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Star Formation and Dust Obscuration at z ≈ 2: Galaxies at the Dawn of Downsizing

Pannella, M. and Carilli, C. L. and Daddi, E. and McCracken, H. J. and Owen, F. N. and Renzini, A. and Strazzullo, V. and Civano, F. and Koekemoer, A. M. and Schinnerer, E. and Scoville, N. and Smolčić, V. and Taniguchi, Y. and Aussel, H. and Kneib, J. P. and Ilbert, O. and Mellier, Y. and Salvato, M. and Thompson, D. and Willott, C. J. (2009) Star Formation and Dust Obscuration at z ≈ 2: Galaxies at the Dawn of Downsizing. Astrophysical Journal Letters, 698 (2). L116-L120. ISSN 2041-8205. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/698/2/L116.

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We present first results of a study aimed to constrain the star formation rate (SFR) and dust content of galaxies at z ≈ 2. We use a sample of BzK-selected star-forming galaxies, drawn from the Cosmic Evolution Survey, to perform a stacking analysis of their 1.4 GHz radio continuum as a function of different stellar population properties, after cleaning the sample from contamination by active galactic nuclei. Dust unbiased SFRs are derived from radio fluxes assuming the local radio-IR correlation. The main results of this work are: (1) specific star formation rate (SSFR)s are constant over about 1 dex in stellar mass and up to the highest stellar mass probed, (2) the dust attenuation is a strong function of galaxy stellar mass with more massive galaxies being more obscured than lower mass objects, (3) a single value of the UV extinction applied to all galaxies would lead to a gross underestimate of the SFR in massive galaxies, (4) correcting the observed UV luminosities for dust attenuation based on the Calzetti recipe provides results in very good agreement with the radio derived ones, (5) the mean SSFR of our sample steadily decreases by a factor of ~4 with decreasing redshift from z = 2.3 to 1.4 and a factor of ~40 down the local universe. These empirical SFRs would cause galaxies to dramatically overgrow in mass if maintained all the way to low redshifts; we suggest that this does not happen because star formation is progressively quenched, likely starting from the most massive galaxies.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Carilli, C. L.0000-0001-6647-3861
Daddi, E.0000-0002-3331-9590
McCracken, H. J.0000-0002-9489-7765
Renzini, A.0000-0002-7093-7355
Civano, F.0000-0002-2115-1137
Koekemoer, A. M.0000-0002-6610-2048
Schinnerer, E.0000-0002-3933-7677
Scoville, N.0000-0002-0438-3323
Smolčić, V.0000-0002-3893-8614
Taniguchi, Y.0000-0003-2247-3741
Aussel, H.0000-0002-1371-5705
Kneib, J. P.0000-0002-4616-4989
Ilbert, O.0000-0002-7303-4397
Salvato, M.0000-0001-7116-9303
Willott, C. J.0000-0002-4201-7367
Additional Information:© 2009 The American Astronomical Society. Received 2009 February 27; accepted 2009 May 8; published 2009 June 1. We thank the anonymous referee for constructive comments that improved the presentation of our results. M.P., V.S., and C.L.C. acknowledge partial support from the Max-Planck Forschungspreise 2005. E.D. and H.J.Mc.C. acknowledge support from the French grants ANR-07-BLAN-0228-03 and ANR- 08-JCJC-0008. A.R. acknowledges support from the ASI grant COFIS. F. C. acknowledges support from NASA-Chandra grant G07-8136A. This work is based in part on data products produced at TERAPIX. The HST COSMOS Treasury program was supported through NASA grant HST-GO-09822.We gratefully acknowledge the contributions of the entire COSMOS collaboration. Based on observations collected, within the COSMOS Legacy Survey, at the HST, Chandra, XMM, Keck, NRAO-VLA, Subaru, KPNO, CTIO, CFHT, and ESO observatories. The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is a facility of the National Science Foundation operated under cooperative agreement by Associated Universities, Inc.
Group:COSMOS, Infrared Processing and Analysis Center (IPAC)
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Max-Planck ForschungspreiseUNSPECIFIED
Agence Nationale pour la Recherche (ANR)ANR-07-BLAN-0228-03
Agence Nationale pour la Recherche (ANR)ANR-08-JCJC-0008
Agenzia Spaziale Italiana (ASI)UNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:galaxies: evolution; galaxies: fundamental parameters; galaxies: ISM; galaxies: luminosity function, mass function; galaxies: statistics; surveys
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20090909-091902540
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Star Formation and Dust Obscuration at z 2: Galaxies at the Dawn of Downsizing M. Pannella, C. L. Carilli, E. Daddi, H. J. McCracken, F. N. Owen, A. Renzini, V. Strazzullo, F. Civano, A. M. Koekemoer, E. Schinnerer, N. Scoville, V. Smolčić, Y. Taniguchi, H. Aussel, J. P. Kneib, O. Ilbert, Y. Mellier, M. Salvato, D. Thompson, and C. J. Willott 2009 ApJ 698 L116-L120 doi: 10.1088/0004-637X/698/2/L116.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:15686
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:10 Sep 2009 16:56
Last Modified:08 Nov 2021 23:21

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