A Caltech Library Service

A new family of distance indicator relations for elliptical galaxies

de Carvalho, R. R. and Djorgovski, S. (1989) A new family of distance indicator relations for elliptical galaxies. Astrophysical Journal, 341 . L37-L40. ISSN 0004-637X. doi:10.1086/185452.

[img] PDF (ADS) - Published Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


We describe a new family of distance indicator relations for elliptical galaxies. Distance-dependent quantities, i.e., radius or luminosity, are expressed as distance-independent combinations of the mean surface brightness and a color, or any other metallicity indicator. Our preliminary results, based on a somewhat heterogeneous collection of published data, indicate that the typical relative distance errors to individual galaxies derived from new relations are ~25%, and the accuracy of ~15% may be achievable with more homogeneous data sets. This is comparable to the accuracy obtained from the Tully-Fisher and D_n - σ relations. The importance of the new relations is that the necessary data are derived from photometry only and thus can be obtained relatively quickly for large numbers of galaxies. This can lead to a more efficient and detailed mapping of the large-scale velocity field and streaming motions. A preliminary application of the new relations gives for the relative distance modulus between the Virgo and Coma clusters Δ(m-M) = 3.95 ± 0.25, in a good agreement with measurements obtained using other methods. The new relations are interpreted in terms of the “fundamental plane” of elliptical galaxies, and imply the existence of a second parameter in the mass-metallicity relation, identified here as the internal luminosity density.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
de Carvalho, R. R.0000-0002-1283-3363
Djorgovski, S.0000-0002-0603-3087
Additional Information:© 1989 The American Astronomical Society. Provided by the NASA Astrophysics Data System. Received 1989 March 14; accepted 1989 April 3. It is a pleasure to thank J. Huchra, B. Madore, and M. Strauss for their constructive comments. We thank also D. Burstein for sending us the B7S data in a computer-readable form. R. R. dC. was supported by a CNPq fellowship, and California Institute of Technology. S. D. acknowledges a partial support from California Institute of Technology and from Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq)UNSPECIFIED
Alfred P. Sloan FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:galaxies: distances - galaxies: general
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190807-105623193
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:97702
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:07 Aug 2019 18:16
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 17:33

Repository Staff Only: item control page