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The Mass–Metallicity Relation at z ∼ 1–2 and Its Dependence on the Star Formation Rate

Henry, Alaina and Rafelski, Marc and Sunnquist, Ben and Pirzkal, Norbert and Pacifici, Camilla and Atek, Hakim and Bagley, Micaela and Baronchelli, Ivano and Barro, Guillermo and Bunker, Andrew J. and Colbert, James and Dai, Y. Sophia and Elmegreen, Bruce G. and Elmegreen, Debra Meloy and Finkelstein, Steven and Kocevski, Dale and Koekemoer, Anton and Malkan, Matthew and Martin, Crystal L. and Mehta, Vihang and Pahl, Anthony and Papovich, Casey and Rutkowski, Michael and Sánchez Almeida, Jorge and Scarlata, Claudia and Snyder, Gregory and Teplitz, Harry (2021) The Mass–Metallicity Relation at z ∼ 1–2 and Its Dependence on the Star Formation Rate. Astrophysical Journal, 919 (2). Art. No. 143. ISSN 0004-637X. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/ac1105.

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We present a new measurement of the gas-phase mass–metallicity relation (MZR) and its dependence on star formation rates (SFRs) at 1.3 < z < 2.3. Our sample comprises 1056 galaxies with a mean redshift of z = 1.9, identified from the Hubble Space Telescope Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3) grism spectroscopy in the Cosmic Assembly Near-infrared Deep Extragalactic Survey and the WFC3 Infrared Spectroscopic Parallel Survey. This sample is four times larger than previous metallicity surveys at z ∼ 2 and reaches an order of magnitude lower in stellar mass (10⁸ M_⊙). Using stacked spectra, we find that the MZR evolves by 0.3 dex relative to z ∼ 0.1. Additionally, we identify a subset of 49 galaxies with high signal-to-noise (S/N) spectra and redshifts between 1.3 < z < 1.5, where Hα emission is observed along with [O iii] and [O ii]. With accurate measurements of SFR in these objects, we confirm the existence of a mass–metallicity–SFR (M–Z–SFR) relation at high redshifts. These galaxies show systematic differences from the local M–Z–SFR relation, which vary depending on the adopted measurement of the local relation. However, it remains difficult to ascertain whether these differences could be due to redshift evolution, as the local M–Z–SFR relation is poorly constrained at the masses and SFRs of our sample. Lastly, we reproduced our sample selection in the IllustrisTNG hydrodynamical simulation, demonstrating that our line flux limit lowers the normalization of the simulated MZR by 0.2 dex. We show that the M–Z–SFR relation in IllustrisTNG has an SFR dependence that is too steep by a factor of around 3.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper G102
Henry, Alaina0000-0002-6586-4446
Rafelski, Marc0000-0002-9946-4731
Sunnquist, Ben0000-0003-3759-8707
Pirzkal, Norbert0000-0003-3382-5941
Pacifici, Camilla0000-0003-4196-0617
Atek, Hakim0000-0002-7570-0824
Bagley, Micaela0000-0002-9921-9218
Baronchelli, Ivano0000-0003-0556-2929
Barro, Guillermo0000-0001-6813-875X
Bunker, Andrew J.0000-0002-8651-9879
Colbert, James0000-0001-6482-3020
Dai, Y. Sophia0000-0002-7928-416X
Elmegreen, Bruce G.0000-0002-1723-6330
Elmegreen, Debra Meloy0000-0002-1392-3520
Finkelstein, Steven0000-0001-8519-1130
Kocevski, Dale0000-0002-8360-3880
Koekemoer, Anton0000-0002-6610-2048
Malkan, Matthew0000-0001-6919-1237
Martin, Crystal L.0000-0001-9189-7818
Mehta, Vihang0000-0001-7166-6035
Pahl, Anthony0000-0003-4464-4505
Papovich, Casey0000-0001-7503-8482
Rutkowski, Michael0000-0001-7016-5220
Sánchez Almeida, Jorge0000-0003-1123-6003
Scarlata, Claudia0000-0002-9136-8876
Snyder, Gregory0000-0002-4226-304X
Teplitz, Harry0000-0002-7064-5424
Additional Information:© 2021. The American Astronomical Society. Received 2021 February 16; revised 2021 June 2; accepted 2021 July 1; published 2021 October 5. We are thankful for the efforts of the anonymous referee, whose thoughtful review led to improvements in this manuscript. A.H., M.R., D.E., and B.E. acknowledge support from HST-AR 14580. We thank Paul Torrey for assisting with the interpretation of IllustrisTNG data. We are grateful to Bahram Mobasher and Kit Boyett for thoughtful comments that improved this manuscript. A.J.B. acknowledges funding from the "FirstGalaxies" Advanced Grant from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation program (grant agreement No. 789056). Y.-S. D. acknowledges the science research grants from NSFC grant Nos. 10878003 and 11933003, the National Key R&D Program of China via grant No. 2017YFA0402703, and the China Manned Space Project with No. CMS-CSST-2021-A05. This work is based on data obtained from the Hubble Space Telescope, as part of the 3D-HST Treasury Program (GO 12177 and 12328) and the CANDELS Multi-Cycle Treasury Program, as well as GO 11600, 11696, 12283, 12568, 12902, 13352, 13517, 14178, 13420, and 14227. Support for these programs was provided by NASA through a grant from the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Incorporated, under NASA contract NAS5-26555. All of the MAST data used in this manuscript can be found at these DOI links: 1. CANDELS: 10.17909/T94S3X, 2. WISP: 10.17909/T9C302, 3. 3D-HST: 10.17909/T9JW9Z, 4. CLEAR: 10.17909/t9-wsnh-yx79, and 5. GOODS-N G102: 10.17909/t9-nypp-mz48. Software: aXe (Kümmel et al. 2009), IRAF Tody (1993, 1986), SExtractor (Bertin & Arnouts 1996), astropy (Astropy Collaboration 2013, 2018), Photutils (Bradley et al. 2021).
Group:Infrared Processing and Analysis Center (IPAC)
Funding AgencyGrant Number
European Research Council (ERC)789056
National Natural Science Foundation of China10878003
National Natural Science Foundation of China11933003
National Key Research and Development Program of China2017YFA0402703
China Manned Space ProjectCMS-CSST-2021-A05
NASAGO 12177
NASAGO 12328
NASAGO 11600
NASAGO 11696
NASAGO 12283
NASAGO 12568
NASAGO 12902
NASAGO 13352
NASAGO 13517
NASAGO 14178
NASAGO 13420
NASAGO 14227
Subject Keywords:Metallicity; Galaxy chemical evolution
Issue or Number:2
Classification Code:Unified Astronomy Thesaurus concepts: Metallicity (1031); Galaxy chemical evolution (580)
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20211012-211827525
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Alaina Henry et al 2021 ApJ 919 143
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:111374
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:13 Oct 2021 20:44
Last Modified:13 Oct 2021 20:44

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