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Published February 1, 2012 | Published
Journal Article Open

The Assembly of the Red Sequence at z ~ 1: The Color and Spectral Properties of Galaxies in the Cl1604 Supercluster


We investigate the properties of the 525 spectroscopically confirmed members of the Cl1604 supercluster at z ~ 0.9 as part of the Observations of Redshift Evolution in Large Scale Environments survey. In particular, we focus on the photometric, stellar mass, morphological, and spectral properties of the 305 member galaxies of the eight clusters and groups that comprise the Cl1604 supercluster. Using an extensive Keck Low-Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (LRIS)/DEep Imaging Multi-Object Spectrograph (DEIMOS) spectroscopic database in conjunction with ten-band ground-based, Spitzer, and Hubble Space Telescope imaging, we investigate the buildup of the red sequence in groups and clusters at high redshift. Nearly all of the brightest and most massive red-sequence galaxies present in the supercluster environment are found to lie within the bounds of the cluster and group systems, with a surprisingly large number of such galaxies present in low-mass group systems. Despite the prevalence of these red-sequence galaxies, we find that the average cluster galaxy has a spectrum indicative of a star-forming galaxy, with a star formation rate between those of z ~ 1 field galaxies and moderate-redshift cluster galaxies. The average group galaxy is even more active, exhibiting spectral properties indicative of a starburst. The presence of massive, red galaxies and the high fraction of starbursting galaxies present in the group environment suggest that significant processing is occurring in group environments at z ~ 1 and earlier. There is a deficit of low-luminosity red-sequence galaxies in all Cl1604 clusters and groups, suggesting that such galaxies transition to the red sequence at later times. Extremely massive (~10^(12)M_☉) red-sequence galaxies routinely observed in rich clusters at z ~ 0 are also absent from the Cl1604 clusters and groups. We suggest that such galaxies form at later times through merging processes. There are significant populations of transition galaxies at intermediate stellar masses (log(M_*)=10.25-10.75) present in the group and cluster environments, suggesting that this range is important for the buildup of the red-sequence mass function at z ~ 1. Through a comparison of the transitional populations present in the Cl1604 cluster and group systems, we find evidence that massive blue-cloud galaxies are quenched earliest in the most dynamically relaxed systems and at progressively later times in dynamically unrelaxed systems.

Additional Information

© 2012 American Astronomical Society. Received 2011 August 29; accepted 2011 December 7; published 2012 January 5. We thank Jeff Newman and Michael Cooper for guidance with the spec2d reduction pipeline and for the many useful suggestions and modifications necessary to reduce our DEIMOS data. We also thank Adam Stanford, Begoña Ascaso, and an anonymous referee for their careful reading of the manuscript and for several useful suggestions. B.C.L. also thanks both Daisys for being supportive and patient throughout the entire process of this work, even when it was not deserved. We also thank the Keck II support astronomers for their dedication, knowledge, and ability to impart that knowledge to us at even the most unreasonable of hours. Support for this research was provided by the National Science Foundation under grant AST-0907858. In addition, we acknowledge support from program number HST-GO-11003 which 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, Inc., under NASA contract NAS5-26555. Portions of this work are also based in part on observations made with the Spitzer Space Telescope, which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology under a contract with NASA. Support for this work was provided by NASA through an award issued by JPL/Caltech. The spectrographic data presented herein were obtained at the W. M. Keck Observatory, which is operated as a scientific partnership among the California Institute of Technology, the University of California, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The Observatory was made possible by the generous financial support of the W. M. Keck Foundation. We thank the indigenous Hawaiian community for allowing us to be guests on their sacred mountain; we are most fortunate to be able to conduct observations from this site.

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Published - Lemaux2012p17467Astrophys_J.pdf


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