Astrophys. J., 708, 817-833 (2010/January-1)
RR Lyrae variables in M32 and the disk of M31.
FIORENTINO G., MONACHESI A., TRAGER S.C., LAUER T.R., SAHA A., MIGHELL K.J., FREEDMAN W., DRESSLER A., GRILLMAIR C. and TOLSTOY E.
Abstract (from CDS):
We observed two fields near M32 with the Advanced Camera for Surveys/High Resolution Channel (ACS/HRC) on board the Hubble Space Telescope. The main field, F1, is 1'.8 from the center of M32; the second field, F2, constrains the M31 background, and is 5'.4 distant. Each field was observed for 16 orbits in each of the F435W (narrow B) and F555W (narrow V) filters. The duration of the observations allowed RR Lyrae stars to be detected. A population of RR Lyrae stars determined to belong to M32 would prove the existence of an ancient population in that galaxy, a subject of some debate. We detected 17 RR Lyrae variables in F1 and 14 in F2. A 1σ upper limit of 6 RR Lyrae variables belonging to M32 is inferred from these two fields alone. Use of our two ACS/WFC parallel fields provides better constraints on the M31 background, however, and implies that 7+4–3(68% confidence interval) RR Lyrae variables in F1 belong to M32. We have therefore found evidence for an ancient population in M32. It seems to be nearly indistinguishable from the ancient population of M31. The RR Lyrae stars in the F1 and F2 fields have indistinguishable mean V-band magnitudes, mean periods, distributions in the Bailey diagram, and ratios of RRc to RRtotaltypes. However, the color distributions in the two fields are different, with a population of red RRab variables in F1 not seen in F2. We suggest that these might be identified with the detected M32 RR Lyrae population, but the small number of stars rules out a definitive claim.
galaxies: elliptical and lenticular, cD - galaxies: individual (M32, M31) - Local Group - stars: Population II - stars: variables: other
VizieR on-line data:
<Available at CDS (J/ApJ/708/817): table2.dat table3.dat table4.dat>
Fig. 2, Table 2: [FMT2010] F1 NN (Nos F1 1 to F1 17). Fig. 3, Table 3: [FMT2010] F2 NN (Nos F2 1 to F2 14).
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