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Published May 21, 2013 | Published + Accepted Version
Journal Article Open

The Herschel census of infrared SEDs through cosmic time


Using Herschel data from the deepest SPIRE and PACS surveys (HerMES and PEP) in COSMOS, GOODS-S and GOODS-N, we examine the dust properties of infrared (IR)-luminous (L_IR > 10^10 L_⊙) galaxies at 0.1 < z < 2 and determine how these evolve with cosmic time. The unique angle of this work is the rigorous analysis of survey selection effects, making this the first study of the star-formation-dominated, IR-luminous population within a framework almost entirely free of selection biases. We find that IR-luminous galaxies have spectral energy distributions (SEDs) with broad far-IR peaks characterized by cool/extended dust emission and average dust temperatures in the 25–45 K range. Hot (T > 45 K) SEDs and cold (T < 25 K), cirrus-dominated SEDs are rare, with most sources being within the range occupied by warm starbursts such as M82 and cool spirals such as M51. We observe a luminosity–temperature (L-T) relation, where the average dust temperature of log [L_IR/L_⊙] ∼ 12.5 galaxies is about 10 K higher than that of their log [L_IR/L_⊙] ∼ 10.5 counterparts. However, although the increased dust heating in more luminous systems is the driving factor behind the L-T relation, the increase in dust mass and/or starburst size with luminosity plays a dominant role in shaping it. Our results show that the dust conditions in IR-luminous sources evolve with cosmic time: at high redshift, dust temperatures are on average up to 10 K lower than what is measured locally (z ≲ 0.1). This is manifested as a flattening of the L-T relation, suggesting that (ultra)luminous infrared galaxies [(U)LIRGs] in the early Universe are typically characterized by a more extended dust distribution and/or higher dust masses than local equivalent sources. Interestingly, the evolution in dust temperature is luminosity dependent, with the fraction of LIRGs with T < 35 K showing a two-fold increase from z ∼ 0 to z ∼ 2, whereas that of ULIRGs with T < 35 K shows a six-fold increase. Our results suggest a greater diversity in the IR-luminous population at high redshift, particularly for ULIRGs.

Additional Information

© 2013 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. Accepted 2013 February 19. Received 2013 February 4; in original form 2012 October 21. First published online: April 1, 2013. Herschel is an ESA space observatory with science instruments provided by European-led Principal Investigator consortia and with important participation from NASA. This paper uses data from Herschel's photometers SPIRE and PACS. SPIRE has been developed by a consortium of institutes led by Cardiff Univ. (UK) and including: Univ. Lethbridge (Canada); NAOC (China); CEA, LAM (France); IFSI, Univ. Padua (Italy); IAC (Spain); Stockholm Observatory (Sweden); Imperial College London, RAL, UCL-MSSL, UKATC, Univ. Sussex (UK); and Caltech, JPL, NHSC, Univ. Colorado (USA). This development has been supported by national funding agencies: CSA (Canada); NAOC (China); CEA, CNES, CNRS (France); ASI (Italy); MCINN (Spain); SNSB (Sweden); STFC, UKSA (UK); and NASA (USA). PACS has been developed by a consortium of institutes led by MPE (Germany) and including UVIE (Austria); KU Leuven, CSL, IMEC (Belgium); CEA, LAM (France); MPIA (Germany); INAFIFSI/OAA/OAP/OAT, LENS, SISSA (Italy); IAC (Spain). This development has been supported by the funding agencies BMVIT (Austria), ESA-PRODEX (Belgium), CEA/CNES (France), DLR (Germany), ASI/INAF (Italy), and CICYT/MCYT (Spain).

Attached Files

Published - MNRAS-2013-Symeonidis-2317-40.pdf

Accepted Version - 1302.4895.pdf


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