Astrophys. J., 812, 149 (2015/October-3)
Hubble Space Telescope proper motion (HSTPROMO) catalogs of Galactic globular clusters. III. Dynamical distances and mass-to-light ratios.
WATKINS L.L., VAN DER MAREL R.P., BELLINI A. and ANDERSON J.
Abstract (from CDS):
We present dynamical distance estimates for 15 Galactic globular clusters (GCs) and use these to check the consistency of dynamical and photometric distance estimates. For most of the clusters, this is the first dynamical distance estimate ever determined. We extract proper-motion (PM) dispersion profiles using cleaned samples of bright stars from the Hubble Space Telescope PM catalogs recently presented in Bellini et al. and compile a set of line of sight (LOS) velocity-dispersion profiles from a variety of literature sources. Distances are then estimated by fitting spherical, non-rotating, isotropic, constant mass-to-light ratio (M/L) dynamical models to the PM and LOS dispersion profiles together. We compare our dynamical distance estimates with literature photometric estimates from the Harris GC catalog and find that the mean fractional difference between the two types is consistent with zero at just -1.9±1.7%. This indicates that there are no significant biases in either estimation method and provides an important validation of the stellar-evolution theory that underlies photometric distance estimates. The analysis also estimates dynamical M/Ls for our clusters; on average, the dynamically inferred M/Ls agree with existing stellar-population-based M/Ls that assume a Chabrier initial mass function (IMF) to within -8.8±6.4%, implying that such an IMF is consistent with our data. Our results are also consistent with a Kroupa IMF, but strongly rule out a Salpeter IMF. We detect no correlation between our M/L offsets from literature values and our distance offsets from literature values, strongly indicating that our methods are reliable and our results are robust.
globular clusters: general - globular clusters: individual - proper motions - stars: distances - stars: kinematics and dynamics - stars: luminosity function, mass function
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