameters for theirdisk brightness distributions. Truncation radii do not appear tocorrelate well with the sizes or brightnesses of the bulges. Thissuggests that the low angular momentum material apparently missing fromthe inner disk was not simply consumed in forming the bulge population.Disk parameters and the statistics of bar orientations in our sampleindicate that the missing stars of the inner disk have not simply beenredistributed azimuthally into bar structures. The sharpness of thebrightness truncations and their locations with respect to othergalactic structures suggest that resonances associated with diskkinematics, or tidal interactions with the mass of bulge stars, might beresponsible for this phenomenon. Mid-IR emission of galaxies in the Virgo cluster and in the Coma supercluster. IV. The nature of the dust heating sourcesWe study the relationship between the mid-IR (5-18 μm) emission oflate-type galaxies and various other star formation tracers in order toinvestigate the nature of the dust heating sources in this spectraldomain. The analysis is carried out using a sample of 123 normal,late-type, nearby galaxies with available data at several frequencies.The mid-IR luminosity (normalized to the H-band luminosity) correlatesbetter with the far-IR luminosity than with more direct tracers of theyoung stellar population such as the Hα and the UV luminosity. Thecomparison of resolved images reveals a remarkable similarity in theHα and mid-IR morphologies, with prominent HII regions at bothfrequencies. The mid-IR images, however, show in addition a diffuseemission not associated with HII regions nor with the diffuse Hαemission. This evidence indicates that the stellar populationresponsible for the heating of dust emitting in the mid-IR is similar tothat heating big grains emitting in the far-IR, including relativelyevolved stars responsible for the non-ionizing radiation. The scatter inthe mid-IR vs. Hα, UV and far-IR luminosity relation is mostly dueto metallicity effects, with metal-poor objects having a lower mid-IRemission per unit star formation rate than metal-rich galaxies. Ouranalysis indicates that the mid-IR luminosity is not an optimal starformation tracer in normal, late-type galaxies. Oxygen and nitrogen abundances in nearby galaxies. Correlations between oxygen abundance and macroscopic propertiesWe performed a compilation of more than 1000 published spectra of H IIregions in spiral galaxies. The oxygen and nitrogen abundances in each HII region were recomputed in a homogeneous way, using the P-method. Theradial distributions of oxygen and nitrogen abundances were derived. Thecorrelations between oxygen abundance and macroscopic properties areexamined. We found that the oxygen abundance in spiral galaxiescorrelates with its luminosity, rotation velocity, and morphologicaltype: the correlation with the rotation velocity may be slightlytighter. There is a significant difference between theluminosity-metallicity relationship obtained here and that based on theoxygen abundances determined through the R23-calibrations.The oxygen abundance of NGC 5457 recently determined using directmeasurements of Te (Kennicutt et al. \cite{Kennicutt2003})agrees with the luminosity-metallicity relationship derived in thispaper, but is in conflict with the luminosity-metallicity relationshipderived with the R23-based oxygen abundances. The obtainedluminosity-metallicity relation for spiral galaxies is compared to thatfor irregular galaxies. Our sample of galaxies shows evidence that theslope of the O/H - MB relationship for spirals (-0.079± 0.018) is slightly more shallow than that for irregulargalaxies (-0.139 ± 0.011). The effective oxygen yields wereestimated for spiral and irregular galaxies. The effective oxygen yieldincreases with increasing luminosity from MB  -11 toMB  -18 (or with increasing rotation velocity fromVrot  10 km s-1 to Vrot  100km s-1) and then remains approximately constant. Irregulargalaxies from our sample have effective oxygen yields lowered by afactor of 3 at maximum, i.e. irregular galaxies usually keep at least1/3 of the oxygen they manufactured during their evolution.Appendix, Tables \ref{table:refero}, \ref{table:referV}, and Figs.\ref{figure:sample2}-\ref{figure:sample5} are only available inelectronic form at http://www.edpsciences.org} Tracing the star formation history of cluster galaxies using the Hα/UV flux ratioSince the Hα and UV fluxes from galaxies are sensitive to stellarpopulations of ages <107 and ≈ 108 yrrespectively, their ratio f(Hα)/f(UV) provides us with a tool tostudy the recent t ≤ 108 yr star formation history ofgalaxies, an exercise that we present here applied to 98 galaxies in 4nearby clusters (Virgo, Coma, Abell 1367 and Cancer). The observedf(Hα)/f(UV) ratio is  a factor of two smaller than theexpected one as determined from population synthesis models assuming arealistic delayed, exponentially declining star formation history. Wediscuss various mechanisms that may have affected the observedf(Hα)/f(UV) ratio and we propose that the above discrepancy arisesfrom either the absorption of Lyman continuum photons by dust within thestar formation regions or from the occurrence of star formationepisodes. After splitting our sample into different subsamples accordingto evolutionary criteria we find that our reference sample of galaxiesunaffected by the cluster environment show an average value off(Hα)/f(UV) two times lower than the expected one. We argue thatthis difference must be mostly due to absorption of ≈45% of the Lymancontinuum photons within star forming regions. Galaxies with clear signsof an ongoing interaction show average values of f(Hα)/f(UV)slightly higher than the reference value, as expected if those objectshad SFR increased by a factor of ≃4. The accuracy of the currentUV and Hα photometry is not yet sufficient to clearly disentanglethe effect of interactions on the f(Hα)/f(UV) ratio, butsignificant observational improvements are shortly expected to resultfrom the GALEX mission.Tables 1-3 are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.org Deprojecting spiral galaxies using Fourier analysis. Application to the Ohio sampleWe use two new methods developed recently (Barberàet al.\cite{bar03}, A&A, 415, 849), as well as information obtained fromthe literature, to calculate the orientation parameters of the spiralgalaxies in the Ohio State University Bright Galaxy Survey. We comparethe results of these methods with data from the literature, and find ingeneral good agreement. We provide a homogeneous set of mean orientationparameters which can be used to approximately deproject the disks of thegalaxies and facilitate a number of statistical studies of galaxyproperties.Table 1 is only available in electronic form at the CDS via anonymousftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/421/595 Radio continuum spectra of galaxies in the Virgo cluster regionNew radio continuum observations of galaxies in the Virgo cluster regionat 4.85, 8.6, and 10.55 GHz are presented. These observations arecombined with existing measurements at 1.4 and 0.325 GHz. The sampleincludes 81 galaxies where spectra with more than two frequencies couldbe derived. Galaxies that show a radio-FIR excess exhibit centralactivity (HII, LINER, AGN). The four Virgo galaxies with the highestabsolute radio excess are found within 2° of the centerof the cluster. Galaxies showing flat radio spectra also host activecenters. There is no clear trend between the spectral index and thegalaxy's distance to the cluster center.Figure 3 is only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.orgTable 3 is only available in electronic form at the CDS via anonymousftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/418/1 Spectrophotometry of galaxies in the Virgo cluster. II. The dataDrift-scan mode (3600-6800 Å) spectra with 500 Deprojecting spiral galaxies using Fourier analysis. Application to the Frei sampleWe present two methods that can be used to deproject spirals, based onFourier analysis of their images, and discuss their potential andrestrictions. Our methods perform particularly well for galaxies moreinclined than 50° or for non-barred galaxies moreinclined than 35°. They are fast and straightforward touse, and thus ideal for large samples of galaxies. Moreover, they arevery robust for low resolutions and thus are appropriate for samples ofcosmological interest. The relevant software is available from us uponrequest. We use these methods to determine the values of the positionand inclination angles for a sample of 79 spiral galaxies contained inthe Frei et al. (\cite{frei96}) sample. We compare our results with thevalues found in the literature, based on other methods. We findstatistically very good agreementTable 7 is only available in electronic form at the CDS via anonymousftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/415/849 The Virgo High-Resolution CO Survey: II. Rotation Curves and Dynamical Mass DistributionsBased on a high-resolution CO survey of Virgo spirals with the NobeyamaMillimeter-wave Array, we determined the dynamical centers usingvelocity fields, and derived position-velocity diagrams (PVDs) along themajor axes of the galaxies across their dynamical centers. We applied anew iteration method to derive rotation curves (RCs), which reproducethe observed PVDs. The obtained high-accuracy RCs generally show a steeprise in the central  100 to 200pc regions, followed by flatrotation in the disk. We applied a deconvolution method to calculate thesurface-mass density (SMD) using the RCs based on two extremeassumptions that the mass distribution is either spherical or thin-diskshaped. Both assumptions give nearly identical results, agreeing witheach other within a factor of two at any radii. The SMD distributionsrevealed central massive cores with peak SMD of  104 -105 Mȯ pc-2 and a total masswithin 200pc radius of the order of  109Mȯ. A correlation analysis among the derived parametersshows that the central CO-line intensity is positively correlated withthe central SMD, which suggests that the deeper is the gravitationalpotential, the higher is the molecular gas concentration in the nuclei,regardless of the morphological types. The Virgo High-Resolution CO Survey: I. CO AtlasWe present the results of the Virgo high-resolution CO survey (ViCS)obtained with the Nobeyama Millimeter-wave Array (NMA). This survey wasmade during the course of a long-term project at Nobeyama from 1999December through 2002 April. The objects were selected from Virgocluster members, while considering the CO richness from the single-dishflux, mild inclination, and a lack of strong tidal perturbations. Thecentral 1' regions ( 4.7 kpc) of 15 spiral galaxies were observedwith resolutions of 2'' - 5'' and 10--20 km s-120 kms-1, and sensitivities of  20 mJy beam-1 fora 10 km s-1 channel. The objects lie at the same distance ofthe Virgo cluster (16.1Mpc), which is advantageous for comparisons amongindividual galaxies. We describe the details of observations and datareduction, and present an atlas of integrated CO intensity maps,velocity fields and position-velocity diagrams along the major axes. Themolecular g as morphology in the Virgo galaxies shows a wealth ofvariety, not specifically depending on the Hubble types. Severalgalaxies show a strong concentration of gas in the central few kpcregion, where the CO morphology shows either a single-peak'' or atwin-peaks''. The morphology of more extended CO components can beclassified into arm-type'', bar-type'', and amorphous-type''. The star formation rate in disc galaxies: thresholds and dependence on gas amountWe reassess the applicability of the Toomre criterion in galactic discsand we study the local star formation law in 16 disc galaxies for whichabundance gradients are published. The data we use consist of stellarlight profiles, atomic and molecular gas (deduced from CO with ametallicity-dependent conversion factor), star formation rates (fromHα emissivities), metallicities, dispersion velocities androtation curves. We show that the Toomre criterion applies successfullyto the case of the Milky Way disc, but it has limited success with thedata of our sample; depending on whether or not the stellar component isincluded in the stability analysis, we find average values for thethreshold ratio of the gas surface density to the critical surfacedensity in the range 0.5-0.7. We also test various star formation lawsproposed in the literature, i.e. either the simple Schmidt law ormodifications of it, that take into account dynamical factors. We findonly small differences among them as far as the overall fit to our datais concerned; in particular, we find that all three star formation laws(with parameters derived from the fits to our data) match observationsin the Milky Way disc particularly well. In all cases we find that theexponent n of our best-fitting star formation rate has slightly highervalues than in other recent works and we suggest several reasons thatmay cause that discrepancy. Structure and star formation in disc galaxies - I. Sample selection and near-infrared imagingWe present near-infrared imaging of a sample of 57 relatively large,northern spiral galaxies with low inclination. After describing theselection criteria and some of the basic properties of the sample, wegive a detailed description of the data collection and reductionprocedures. The Ksλ= 2.2-μm images cover most ofthe disc for all galaxies, with a field of view of at least 4.2 arcmin.The spatial resolution is better than 1 arcsec for most images. We fitbulge and exponential disc components to radial profiles of the lightdistribution. We then derive the basic parameters of these components,and the bulge/disc ratio, and explore correlations of these parameterswith several galaxy parameters. The Relationship between Stellar Light Distributions of Galaxies and Their Formation HistoriesA major problem in extragalactic astronomy is the inability todistinguish in a robust, physical, and model-independent way how galaxypopulations are physically related to each other and to their formationhistories. A similar, but distinct, and also long-standing question iswhether the structural appearances of galaxies, as seen through theirstellar light distributions, contain enough physical information tooffer this classification. We argue through the use of 240 images ofnearby galaxies that three model-independent parameters measured on asingle galaxy image reveal its major ongoing and past formation modesand can be used as a robust classification system. These parametersquantitatively measure: the concentration (C), asymmetry (A), andclumpiness (S) of a galaxy's stellar light distribution. When combinedinto a three-dimensional CAS'' volume all major classes of galaxies invarious phases of evolution are cleanly distinguished. We argue thatthese three parameters correlate with important modes of galaxyevolution: star formation and major merging activity. This is arguedthrough the strong correlation of Hα equivalent width andbroadband colors with the clumpiness parameter S, the uniquely largeasymmetries of 66 galaxies undergoing mergers, and the correlation ofbulge to total light ratios, and stellar masses, with the concentrationindex. As an obvious goal is to use this system at high redshifts totrace evolution, we demonstrate that these parameters can be measured,within a reasonable and quantifiable uncertainty with available data outto z~3 using the Hubble Space Telescope GOODS ACS and Hubble Deep Fieldimages. Companions of Bright Barred Shapley-Ames GalaxiesCompanion galaxy environment for a subset of 78 bright and nearby barredgalaxies from the Shapley-Ames Catalog is presented. Among the spiralbarred galaxies, there are Seyfert galaxies, galaxies with circumnuclearstructures, galaxies not associated with any large-scale galaxy cloudstructure, galaxies with peculiar disk morphology (crooked arms), andgalaxies with normal disk morphology; the list includes all Hubbletypes. The companion galaxy list includes the number of companiongalaxies within 20 diameters, their Hubble type, and projectedseparation distance. In addition, the companion environment was searchedfor four known active spiral galaxies, three of them are Seyfertgalaxies, namely, NGC 1068, NGC 1097, and NGC 5548, and one is astarburst galaxy, M82. Among the results obtained, it is noted that theonly spiral barred galaxy classified as Seyfert 1 in our list has nocompanions within a projected distance of 20 diameters; six out of 10Seyfert 2 bar galaxies have no companions within 10 diameters, six outof 10 Seyfert 2 galaxies have one or more companions at projectedseparation distances between 10 and 20 diameters; six out of 12 galaxieswith circumnuclear structures have two or more companions within 20diameters. Galaxy classification using fractal signatureFractal geometry is becoming increasingly important in the study ofimage characteristics. For recognition of regions and objects in naturalscenes, there is always a need for features that are invariant and theyprovide a good set of descriptive values for the region. There are manyfractal features that can be generated from an image. In this paper,fractal signatures of nearby galaxies are studied with the aim ofclassifying them. The fractal signature over a range of scales proved tobe an efficient feature set with good discriminating power. Classifierswere designed using nearest neighbour method and neural networktechnique. Using the nearest distance approach, classification rate wasfound to be 92%. By the neural network method it has been found toincrease to 95%. A new catalogue of ISM content of normal galaxiesWe have compiled a catalogue of the gas content for a sample of 1916galaxies, considered to be a fair representation of normality''. Thedefinition of a normal'' galaxy adopted in this work implies that wehave purposely excluded from the catalogue galaxies having distortedmorphology (such as interaction bridges, tails or lopsidedness) and/orany signature of peculiar kinematics (such as polar rings,counterrotating disks or other decoupled components). In contrast, wehave included systems hosting active galactic nuclei (AGN) in thecatalogue. This catalogue revises previous compendia on the ISM contentof galaxies published by \citet{bregman} and \citet{casoli}, andcompiles data available in the literature from several small samples ofgalaxies. Masses for warm dust, atomic and molecular gas, as well asX-ray luminosities have been converted to a uniform distance scale takenfrom the Catalogue of Principal Galaxies (PGC). We have used twodifferent normalization factors to explore the variation of the gascontent along the Hubble sequence: the blue luminosity (LB)and the square of linear diameter (D225). Ourcatalogue significantly improves the statistics of previous referencecatalogues and can be used in future studies to define a template ISMcontent for normal'' galaxies along the Hubble sequence. The cataloguecan be accessed on-line and is also available at the Centre desDonnées Stellaires (CDS).The catalogue is available in electronic form athttp://dipastro.pd.astro.it/galletta/ismcat and at the CDS via anonymousftp to\ cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or via\http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/405/5 UV to radio centimetric spectral energy distributions of optically-selected late-type galaxies in the Virgo clusterWe present a multifrequency dataset for an optically-selected,volume-limited, complete sample of 118 late-type galaxies (>=S0a) inthe Virgo cluster. The database includes UV, visible, near-IR, mid-IR,far-IR, radio continuum photometric data as well as spectroscopic dataof Hα , CO and HI lines, homogeneously reduced, obtained from ourown observations or compiled from the literature. Assuming the energybalance between the absorbed stellar light and that radiated in the IRby dust, we calibarte an empirical attenuation law suitable forcorrecting photometric and spectroscopic data of normal galaxies. Thedata, corrected for internal extinction, are used to construct thespectral energy distribution (SED) of each individual galaxy, andcombined to trace the median SED of galaxies in various classes ofmorphological type and luminosity. Low-luminosity, dwarf galaxies haveon average bluer stellar continua and higher far-IR luminosities perunit galaxy mass than giant, early-type spirals. If compared to nearbystarburst galaxies such as M 82 and Arp 220, normal spirals haverelatively similar observed stellar spectra but 10-100 times lower IRluminosities. The temperature of the cold dust component increases withthe far-IR luminosity, from giant spirals to dwarf irregulars. The SEDare used to separate the stellar emission from the dust emission in themid-IR regime. We show that the contribution of the stellar emission at6.75 mu m to the total emission of galaxies is generally important, from~ 80% in Sa to ~ 20% in Sc.Tables 2-5, 7, 8, and Fig. 2 are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.orgTables 10-12 are only available in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/402/37 12CO(J= 2->1) and CO(J= 3->2) observations of Virgo Cluster spiral galaxies with the KOSMA telescope: Global propertiesWe present 12CO (J= 2->1) and CO (J= 3->2) observationsof quiescent Virgo Cluster spiral galaxies with the KOSMA 3 m submmtelescope. The beam sizes of 80\arcsec at 345 GHz and 120 arcsec at 230GHz are well suited for the investigation of global properties of VirgoCluster galaxies. The observed sample was selected based on previous12CO (J=1->0) detections by Stark et al. (\cite{Stark86}),performed with the AT&T Bell Laboratory 7 m telescope (beam size ~100\arcsec). We were able to detect 18 spiral galaxies in12CO (2->1) and 16 in 12CO (3->2). Beammatched observations of the lowest three 12CO transitionsallow us to compare our results with previous high spatial resolutionstudies of (moderate) starburst galaxies and galactic core regions. Wediscuss the global excitation conditions of the ISM in these quiescentspiral galaxies. The resulting CO (3-2)/(1-0) integrated line ratiosvary over a relatively narrow range of values from 0.35 to 0.14 (on a Kkm s-1-scale) with increasing CO (2-1)/(1-0) ratio (from 0.5to 1.1). The line ratios between the three lowest rotational transitionsof CO cannot be fitted by any radiative transfer model with a singlesource component. A two-component model, assuming a warm, dense nuclearand a cold, less dense disc component allows us to fit the observed lineratios for most of the galaxies individually by selecting suitableparameters. The two-component model, however, fails to explain theobserved correlation of the line ratios. This is due to a variation ofthe relative filling factor of the warm gas alone, assuming a typicalset of parameters for the two components common for all galaxies. On the origin of nitrogenThe problem of the origin of nitrogen is considered within the frameworkof an empirical approach. The oxygen abundances and nitrogen to oxygenabundances ratios are derived in H II regions of a number of spiralgalaxies through the recently suggested P-method using more than sixhundred published spectra. The N/O-O/H diagram for H II regions inirregular and spiral galaxies is constructed. It is found that the N/Ovalues in H II regions of spiral galaxies of early morphological typesare higher than those in H II regions with the same metallicity inspiral galaxies of late morphological types. This suggests along-time-delayed contribution to the nitrogen production. The N/O ratioof a galaxy can then be used as an indicator of the time that haselapsed since the bulk of star formation occurred, or in other words ofthe nominal age'' of the galaxy as suggested by Edmunds & Pagelmore than twenty years ago. The scatter in N/O values at a given O/H canbe naturally explained by differences in star formation histories ingalaxies. While low-metallicity dwarf galaxies with low N/O do notcontain an appreciable amount of old stars, low-metallicity dwarfgalaxies with an appreciable fraction of old stars have high N/O.Consideration of planetary nebulae in the Small Magellanic Cloud and inthe Milky Way Galaxy suggests that the contribution of low-mass stars tothe nitrogen production is significant, confirming the conclusion thatthere is a long-time-delayed contribution to the nitrogen production.
Submit a new article