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          Institute: MPI für Astronomie     Collection: Publikationen_mpia     Display Documents

ID: 730007.0, MPI für Astronomie / Publikationen_mpia
A direct constraint on the gas content of a massive, passively evolving elliptical galaxy at z = 1.43
Authors:Sargent, M. T.; Daddi, E.; Bournaud, F.; Onodera, M.; Feruglio, C.; Martig, M.; Gobat, R.; Dannerbauer, H.; Schinnerer, E.
Date of Publication (YYYY-MM-DD):2015
Title of Journal:The Astrophysical Journal Letters
Issue / Number:1
Start Page:id. L20 (6 pp)
Audience:Not Specified
Abstract / Description:Gas and dust in star-forming galaxies at the peak epoch of galaxy assembly are presently the topic of intense study, but little is known about the interstellar medium (ISM) of distant, passively evolving galaxies. We report on a deep 3 mm band search with the IRAM/Plateau de Bure Interferometer for molecular (H2) gas in a massive ({{M}\star } ˜ 6 × 1011 {{M}}) elliptical galaxy at z = 1.4277, the first observation of this kind ever attempted. We place a 3σ upper limit of 0.32 Jy km s-1 on the flux of the CO(J = 2 \to 1) line or LCO^{\prime } < 8.8 × 109 K km s-1 pc2, assuming a disklike CO-morphology and a circular velocity scaling with the stellar velocity dispersion as in local early-type galaxies (ETGs). This translates to an H2 mass of <3.9 × 1010 ({{α }CO}/4.4) {{M}} or a gas fraction of ≲6% assuming a Salpeter initial mass function and an ISM dominated by H2, as observed in many local, high-mass ellipticals. This low value approaches that of local ETGs, suggesting that the low star formation activity in massive, high-z passive galaxies reflects a true dearth of gas and a lesser role for inhibitive mechanisms like morphological quenching. Based on observations with the Plateau de Bure Interferometer (PdBI), operated by the Institute for Radio Astronomy in the Millimeter range (IRAM), funded by a partnership of INSU/CNRS (France), MPG (Germany) and IGN (Spain).
Free Keywords:cosmology: observations; galaxies: elliptical and lenticular; cD; galaxies: evolution; galaxies: ISM; ISM: molecules
External Publication Status:published
Document Type:Article
Communicated by:N. N.
Affiliations:MPI für Astronomie
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