X-shooter Spectroscopy and HST Imaging of 15 Massive Quiescent Galaxies at z ≳ 2 - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles The Astrophysical Journal Year : 2020

X-shooter Spectroscopy and HST Imaging of 15 Massive Quiescent Galaxies at z ≳ 2

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Mikkel Stockmann
  • Function : Author
Sune Toft
  • Function : Author
Anna Gallazzi
  • Function : Author
Stefano Zibetti
  • Function : Author
Christopher J. Conselice
  • Function : Author
Inger Jørgensen
  • Function : Author
Georgios E. Magdis
  • Function : Author
Carlos Gómez-Guijarro
  • Function : Author
Francesco M. Valentino
  • Function : Author
Gabriel B. Brammer
  • Function : Author
Daniel Ceverino
  • Function : Author
Isabella Cortzen
  • Function : Author
Iary Davidzon
  • Function : Author
Richardo Demarco
  • Function : Author
Andreas Faisst
  • Function : Author
Michaela Hirschmann
  • Function : Author
Claudia D. Lagos
  • Function : Author
Allison W. S. Man
  • Function : Author
Carl J. Mundy
  • Function : Author
Yingjie Peng
  • Function : Author
Jonatan Selsing
  • Function : Author
Charles L. Steinhardt
  • Function : Author
Kathrine E. Whitaker
  • Function : Author

Abstract

We present a detailed analysis of a large sample of spectroscopically confirmed massive quiescent galaxies (MQGs; log(M */M ) ∼ 11.5) at z ≳ 2. This sample comprises 15 galaxies selected in the COSMOS and UDS fields by their bright K-band magnitudes and followed up with Very Large Telescope (VLT) X-shooter spectroscopy and Hubble Space Telescope (HST)/WFC3 H F160W imaging. These observations allow us to unambiguously confirm their redshifts, ascertain their quiescent nature and stellar ages, and reliably assess their internal kinematics and effective radii. We find that these galaxies are compact, consistent with the high-mass end of the stellar mass-size relation for quiescent galaxies at z = 2. Moreover, the distribution of the measured stellar velocity dispersions of the sample is consistent with the most massive local early-type galaxies from the MASSIVE Survey, showing that evolution in these galaxies is dominated by changes in size. The HST images reveal, as surprisingly high, that 40% of the sample has tidal features suggestive of mergers and companions in close proximity, including three galaxies experiencing ongoing major mergers. The absence of velocity dispersion evolution from z = 2 to 0, coupled with a doubling of the stellar mass, with a factor of 4 size increase and the observed disturbed stellar morphologies, supports dry minor mergers as the primary drivers of the evolution of the MQGs over the last 10 billion yr.

Dates and versions

insu-03718062 , version 1 (08-07-2022)

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Cite

Mikkel Stockmann, Sune Toft, Anna Gallazzi, Stefano Zibetti, Christopher J. Conselice, et al.. X-shooter Spectroscopy and HST Imaging of 15 Massive Quiescent Galaxies at z ≳ 2. The Astrophysical Journal, 2020, 888, ⟨10.3847/1538-4357/ab5af4⟩. ⟨insu-03718062⟩
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