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A Comparison of Star-forming Clumps and Tidal Tails in Local Mergers and High-redshift Galaxies

Elmegreen, Debra Meloy and Elmegreen, Bruce G. and Whitmore, Bradley C. and Chandar, Rupali and Calzetti, Daniela and Lee, Janice C. and White, Richard and Cook, David and Ubeda, Leonardo and Mok, Angus and Linden, Sean T. (2021) A Comparison of Star-forming Clumps and Tidal Tails in Local Mergers and High-redshift Galaxies. Astrophysical Journal, 908 (2). Art. No. 121. ISSN 1538-4357. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/abd541.

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The Clusters, Clumps, Dust, and Gas in Extreme Star-forming Galaxies (CCDG) survey with the Hubble Space Telescope includes multiwavelength imaging of 13 galaxies less than 100 Mpc away, spanning a range of morphologies and sizes, from blue compact dwarfs to luminous infrared galaxies, all with star formation rates in excess of hundreds of solar masses per year. Images of seven merging galaxies in the CCDG survey were artificially redshifted to compare with galaxies at z = 0.5, 1, and 2. Most redshifted tails have surface brightnesses that would be visible at z = 0.5 or 1 but not at z = 2 due to cosmological dimming. Giant star clumps are apparent in these galaxies; the 51 measured have similar sizes, masses, and colors to clumps in observed high-z systems in the UDF, GEMS, GOODS, and CANDELS surveys. These results suggest that some clumpy high-z galaxies without observable tidal features could be the result of mergers. The local clumps also have the same star formation rate per unit area and stellar surface density as clumps observed at intermediate and high redshift, so they provide insight into the substructure of distant clumps. A total of 1596 star clusters brighter than M V = −9 were identified within the boundaries of the local clumps. The cluster magnitude distribution function is a power law with approximately the same slope (~−1 for a plot of number versus log luminosity) for all the galaxies both inside and outside the clumps and independently of clump surface brightness.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Elmegreen, Debra Meloy0000-0002-1392-3520
Elmegreen, Bruce G.0000-0002-1723-6330
Whitmore, Bradley C.0000-0002-3784-7032
Chandar, Rupali0000-0003-0085-4623
Calzetti, Daniela0000-0002-5189-8004
Lee, Janice C.0000-0002-2278-9407
White, Richard0000-0002-9194-2807
Cook, David0000-0002-6877-7655
Mok, Angus0000-0001-7413-7534
Linden, Sean T.0000-0002-1000-6081
Additional Information:© 2021. The American Astronomical Society. Received 2020 October 12; revised 2020 December 5; accepted 2020 December 18; published 2021 February 18. We thank the referee for helpful suggestions to improve the paper. Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Incorporated, under NASA contract NAS5-26555. Support for program number HST-GO-15649 was provided through a grant from the STScI under NASA contract NAS5-26555. This research has made use of the NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database (NED), which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
Group:Infrared Processing and Analysis Center (IPAC)
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Subject Keywords:Galaxy evolution ; High-redshift galaxies ; Interacting galaxies ; Starburst galaxies
Issue or Number:2
Classification Code:Unified Astronomy Thesaurus concepts: Galaxy evolution (594); High-redshift galaxies (734); Interacting galaxies (802); Starburst galaxies (1570)
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20210222-100903009
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Official Citation:Debra Meloy Elmegreen et al 2021 ApJ 908 121
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:108135
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:22 Feb 2021 20:17
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 19:09

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