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Published October 20, 1998 | Published + Submitted
Journal Article Open

Near-Infrared Observations of a Redshift 5.34 Galaxy: Further Evidence for Dust Absorption in the Early Universe


Imaging at 1.25 and 2.20 μm has been obtained of the field containing the galaxy (RD1) found at redshift z=5.34 by Dey et al. This galaxy has been detected at 1.25 μm, while the lower redshift (z=4.02) galaxy also found in the same field by Dey et al. was detected at both 1.25 and 2.20 μm. Comparison to stellar population synthesis models indicates that if RD1 is a young (t<10^8 yr) galaxy, significant reddening (A_V>0.5 mag) is indicated. Combined with observations of other high-redshift systems, these data show that dust is likely to be an important component of young galaxies even at redshifts of z>5. The extinction-corrected monochromatic luminosity of RD1 at 1500 Å is then a factor of about 3 larger than L^*_(1500) as determined by Dickinson for z~3 starburst galaxies. The implied star formation rate in RD1, corrected for extinction, is ~50-100 h^(−2)_(50) M_☉ yr^(-1).

Additional Information

© 1998. The American Astronomical Society. Received 7 April 1998. Accepted 17 June 1998. Published 9 September 1998. We thank R. Goodrich for assistance with the observations and S. E. Persson for providing photometric standards in advance of publication. Discussions with Daniela Calzetti, Arjun Dey, Tim Heckman, and David Hogg are greatly appreciated. Mike Pahre provided us with the Keck I-band filter and CCD response curves, and we thank him for that. We also would like to thank the referee, Hy Spinrad, for a critical reading of the manuscript and a number of valuable suggestions. The W. M. Keck Observatory is operated as a scientific partnership between the California Institute of Technology, the University of California, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. It was made possible by the generous financial support of the W. M. Keck Foundation. Infrared astronomy at Caltech is supported by grants from the NSF and NASA. This research has made use of the NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database, which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech, under contract with NASA.

Attached Files

Published - Armus_1998_ApJ_506_L89.pdf

Submitted - 9806243.pdf


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