Bar-induced central star formation as revealed by integral field spectroscopy from CALIFA.
LIN L., LI C., HE Y., XIAO T. and WANG E.
Abstract (from CDS):
We investigate the recent star formation history (SFH) in the inner region of 57 nearly face-on spiral galaxies selected from the Calar Alto Legacy Integral Field Area (CALIFA) survey. For each galaxy, we use the integral field spectroscopy from CALIFA to obtain two-dimensional maps and radial profiles of three parameters that are sensitive indicators of the recent SFH: the 4000 Å break (Dn(4000)), and the equivalent width of Hδ absorption (EW(HδA)) and Hα emission (EW(Hα)). We have also performed photometric decomposition of bulge/bar/disk components based on SDSS optical image. We identify a class of 17 "turnover" galaxies for which the central region presents a significant drop in Dn(4000), and most of them correspondingly show a central upturn in EW(HδA) and EW(Hα). This indicates that the central region of the turnover galaxies has experienced star formation in the past 1-2 Gyr, which makes the bulge younger and more star-forming than surrounding regions. We find that almost all (15/17) of the turnover galaxies are barred, while only half of the barred galaxies in our sample (15/32) are classified as a turnover galaxies. This finding provides strong evidence in support of the theoretical expectation that the bar may drive gas from the disk inward to trigger star formation in the galaxy center, an important channel for the growth/rejuvenation of pseudobulges in disk galaxies.