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|The Southern Sky Redshift Survey|
We report redshifts, magnitudes, and morphological classifications for5369 galaxies with m_B <= 15.5 and for 57 galaxies fainter than thislimit, in two regions covering a total of 1.70 sr in the southerncelestial hemisphere. The galaxy catalog is drawn primarily from thelist of nonstellar objects identified in the Hubble Space TelescopeGuide Star Catalog (GSC). The galaxies have positions accurate to ~1"and magnitudes with an rms scatter of ~0.3 mag. We compute magnitudes(m_SSRS2) from the relation between instrumental GSC magnitudes and thephotometry by Lauberts & Valentijn. From a comparison with CCDphotometry, we find that our system is homogeneous across the sky andcorresponds to magnitudes measured at the isophotal level ~26 magarcsec^-2. The precision of the radial velocities is ~40 km s^-1, andthe redshift survey is more than 99% complete to the m_SSRS2 = 15.5 maglimit. This sample is in the direction opposite that of the CfA2; incombination the two surveys provide an important database for studies ofthe properties of galaxies and their large-scale distribution in thenearby universe. Based on observations obtained at Cerro TololoInter-American Observatory, National Optical Astronomy Observatories,operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy,Inc., under cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation;Complejo Astronomico El Leoncito, operated under agreement between theConsejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas de laRepública Argentina and the National Universities of La Plata,Córdoba, and San Juan; the European Southern Observatory, LaSilla, Chile, partially under the bilateral ESO-ObservatórioNacional agreement; Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory;Laboratório Nacional de Astrofísica, Brazil; and the SouthAfrican Astronomical Observatory.
|Properties of Very Luminous Galaxies|
Recent analysis of the data from the Southern Sky Redshift Surveyextension (SSRS2) based on cell counts and the two-point correlationfunction has shown that very luminous galaxies are much more stronglyclustered than fainter galaxies. In fact, the amplitude of thecorrelation function of very luminous galaxies (L > L^*)asymptotically approaches that of R >= 0 clusters. In this paper weinvestigate the properties of the most luminous galaxies, with blueabsolute magnitudes M_B <= -21. We find that (1) the population mixis comparable to that in other ranges of absolute magnitude; (2) only asmall fraction are located in bona fide clusters; (3) the brightgalaxy-cluster cross-correlation function is significantly higher onlarge scales than that measured for fainter galaxies; (4) thecorrelation length of galaxies brighter than M_B ~ -20.0, expressed as afunction of the mean interparticle distance, appears to follow theuniversal dimensionless correlation function found for clusters andradio galaxies; (5) a large fraction of the bright galaxies are ininteracting pairs, while others show evidence for tidal distortions andsome appear to be surrounded by faint satellite galaxies. We concludethat very luminous optical galaxies differ from the normal population ofgalaxies in both clustering and other respects. We speculate that thispopulation is a highly biased tracer of mass, being associated with darkhalos with masses more comparable to clusters than to typical loosegroups.
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