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 Stellar Populations in Nearby Lenticular GalaxiesWe have obtained two-dimensional spectral data for a sample of 58 nearbyS0 galaxies with the Multi-Pupil Fiber/Field Spectrograph of the 6 mtelescope of the Special Astrophysical Observatory of the RussianAcademy of Sciences. The Lick indices Hβ, Mg b, and arecalculated separately for the nuclei and for the bulges taken as therings between R=4'' and 7", and the luminosity-weighted ages,metallicities, and Mg/Fe ratios of the stellar populations are estimatedby comparing the data to single stellar population (SSP) models. Fourtypes of galaxy environments are considered: clusters, centers ofgroups, other places in groups, and the field. The nuclei are found tobe on average slightly younger than the bulges in any type ofenvironment, and the bulges of S0 galaxies in sparse environments areyounger than those in dense environments. The effect can be partlyattributed to the well-known age correlation with the stellar velocitydispersion in early-type galaxies (in our sample the galaxies in sparseenvironments are on average less massive than those in denseenvironments), but for the most massive S0 galaxies, withσ*=170-220 km s-1, the age dependence on theenvironment is still significant at the confidence level of 1.5 σ.Based on observations collected with the 6 m telescope (BTA) at theSpecial Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) of the Russian Academy ofSciences (RAS). Low-Luminosity Active Galaxies and Their Central Black HolesCentral black hole masses for 117 spiral galaxies representingmorphological stages S0/a through Sc and taken from the largespectroscopic survey of Ho et al. are derived using Ks-banddata from the Two Micron All Sky Survey. Black hole masses are foundusing a calibrated black hole-Ks bulge luminosity relation,while bulge luminosities are measured by means of a two-dimensionalbulge-disk decomposition routine. The black hole masses are correlatedagainst a variety of parameters representing properties of the nucleusand host galaxy. Nuclear properties such as line width (FWHM [N II]), aswell as emission-line ratios (e.g., [O III]/Hβ, [O I]/Hα, [NII]/Hα, and [S II]/Hα), show a very high degree ofcorrelation with black hole mass. The excellent correlation with linewidth supports the view that the emission-line gas is in virialequilibrium with either the black hole or bulge potential. The very goodemission-line ratio correlations may indicate a change in ionizingcontinuum shape with black hole mass in the sense that more massiveblack holes generate harder spectra. Apart from theinclination-corrected rotational velocity, no excellent correlations arefound between black hole mass and host galaxy properties. Significantdifferences are found between the distributions of black hole masses inearly-, mid-, and late-type spiral galaxies (subsamples A, B, and C) inthe sense that early-type galaxies have preferentially larger centralblack holes, consistent with observations that Seyfert galaxies arefound preferentially in early-type systems. The line width distributionsshow a marked difference among subsamples A, B, and C in the sense thatearlier type galaxies have larger line widths. There are also cleardifferences in line ratios between subsamples A+B and C that likely arerelated to the level of ionization in the gas. Finally, aKs-band Simien & de Vaucouleurs diagram shows excellentagreement with the original B-band relation, although there is a largedispersion at a given morphological stage. A radio census of nuclear activity in nearby galaxiesIn order to determine the incidence of black hole accretion-drivennuclear activity in nearby galaxies, as manifested by their radioemission, we have carried out a high-resolution Multi-ElementRadio-Linked Interferometer Network (MERLIN) survey of LINERs andcomposite LINER/Hii galaxies from a complete magnitude-limited sample ofbright nearby galaxies (Palomar sample) with unknown arcsecond-scaleradio properties. There are fifteen radio detections, of which three arenew subarcsecond-scale radio core detections, all being candidate AGN.The detected galaxies supplement the already known low-luminosity AGN -low-luminosity Seyferts, LINERs and composite LINER/Hii galaxies - inthe Palomar sample. Combining all radio-detected Seyferts, LINERs andcomposite LINER/Hii galaxies (LTS sources), we obtain an overall radiodetection rate of 54% (22% of all bright nearby galaxies) and weestimate that at least ~50% (~20% of all bright nearby galaxies) aretrue AGN. The radio powers of the LTS galaxies allow the construction ofa local radio luminosity function. By comparing the luminosity functionwith those of selected moderate-redshift AGN, selected from the 2dF/NVSSsurvey, we find that LTS sources naturally extend the RLF of powerfulAGN down to powers of about 10 times that of Sgr A*. Structure and kinematics of edge-on galaxy discs - V. The dynamics of stellar discsIn earlier papers in this series we determined the intrinsic stellardisc kinematics of 15 intermediate- to late-type edge-on spiral galaxiesusing a dynamical modelling technique. The sample covers a substantialrange in maximum rotation velocity and deprojected face-on surfacebrightness, and contains seven spirals with either a boxy orpeanut-shaped bulge. Here we discuss the structural, kinematical anddynamical properties. From the photometry we find that intrinsicallymore flattened discs tend to have a lower face-on central surfacebrightness and a larger dynamical mass-to-light ratio. This observationsuggests that, at a constant maximum rotational velocity, lower surfacebrightness discs have smaller vertical stellar velocity dispersions.Although the individual uncertainties are large, we find from thedynamical modelling that at least 12 discs are submaximal. The averagedisc contributes 53 +/- 4 per cent to the observed rotation at 2.2 discscalelengths (hR), with a 1σ scatter of 15 per cent.This percentage becomes somewhat lower when effects of finite discflattening and gravity by the dark halo and the gas are taken intoaccount. Since boxy and peanut-shaped bulges are probably associatedwith bars, the result suggests that at 2.2hR the submaximalnature of discs is independent of barredness. The possibility remainsthat very high surface brightness discs are maximal, as these discs areunderrepresented in our sample. We confirm that the radial stellar discvelocity dispersion is related to the galaxy maximum rotationalvelocity. The scatter in this σ versus vmax relationappears to correlate with the disc flattening, face-on central surfacebrightness and dynamical mass-to-light ratio. Low surface brightnessdiscs tend to be more flattened and have smaller stellar velocitydispersions. The findings are consistent with the observed correlationbetween disc flattening and dynamical mass-to-light ratio and cangenerally be reproduced by the simple collapse theory for disc galaxyformation. Finally, the disc mass Tully-Fisher relation is offset fromthe maximum-disc scaled stellar mass Tully-Fisher relation of the UrsaMajor cluster. This offset, -0.3 dex in mass, is naturally explained ifthe discs of the Ursa Major cluster spirals are submaximal. The stellar populations of low-luminosity active galactic nuclei - III. Spatially resolved spectral propertiesIn a recently completed survey of the stellar population properties oflow-ionization nuclear emission-line regions (LINERs) and LINER/HIItransition objects (TOs), we have identified a numerous class ofgalactic nuclei which stand out because of their conspicuous108-9 yr populations, traced by high-order Balmer absorptionlines and other stellar indices. These objects are called young-TOs',because they all have TO-like emission-line ratios. In this paper weextend this previous work, which concentrated on the nuclear properties,by investigating the radial variations of spectral properties inlow-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGNs). Our analysis is based onhigh signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) long-slit spectra in the 3500-5500Å interval for a sample of 47 galaxies. The data probe distancesof typically up to 850 pc from the nucleus with a resolution of ~100 pc(~1 arcsec) and S/N ~ 30. Stellar population gradients are mapped by theradial profiles of absorption-line equivalent widths and continuumcolours along the slit. These variations are further analysed by meansof a decomposition of each spectrum in terms of template galaxiesrepresentative of very young (<=107 yr), intermediate age(108-9 yr) and old (1010 yr) stellar populations.This study reveals that young-TOs also differ from old-TOs andold-LINERs in terms of the spatial distributions of their stellarpopulations and dust. Specifically, our main findings are as follows.(i) Significant stellar population gradients are found almostexclusively in young-TOs. (ii) The intermediate age population ofyoung-TOs, although heavily concentrated in the nucleus, reachesdistances of up to a few hundred pc from the nucleus. Nevertheless, thehalf width at half-maximum of its brightness profile is more typically100 pc or less. (iii) Objects with predominantly old stellar populationspresent spatially homogeneous spectra, be they LINERs or TOs. (iv)Young-TOs have much more dust in their central regions than otherLLAGNs. (v) The B-band luminosities of the central <~1 Gyr populationin young-TOs are within an order of magnitude of MB=-15,implying masses of the order of ~107-108Msolar. This population was 10-100 times more luminous in itsformation epoch, at which time young massive stars would have completelyoutshone any active nucleus, unless the AGN too was brighter in thepast. Chemically Decoupled Nuclei in Five Lenticular Galaxies from SAURON DataWe analyze data from the SAURON integral-field spectrograph of theWilliam Herschel 4-m telescope for five lenticular galaxies in which wepreviously found chemically decoupled nuclei from observations with theMultipupil Fiber Spectrograph of the 6-m Special AstrophysicalObservatory telescope. In a larger field of view, we confirmed thepresence of peaks of the equivalent width of the Mg Ib λ5175absorption line in the nuclei of all five galaxies. However, thestructure of the chemically decoupled regions turned out to be highlyvaried even in such a small sample: from compact unresolved knots todisks with an extent of several hundred parsecs and, in one case, atriaxial compact minibar-type structure. We confirmed the presence of aninner gaseous polar ring in NGC 7280 and found it in NGC 7332. In theirouter parts, the planes of these polar rings are warped toward the planeof stellar rotation in such a way that the gas counterrotates withrespect to the stars. This behavior of the gas in a triaxial potentialwas predicted by several theoretical models. Probing the Ionizing Continuum of Narrow-Line Seyfert 1 Galaxies. I. Observational ResultsWe present optical spectra and emission-line ratios of 12 narrow-lineSeyfert 1 (NLS1) galaxies that we observed to study the ionizing EUVcontinuum. A common feature in the EUV continuum of active galacticnuclei is the big blue bump (BBB), generally associated with thermalaccretion disk emission. While Galactic absorption prevents directaccess to the EUV range, it can be mapped by measuring the strength of avariety of forbidden optical emission lines that respond to differentEUV continuum regions. We find that narrow emission line ratiosinvolving [O II] λ3727, Hβ, [O III] λ5007, [O I]λ6300, Hα, [N II] λ6583, and [S II]λλ6716, 6731 indicate no significant difference betweenNLS1 galaxies and broad-line Seyfert 1 (BLS1) galaxies, which suggeststhat the spectral energy distributions of their ionizing EUV-soft X-raycontinua are similar. The relative strength of important forbiddenhigh-ionization lines like [Ne V] λ3426 compared to He IIλ4686 and the relative strength of [Fe X] λ6374 appear toshow the same range as in BLS1 galaxies. However, a trend of weaker F([OI] λ6300)/F(Hα) emission-line ratios is indicated for NLS1galaxies compared to BLS1 galaxies. To recover the broad emission lineprofiles, we used Gaussian components. This approach indicates that thebroad Hβ profile can be well described with a broad component(FWHM~=3275+/-800 km s-1) and an intermediate broad component(FWHM~=1200+/-300 km s-1). The width of the broad componentis in the typical range of normal BLS1 galaxies. The emission-line fluxthat is associated with the broad component in these NLS1 galaxiesamounts to at least 60% of the total flux. Thus, it dominates the totalline flux, similar to BLS1 galaxies. Structural parameters of nearby emission-line galaxies We present the results of an investigation on the main structuralproperties derived from VRI and Hα surface photometry of galaxieshosting nuclear emission-line regions [including Seyfert 1, Seyfert 2,low-ionization nuclear emission region (LINER) and starburst galaxies]as compared with normal galaxies. Our original sample comprises 22active galaxies, four starbursts and one normal galaxy and has beenextended with several samples obtained from the literature. Bulge anddisc parameters, along with the bulge-to-disc luminosity ratio, havebeen derived applying an iterative procedure. The resulting parametershave been combined with additional data in order to reach astatistically significant sample. We find some differences in the bulgedistribution across the different nuclear types that could implyfamilies of bulges with different physical properties. Bulge and disccharacteristic colours have been defined and derived for our sample andcompared with a control sample of early-type objects. The resultssuggest that bulge and disc stellar populations are comparable in normaland active galaxies. Stellar Velocity Dispersion and Mass Estimation for Galactic DisksAvailable velocity dispersion estimates for the old stellar populationof galactic disks at galactocentric distances r=2L (where L is thephotometric radial scale length of the disk) are used to determine thethreshold local surface density of disks that are stable againstgravitational perturbations. The mass of the disk Mdcalculated under the assumption of its marginal stability is comparedwith the total mass Mt and luminosity LB of thegalaxy within r=4L. We corroborate the conclusion that a substantialfraction of the mass in galaxies is probably located in their darkhalos. The ratio of the radial velocity dispersion to the circularvelocity increases along the sequence of galactic color indices anddecreases from the early to late morphological types. For most of thegalaxies with large color indices (B-V)0 > 0.75, whichmainly belong to the S0 type, the velocity dispersion exceedssignificantly the threshold value required for the disk to be stable.The reverse situation is true for spiral galaxies: the ratiosMd/LB for these agree well with those expected forevolving stellar systems with the observed color indices. This suggeststhat the disks of spiral galaxies underwent no significant dynamicalheating after they reached a quasi-equilibrium stable state. Mid-Infrared Galaxy Morphology along the Hubble SequenceThe mid-infrared emission from 18 nearby galaxies were imaged with theInfrared Array Camera (IRAC) on the Spitzer Space Telescope, samplingthe spatial distributions of the reddening-free stellar photosphericemission and the warm dust in the interstellar medium. These twocomponents provide a new framework for galaxy morphology classificationin which the presence of spiral arms and their emission strengthrelative to the starlight can be measured directly and with highcontrast. Four mid-infrared classification methods are explored, threeof which are based on quantitative global parameters (colors andbulge-to-disk ratio) that are similar to those used in the past foroptical studies; in this limited sample, all correlate well withtraditional B-band classification. We suggest reasons why infraredclassification may be superior to optical classification. Circumnuclear Structure and Black Hole Fueling: Hubble Space Telescope NICMOS Imaging of 250 Active and Normal GalaxiesWhy are the nuclei of some galaxies more active than others? If mostgalaxies harbor a central massive black hole, the main difference isprobably in how well it is fueled by its surroundings. We investigatethe hypothesis that such a difference can be seen in the detailedcircumnuclear morphologies of galaxies using several quantitativelydefined features, including bars, isophotal twists, boxy and diskyisophotes, and strong nonaxisymmetric features in unsharp-masked images.These diagnostics are applied to 250 high-resolution images of galaxycenters obtained in the near-infrared with NICMOS on the Hubble SpaceTelescope. To guard against the influence of possible biases andselection effects, we have carefully matched samples of Seyfert 1,Seyfert 2, LINER, starburst, and normal galaxies in their basicproperties, taking particular care to ensure that each was observed witha similar average scale (10-15 pc pixel-1). Severalmorphological differences among our five different spectroscopicclassifications emerge from the analysis. The H II/starburst galaxiesshow the strongest deviations from smooth elliptical isophotes, whilethe normal galaxies and LINERs have the least disturbed morphology. TheSeyfert 2s have significantly more twisted isophotes than any othercategory, and the early-type Seyfert 2s are significantly more disturbedthan the early-type Seyfert 1s. The morphological differences betweenSeyfert 1s and Seyfert 2s suggest that more is at work than simply theviewing angle of the central engine. They may correspond to differentevolutionary stages. The Stellar Populations of Low-Luminosity Active Galactic Nuclei. II. Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph ObservationsWe present a study of the stellar populations of low-luminosity activegalactic nuclei (LLAGNs). Our goal is to search for spectroscopicsignatures of young and intermediate-age stars and to investigate theirrelationship with the ionization mechanism in LLAGNs. The method used isbased on the stellar population synthesis of the optical continuum ofthe innermost (20-100 pc) regions in these galaxies. For this purpose,we have collected high spatial resolution optical (2900-5700 Å)STIS spectra of 28 nearby LLAGNs that are available in the Hubble SpaceTelescope archive. The analysis of these data is compared with a similaranalysis also presented here for 51 ground-based spectra of LLAGNs. Ourmain findings are as follows: (1) No features due to Wolf-Rayet starswere convincingly detected in the STIS spectra. (2) Young starscontribute very little to the optical continuum in the ground-basedaperture. However, the fraction of light provided by these stars ishigher than 10% in most of the weak-[O I] ([OI]/Hα<=0.25) LLAGNSTIS spectra. (3) Intermediate-age stars contribute significantly to theoptical continuum of these nuclei. This population is more frequent inobjects with weak than with strong [O I]. Weak-[O I] LLAGNs that haveyoung stars stand out for their intermediate-age population. (4) Most ofthe strong-[O I] LLAGNs have predominantly old stellar population. A fewof these objects also show a featureless continuum that contributessignificantly to the optical continuum. These results suggest that youngand intermediate-age stars do not play a significant role in theionization of LLAGNs with strong [O I]. However, the ionization inweak-[O I] LLAGNs with young and/or intermediate-age populations couldbe due to stellar processes. A comparison of the properties of theseobjects with Seyfert 2 galaxies that harbor a nuclear starburst suggeststhat weak-[O I] LLAGNs are the lower luminosity counterparts of theSeyfert 2 composite nuclei.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. Based on observations made with the Nordic OpticalTelescope (NOT), operated on the island of La Palma jointly by Denmark,Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, in the Spanish Observatorio delRoque de los Muchachos of the Instituto de Astrofísica deCanarias. The Stellar Populations of Low-Luminosity Active Galactic Nuclei. I. Ground-based ObservationsWe present a spectroscopic study of the stellar populations oflow-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGNs). Our main goal is todetermine whether the stars that live in the innermost (100 pc scale)regions of these galaxies are in some way related to the emission-lineproperties, which would imply a link between the stellar population andthe ionization mechanism. High signal-to-noise ratio, ground-basedlong-slit spectra in the 3500-5500 Å interval were collected for60 galaxies: 51 LINERs and LINER/H II transition objects, two starburstgalaxies, and seven nonactive galaxies. In this paper, the first of aseries, we (1) describe the sample; (2) present the nuclear spectra; (3)characterize the stellar populations of LLAGNs by means of an empiricalcomparison with normal galaxies; (4) measure a set of spectral indices,including several absorption-line equivalent widths and colorsindicative of stellar populations; and (5) correlate the stellar indiceswith emission-line ratios that may distinguish between possibleexcitation sources for the gas. Our main findings are as follows: (1)Few LLAGNs have a detectable young (<~107 yr) starburstcomponent, indicating that very massive stars do not contributesignificantly to the optical continuum. In particular, no features dueto Wolf-Rayet stars were convincingly detected. (2) High-order Balmerabsorption lines of H I (HOBLs), on the other hand, are detected in ~40%of LLAGNs. These features, which are strongest in108-109 yr intermediate-age stellar populations,are accompanied by diluted metal absorption lines and bluer colors thanother objects in the sample. (3) These intermediate-age populations arevery common (~50%) in LLAGNs with relatively weak [O I] emission([OI]/Hα<=0.25) but rare (~10%) in LLAGNs with stronger [O I].This is intriguing since LLAGNs with weak [O I] have been previouslyhypothesized to be transition objects'' in which both an AGN and youngstars contribute to the emission-line excitation. Massive stars, ifpresent, are completely outshone by intermediate-age and old stars inthe optical. This happens in at least a couple of objects whereindependent UV spectroscopy detects young starbursts not seen in theoptical. (4) Objects with predominantly old stars span the whole rangeof [O I]/Hα values, but (5) sources with significant young and/orintermediate-age populations are nearly all (~90%) weak-[O I] emitters.These new findings suggest a link between the stellar populations andthe gas ionization mechanism. The strong-[O I] objects are most likelytrue LLAGNs, with stellar processes being insignificant. However, theweak-[O I] objects may comprise two populations, one where theionization is dominated by stellar processes and another where it isgoverned by either an AGN or a more even mixture of stellar and AGNprocesses. Possible stellar sources for the ionization include weakstarbursts, supernova remnants, and evolved poststarburst populations.These scenarios are examined and constrained by means of complementaryobservations and detailed modeling of the stellar populations inforthcoming communications.Based on observations made with the Nordic Optical Telescope, operatedon the island of La Palma jointly by Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway,and Sweden, in the Spanish Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos ofthe Instituto de Astrofísica de Canárias. 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. The Hα galaxy survey. I. The galaxy sample, Hα narrow-band observations and star formation parameters for 334 galaxiesWe discuss the selection and observations of a large sample of nearbygalaxies, which we are using to quantify the star formation activity inthe local Universe. The sample consists of 334 galaxies across allHubble types from S0/a to Im and with recession velocities of between 0and 3000 km s-1. The basic data for each galaxy are narrowband H\alpha +[NII] and R-band imaging, from which we derive starformation rates, H\alpha +[NII] equivalent widths and surfacebrightnesses, and R-band total magnitudes. A strong correlation is foundbetween total star formation rate and Hubble type, with the strongeststar formation in isolated galaxies occurring in Sc and Sbc types. Moresurprisingly, no significant trend is found between H\alpha +[NII]equivalent width and galaxy R-band luminosity. More detailed analyses ofthe data set presented here will be described in subsequent papers.Based on observations made with the Jacobus Kapteyn Telescope operatedon the island of La Palma by the Isaac Newton Group in the SpanishObservatorio del Roque de los Muchachos of the Instituto deAstrofísica de Canarias.The full version of Table \ref{tab3} is available in electronic form atthe CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/414/23 Reduced image datafor this survey can be downloaded fromhttp://www.astro.livjm.ac.uk/HaGS/ Lensing and the Centers of Distant Early-Type GalaxiesGravitational lensing provides a unique probe of the inner 10-1000 pc ofdistant galaxies (z~0.2-1). Theoretical studies have predicted that eachstrong lens system should have a faint image near the center of the lensgalaxy, which should, in principle, be visible in radio lenses but hasnever been detected. We study the predicted core'' images using modelsderived from the stellar distributions in nearby early-type galaxies. Wefind that realistic lens galaxies produce a remarkably wide range ofcore images, with magnifications spanning some 6 orders of magnitude.More concentrated galaxies produce fainter core images, although notwith any model-independent relation between the galaxy properties andthe core images. Some real galaxies have diffuse cores that should yieldbright core images (magnification μcore>~0.1), but morecommon are galaxies that yield faint core images(μcore<~0.001). Thus, stellar mass distributions aloneare probably concentrated enough to explain the lack of observed coreimages. Observational sensitivity may need to improve by an order ofmagnitude before detections of core images become common. Two-imagelenses should tend to have brighter core images than four-image lenses,so they will be the better targets for finding core images andexploiting these tools for studying the central mass distributions ofdistant galaxies. Minor-axis velocity gradients in spirals and the case of inner polar disksWe measured the ionized-gas and stellar kinematics along the major andminor axis of a sample of 10 early-type spirals. Much to our surprise wefound a remarkable gas velocity gradient along the minor axis of 8 ofthem. According to the kinematic features observed in their ionized-gasvelocity fields, we divide our sample galaxies in three classes ofobjects. (i) NGC 4984, NGC 7213, and NGC 7377 show an overall velocitycurve along the minor axis without zero-velocity points, out to the lastmeasured radius, which is interpreted as due to the warped structure ofthe gaseous disk. (ii) NGC 3885, NGC 4224, and NGC 4586 arecharacterized by a velocity gradient along both major and minor axis,although non-zero velocities along the minor axis are confined to thecentral regions. Such gas kinematics have been explained as being due tonon-circular motions induced by a triaxial potential. (iii) NGC 2855 andNGC 7049 show a change of slope of the velocity gradient measured alongthe major axis (which is shallower in the center and steeper away fromthe nucleus), as well as non-zero gas velocities in the central regionsof the minor axis. This has been attributed to the presence of akinematically-decoupled gaseous component in orthogonal rotation withrespect to the galaxy disk, namely an inner polar disk. The case andorigin of inner polar disks are discussed and the list of their hostgalaxies is presented.Based on observations carried out at the European Southern Observatory(ESO 62.A-0463 and 63.N-0305).Tables 3 and 4 are only available in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/408/873 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 A Chemically Decoupled Nucleus and Inner Polar Ring of the SBb Galaxy NGC 4548Not Available Automated Galaxy Morphology: A Fourier ApproachWe use automated surface photometry and pattern classificationtechniques to morphologically classify galaxies. The two-dimensionallight distribution of a galaxy is reconstructed using Fourier seriesfits to azimuthal profiles computed in concentric elliptical annulicentered on the galaxy. Both the phase and amplitude of each Fouriercomponent have been studied as a function of radial bin number for alarge collection of galaxy images using principal-component analysis. Wefind that up to 90% of the variance in many of these Fourier profilesmay be characterized in as few as three principal components and thattheir use substantially reduces the dimensionality of the classificationproblem. We use supervised learning methods in the form of artificialneural networks to train galaxy classifiers that detect morphologicalbars at the 85%-90% confidence level and can identify the Hubble typewith a 1 σ scatter of 1.5 steps on the 16 step stage axis of therevised Hubble system. Finally, we systematically characterize theadverse effects of decreasing resolution and signal-to-noise ratio onthe quality of morphological information predicted by these classifiers. Nested and Single Bars in Seyfert and Non-Seyfert GalaxiesWe analyze the observed properties of nested and single stellar barsystems in disk galaxies. The 112 galaxies in our sample comprise thelargest matched Seyfert versus non-Seyfert galaxy sample of nearbygalaxies with complete near-infrared or optical imaging sensitive tolength scales ranging from tens of parsecs to tens of kiloparsecs. Thepresence of bars is deduced by fitting ellipses to isophotes in HubbleSpace Telescope (HST) H-band images up to 10" radius and in ground-basednear-infrared and optical images outside the H-band images. This is aconservative approach that is likely to result in an underestimate ofthe true bar fraction. We find that a significant fraction of the samplegalaxies, 17%+/-4%, have more than one bar, and that 28%+/-5% of barredgalaxies have nested bars. The bar fractions appear to be stableaccording to reasonable changes in our adopted bar criteria. For thenested bars, we detect a clear division in length between thelarge-scale (primary) bars and small-scale (secondary) bars, in bothabsolute and normalized (to the size of the galaxy) length. We arguethat this bimodal distribution can be understood within the framework ofdisk resonances, specifically the inner Lindblad resonances (ILRs),which are located where the gravitational potential of the innermostgalaxy switches effectively from three-dimensional to two-dimensional.This conclusion is further strengthened by the observed distribution ofthe sizes of nuclear rings which are dynamically associated with theILRs. While primary bar sizes are found to correlate with the hostgalaxy sizes, no such correlation is observed for the secondary bars.Moreover, we find that secondary bars differ morphologically from singlebars. Our matched Seyfert and non-Seyfert samples show a statisticallysignificant excess of bars among the Seyfert galaxies at practically alllength scales. We confirm our previous results that bars are moreabundant in Seyfert hosts than in non-Seyfert galaxies and that Seyfertgalaxies always show a preponderance of thick'' bars compared to thebars in non-Seyfert galaxies. Finally, no correlation is observedbetween the presence of a bar and that of companion galaxies, evenrelatively bright ones. Overall, since star formation and dustextinction can be significant even in the H band, the stellar dynamicsof the central kiloparsec cannot always be revealed reliably by the useof near-infrared surface photometry alone. Nuclear Cusps and Cores in Early-Type Galaxies as Relics of Binary Black Hole MergersWe present an analysis of the central cusp slopes and core parameters ofearly-type galaxies using a large database of surface brightnessprofiles obtained from Hubble Space Telescope observations. We examinethe relation between the central cusp slopes, core parameters, and blackhole masses in early-type galaxies, in light of two models that attemptto explain the formation of cores and density cusps via the dynamicalinfluence of black holes. Contrary to the expectations fromadiabatic-growth models, we find that the cusp slopes do not steepenwith increasing black hole mass fraction. Moreover, a comparison ofkinematic black hole mass measurements with the masses predicted by theadiabatic models shows that they overpredict the masses by a factor of~3. Simulations involving binary black hole mergers predict that boththe size of the core and the central mass deficit correlate with thefinal black hole mass. These relations are qualitatively supported bythe present data. 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. Spiral Galaxies with HST/NICMOS. II. Isophotal Fits and Nuclear Cusp SlopesWe present surface brightness profiles for 56 of the 78 spiral galaxiesobserved in the HST/NICMOS2 F160W snapshot survey introduced in Paper Iof this series, as well as surface brightness profiles for 23 objectsout of the 41 that were also observed in the F110W filter. We fit thesesurface brightness profiles with the Nuker law of Lauer et al. and usethe smooth analytical descriptions of the data to compute the averagenuclear stellar cusp slopes <γ> in the 0.1"-0.5" radialrange. Our main result is the startling similarity between the nuclearstellar cusp slopes <γ> in the near-infrared compared withthose derived in the visual passband. This similarity has severalimplications: (1) Despite the significant local color variations thatare found in the nuclear regions of spirals and that are documented inPaper I, there are typically little or no optical-NIR global colorgradients, and thus no global stellar population variations, inside~50-100 pc from the nucleus in nearby spirals. (2) The large observedrange of the strength of the nuclear stellar cusps seen in the HSToptical study of spiral galaxies reflects a physical difference betweengalaxies and is not an artifact caused by nuclear dust and/or recentstar formation. (3) The dichotomy between R1/4 bulges, withsteep nuclear stellar cusps <γ>~1, and exponential bulges,with shallow nuclear stellar cusps <γ><0.3, is also notan artifact of the effects of dust or recent star formation. (4) Thepresence of a surrounding massive disk appears to have no effect on therise of the stellar density distribution within the innermost hundredparsecs of the R1/4 spheroids. These results imply abreakdown within the family of exponential bulges of the nuclear versusglobal relationships that have been found for the R1/4spheroids. Such a breakdown is likely to have significant implicationsconcerning the formation of exponential bulges and their connection withthe R1/4 spheroids. Based on observations with the NASA/ESAHubble Space Telescope, obtained at the Space Telescope ScienceInstitute, which is operated by the Association of Universities forResearch in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. Spiral Galaxies with HST/NICMOS. I. Nuclear Morphologies, Color Maps, and Distinct NucleiThis is the first of two papers where we present the analysis of anHST/NICMOS2 near-infrared (NIR) snapshot survey in the F160W (H) filterfor a sample of 78 spiral galaxies selected from the UGC and ESOLVcatalogs. For 69 of these objects we provide nuclear color informationderived by combining the H data either with additional NICMOS F110W (J)images or with V WFPC2/HST data. Here we present the NIR images and theoptical-NIR color maps. We focus our attention on the properties of thephotometrically distinct `nuclei'' which are found embedded in most ofthe galaxies and provide measurements of their half-light radii andmagnitudes in the H (and when available in the J) band. We find that (1)in the NIR the nuclei embedded in the bright early- to intermediate-typegalaxies span a much larger range in brightness than the nuclei whichare typically found embedded in bulgeless late-type disks: the nucleiembedded in the early- to intermediate-type galaxies reach, on thebright end, values up to HAB~-17.7 mag; (2) nuclei are foundin both nonbarred and barred hosts, in large-scale (>~1 kpc) as wellas in nuclear (up to a few 100 pc) bars; (3) there is a significantincrease in half-light radius with increasing luminosity of the nucleusin the early/intermediate types (a decade in radius for ~8 magbrightening), a correlation which was found in the V band and which isalso seen in the NIR data; (4) the nuclei of early/intermediate-typespirals cover a large range of optical-NIR colors, from V-H~-0.5 to 3.Some nuclei are bluer and others redder than the surroundinggalaxy,indicating the presence of activity or reddening by dust in many ofthese systems; (5) someearly/intermediate nuclei are elongated and/orslightly offset from the isophotal center of the host galaxy. Onaverage, however, these nuclei appear as centered, star-cluster-likestructures similar to those whichare found in the late-type disks. Basedon observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtained atthe Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by Associationof Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS5-26555. Outer edges of face-on spiral galaxies. Deep optical imaging of NGC 5923, UGC 9837 and NGC 5434We present deep optical imaging of three face-on disk galaxies togetherwith a detailed description of the reduction and calibration methodsused, in order to measure the intrinsic shape of their outer stellaredges. Whereas it is now well accepted that disks of spiral galaxies arenot infinite exponential beyond galactocentric distances of about 3-5radial scalelengths, the genuine structure of the truncation region isnot yet well known. Our data quantitatively establish a smoothtruncation behaviour of the radial surface brightness profiles and isbest described by a two-slope model, characterised by an inner and outerexponential scalelength separated at a relatively well defined breakradius. This result disagrees with the frequently assumed sharplytruncated nature of the radial surface brightness profiles and impliesthe presence of stars and even star-formation beyond the break radius.In addition, we do not find a strong influence of a nearby companion onthe ratio of the break radius to the radial scalelength. Our resultsdenote new observational constraints for the search of the physicalexplanation for these smooth disk truncations. Based on observationsobtained at the German-Spanish Astronomical Center (DSAZ), Calar Alto,jointly operated by the Max-Planck-Institut für AstronomieHeidelberg and the Spanish National Commission for Astronomy. Chemically distinct nuclei and circumnuclear rings in lenticular galaxies NGC 4429 and NGC 7013The central regions of the regular lenticular galaxies NGC 4429 and NGC7013 have been studied with the Multi-Pupil Field (Fiber) Spectrograph(MPFS) of the 6 m telescope of the Special Astrophysical Observatory RAS(Nizhnij Arkhyz, Russia) in two spectral ranges, the blue one includingthe strong absorption lines Mg I and Fe I and the red one including theemission lines Hα and [N II]lambda 6583. We confirm the presenceof the chemically distinct nucleus in NGC 7013 reported earlier. Besidesthis unresolved (in the magnesium index) structure, we have found a ringof younger stellar populations than those in the nucleus and in thebulge; the radius of this ring is about 6\arcsec (400 pc). A similarring, distinguished by high magnesium- and iron-index values andbordered by Hα emission at its inner edge, with a radius of6\arcsec (500 pc), is found in NGC 4429. We try to relate the ringedstructure of the chemically decoupled cores in these galaxies with past,now dissolved, large-scale bars whose remnants are now seen in NGC 4429and NGC 7013 as lenses between the bulges and global disks. An analysisof the gas and star kinematics in the centers of the galaxies hasrevealed the presence of an inclined circumnuclear disk in NGC 7013 andthe existence of minibar in NGC 4429. Based on observations collectedwith the 6 m telescope of the Special Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) ofthe Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) which is operated under thefinancial support of Science Department of Russia (registration number01-43) and on data from the HST and ING Archives. Strömgren Photometry from z=0 to z~1. I. The MethodWe use rest-frame Strömgren photometry to observe clusters ofgalaxies in a self-consistent manner from z=0 to z=0.8. Strömgrenphotometry of galaxies is intended as a compromise between standardbroadband photometry and spectroscopy, in the sense that it is moresensitive to subtle variations in spectral energy distributions than theformer, yet much less time-consuming than the latter. principalcomponent analysis is used to facilitate extraction of information fromthe Strömgren data. By calibrating the principal components usingwell-studied galaxies, as well as models of stellar populations, wedevelop a purely empirical method to detect, and subsequently classify,cluster galaxies at all redshifts smaller than 0.8. Interlopers arediscarded with unprecedented efficiency (up to 100%). The firstprincipal component essentially reproduces the Hubble sequence and canthus be used to determine the global star formation history of clustermembers. The (PC2, PC3) plane allows us to identify Seyfert galaxies(and distinguish them from starbursts) based on photometric colorsalone. In the case of E/S0 galaxies with known redshift, we are able toresolve the age-dust-metallicity degeneracy, albeit at the accuracylimit of our present observations. We use this technique in later papersto probe galaxy clusters well beyond their cores and to faintermagnitudes than spectroscopy can achieve, because the faint end of theluminosity function as well as the outer cluster regions seem to exhibitthe strongest evolutionary trends. We are able to directly compare thesedata over the entire redshift range without a priori assumptions becauseour observations do not require first-order k-corrections. Thecompilation of such data for different cluster types over a wideredshift range is likely to set important constraints on the evolutionof galaxies and on the clustering process. Arp 220: A Circumnuclear Polar Ring as an Alternative to a Double Nucleus?Recent millimeter interferometer observations of Arp 220 have yielded~0.5" resolution images showing two strong concentrations of millimeterradio continuum and CO line emission embedded in a larger molecular gasdisk (r~1 kpc). The interferometer observations also revealed a complexvelocity field with steep velocity gradients across each of the fluxconcentrations of Δv~500 km s-1 within r=0.3". Thedirections of these gradients are not aligned with each other or withthat of the outer gas disk. This led to the conclusion that the twoemission peaks represent either double nuclei with their own gas disks(r~100 pc), which are counterrotating with respect to each other androtate around the dynamical center of the system, or that they are twohot spots within a nuclear molecular gas disk. The overall structure ofthe molecular gas distribution and the corresponding complex velocityfield, however, are highly symmetric, except for the unequalbrightnesses of the two flux concentrations. This fact and similaritiesto the distribution and kinematics of the molecular gas in the central2'' of NGC 1068 motivated us to try describing the Arp 220nucleus as a warped molecular gas disk in which the peaks in the fluxand line width distributions arise as a result of crowding of inclinedcircular orbits. Hubble Space Telescope (HST) images of the dust lanesflaring toward larger radii provide further support for a warped gasdisk. The final model is surprisingly successful in explaining the COline flux distribution, the velocity field, and position-velocitydiagrams across the central flux concentrations. The model represents astrong 90deg warp of the gas orbits out of the principalplane forming a circumnuclear polar ring and reproduces well thestructures in HST near-IR color and continuum maps. The large number ofyoung stars recently formed out of the warped, polar-ring gas impliesthat those stars will have kinematic properties similar to that of themolecular gas. We suggest that the red near-IR source at the center ofthe polar ring is the true nucleus of Arp 220. The success of the modelimplies that the two flux concentrations are not necessarilycounterrotating nuclei, but rather the result of a combination of hotspots and orbit crowding due to the warp. The warp could be a directconsequence of the recent merger event indicated by tidal tails inoptical images.
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