SIMBAD references

2011MNRAS.412.1627C - Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 412, 1627-1638 (2011/April-2)

Dynamical versus stellar masses of ultracompact dwarf galaxies in the Fornax cluster.


Abstract (from CDS):

The origin of ultracompact dwarf (UCD) galaxies, compact extragalactic stellar systems, is still a puzzle for present galaxy formation models. We present the comprehensive analysis of high-resolution multi-object spectroscopic data for a sample of 24 Fornax cluster UCDs obtained with VLT with Fibre Large Array Multi Element Spectrograph (FLAMES). It comprises previously published data for 19 objects which we re-analysed, including 13 with available Hubble Space Telescope (HST) photometric data. Using Virtual Observatory technologies we found archival HST images for two more UCDs and then determined their structural properties. For all objects we derived internal velocity dispersions, stellar population parameters and stellar mass-to-light ratios (M/L)* by fitting individual simple stellar population (SSP) synthetic spectra convolved with a Gaussian against the observed spectra using the NBURSTS full spectral fitting technique. For 14 objects we estimated dynamical masses suggesting no dark matter (DM) in 12 of them and no more than 40 per cent DM mass fraction in the remaining two, in contrast to findings for several UCDs in the Virgo cluster. Some Fornax UCDs even have too high values of (M/L)* estimated using the Kroupa stellar initial mass function (IMF) resulting in negative formally computed DM mass fractions. The objects with too high (M/L)* ratios compared to the dynamical ones have relatively short dynamical relaxation time-scales, close to the Hubble time or below. We therefore suggest that their lower dynamical ratios (M/L)dyn are caused by low-mass star depletion due to dynamical evolution. Overall, the observed UCD characteristics suggest at least two formation channels: tidal threshing of nucleated dwarf galaxies for massive UCDs ( ≃ 108 M), and a classical scenario of red globular cluster formation for lower-mass UCDs ( ≲ 107 M).

Based on the archival ESO VLT with Fibre Large Array Multi Element Spectrograph (FLAMES) (programme 078.B-0496) available through and Hubble Space Telescope archival data (programmes 8090 and 10129) available through

Abstract Copyright: 2011 The Authors Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society2011 RAS

Journal keyword(s): galaxies: dwarf - galaxies: elliptical and lenticular, cD - galaxies: evolution - galaxies: kinematics and dynamics - galaxies: stellar content

Nomenclature: table 2: [MHJ2008] F-NN N=6 among (Nos 13-62) added.

Simbad objects: 38

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