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 Stellar kinematics and populations of early-type galaxies with the SAURON and OASIS integral-field spectrographsWe summarise the results and achievements of integral-field spectroscopyof early-type galaxies, observed as part of a survey using both theSAURON and OASIS spectrographs. From the perspective of integral-fieldspectroscopy, these otherwise smooth and featureless objects show awealth of structure, both in their stellar kinematics and populations.We focus on the stellar content, and examine properties on bothkiloparsec scales with SAURON, and scales of 100’s of parsecs withOASIS. These complementary studies reveal two types of kinematicallydistinct components (KDCs), differing primarily in their intrinsicsizes. In previous studies, KDCs and their host galaxies have generallybeen found to be unremarkable in other aspects. We show that large KDCs,typical of the well-studied cases, indeed show little or no agedifferences with their host galaxy. The KDCs detected with the higherspatial-resolution of OASIS are intrinsically smaller and include, incontrast, a significant fraction of young stars. We speculate on therelationship between KDCs and their host galaxies, and the implicationsfor young populations in early-type galaxies. The SAURON project - VI. Line strength maps of 48 elliptical and lenticular galaxiesWe present absorption line strength maps of 48 representative ellipticaland lenticular galaxies obtained as part of a survey of nearby galaxiesusing our custom-built integral-field spectrograph, SAURON, operating onthe William Herschel Telescope. Using high-quality spectra, spatiallybinned to a constant signal-to-noise ratio, we measure four key age,metallicity and abundance ratio sensitive indices from the Lick/IDSsystem over a two-dimensional field extending up to approximately oneeffective radius. A discussion of calibrations and offsets is given,along with a description of error estimation and nebular emissioncorrection. We modify the classical Fe5270 index to define a new index,Fe5270S, which maximizes the useable spatial coverage ofSAURON. Maps of Hβ, Fe5015, Mgb and Fe5270S arepresented for each galaxy. We use the maps to compute average linestrengths integrated over circular apertures of one-eighth effectiveradius, and compare the resulting relations of index versus velocitydispersion with previous long-slit work. The metal line strength mapsshow generally negative gradients with increasing radius roughlyconsistent with the morphology of the light profiles. Remarkabledeviations from this general trend exist, particularly the Mgb isoindexcontours appear to be flatter than the isophotes of the surfacebrightness for about 40 per cent of our galaxies without significantdust features. Generally, these galaxies exhibit significant rotation.We infer from this that the fast-rotating component features a highermetallicity and/or an increased Mg/Fe ratio as compared to the galaxy asa whole. The Hβ maps are typically flat or show a mild positiveoutwards radial gradient, while a few galaxies show strong central peaksand/or elevated overall Hβ strength likely connected to recent starformation activity. For the most prominent post-starburst galaxies, eventhe metal line strength maps show a reversed gradient. The SAURON project - V. Integral-field emission-line kinematics of 48 elliptical and lenticular galaxiesWe present the emission-line fluxes and kinematics of 48 representativeelliptical and lenticular galaxies obtained with our custom-builtintegral-field spectrograph, SAURON, operating on the William HerschelTelescope. Hβ, [OIII]λλ4959,5007 and[NI]λλ5198,5200 emission lines were measured using a newprocedure that simultaneously fits both the stellar spectrum and theemission lines. Using this technique we can detect emission lines downto an equivalent width of 0.1 Å set by the current limitations indescribing galaxy spectra with synthetic and real stellar templates,rather than by the quality of our spectra. Gas velocities and velocitydispersions are typically accurate to within 14 and 20 kms-1, respectively, and at worse to within 25 and 40 kms-1. The errors on the flux of the [OIII] and Hβ linesare on average 10 and 20 per cent, respectively, and never exceed 30 percent. Emission is clearly detected in 75 per cent of our samplegalaxies, and comes in a variety of resolved spatial distributions andkinematic behaviours. A mild dependence on the Hubble type and galacticenvironment is observed, with higher detection rates in lenticulargalaxies and field objects. More significant is the fact that only 55per cent of the galaxies in the Virgo cluster exhibit clearly detectedemission. The ionized-gas kinematics is rarely consistent with simplecoplanar circular motions. However, the gas almost never displayscompletely irregular kinematics, generally showing coherent motions withsmooth variations in angular momentum. In the majority of the cases, thegas kinematics is decoupled from the stellar kinematics, and in half ofthe objects this decoupling implies a recent acquisition of gaseousmaterial. Over the entire sample however, the distribution of the meanmisalignment values between stellar and gaseous angular momenta isinconsistent with a purely external origin. The distribution ofkinematic misalignment values is found to be strongly dependent on theapparent flattening and the level of rotational support of galaxies,with flatter, fast rotating objects hosting preferentially corotatinggaseous and stellar systems. In a third of the cases, the distributionand kinematics of the gas underscore the presence of non-axisymmetricperturbations of the gravitational potential. Consistent with previousstudies, the presence of dust features is always accompanied by gasemission while the converse is not always true. A considerable range ofvalues for the [OIII]/Hβ ratio is found both across the sample andwithin single galaxies. Despite the limitations of this ratio as anemission-line diagnostic, this finding suggests either that a variety ofmechanisms is responsible for the gas excitation in E and S0 galaxies orthat the metallicity of the interstellar material is quiteheterogeneous. The SAURON project - IV. The mass-to-light ratio, the virial mass estimator and the Fundamental Plane of elliptical and lenticular galaxiesWe investigate the well-known correlations between the dynamicalmass-to-light ratio (M/L) and other global observables of elliptical (E)and lenticular (S0) galaxies. We construct two-integral Jeans andthree-integral Schwarzschild dynamical models for a sample of 25 E/S0galaxies with SAURON integral-field stellar kinematics to about oneeffective (half-light) radius Re. They have well-calibratedI-band Hubble Space Telescope WFPC2 and large-field ground-basedphotometry, accurate surface brightness fluctuation distances, and theirobserved kinematics is consistent with an axisymmetric intrinsic shape.All these factors result in an unprecedented accuracy in the M/Lmeasurements. We find a tight correlation of the form (M/L) = (3.80 +/-0.14) ×(σe/200kms-1)0.84+/-0.07 betweenthe M/L (in the I band) measured from the dynamical models and theluminosity-weighted second moment σe of the LOSVDwithin Re. The observed rms scatter in M/L for our sample is18 per cent, while the inferred intrinsic scatter is ~13 per cent. The(M/L)-σe relation can be included in the remarkableseries of tight correlations between σe and othergalaxy global observables. The comparison of the observed correlationswith the predictions of the Fundamental Plane (FP), and with simplevirial estimates, shows that the tilt' of the FP of early-typegalaxies, describing the deviation of the FP from the virial relation,is almost exclusively due to a real M/L variation, while structural andorbital non-homology have a negligible effect. When the photometricparameters are determined in the classic' way, using growth curves, andthe σe is measured in a large aperture, the virial massappears to be a reliable estimator of the mass in the central regions ofgalaxies, and can be safely used where more expensive' models are notfeasible (e.g. in high-redshift studies). In this case the best-fittingvirial relation has the form (M/L)vir= (5.0 +/- 0.1)×Reσ2e/(LG), in reasonableagreement with simple theoretical predictions. We find no differencebetween the M/L of the galaxies in clusters and in the field. Thecomparison of the dynamical M/L with the (M/L)pop inferredfrom the analysis of the stellar population, indicates a median darkmatter fraction in early-type galaxies of ~30 per cent of the total massinside one Re, in broad agreement with previous studies, andit also shows that the stellar initial mass function varies little amongdifferent galaxies. Our results suggest a variation in M/L at constant(M/L)pop, which seems to be linked to the galaxy dynamics. Wespeculate that fast-rotating galaxies have lower dark matter fractionsthan the slow-rotating and generally more-massive ones. If correct, thiswould suggest a connection between the galaxy assembly history and thedark matter halo structure. The tightness of our correlation providessome evidence against cuspy nuclear dark matter profiles in galaxies. The ACS Virgo Cluster Survey. VIII. The Nuclei of Early-Type GalaxiesThe ACS Virgo Cluster Survey is a Hubble Space Telescope program toobtain high-resolution imaging in widely separated bandpasses (F475W~gand F850LP~z) for 100 early-type members of the Virgo Cluster, spanninga range of ~460 in blue luminosity. We use this large, homogenous dataset to examine the innermost structure of these galaxies and tocharacterize the properties of their compact central nuclei. We presenta sharp upward revision in the frequency of nucleation in early-typegalaxies brighter than MB~-15 (66%<~fn<~82%)and show that ground-based surveys underestimated the number of nucleidue to surface brightness selection effects, limited sensitivity andpoor spatial resolution. We speculate that previously reported claimsthat nucleated dwarfs are more concentrated toward the center of Virgothan their nonnucleated counterparts may be an artifact of theseselection effects. There is no clear evidence from the properties of thenuclei, or from the overall incidence of nucleation, for a change atMB~-17.6, the traditional dividing point between dwarf andgiant galaxies. There does, however, appear to be a fundamentaltransition at MB~-20.5, in the sense that the brighter,core-Sérsic'' galaxies lack resolved (stellar) nuclei. A searchfor nuclei that may be offset from the photocenters of their hostgalaxies reveals only five candidates with displacements of more than0.5", all of which are in dwarf galaxies. In each case, however, theevidence suggests that these nuclei'' are, in fact, globular clustersprojected close to the galaxy photocenter. Working from a sample of 51galaxies with prominent nuclei, we find a median half-light radius of=4.2 pc, with the sizes of individual nucleiranging from 62 pc down to <=2 pc (i.e., unresolved in our images) inabout a half-dozen cases. Excluding these unresolved objects, the nucleisizes are found to depend on nuclear luminosity according to therelation rh L0.50+/-0.03. Because the largemajority of nuclei are resolved, we can rule out low-level AGNs as anexplanation for the central luminosity excess in almost all cases. Onaverage, the nuclei are ~3.5 mag brighter than a typical globularcluster. Based on their broadband colors, the nuclei appear to have oldto intermediate age stellar populations. The colors of the nuclei ingalaxies fainter than MB~-17.6 are tightly correlated withtheir luminosities, and less so with the luminosities of their hostgalaxies, suggesting that their chemical enrichment histories weregoverned by local or internal factors. Comparing the nuclei to thenuclear clusters'' found in late-type spiral galaxies reveals a closematch in terms of size, luminosity, and overall frequency. A formationmechanism that is rather insensitive to the detailed properties of thehost galaxy properties is required to explain this ubiquity andhomogeneity. The mean of the frequency function for thenucleus-to-galaxy luminosity ratio in our nucleated galaxies,=-2.49+/-0.09 dex (σ=0.59+/-0.10), isindistinguishable from that of the SBH-to-bulge mass ratio,=-2.61+/-0.07dex (σ=0.45+/-0.09), calculated in 23 early-type galaxies withdetected supermassive black holes (SBHs). We argue that the compactstellar nuclei found in many of our program galaxies are the low-masscounterparts of the SBHs detected in the bright galaxies. If thisinterpretation is correct, then one should think in terms of centralmassive objects''-either SBHs or compact stellar nuclei-that accompanythe formation of almost all early-type galaxies and contain a meanfraction ~0.3% of the total bulge mass. In this view, SBHs would be thedominant formation mode above MB~-20.5.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASAcontract NAS5-26555. Spitzer IRS spectra of Virgo Early-Type Galaxies: Detection of Stellar Silicate EmissionWe present high signal-to-noise ratio Spitzer Infrared Spectrographobservations of 17 Virgo early-type galaxies. The galaxies were selectedfrom those that define the color-magnitude relation of the cluster, withthe aim of detecting the silicate emission of their dusty, mass-losingevolved stars. To flux calibrate these extended sources, we have deviseda new procedure that allows us to obtain the intrinsic spectral energydistribution and to disentangle resolved and unresolved emission withinthe same object. We have found that 13 objects of the sample (76%) arepassively evolving galaxies with a pronounced broad silicate featurethat is spatially extended and likely of stellar origin, in agreementwith model predictions. The other four objects (24%) are characterizedby different levels of activity. In NGC 4486 (M87), the line emissionand the broad silicate emission are evidently unresolved, and, givenalso the typical shape of the continuum, they likely originate in thenuclear torus. NGC 4636 shows emission lines superposed on extended(i.e., stellar) silicate emission, thus pushing the percentage ofgalaxies with silicate emission to 82%. Finally, NGC 4550 and NGC 4435are characterized by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) and lineemission, arising from a central unresolved region. A more detailedanalysis of our sample, with updated models, will be presented in aforthcoming paper. The ACS Virgo Cluster Survey. XI. The Nature of Diffuse Star Clusters in Early-Type GalaxiesWe use HST ACS imaging of 100 early-type galaxies in the ACS VirgoCluster Survey to investigate the nature of diffuse star clusters(DSCs). Compared to globular clusters (GCs), these star clusters havelow luminosities (MV>-8) and a broad distribution of sizes(320 magarcsec-2). The median colors of diffuse star cluster systems(1.1 The ACS Virgo Cluster Survey. IX. The Color Distributions of Globular Cluster Systems in Early-Type GalaxiesWe present the color distributions of globular cluster (GC) systems for100 early-type galaxies observed in the ACS Virgo Cluster Survey, thedeepest and most homogeneous survey of this kind to date. On average,galaxies at all luminosities in our study (-22 First Results from SAPAC: Toward a Three-dimensional Picture of the Fornax Cluster CoreA sophisticated surface brightness fluctuation (SBF) analysis packagehas been developed, designed to measure distances of early-type galaxiesby means of SBFs of unresolved stars. This suite of programs, calledSAPAC, is made readily available to the astronomical community forextensive testing, with the long-term goal of providing the necessarytools for systematic distance surveys of early-type galaxies usingmodern optical/near-IR telescopes equipped with wide-field cameras. Wediscuss the technical and scientific concepts of SAPAC and demonstrateits capabilities by analyzing deep B- and R-band CCD images of 10 dwarfelliptical galaxy candidates in the Fornax Cluster obtained with FORS1at the Very Large Telescope. All candidates are confirmed as clustermembers. We then turn our attention to the innermost region of theFornax Cluster. A total of 29 early-type galaxies closer than threecluster core radii (2deg) to the central galaxy NGC 1399 haveradial velocities and SBF distances. Their Hubble diagram exhibits apronounced S-shaped infall pattern, suggesting that Fornax is still inthe process of formation during the present epoch through a generalcollapse and possible accretion of distinct groups of galaxies. Fromfitting a model we estimate the cluster mass within 720 kpc projecteddistance of NGC 1399 to be 2.3+/-0.3×1014Msolar. The associated collapse time istcoll=2.9+1.6-0.9 Gyr. After cleansing our galaxy sample of afew kinematical outliers, the true distance of the Fornax Cluster coreis determined at 20.13+/-0.40 Mpc [(m-M)0=31.51+/-0.04 mag].Applying a bootstrap resampling technique on the distance distributionwith individual distance errors taken into account further reveals asmall intrinsic cluster depth of σint=0.74+0.52-0.74Mpc, in best agreement with the cluster's linear extension in the sky:σR.A.=σdecl.~0.5 Mpc. We conclude thatthe early-type galaxy population in the Fornax Cluster must be spatiallywell constrained, with no evidence of elongation along the line ofsight, in contrast to the Virgo Cluster. Moreover, we find marginalevidence for substructure, a result that is consistent with the youngevolutionary state of the cluster and the overall galaxy infall.Combining the kinematically defined cluster distance with the meancosmological velocity for the central cluster galaxy sample yields aHubble constant of H0=63+/-5 km s-1Mpc-1.Based on observations collected at the ESO Very Large Telescope, underprogram ESO 68.A-0176. The X-ray emission properties and the dichotomy in the central stellar cusp shapes of early-type galaxiesThe Hubble Space Telescope has revealed a dichotomy in the centralsurface brightness profiles of early-type galaxies, which havesubsequently been grouped into two families: core, boxy, anisotropicsystems; and cuspy (power-law'), discy, rotating ones. Here weinvestigate whether a dichotomy is also present in the X-ray propertiesof the two families. We consider both their total soft emission(LSX,tot), which is a measure of the galactic hot gascontent, and their nuclear hard emission (LHX,nuc), mostlycoming from Chandra observations, which is a measure of the nuclearactivity. At any optical luminosity, the highest LSX,totvalues are reached by core galaxies; this is explained by their beingthe central dominant galaxies of groups, subclusters or clusters, inmany of the logLSX,tot (ergs-1) >~ 41.5 cases.The highest LHX,nuc values, similar to those of classicalactive galactic nuclei (AGNs), in this sample are hosted only by core orintermediate galaxies; at low luminosity AGN levels, LHX,nucis independent of the central stellar profile shape. The presence ofoptical nuclei (also found by HST) is unrelated to the level ofLHX,nuc, even though the highest LHX,nuc are allassociated with optical nuclei. The implications of these findings forgalaxy evolution and accretion modalities at the present epoch arediscussed. The ACS Virgo Cluster Survey. X. Half-Light Radii of Globular Clusters in Early-Type Galaxies: Environmental Dependencies and a Standard Ruler for Distance EstimationWe have measured half-light radii, rh, for thousands ofglobular clusters (GCs) belonging to the 100 early-type galaxiesobserved in the ACS Virgo Cluster Survey and the elliptical galaxy NGC4697. An analysis of the dependencies of the measured half-light radiion both the properties of the GCs themselves and their host galaxiesreveals that, in analogy with GCs in the Galaxy but in a milder fashion,the average half-light radius increases with increasing galactocentricdistance or, alternatively, with decreasing galaxy surface brightness.For the first time, we find that the average half-light radius decreaseswith the host galaxy color. We also show that there is no evidence for avariation of rh with the luminosity of the GCs. Finally, wefind in agreement with previous observations that the averagerh depends on the color of GCs, with red GCs being ~17%smaller than their blue counterparts. We show that this difference isprobably a consequence of an intrinsic mechanism, rather than projectioneffects, and that it is in good agreement with the mechanism proposed byJordán. We discuss these findings in light of two simple picturesfor the origin of the rh of GCs and show that both lead to abehavior in rough agreement with the observations. After accounting forthe dependencies on galaxy color, galactocentric radius, and underlyingsurface brightness, we show that the average GC half-light radii can be successfully used as a standard ruler fordistance estimation. We outline the methodology, provide a calibrationfor its use, and discuss the prospects for this distance estimator withfuture observing facilities. We find =2.7+/-0.35 pcfor GCs with (g-z)=1.2 mag in a galaxy with color(g-z)gal=1.5 mag and at an underlying surface z-bandbrightness of μz=21 mag arcsec-2. Using thistechnique, we place an upper limit of 3.4 Mpc on the 1 σline-of-sight depth of the Virgo Cluster. Finally, we examine the formof the rh distribution for our sample galaxies and provide ananalytic expression that successfully describes this distribution.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASAcontract NAS 5-26555. The Centers of Early-Type Galaxies with Hubble Space Telescope. V. New WFPC2 PhotometryWe present observations of 77 early-type galaxies imaged with the PC1CCD of the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) WFPC2. Nuker-law'' parametricfits to the surface brightness profiles are used to classify the centralstructure into core'' or power-law'' forms. Core galaxies aretypically rounder than power-law galaxies. Nearly all power-law galaxieswith central ellipticities ɛ>=0.3 have stellar disks,implying that disks are present in power-law galaxies withɛ<0.3 but are not visible because of unfavorable geometry. Afew low-luminosity flattened core galaxies also have disks; these may betransition forms from power-law galaxies to more luminous core galaxies,which lack disks. Several core galaxies have strong isophote twistsinterior to their break radii, although power-law galaxies have interiortwists of similar physical significance when the photometricperturbations implied by the twists are evaluated. Central colorgradients are typically consistent with the envelope gradients; coregalaxies have somewhat weaker color gradients than power-law galaxies.Nuclei are found in 29% of the core galaxies and 60% of the power-lawgalaxies. Nuclei are typically bluer than the surrounding galaxy. Whilesome nuclei are associated with active galactic nuclei (AGNs), just asmany are not; conversely, not all galaxies known to have a low-level AGNexhibit detectable nuclei in the broadband filters. NGC 4073 and 4382are found to have central minima in their intrinsic starlightdistributions; NGC 4382 resembles the double nucleus of M31. In general,the peak brightness location is coincident with the photocenter of thecore to a typical physical scale of <1 pc. Five galaxies, however,have centers significantly displaced from their surrounding cores; thesemay be unresolved asymmetric double nuclei. Finally, as noted byprevious authors, central dust is visible in about half of the galaxies.The presence and strength of dust correlates with nuclear emission;thus, dust may outline gas that is falling into the central black hole.The prevalence of dust and its morphology suggest that dust clouds form,settle to the center, and disappear repeatedly on ~108 yrtimescales. We discuss the hypothesis that cores are created by thedecay of a massive black hole binary formed in a merger. Apart fromtheir brightness profiles, there are no strong differences between coregalaxies and power-law galaxies that demand this scenario; however, therounder shapes of core, their lack of disks, and their reduced colorgradients may be consistent with it.Based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope,obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated bythe Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA), Inc.,under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. These observations are associated withGO and GTO proposals 5236, 5446, 5454, 5512, 5943, 5990, 5999, 6099,6386, 6554, 6587, 6633, 7468, 8683, and 9107. Near infra-red and optical colour gradients in E-type galaxies. Inferences on dust contentColour gradients are considered for a sample of circa 50 E-type galaxiesin the Local Supercluster. The new data includes isophotal colourprofiles in J-H, J-K, V-J and V-K, measured using 2MASS frames mostlyfrom the Large Galaxies Atlas, V frames from previous work and Vprofiles from the literature. This is supplemented by U-B, B-V, B-R, V-Icolour gradients obtained anew from published photometric data. Colourgradients in E galaxies show remarkably large variations from object toobject and do not correlate with other properties. Metallicity gradientsare the primary cause as shown before. Age gradients with oppositeeffects are possibly needed to explain objects with small colourgradients. Some empirical evidence of such age effects has been foundfor a subset of objects with morphological peculiarities and youngerstars mixed. Dust has only modest effects on colour gradients, as shownby the fact that objects with zero IRAS 100 μ flux have the sameaverage values of the gradients, except in V-J and V-K, as those withnon zero flux (cf. Table 7). This last subsample however exhibits poorbut definite correlations between IRAS flux and gradients, which mightbe caused by the presence of a few relatively dusty galaxies in thesample. Given the absence of a correlation between any gradients andgalaxy velocity dispersion (and hence mass), the observations do notagree with the predictions of the monolithic scenario for the formationof E galaxies. Simulated datasets of “dummy” objectsmimicking the hierarchical scenario have been obtained, and used to testa technique for estimating the dust content of E-galaxies from thecomparison of the V-K (or V-J) colour gradients with the U-B (or B-V)ones: the contents of diffuse dust, gauged in terms of published models,are obtained for a dozen objects. Nuclear activity and the dynamics of elliptical galaxiesThis Letter looks for any correlation between the internal dynamics ofelliptical galaxies and the relatively mild nuclear activity found inmany such systems. We show that there is such a relation in the sensethat the active ellipticals tend to be significantly less rotationallysupported than their inactive cousins. The correlation can partly berelated to the galaxies' luminosities: the brightest galaxies tend to bemore active and less rotationally supported. However, even at lowerluminosities the active and inactive galaxies seem to havesystematically different dynamics. This variation suggests that thereare significant large-scale structural differences between active andinactive elliptical galaxies, and hence that the existence of both typesof system cannot just be the result of random sporadic nuclear activity. The SAURON project - III. Integral-field absorption-line kinematics of 48 elliptical and lenticular galaxiesWe present the stellar kinematics of 48 representative elliptical andlenticular galaxies obtained with our custom-built integral-fieldspectrograph SAURON operating on the William Herschel Telescope. Thedata were homogeneously processed through a dedicated reduction andanalysis pipeline. All resulting SAURON data cubes were spatially binnedto a constant minimum signal-to-noise ratio. We have measured thestellar kinematics with an optimized (penalized pixel-fitting) routinewhich fits the spectra in pixel space, via the use of optimal templates,and prevents the presence of emission lines to affect the measurements.We have thus generated maps of the mean stellar velocity V, the velocitydispersion σ, and the Gauss-Hermite moments h3 andh4 of the line-of-sight velocity distributions. The mapsextend to approximately one effective radius. Many objects displaykinematic twists, kinematically decoupled components, central stellardiscs, and other peculiarities, the nature of which will be discussed infuture papers of this series. The relationship between the Sérsic law profiles measured along the major and minor axes of elliptical galaxiesIn this paper we discuss the reason why the parameters of theSérsic model best-fitting the major axis light profile ofelliptical galaxies can differ significantly from those derived for theminor axis profile. We show that this discrepancy is a naturalconsequence of the fact that the isophote eccentricity varies with theradius of the isophote and present a mathematical transformation thatallows the minor axis Sérsic model to be calculated from themajor axis model, provided that the elliptical isophotes are aligned andconcentric and that their eccentricity can be represented by a wellbehaved, though quite general, function of the radius. When there is novariation in eccentricity only the effective radius changes in theSérsic model, while for radial-dependent eccentricity thetransformation, which allows the minor axis Sérsic model to becalculated from the major axis model is given by the Lerch Φtranscendental function. The proposed transformation was tested usingphotometric data for 28 early-type galaxies. The ACS Virgo Cluster Survey. II. Data Reduction ProceduresThe ACS Virgo Cluster Survey is a large program to carry out multicolorimaging of 100 early-type members of the Virgo Cluster using theAdvanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) on the Hubble Space Telescope. DeepF475W and F850LP images (~SDSS g and z) are being used to study thecentral regions of the program galaxies, their globular cluster systems,and the three-dimensional structure of Virgo itself. In this paper, wedescribe in detail the data reduction procedures used for the survey,including image registration, drizzling strategies, the computation ofweight images, object detection, the identification of globular clustercandidates, and the measurement of their photometric and structuralparameters.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASAcontract NAS 5-26555. The ACS Virgo Cluster Survey. I. Introduction to the SurveyThe Virgo Cluster is the dominant mass concentration in the LocalSupercluster and the largest collection of elliptical and lenticulargalaxies in the nearby universe. In this paper, we present anintroduction to the ACS Virgo Cluster Survey: a program to image, in theF475W and F850LP bandpasses (~Sloan g and z), 100 early-type galaxies inthe Virgo Cluster using the Advanced Camera for Surveys on the HubbleSpace Telescope. We describe the selection of the program galaxies andtheir ensemble properties, the choice of filters, the field placementand orientation, the limiting magnitudes of the survey, coordinatedparallel observations of 100 intergalactic'' fields with WFPC2, andsupporting ground-based spectroscopic observations of the programgalaxies. In terms of depth, spatial resolution, sample size, andhomogeneity, this represents the most comprehensive imaging survey todate of early-type galaxies in a cluster environment. We brieflydescribe the main scientific goals of the survey, which include themeasurement of luminosities, metallicities, ages, and structuralparameters for the many thousands of globular clusters associated withthese galaxies, a high-resolution isophotal analysis of galaxiesspanning a factor of ~450 in luminosity and sharing a commonenvironment, the measurement of accurate distances for the full sampleof galaxies using the method of surface brightness fluctuations, and adetermination of the three-dimensional structure of Virgo itself.ID="FN1"> 1Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble SpaceTelescope obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which isoperated by the association of Universities for Research in Astronomy,Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. Cold Dust in Early-Type Galaxies. I. ObservationsWe describe far-infrared observations of early-type galaxies selectedfrom the Infrared Space Observatory (ISO) archive. This ratherinhomogeneous sample includes 39 giant elliptical galaxies and 14 S0 (orlater) galaxies. These galaxies were observed with the array photometerPHOT on-board the ISO satellite using a variety of different observingmodes-sparse maps, mini-maps, oversampled maps, and singlepointings-each of which requires different and often rather elaboratephotometric reduction procedures. The ISO background data agree wellwith the COBE-DIRBE results to which we have renormalized ourcalibrations. As a further check, the ISO fluxes from galaxies at 60 and100 μm agree very well with those previously observed with IRAS atthese wavelengths. The spatial resolution of ISO is several timesgreater than that of IRAS, and the ISO observations extend out to 200μm, which views a significantly greater mass of colder dust notassessable to IRAS. Most of the galaxies are essentially point sourcesat ISO resolution, but a few are clearly extended at FIR wavelengthswith image sizes that increase with FIR wavelength. The integratedfar-infrared luminosities do not correlate with optical luminosities,suggesting that the dust may have an external, merger-related origin. Ingeneral, the far-infrared spectral energy distributions can be modeledwith dust at two temperatures, ~43 and ~20 K, which probably representlimits of a continuous range of temperatures. The colder dust componentdominates the total mass of dust, 106-107Msolar, which is typically more than 10 times larger than thedust masses previously estimated for the same galaxies using IRASobservations. For S0 galaxies we find that the optically normalizedfar-infrared luminosity LFIR/LB correlatesstrongly with the mid-infrared luminosityL15μm/LB, but that correlation is weaker forelliptical galaxies.Based on observations with ISO, an ESA project with instruments fundedby ESA Member States (especially the PI countries: France, Germany, theNetherlands, and United Kingdom) and with the participation of ISAS andNASA. Peculiarities and populations in elliptical galaxies. I. An old question revisitedMorphological peculiarities, as defined from isophote asymmetries andnumber of detected shells, jets or similar features, have been estimatedin a sample of 117 E classified galaxies, and qualified by an ad hocΣ2 index. The overall frequency of peculiar'' objects(Pec subsample) is 32.5%. It decreases with the cosmic density of theenvironment, being minimal for the Virgo cluster, the densestenvironment in the sampled volume. This environmental effect is strongerfor galaxies with relatively large Σ2.The Pec subsample objects are compared with normal'' objects (Nopsubsample) as regards their basic properties. Firstly, theysystematically deviate from the Fundamental Plane and the Faber-Jacksonrelation derived for the Nop subsample, being too bright for their mass.Secondly, the dust content of galaxies, as estimated from IRAS fluxes,are similar in both subsamples. Third, the same is true of the frequencyof Kinematically Distinct cores (KDC), suggesting that KDC andmorphological peculiarities do not result from the same events in thehistory of E-galaxies.Using the Nop sample alone, we obtain very tight reference relationsbetween stellar population indicators (U-B, B-V, B-R, V-I,Mg2, Hβ, , Mgb) and the central velocitydispersion σ0. The discussion of the residuals of theserelations allows us to classify the Pec galaxies in two families i.e.the YP or NGC 2865 family, and the NP or NGC 3923 one. Galaxies in thefirst group show consistent evidence for a younger stellar populationmixed with the old one, in agreement with classical results (Schweizeret al. \cite{Schweizer1990}; Schweizer & Seitzer\cite{Schweizer1992}). The second group, however, has normal, orreddish, populations. It is remarkable that a fraction (circa 40%) ofmorphologically perturbed objects do not display any signature of ayoung population, either because the event responsible for thepecularity is too ancient, or because it did not produce significantstar formation (or eventually that the young sub-population has highmetallicity).A preliminary attempt is made to interpret the populations of Pecobjects by combining a young Single Stellar Population with a Nopgalaxy, with only limited success, perhaps largely due to uncertaintiesin the SSP indices used.Based in part on observations collected at the Observatoire deHaute-Provence.Figures \ref{fig1}-\ref{fig3} are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.orgTable 10 is only available in electronic form at the CDS via anonymousftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/423/833 The origin of H I-deficiency in galaxies on the outskirts of the Virgo cluster. II. Companions and uncertainties in distances and deficienciesThe origin of the deficiency in neutral hydrogen of 13 spiral galaxieslying in the outskirts of the Virgo cluster is reassessed. If thesegalaxies have passed through the core of the cluster, their interstellargas should have been lost through ram pressure stripping by the hotX-ray emitting gas of the cluster. We analyze the positions of these HI-deficient and other spiral galaxies in velocity-distance plots, inwhich we include our compilation of velocity-distance data on 61elliptical galaxies, and compare with simulated velocity-distancediagrams obtained from cosmological N-body simulations. We find that20% relative Tully-Fisher distance errors are consistent with thegreat majority of the spirals, except for a small number of objectswhose positions in the velocity-distance diagram suggest grosslyincorrect distances, implying that the Tully-Fisher error distributionfunction has non-Gaussian wings. Moreover, we find that the distanceerrors may lead to an incorrect fitting of the Tolman-Bondi solutionthat can generate significant errors in the distance and especially themass estimates of the cluster. We suggest 4 possibilities for theoutlying H I-deficient spirals (in decreasing frequency): 1) they havelarge relative distance errors and are in fact close enough (atdistances between 12.7 and 20.9 Mpc from us) to the cluster to havepassed through its core and seen their gas removed by ram pressurestripping; 2) their gas is converted to stars by tidal interactions withother galaxies; 3) their gas is heated during recent mergers withsmaller galaxies; and 4) they are not truly H I-deficient (e.g. S0/amisclassified as Sa).Appendix A is only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.org Spectrophotometry of galaxies in the Virgo cluster. II. The dataDrift-scan mode (3600-6800 Å) spectra with 500 Near-infrared imaging of ellipticals: surface brightness profiles and photometryWe present near-infrared K-band imaging of a large sample of candidatemerger remnant galaxies and Hickson Compact Group ellipticals. We derivelight profile indices, effective radii and surface brightnesses, as wellas total K-band magnitudes. We find that the light distributions of themerger remnant candidates are consistent with those of normal'ellipticals, and scatter around a mean profile index of (1/n) = 0.20.Many of our sample galaxies have surface brightness profiles that arenot well described by a de Vaucouleurs law (1/n= 0.25), and we discussthe implications of this on the derived total magnitudes. Comparing thetotal K magnitudes calculated by extrapolating a de Vaucouleurs profileand those derived using a generalized Sérsic form, we find that asignificant bias is introduced if the de Vaucouleurs law is not a gooddescription of the actual light profile. Metallicity distributions of globular cluster systems in galaxiesWe collected a sample of 100 galaxies for which different observers havedetermined colour indices of globular cluster candidates. The sampleincludes representatives of galaxies of various morphological types anddifferent luminosities. Colour indices (in most cases (V-I), but also(B-I) and (C-T_1)) were transformed into metallicities [Fe/H] accordingto a relation by Kissler-Patig (1998). These data were analysed with theKMM software in order to estimate similarity of the distribution withuni- or bimodal Gaussian distribution. We found that 45 of 100 systemshave bimodal metallicity distributions. Mean metallicity of themetal-poor component for these galaxies is < [Fe/H]> = -1.40 +/-0.02, of the metal-rich component < [Fe/H]> = -0.69 +/- 0.03.Dispersions of the distributions are 0.15 and 0.18, respectively.Distribution of unimodal metallicities is rather wide. These data willbe analysed in a subsequent paper in order to find correlations withparameters of galaxies and galactic environment. Star Formation Histories of Early-Type Galaxies. I. Higher Order Balmer Lines as Age IndicatorsWe have obtained blue integrated spectra of 175 nearby early-typegalaxies, covering a wide range in galaxy velocity dispersion andemphasizing those with σ<100 km s-1. Galaxies havebeen observed both in the Virgo Cluster and in lower densityenvironments. The main goals are the evaluation of higher order Balmerlines as age indicators and differences in stellar populations as afunction of mass, environment, and morphology. In this first paper, ouremphasis is on presenting the methods used to characterize the behaviorof the Balmer lines through evolutionary population synthesis models.Lower σ galaxies exhibit a substantially greater intrinsicscatter, in a variety of line-strength indicators, than do higherσ galaxies, with the large intrinsic scatter setting in below aσ of 100 km s-1. Moreover, a greater contrast inscatter is present in the Balmer lines than in the lines of metalfeatures. Evolutionary synthesis modeling of the observed spectralindexes indicates that the strong Balmer lines found primarily among thelow-σ galaxies are caused by young age, rather than by lowmetallicity. Thus we find a trend between the population age and thecentral velocity dispersion, such that low-σ galaxies have youngerluminosity-weighted mean ages. We have repeated this analysis usingseveral different Balmer lines and find consistent results from onespectral indicator to another. New Optical and Near-Infrared Surface Brightness Fluctuation Models: A Primary Distance Indicator Ranging from Globular Clusters to Distant Galaxies?We present new theoretical models for surface brightness fluctuations(SBFs) both for optical and near-infrared bands in standard ground-basedand Hubble Space Telescope filter systems. Simple stellar populationsimulations are adopted. Models cover the age and metallicity rangesfrom 5 to 15 Gyr and from Z=0.0001 to Z=0.04, respectively. Effects dueto variation of the initial mass function and the stellarcolor-temperature relation are explored. Particular attention is devotedto very bright stars in the color-magnitude diagram and to investigatingthe effects of mass loss along the red giant branch (RGB) and theasymptotic giant branch (AGB). It is found that U- and B-band SBFamplitudes are powerful diagnostics for the morphology of the horizontalbranch and the post-AGB star population. We point out that a carefultreatment of the mass-loss process along the RGB and AGB is fundamentalto determining reliable SBF evaluations. The SBF measurements are usedto place robust constraints on the evolution of AGB stars, suggestingthat the mass-loss activity of AGB stars should be twice as efficient asthat of RGB stars. Our models are able to reproduce the absolute SBFmagnitudes of Galactic globular clusters and of galaxies and theirintegrated colors. New calibrations of absolute SBF magnitude in V, R,I, and K photometric filters are provided, which appear reliable enoughto directly gauge distances, bypassing other distance indicators. TheSBF technique is also used as a stellar population tracer to derive theage and metallicity of a selected sample of galaxies of known distances.Finally, SBF color versus integrated color diagrams are proposed asparticularly useful in removing the well-known age-metallicitydegeneracy affecting our knowledge of remote stellar systems. A new catalogue of ISM content of normal galaxiesWe have compiled a catalogue of the gas content for a sample of 1916galaxies, considered to be a fair representation of normality''. Thedefinition of a normal'' galaxy adopted in this work implies that wehave purposely excluded from the catalogue galaxies having distortedmorphology (such as interaction bridges, tails or lopsidedness) and/orany signature of peculiar kinematics (such as polar rings,counterrotating disks or other decoupled components). In contrast, wehave included systems hosting active galactic nuclei (AGN) in thecatalogue. This catalogue revises previous compendia on the ISM contentof galaxies published by \citet{bregman} and \citet{casoli}, andcompiles data available in the literature from several small samples ofgalaxies. Masses for warm dust, atomic and molecular gas, as well asX-ray luminosities have been converted to a uniform distance scale takenfrom the Catalogue of Principal Galaxies (PGC). We have used twodifferent normalization factors to explore the variation of the gascontent along the Hubble sequence: the blue luminosity (LB)and the square of linear diameter (D225). Ourcatalogue significantly improves the statistics of previous referencecatalogues and can be used in future studies to define a template ISMcontent for normal'' galaxies along the Hubble sequence. The cataloguecan be accessed on-line and is also available at the Centre desDonnées Stellaires (CDS).The catalogue is available in electronic form athttp://dipastro.pd.astro.it/galletta/ismcat and at the CDS via anonymousftp to\ cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or via\http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/405/5 The Photometric Plane' of elliptical galaxiesThe Sérsic (r1/n) index n of an elliptical galaxy (orbulge) has recently been shown to correlate strongly (r= 0.8) with thecentral velocity dispersion of a galaxy. This index could thereforeprove extremely useful and cost-effective (in terms of both telescopetime and data reduction) for many fields of extragalactic research. Itis a purely photometric quantity which apparently not only traces themass of a bulge but has additionally been shown to reflect the degree ofbulge concentration. This paper explores the affect of replacing thecentral velocity dispersion term in the Fundamental Plane with theSérsic index n. Using a sample of early-type galaxies from theVirgo and Fornax clusters, various (B-band) `Photometric Planes' wereconstructed and found to have a scatter of 0.14-0.17 dex in logre, or a distance error of 38-48 per cent per galaxy (thehigher values arising from the inclusion of the S0 galaxies). Thecorresponding Fundamental Plane yielded a 33-37 per cent error indistance for the same galaxy samples (i.e. ~15-30 per cent lessscatter). The gains in using a hyperplane (i.e. adding the Sérsicindex to the Fundamental Plane as a fourth parameter) were small, givinga 27-33 per cent error in distance, depending on the galaxy sample used.The Photometric Plane has been used here to estimate the Virgo-Fornaxdistance modulus; giving a value of 0.62 +/- 0.30 mag[cf. 0.51 +/- 0.21,Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Key Project on the Extragalactic DistanceScale]. The prospects for using the Photometric Plane at higherredshifts appears promising. Using published data on the intermediateredshift cluster Cl 1358 + 62 (z= 0.33) gave a Photometric Planedistance error of 35-41 per cent per galaxy. The luminosity function of the Virgo Cluster from MB=-22 to -11We measure the galaxy luminosity function (LF) for the Virgo Clusterbetween blue magnitudes MB=-22 and -11 from wide-fieldcharge-coupled device (CCD) imaging data. The LF is only graduallyrising for -22 1.65-μm (H -band) surface photometry of galaxies - VIII. The near-IR κ space at z =0We present the distribution of a statistical sample of nearby galaxiesin the κ -space (κ 1 ~logM , κ 2~logI e 3 M /L , κ 3 ~logM /L ).Our study is based on near-IR (H -band: λ =1.65μm)observations, for the first time comprising early- and late-typesystems. Our data confirm that the mean effective dynamicalmass-to-light ratio M /L of the E+S0+S0a galaxies increases withincreasing effective dynamical mass M , as expected from the existenceof the Fundamental Plane relation. Conversely, spiral and Im/BCDgalaxies show a broad distribution in M /L with no detected trend of M/L with M , the former galaxies having M /L values about twice largerthan the latter, on average. For all the late-type galaxies, the M /Lincreases with decreasing effective surface intensity I e ,consistent with the existence of the Tully-Fisher relation. Theseresults are discussed on the basis of the assumptions behind theconstruction of the κ -space and their limitations. Our study iscomplementary to a previous investigation in the optical (B -band:λ =0.44μm) and allows us to study wavelength dependences ofthe galaxy distribution in the κ -space. As a first result, wefind that the galaxy distribution in the κ 1 -κ2 plane reproduces the transition from bulgeless tobulge-dominated systems in galaxies of increasing dynamical mass.Conversely, it appears that the M /L of late-types is higher (lower)than that of early-types with the same M in the near-IR (optical). Theorigins of this behaviour are discussed in terms of dust attenuation andstar formation history.
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