Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 357, 1337-1347 (2005/March-2)
An Hα survey of cluster galaxies - V. Cluster-field comparison for early-type galaxies.
MOSS C. and WHITTLE M.
Abstract (from CDS):
We have extended our Hα objective prism survey of eight low-redshift clusters (viz. Abell 262, 347, 400, 426, 569, 779, 1367 and 1656) to include a complete sample of early-type galaxies within 1.5 Abell radii of the cluster centres. Of the 379 galaxies surveyed, 3 per cent of E, E-S0 galaxies, 6 per cent of S0 galaxies, and 9 per cent of S0/a galaxies were detected in emission. From a comparison of cluster and supercluster field galaxies, we conclude that the frequency of emission-line galaxies (ELGs; Wλ≥ 20 Å) is similar for field and cluster early-type galaxies. A similar result has previously been obtained for galaxies of types Sa and later. Together, these results confirm the inference of Biviano et al. that the relative frequency of ELGs in clusters and the field can be entirely accounted for by the different mix of morphological types between the differing environments, and that, for galaxies of a given morphological type, the fraction of ELGs is independent of environment. Detected emission is classified as `compact' or `diffuse', identified as circumnuclear starburst or active galactic nucleus (AGN) emission and disc emission, respectively. By comparing spectroscopic data for cluster early-type ELGs with data for field galaxies from the Palomar spectroscopic survey of nearby galactic nuclei, we demonstrate that there is modest evidence for an enhancement of compact HII emission relative to AGN emission in the early-type cluster ELGs as compared to the field. For the cluster early-type galaxies, compact HII emission correlates strongly with a disturbed morphology. This suggests that, as for later-type cluster galaxies, this enhanced compact HII emission can readily be explained as an enhancement of circumnuclear starburst emission due to gravitational tidal interactions, most likely caused by subcluster merging and other on-going processes of cluster virialization.
surveys - galaxies: clusters: general - galaxies: elliptical and lenticular, cD - galaxies: evolution - galaxies: interactions - galaxies: starburst
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<Available at CDS (J/MNRAS/357/1337): table1.dat table2.dat notes.dat>
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