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 The Survey for Ionization in Neutral Gas Galaxies. I. Description and Initial ResultsWe introduce the Survey for Ionization in Neutral Gas Galaxies (SINGG),a census of star formation in H I-selected galaxies. The survey consistsof Hα and R-band imaging of a sample of 468 galaxies selected fromthe H I Parkes All Sky Survey (HIPASS). The sample spans three decadesin H I mass and is free of many of the biases that affect otherstar-forming galaxy samples. We present the criteria for sampleselection, list the entire sample, discuss our observational techniques,and describe the data reduction and calibration methods. This paperfocuses on 93 SINGG targets whose observations have been fully reducedand analyzed to date. The majority of these show a single emission linegalaxy (ELG). We see multiple ELGs in 13 fields, with up to four ELGs ina single field. All of the targets in this sample are detected inHα, indicating that dormant (non-star-forming) galaxies withMHI>~3×107 Msolar are veryrare. A database of the measured global properties of the ELGs ispresented. The ELG sample spans 4 orders of magnitude in luminosity(Hα and R band), and Hα surface brightness, nearly 3 ordersof magnitude in R surface brightness and nearly 2 orders of magnitude inHα equivalent width (EW). The surface brightness distribution ofour sample is broader than that of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS)spectroscopic sample, the EW distribution is broader than prism-selectedsamples, and the morphologies found include all common types ofstar-forming galaxies (e.g., irregular, spiral, blue compact dwarf,starbursts, merging and colliding systems, and even residual starformation in S0 and Sa spirals). Thus, SINGG presents a superior censusof star formation in the local universe suitable for further studiesranging from the analysis of H II regions to determination of the localcosmic star formation rate density. Hubble Space Telescope STIS Spectra of Nuclear Star Clusters in Spiral Galaxies: Dependence of Age and Mass on Hubble TypeWe study the nuclear star clusters (NCs) in spiral galaxies of variousHubble types using spectra obtained with the STIS on board the HubbleSpace Telescope (HST). We observed the nuclear clusters in 40 galaxies,selected from two previous HST WFPC2 imaging surveys. At a spatialresolution of ~0.2" the spectra provide a better separation of clusterlight from underlying galaxy light than is possible with ground-basedspectra. Approximately half of the spectra have a sufficiently highsignal-to-noise ratio for detailed stellar population analysis. For theother half we only measure the continuum slope, as quantified by the B-Vcolor. To infer the star formation history, metallicity, and dustextinction, we fit weighted superpositions of single-age stellarpopulation templates to the high signal-to-noise ratio spectra. We usethe results to determine the luminosity-weighted age, mass-to-lightratio, and masses of the clusters. Approximately half of the sampleclusters contain a population younger than 1 Gyr. Theluminosity-weighted ages range from 10 Myr to 10 Gyr. The stellarpopulations of NCs are generally best fit as a mixture of populations ofdifferent ages. This indicates that NCs did not form in a single event,but that instead they had additional star formation long after theoldest stars formed. On average, the sample clusters in late-typespirals have a younger luminosity-weighted mean age than those inearly-type spirals (L=8.37+/-0.25 vs.9.23+/-0.21). The average mass-weighted ages are older by ~0.7 dex,indicating that there often is an underlying older population that doesnot contribute much light but does contain most of the mass. The averagecluster masses are smaller in late-type spirals than in early-typespirals (logM=6.25+/-0.21 vs. 7.63+/-0.24) and exceed the masses typicalof globular clusters. The cluster mass correlates loosely with totalgalaxy luminosity. It correlates more strongly with both the Hubble typeof the host galaxy and the luminosity of its bulge. The lattercorrelation has the same slope as the well-known correlation betweensupermassive black hole mass and bulge luminosity. The properties ofboth nuclear clusters and black holes in the centers of spiral galaxiesare therefore intimately connected to the properties of the host galaxy,and in particular its bulge component. Plausible formation scenarioshave to account for this. We discuss various possible selection biasesin our results, but conclude that none of them can explain thedifferences seen between clusters in early- and late-type spirals. Theinability to infer spectroscopically the populations of faint clustersdoes introduce a bias toward younger ages, but not necessarily towardhigher masses.Based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope,obtained from the Data Archive at the Space Telescope Science Institute,which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research inAstronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS5-26555. These observations areassociated with proposals 9070 and 9783. Star Formation in H I-selected Galaxies. II. H II Region PropertiesA sample of 69 galaxies with radial velocities less than 2500 kms-1 was selected from the H I Parkes All Sky Survey (HIPASS)to deduce details about star formation in nearby disk galaxies selectedwith no bias to optical surface brightness selection effects. Broadband(B and R) and narrowband (Hα) images were obtained for all ofthese objects. More than half of the sample galaxies are late-type,dwarf disks (mostly Sc and Sm galaxies). We have measured the propertiesof the H II regions on Hα continuum-subtracted images, using theHIIphot package developed by Thilker et al. All but one of the galaxiescontained at least one detectable H II region. Examination of theproperties of the H II regions in each galaxy revealed that thebrightest regions in higher surface brightness galaxies tend to be moreluminous than those in lower surface brightness galaxies. A higherfraction (referred to as the diffuse fraction) of the Hα emissionfrom lower surface brightness galaxies comes from diffuse ionized gas. HII region luminosity functions (LFs) co-added according to surfacebrightness show that the shapes of the LFs for the lowest surfacebrightness galaxies are different from those for typical spiralgalaxies. This discrepancy could be caused by the lowest surfacebrightness galaxies having somewhat episodic star formation or by themforming a relatively larger fraction of their stars outside of dense,massive molecular clouds. In general, the results imply that theconditions under which star formation occurs in lower surface brightnessgalaxies are different than in more typical, higher surface brightnessspiral galaxies. Light and Motion in the Local VolumeUsing high-quality data on 149 galaxies within 10 Mpc, I find nocorrelation between luminosity and peculiar velocity at all. There is nounequivocal sign on scales of 1-2 Mpc of the expected gravitationaleffect of the brightest galaxies, in particular infall toward groups, orof infall toward the supergalactic plane on any scale. Either darkmatter is not distributed in the same way as luminous matter in thisregion, or peculiar velocities are not due to fluctuations in mass. Thesensitivity of peculiar velocity studies to the background model ishighlighted. Star Formation in H I-Selected Galaxies. I. Sample CharacteristicsA sample of 69 galaxies with radial velocities of less than 2500 kms-1 was selected from the H I Parkes All-Sky Survey (HIPASS)and imaged in broadband B and R and narrowband Hα, to deducedetails about star formation in nearby disk galaxies while avoidingsurface brightness selection effects. The sample is dominated bylate-type, dwarf disks (mostly Sc and Sm galaxies) with exponential diskscale lengths of ~1-5 kpc. The HIPASS galaxies, on average, have lowerstar formation rates (SFRs), are bluer, and have lower surfacebrightness than an optically selected sample. H II regions were detectedin all but one of the galaxies. Many galaxies had as few as two to fiveH II regions. The galaxies' Hα equivalent widths, colors, and SFRsper unit of H I mass are best explained by young mean ages (~3-5 Gyr,according to Schmidt-law models) with star formation histories in whichthe SFRs were higher in the past. Comparison of the surface brightnesscoverage of the HIPASS galaxies with that of an optically selectedsample shows that such a sample may miss ~10% of the local galaxy numberdensity and could possibly miss as much as 3%-4% of the SFR density. Theamount lower surface brightness galaxies contribute to the totalluminosity density may be insignificant, but this conclusion is somewhatdependent on how the fluxes of these objects are determined. Inner-truncated Disks in GalaxiesWe present an analysis of the disk brightness profiles of 218 spiral andlenticular galaxies. At least 28% of disk galaxies exhibit innertruncations in these profiles. There are no significant trends oftruncation incidence with Hubble type, but the incidence among barredsystems is 49%, more than 4 times that for nonbarred galaxies. However,not all barred systems have inner truncations, and not allinner-truncated systems are currently barred. Truncations represent areal dearth of disk stars in the inner regions and are not an artifactof our selection or fitting procedures nor the result of obscuration bydust. Disk surface brightness profiles in the outer regions are wellrepresented by simple exponentials for both truncated and nontruncateddisks. However, truncated and nontruncated systems have systematicallydifferent slopes and central surface brightness parameters for theirdisk brightness distributions. Truncation radii do not appear tocorrelate well with the sizes or brightnesses of the bulges. Thissuggests that the low angular momentum material apparently missing fromthe inner disk was not simply consumed in forming the bulge population.Disk parameters and the statistics of bar orientations in our sampleindicate that the missing stars of the inner disk have not simply beenredistributed azimuthally into bar structures. The sharpness of thebrightness truncations and their locations with respect to othergalactic structures suggest that resonances associated with diskkinematics, or tidal interactions with the mass of bulge stars, might beresponsible for this phenomenon. A Catalog of Neighboring GalaxiesWe present an all-sky catalog of 451 nearby galaxies, each having anindividual distance estimate D<~10 Mpc or a radial velocityVLG<550 km s-1. The catalog contains data onbasic optical and H I properties of the galaxies, in particular, theirdiameters, absolute magnitudes, morphological types, circumnuclearregion types, optical and H I surface brightnesses, rotationalvelocities, and indicative mass-to-luminosity and H I mass-to-luminosityratios, as well as a so-called tidal index, which quantifies the galaxyenvironment. We expect the catalog completeness to be roughly 70%-80%within 8 Mpc. About 85% of the Local Volume population are dwarf (dIr,dIm, and dSph) galaxies with MB>-17.0, which contributeabout 4% to the local luminosity density, and roughly 10%-15% to thelocal H I mass density. The H I mass-to-luminosity and the H Imass-to-total (indicative) mass ratios increase systematically fromgiant galaxies toward dwarfs, reaching maximum values about 5 in solarunits for the most tiny objects. For the Local Volume disklike galaxies,their H I masses and angular momentum follow Zasov's linear relation,expected for rotating gaseous disks being near the threshold ofgravitational instability, favorable for active star formation. We foundthat the mean local luminosity density exceeds 1.7-2.0 times the globaldensity, in spite of the presence of the Tully void and the absence ofrich clusters in the Local Volume. The mean local H I density is 1.4times its global'' value derived from the H I Parkes Sky Survey.However, the mean local baryon densityΩb(<8Mpc)=2.3% consists of only a half of the globalbaryon density, Ωb=(4.7+/-0.6)% (Spergel et al.,published in 2003). The mean-square pairwise difference of radialvelocities is about 100 km s-1 for spatial separations within1 Mpc, increasing to ~300 km s-1 on a scale of ~3 Mpc. alsoWe calculated the integral area of the sky occupied by the neighboringgalaxies. Assuming the H I size of spiral and irregular galaxies to be2.5 times their standard optical diameter and ignoring any evolutioneffect, we obtain the expected number of the line-of-sight intersectionswith the H I galaxy images to be dn/dz~0.4, which does not contradictthe observed number of absorptions in QSO spectra. A Hubble Space Telescope Census of Nuclear Star Clusters in Late-Type Spiral Galaxies. II. Cluster Sizes and Structural Parameter CorrelationsWe investigate the structural properties of nuclear star clusters inlate-type spiral galaxies. More specifically, we fit analytical modelsto Hubble Space Telescope images of 39 nuclear clusters in order todetermine their effective radii after correction for the instrumentalpoint-spread function. We use the results of this analysis to comparethe luminosities and sizes of nuclear star clusters to those of otherellipsoidal stellar systems, in particular the Milky Way globularclusters. Our nuclear clusters have a median effective radius ofre=3.5 pc, with 50% of the sample falling in the range2.4pc<=re<=5.0pc. This narrow size distribution isstatistically indistinguishable from that of Galactic globular clusters,even though the nuclear clusters are, on average, 4 mag brighter thanthe old globular clusters. We discuss some possible interpretations ofthis result. From a comparison of nuclear cluster luminosities withvarious properties of their host galaxies, we confirm that more luminousgalaxies harbor more luminous nuclear clusters. It remains unclearwhether this correlation mainly reflects the influence of galaxy size,mass, and/or star formation rate. Since the brighter galaxies in oursample typically have stellar disks with a higher central surfacebrightness, nuclear cluster luminosity also correlates with thisproperty of their hosts. On the other hand, we find no evidence for acorrelation between the presence of a nuclear star cluster and thepresence of a large-scale stellar bar. Oxygen and nitrogen abundances in nearby galaxies. Correlations between oxygen abundance and macroscopic propertiesWe performed a compilation of more than 1000 published spectra of H IIregions in spiral galaxies. The oxygen and nitrogen abundances in each HII region were recomputed in a homogeneous way, using the P-method. Theradial distributions of oxygen and nitrogen abundances were derived. Thecorrelations between oxygen abundance and macroscopic properties areexamined. We found that the oxygen abundance in spiral galaxiescorrelates with its luminosity, rotation velocity, and morphologicaltype: the correlation with the rotation velocity may be slightlytighter. There is a significant difference between theluminosity-metallicity relationship obtained here and that based on theoxygen abundances determined through the R23-calibrations.The oxygen abundance of NGC 5457 recently determined using directmeasurements of Te (Kennicutt et al. \cite{Kennicutt2003})agrees with the luminosity-metallicity relationship derived in thispaper, but is in conflict with the luminosity-metallicity relationshipderived with the R23-based oxygen abundances. The obtainedluminosity-metallicity relation for spiral galaxies is compared to thatfor irregular galaxies. Our sample of galaxies shows evidence that theslope of the O/H - MB relationship for spirals (-0.079± 0.018) is slightly more shallow than that for irregulargalaxies (-0.139 ± 0.011). The effective oxygen yields wereestimated for spiral and irregular galaxies. The effective oxygen yieldincreases with increasing luminosity from MB  -11 toMB  -18 (or with increasing rotation velocity fromVrot  10 km s-1 to Vrot  100km s-1) and then remains approximately constant. Irregulargalaxies from our sample have effective oxygen yields lowered by afactor of 3 at maximum, i.e. irregular galaxies usually keep at least1/3 of the oxygen they manufactured during their evolution.Appendix, Tables \ref{table:refero}, \ref{table:referV}, and Figs.\ref{figure:sample2}-\ref{figure:sample5} are only available inelectronic form at http://www.edpsciences.org} Companions of Bright Barred Shapley-Ames GalaxiesCompanion galaxy environment for a subset of 78 bright and nearby barredgalaxies from the Shapley-Ames Catalog is presented. Among the spiralbarred galaxies, there are Seyfert galaxies, galaxies with circumnuclearstructures, galaxies not associated with any large-scale galaxy cloudstructure, galaxies with peculiar disk morphology (crooked arms), andgalaxies with normal disk morphology; the list includes all Hubbletypes. The companion galaxy list includes the number of companiongalaxies within 20 diameters, their Hubble type, and projectedseparation distance. In addition, the companion environment was searchedfor four known active spiral galaxies, three of them are Seyfertgalaxies, namely, NGC 1068, NGC 1097, and NGC 5548, and one is astarburst galaxy, M82. Among the results obtained, it is noted that theonly spiral barred galaxy classified as Seyfert 1 in our list has nocompanions within a projected distance of 20 diameters; six out of 10Seyfert 2 bar galaxies have no companions within 10 diameters, six outof 10 Seyfert 2 galaxies have one or more companions at projectedseparation distances between 10 and 20 diameters; six out of 12 galaxieswith circumnuclear structures have two or more companions within 20diameters. The IRAS Revised Bright Galaxy SampleIRAS flux densities, redshifts, and infrared luminosities are reportedfor all sources identified in the IRAS Revised Bright Galaxy Sample(RBGS), a complete flux-limited survey of all extragalactic objects withtotal 60 μm flux density greater than 5.24 Jy, covering the entiresky surveyed by IRAS at Galactic latitudes |b|>5°. The RBGS includes629 objects, with median and mean sample redshifts of 0.0082 and 0.0126,respectively, and a maximum redshift of 0.0876. The RBGS supersedes theprevious two-part IRAS Bright Galaxy Samples(BGS1+BGS2), which were compiled before the final(Pass 3) calibration of the IRAS Level 1 Archive in 1990 May. The RBGSalso makes use of more accurate and consistent automated methods tomeasure the flux of objects with extended emission. The RBGS contains 39objects that were not present in the BGS1+BGS2,and 28 objects from the BGS1+BGS2 have beendropped from RBGS because their revised 60 μm flux densities are notgreater than 5.24 Jy. Comparison of revised flux measurements forsources in both surveys shows that most flux differences are in therange ~5%-25%, although some faint sources at 12 and 25 μm differ byas much as a factor of 2. Basic properties of the RBGS sources aresummarized, including estimated total infrared luminosities, as well asupdates to cross identifications with sources from optical galaxycatalogs established using the NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database. Inaddition, an atlas of images from the Digitized Sky Survey with overlaysof the IRAS position uncertainty ellipse and annotated scale bars isprovided for ease in visualizing the optical morphology in context withthe angular and metric size of each object. The revised bolometricinfrared luminosity function, φ(Lir), forinfrared-bright galaxies in the local universe remains best fit by adouble power law, φ(L)~Lα, withα=-0.6(+/-0.1) and α=-2.2(+/-0.1) below and above thecharacteristic'' infrared luminosityL*ir~1010.5Lsolar,respectively. A companion paper provides IRAS High Resolution (HIRES)processing of over 100 RBGS sources where improved spatial resolutionoften provides better IRAS source positions or allows for deconvolutionof close galaxy pairs. Searching for Bulges at the End of the Hubble SequenceWe investigate the stellar disk properties of a sample of 19 nearbyspiral galaxies with low inclination and late Hubble type (Scd orlater). We combine our high-resolution Hubble Space Telescope I-bandobservations with existing ground-based optical images to obtain surfacebrightness profiles that cover a high dynamic range of galactic radii.Most of these galaxies contain a nuclear star cluster, as discussed in aseparate paper. The main goal of the present work is to constrain theproperties of stellar bulges at these extremely late Hubble types. Wefind that the surface brightness profiles of the latest-type spiralgalaxies are complex, with a wide range in shapes. We have sorted oursample in a sequence, starting with pure'' disk galaxies(approximately 30% of the sample). These galaxies have exponentialstellar disks that extend inward to within a few tens of parsecs fromthe nucleus, where the light from the nuclear cluster starts todominate. They appear to be truly bulgeless systems. Progressing alongthe sequence, the galaxies show increasingly prominent deviations from asimple exponential disk model on kiloparsec scales. Traditionally, suchdeviations have prompted bulge-disk'' decompositions. Indeed, thesurface brightness profiles of these galaxies are generally well fittedby adding a second (exponential) bulge component. However, we find thatmost surface brightness profiles can be fitted equally well (or better)with a single Sérsic-type R1/n profile over the entireradial range of the galaxy without requiring a separate bulge''component. We warn in a general sense against identification of bulgessolely on the basis of single-band surface brightness profiles. Despitethe narrow range of Hubble types in our sample, the surface brightnessprofiles are far from uniform. The differences between the variousgalaxies appear unrelated to their Hubble types, thus questioning theusefulness of the Hubble sequence for the subcategorization of thelatest-type spiral galaxies. A number of galaxies show central excessemission on spatial scales of a few hundred parsecs that cannot beattributed to the nuclear cluster, the Sérsic-type description ofthe stellar disk, or what one would generally consider to be a bulgecomponent. The origin of this light component remains unclear.Based in part on observations made 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. These observations are associatedwith proposal 8599. 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 Bar strengths in spiral galaxies estimated from 2MASS imagesNon-axisymmetric forces are presented for a sample of 107 spiralgalaxies, of which 31 are barred (SB) and 53 show nuclear activity. As adata base we use JHK images from the 2 Micron All-sky Survey, and thenon-axisymmetries are characterized by the ratio of the tangential forceto the mean axisymmetric radial force field, following Buta & Block.Bar strengths have an important role in many extragalactic problems andtherefore it is important to verify that the different numerical methodsapplied for calculating the forces give mutually consistent results. Weapply both direct Cartesian integration and a polar grid integrationutilizing a limited number of azimuthal Fourier components of density.We find that the bar strength is independent of the method used toevaluate the gravitational potential. However, because of thedistance-dependent smoothing by Fourier decomposition, the polar methodis more suitable for weak and noisy images. The largest source ofuncertainty in the derived bar strength appears to be the uncertainty inthe vertical scaleheight, which is difficult to measure directly formost galaxies. On the other hand, the derived bar strength is ratherinsensitive to the possible gradient in the vertical scaleheight of thedisc or to the exact model of the vertical density distribution,provided that the same effective vertical dispersion is assumed in allmodels. In comparison with the pioneering study by Buta & Block, thebar strength estimate is improved here by taking into account thedependence of the vertical scaleheight on the Hubble type: we find thatfor thin discs bar strengths are stronger than for thick discs by anamount that may correspond to as much as one bar strength class. Weconfirm the previous result by Buta and co-workers showing that thedispersion in bar strength is large among all the de Vaucouleurs opticalbar classes. In the near-infrared 40 per cent of the galaxies in oursample have bars (showing constant phases in the m= 2 Fourier amplitudesin the bar region), while in the optical band one-third of these barsare obscured by dust. Significant non-axisymmetric forces can also beinduced by the spiral arms, generally in the outer parts of the galacticdiscs, which may have important implications on galaxy evolution.Possible biases of the selected sample are also studied: we find thatthe number of bars identified drops rapidly when the inclination of thegalactic disc is larger than 50°. A similar bias is found in theThird Reference Catalogue of Bright Galaxies, which might be of interestwhen comparing bar frequencies at high and low redshifts. A Search for H2O Maser Emission in Southern Active Galactic Nuclei and Star-forming Galaxies: Discovery of a Maser in the Edge-on Galaxy IRAS F01063-8034We report the cumulative results of five surveys for H2Omaser emission at 1.35 cm wavelength in 131 active galactic nuclei(AGNs) and star-forming galaxies, conducted at the Parkes Observatorybetween 1993 and 1998. We detected one new maser, in the edge-on galaxyIRAS F01063-8034, which exhibits a single ~0.1 Jy spectral feature at4282+/-6 km s-1 (heliocentric) with an unusually large54+/-16 km s-1 half-power full width. The centroid velocityof the emission increased to 4319.6+/-0.6 km s-1 (38+/-2 kms-1 width) over the 13 days between discovery andconfirmation of the detection. A similarly broad-line width and largechange in velocity has been noted for the maser in NGC 1052, wherein jetactivity excites the emission. Neither optical spectroscopy,radio-infrared correlations, nor infrared colors provide compellingevidence of unusual activity in the nucleus of IRAS F01063-8034. Sincethe galaxy appears to be outwardly normal at optical and infraredwavelengths, detection of an H2O maser therein is unique. Themaser emission is evidence that the galaxy harbors an AGN that isprobably obscured by the edge-on galactic disk. The detection highlightsthe possibility that undetected AGNs could be hidden in other relativelynearby galaxies. No other maser emission features have been identifiedat velocities between 3084 and 6181 km s-1. Bar Galaxies and Their EnvironmentsThe prints of the Palomar Sky Survey, luminosity classifications, andradial velocities were used to assign all northern Shapley-Ames galaxiesto either (1) field, (2) group, or (3) cluster environments. Thisinformation for 930 galaxies shows no evidence for a dependence of barfrequency on galaxy environment. This suggests that the formation of abar in a disk galaxy is mainly determined by the properties of theparent galaxy, rather than by the characteristics of its environment. An Infrared Space Observatory Atlas of Bright Spiral GalaxiesIn this first paper in a series we present an atlas of infrared imagesand photometry from 1.2 to 180 μm for a sample of bright spiralgalaxies. The atlas galaxies are an optically selected,magnitude-limited sample of 77 spiral and S0 galaxies chosen from theRevised Shapley-Ames Catalog (RSA). The sample is a representativesample of spiral galaxies and includes Seyfert galaxies, LINERs,interacting galaxies, and peculiar galaxies. Using the Infrared SpaceObservatory (ISO), we have obtained 12 μm images and photometry at60, 100, and 180 μm for the galaxies. In addition to its imagingcapabilities, ISO provides substantially better angular resolution thanis available in the IRAS survey, and this permits discrimination betweeninfrared activity in the central regions and global infrared emission inthe disks of these galaxies. These ISO data have been supplemented withJHK imaging using ground-based telescopes. The atlas includes 2 and 12μm images. Following an analysis of the properties of the galaxies,we have compared the mid-infrared and far-infrared ISO photometry withIRAS photometry. The systematic differences we find between the IRASFaint Source Catalog and ISO measurements are directly related to thespatial extent of the ISO fluxes, and we discuss the reliability of IRASFaint Source Catalog total flux densities and flux ratios for nearbygalaxies. In our analysis of the 12 μm morphological features we findthat most but not all galaxies have bright nuclear emission. We find 12μm structures such as rings, spiral arm fragments, knotted spiralarms, and bright sources in the disks that are sometimes brighter thanthe nuclei at mid-infrared wavelengths. These features, which arepresumably associated with extranuclear star formation, are common inthe disks of Sb and later galaxies but are relatively unimportant inS0-Sab galaxies. Based on observations with the Infrared SpaceObservatory (ISO), an ESA project with instruments funded by ESA MemberStates (especially the PI countries: France, Germany, Netherlands, andUnited Kingdom) and with the participation of ISAS and NASA. A Hubble Space Telescope Census of Nuclear Star Clusters in Late-Type Spiral Galaxies. I. Observations and Image AnalysisWe present new Hubble Space Telescope I-band images of a sample of 77nearby late-type spiral galaxies with low inclination. The main purposeof this catalog is to study the frequency and properties of nuclear starclusters. In 59 galaxies of our sample, we have identified a distinct,compact (but resolved), and dominant source at or very close to thephotocenter. In many cases, these clusters are the only prominent sourcewithin a few kiloparsecs from the galaxy nucleus. We present surfacebrightness profiles, derived from elliptical isophote fits, of allgalaxies for which the fit was successful. We use the fitted isophotesat radii larger than 2" to check whether the location of the clustercoincides with the photocenter of the galaxy and confirm that in nearlyall cases, we are truly dealing with nuclear'' star clusters. Fromanalytical fits to the surface brightness profiles, we derive thecluster luminosities after subtraction of the light contribution fromthe underlying galaxy disk and/or bulge. Based on observations made withthe NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtained at the Space TelescopeScience Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universitiesfor Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. Theseobservations are associated with proposal 8599. Magnetic fields in barred galaxies. I. The atlasThe total and polarized radio continuum emission of 20 barred galaxieswas observed with the Very Large Array (VLA) at lambda 3, 6, 18 and 22cm and with the Australia Telescope Compact Array (ATCA) at lambda 6 cmand 13 cm. Maps at 30\arcsec angular resolution are presented here.Polarized emission (and therefore a large-scale regular magnetic field)was detected in 17 galaxies. Most galaxies of our sample are similar tonon-barred galaxies with respect to the radio/far-infrared fluxcorrelation and equipartition strength of the total magnetic field.Galaxies with highly elongated bars are not always radio-bright. Wediscuss the correlation of radio properties with the aspect ratio of thebar and other measures of the bar strength. We introduce a new measureof the bar strength, Lambda , related to the quadrupole moment of thebar's gravitational potential. The radio surface brightness I of thebarred galaxies in our sample is correlated with Lambda , I~Lambda0.4+/-0.1, and thus is highest in galaxies with a long barwhere the velocity field is distorted by the bar over a large fractionof the disc. In these galaxies, the pattern of the regular field issignificantly different from that in non-barred galaxies. In particular,field enhancements occur upstream of the dust lanes where the fieldlines are oriented at large angles to the bar's major axis. Polarizedradio emission seems to be a good indicator of large-scalenon-axisymmetric motions. Tables 3, 4 and Figs. 8-10, 13, 15, 16, 18 and22 are only available in electronic form at http://www.edpsciences.org New distances to galaxies in the Centaurus A groupWe present Hubble Space Telescope/WFPC2 images of seventeen dwarfgalaxies in the Centaurus A group. Their distances derived from themagnitudes of the tip of the red giant branch are 5.2 Mpc (KK112), 3.2Mpc (ESO 321-014), 3.5 Mpc (KK179), 3.4 Mpc (NGC 5102), 4.6 Mpc (KK200),3.7 Mpc (ESO 324-024), 4.7 Mpc (KK208), 4.6 Mpc (ESO 444-084), 4.4 Mpc(IC 4316), 4.5 Mpc (NGC 5264), 3.6 Mpc (KK211), 3.6 Mpc (KK213), 3.4 Mpc(ESO 325-011), 3.8 Mpc (KK217), 4.0 Mpc (KK221), 4.8 Mpc (NGC 5408), and3.6 Mpc (PGC 51659). The galaxies are concentrated in two spatiallyseparated groups around NGC 5128 = Cen A and NGC 5236 = M 83. The Cen Agroup itself has a mean distance of 3.63+/- 0.07 Mpc, a velocitydispersion of 89 km s-1, a mean projected radius of 263 kpc,an estimated orbital mass of 2.1x 1012 Msun, andan orbital mass-to-blue luminosity ratio of 64Msun/Lsun. For the M 83 group we derived a meandistance of 4.57+/- 0.05 Mpc, a velocity dispersion of 62 kms-1, a mean projected radius of 142 kpc, an estimated orbitalmass of 0.8x 1012 Msun, andMorb/LB = 37 Msun/Lsun. TheM 83 group moves away from the Cen A group, which yields a radius of thezero-velocity surface of the Cen A group of R0 < 1.26 Mpc.The total mass within R0, M0 < 2.7x1012 Msun, agrees with the orbital mass estimate.The centroids of both the groups have very small peculiar velocities,(+18+/- 24) km s-1 (Cen A) and (-17+/-27) km s-1(M 83) with respect to the local Hubble flow with H0 = 70 kms-1 Mpc-1. Based on observations made with theNASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. The Space Telescope Science Instituteis operated by the Association of Universities for Research inAstronomy, Inc. under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. Figure 3 is onlyavailable in electronic form at http://www.edpsciences.org Fractal Structure in Galactic Star FieldsThe fractal structure of star formation on large scales in disk galaxiesis studied using the size distribution function of stellar aggregates inkiloparsec-scale star fields. Archival Hubble Space Telescope images of10 galaxies are Gaussian-smoothed to define the aggregates, and a countof these aggregates versus smoothing scale gives the fractal dimension.Fractal and Poisson models confirm the procedure. The fractal dimensionof star formation in all of the galaxies is ~2.3. This is the same asthe fractal dimension of interstellar gas in the Milky Way and nearbygalaxies, suggesting that star formation is a passive tracer of gasstructure defined by self-gravity and turbulence. Dense clusters such asthe Pleiades form at the bottom of the hierarchy of structures, wherethe protostellar gas is densest. If most stars form in such clusters,then the fractal arises from the spatial distribution of theirpositions, giving dispersed star fields from continuous clusterdisruption. Dense clusters should have an upper mass limit thatincreases with pressure, from ~103 Msolar inregions like the solar neighborhood to ~106 Msolarin starbursts. Nearby Optical Galaxies: Selection of the Sample and Identification of GroupsIn this paper we describe the Nearby Optical Galaxy (NOG) sample, whichis a complete, distance-limited (cz<=6000 km s-1) andmagnitude-limited (B<=14) sample of ~7000 optical galaxies. Thesample covers 2/3 (8.27 sr) of the sky (|b|>20deg) andappears to have a good completeness in redshift (97%). We select thesample on the basis of homogenized corrected total blue magnitudes inorder to minimize systematic effects in galaxy sampling. We identify thegroups in this sample by means of both the hierarchical and thepercolation friends-of-friends'' methods. The resulting catalogs ofloose groups appear to be similar and are among the largest catalogs ofgroups currently available. Most of the NOG galaxies (~60%) are found tobe members of galaxy pairs (~580 pairs for a total of ~15% of objects)or groups with at least three members (~500 groups for a total of ~45%of objects). About 40% of galaxies are left ungrouped (field galaxies).We illustrate the main features of the NOG galaxy distribution. Comparedto previous optical and IRAS galaxy samples, the NOG provides a densersampling of the galaxy distribution in the nearby universe. Given itslarge sky coverage, the identification of groups, and its high-densitysampling, the NOG is suited to the analysis of the galaxy density fieldof the nearby universe, especially on small scales. The Mass of the Centaurus A Group of GalaxiesThe mass M and the radius Rh of the Centaurus A group areestimated from the positions and radial velocities of 30 probablecluster members. For an assumed distance of 3.9 Mpc, it is found thatRh~640 kpc. The velocity dispersion in the Cen A group is114+/-21 km s-1. From this value and Rh=640 kpc,the virial theorem yields a total mass of 1.4x1013Msolar for the Cen A group. The projected mass method gives amass of 1.8x1013 Msolar. These values suggest thatthe Cen A group is about 7 times as massive as the Local Group. The CenA mass-to-light ratio is found to be M/LB=155-200(M/L)solar. The cluster has a zero-velocity radiusR0=2.3 Mpc. Surface BR Photometry of Newly Discovered Dwarf Elliptical Galaxies in the Nearby Sculptor and Centaurus A GroupsPrompted by the recent finding of a large number of gas-rich dwarfirregular galaxies in the nearby southern galaxy groups Sculptor (Scl)and Centaurus A (Cen A) we carried out a complementary survey to searchfor members of the gas-poor dwarf elliptical (dE) galaxy family. Intotal 18 dE candidates were identified on SRC Sky Survey films coveringthe group regions. For five dE's in the Scl group and five in the Cen Agroup, membership information is available from surface brightnessfluctuations distance measurements; two dEs in each group also haveindependent redshift measurements. The remaining eight galaxies havebeen associated to the groups based on their morphology. We acquireddeep B- and R-band CCD images for all galaxies and determined theirphotometric and structural parameters. According to the magnitude rangecovered, -14 Multicolor photometry and spectrophotometry of star-forming complexes in spiral and irregular galaxies for analyses of star-formation parameters. Data and reductionsIntermediate-band photometric measurements of star-forming complexes(SFCs) in six spiral and irregular galaxies are presented, and added topreviously published multicolor data to form a master database. The oldand new data have been reduced to a standard photometric system, and theaccuracy of various color-index measurements compared. A total of 928measurements of 569 SFCs in 49 galaxies are considered. The observedcolors of SFCs-giant HII regions-in external galaxies are compared withtheoretical (U_B)(B_V), LCI(U_B), and LCI(B_V) diagrams for a wide rangeof star-formation parameters (the observed colors were reduced to asingle photometric system and corrected for extinction). The presence ofobservational selection effects in the data sample is demonstrated. Thearea occupied by theoretical evolutionary tracks is consistent with theobserved distribution of colors for star-forming complexes. Chemical Evidence for Morphological Evolution of Spiral GalaxiesUsing the methods of spectrophotometric imagery and multislitspectroscopy, we have derived the radial abundance profiles from O/Hmeasurements in 549 H II regions of eight early-type spiral galaxies. Wethen compared the characteristic abundance levels and radialdistributions of this group of spirals with those of late-type galaxies.The early-type galaxies of our sample display gradients that are flatterand overall levels of O/H abundances that are higher than those ofnormal late-type galaxies. Early-type galaxies show an identical trendin the behavior of extrapolated central abundance versus morphologicaltype to that shown by late-type galaxies with strong bars, even in theabsence of a bar. On a diagram showing extrapolated central abundancesversus morphological types, two clearly separated sequences appear:late-type barred galaxies and early-type (barred or unbarred) galaxiesclearly fall on a sequence ~0.5 dex in abundance below that of normallate-type galaxies. This behavior is consistent with a scenario ofmorphological evolution of disk galaxies by the formation anddissolution of a bar over a period of a few 10^9 yr, where later typegalaxies (Sd, Sc, Sbc) evolve into earlier-type disk galaxies (Sb, Sa)through transitory SBc and SBb phases. HI properties of nearby galaxies from a volume-limited sampleWe consider global HI and optical properties of about three hundrednearby galaxies with V_0 < 500 km s(-1) . The majority of them haveindividual photometric distance estimates. The galaxy sample parametersshow some known and some new correlations implying a meaningful dynamicexplanation: 1) In the whole range of diameters, 1 - 40 Kpc, the galaxystandard diameter and rotational velocity follows a nearly linearTully-Fisher relation, lg A25~(0.99+/-0.06)lg V_m. 2) The HImass-to-luminosity ratio and the HI mass-to-total" mass (inside thestandard optical diameter) ratio increase systematically from giantgalaxies towards dwarfs, reaching maximum values 5 ;M_ȯ/L_ȯand 3, respectively. 3) For all the Local Volume galaxies their totalmass-to-luminosity ratio lies within a range of [0.2-16]M_ȯ/L_ȯ with a median of 3.0 ;M_ȯ/L_ȯ. TheM25/L ratio decreases slightly from giant towards dwarfgalaxies. 4) The M_HI/L and M25/L ratios for the samplegalaxies correlate with their mean optical surface brightness, which maybe caused by star formation activity in the galaxies. 5) The M_HI/L andM25/L ratios are practically independent of the local massdensity of surrounding galaxies within the range of densities of aboutsix orders of magnitude. 6) For the LV galaxies their HI mass andangular momentum follow a nearly linear relation: lgM_HI~(0.99+/-0.04)lg (V_m* A25), expected for rotatinggaseous disks being near the threshold of gravitational instability,favourable for active star formation. Table in the Appendix is availableonly in electronic form at the CDS via anonymous ftp 130.79.128.5 orhttp//cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/Abstract.html New catalogue of Wolf-Rayet galaxies and high-excitation extra-galactic HII regionsWe present a new compilation of Wolf-Rayet (WR) galaxies andextra-galactic Hii regions showing broad He ii lambda 4686 emissiondrawn from the literature. Relevant information on the presence of otherbroad emission lines ([N i] lambda 5199ii, C iv lambda 5808 and others)from WR stars of WN and WC subtypes, and other existing broad nebularlines is provided. In total we include 139 known WR galaxies. Amongthese, 57 objects show both broad He ii lambda 4686 and C iv lambda 5808features. In addition to the broad (stellar) He ii lambda 4686 emission,a nebular He ii component is well established (suspected) in 44 (54)objects. We find 19 extra-galatic Hii regions without WR detectionsshowing nebular He ii lambda 4686 emission. The present sample can beused for a variety of studies on massive stars, interactions of massivestars with the ISM, stellar populations, starburst galaxies etc. Thedata is accessible electronically and will be updated periodically. Thecatalogue is available at the CDS via anonymous ftp tocdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/Abstract.html Bulge-Disk Decomposition of 659 Spiral and Lenticular Galaxy Brightness ProfilesWe present one of the largest homogeneous sets of spiral and lenticulargalaxy brightness profile decompositions completed to date. The 659galaxies in our sample have been fitted with a de Vaucouleurs law forthe bulge component and an inner-truncated exponential for the diskcomponent. Of the 659 galaxies in the sample, 620 were successfullyfitted with the chosen fitting functions. The fits are generally welldefined, with more than 90% having rms deviations from the observedprofile of less than 0.35 mag. We find no correlations of fittingquality, as measured by these rms residuals, with either morphologicaltype or inclination. Similarly, the estimated errors of the fittedcoefficients show no significant trends with type or inclination. Thesedecompositions form a useful basis for the study of the lightdistributions of spiral and lenticular galaxies. The object base issufficiently large that well-defined samples of galaxies can be selectedfrom it. The Southern Sky Redshift SurveyWe 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.
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