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|Supermassive Black Holes in Galactic Nuclei: Past, Present and Future Research|
This review discusses the current status of supermassive black holeresearch, as seen from a purely observational standpoint. Since theearly ‘90s, rapid technological advances, most notably the launchof the Hubble Space Telescope, the commissioning of the VLBA andimprovements in near-infrared speckle imaging techniques, have not onlygiven us incontrovertible proof of the existence of supermassive blackholes, but have unveiled fundamental connections between the mass of thecentral singularity and the global properties of the host galaxy. It isthanks to these observations that we are now, for the first time, in aposition to understand the origin, evolution and cosmic relevance ofthese fascinating objects.
|An IRAS High Resolution Image Restoration (HIRES) Atlas of All Interacting Galaxies in the IRAS Revised Bright Galaxy Sample|
The importance of far-infrared observations for our understanding ofextreme activity in interacting and merging galaxies has beenillustrated by many studies. Even though two decades have passed sinceits launch, the most complete all-sky survey to date from which far-IRselected galaxy samples can be chosen is still that of the InfraredAstronomical Satellite (IRAS). However, the spatial resolution of theIRAS all-sky survey is insufficient to resolve the emission fromindividual galaxies in most interacting galaxy pairs, and hence previousstudies of their far-IR properties have had to concentrate either onglobal system properties or on the properties of very widely separatedand weakly interacting pairs. Using the HIRES image reconstructiontechnique, it is possible to achieve a spatial resolution ranging from30" to 1.5m (depending on wavelength and detector coverage), whichis a fourfold improvement over the normal resolution of IRAS. This issufficient to resolve the far-IR emission from the individual galaxiesin many interacting systems detected by IRAS, which is very importantfor meaningful comparisons with single, isolated galaxies. We presenthigh-resolution 12, 25, 60, and 100 μm images of 106 interactinggalaxy systems contained in the IRAS Revised Bright Galaxy Sample (RBGS,Sanders et al.), a complete sample of all galaxies having a 60 μmflux density greater than 5.24 Jy. These systems were selected to haveat least two distinguishable galaxies separated by less than threeaverage galactic diameters, and thus we have excluded very widelyseparated systems and very advanced mergers. Additionally, some systemshave been included that are more than three galactic diameters apart,yet have separations less than 4' and are thus likely to suffer fromconfusion in the RBGS. The new complete survey has the same propertiesas the prototype survey of Surace et al. We find no increased tendencyfor infrared-bright galaxies to be associated with other infrared-brightgalaxies among the widely separated pairs studied here. We find smallenhancements in far-IR activity in multiple galaxy systems relative toRBGS noninteracting galaxies with the same blue luminosity distribution.We also find no differences in infrared activity (as measured byinfrared color and luminosity) between late- and early-type spiralgalaxies.
|Star Formation Rates in Interacting Starburst Galaxies|
By narrowband imaging in Hα and in the adjacent red stellarcontinuum we have studied the rate and distribution of star formation in43 systems of luminous and ultraluminous IR galaxies currentlyundergoing interaction and merging. These galaxies are amongst the mostluminous at 60 μm and range in distance from ~50 up to 100 Mpc. Herewe present the Hα and the adjacent red-continuum narrowbandimages, and we compare the star formation rates derived from Hαwith those estimated from the IR luminosity. We find clear evidence forsubstantial extinction and obscuration of star-forming regions in theoptical. Without correction for reddening in the host galaxy orcorrection for [N II] contamination, the star formation rates derivedfor Hα are typically 0.5-1.0 dex lower than those estimated fromthe IR flux, and the scatter in the correlation is very large. However,an unexpected result is that when spectroscopic data are used toeliminate objects dominated by an active nucleus, to determine thegalaxian extinction, and to correct the Hα flux for both reddeningand for the contamination by the [N II] emission, a remarkably goodcorrelation emerges between the star formation rates estimated from theHα flux and those derived from the FIR continuum. In addition, astrong correlation is found between the extinction in the line-emittingregion, AHα, and the rate of star formation. Ourresults invalidate the use of Hα imaging as a reliable indicatorof star formation in starburst galaxies unless spectroscopic data arealso available. This has important implications for the determination ofstar formation rates in high-redshift galaxies. Finally, we find nocorrelation between the measured star formation rates, and theinteraction class, suggesting that the enhanced star formation ratestriggered by the interaction continue throughout the whole of themerging sequence.
|The UZC-SSRS2 Group Catalog|
We apply a friends-of-friends algorithm to the combined Updated ZwickyCatalog and Southern Sky Redshift Survey to construct a catalog of 1168groups of galaxies; 411 of these groups have five or more members withinthe redshift survey. The group catalog covers 4.69 sr, and all groupsexceed the number density contrast threshold, δρ/ρ=80. Wedemonstrate that the groups catalog is homogeneous across the twounderlying redshift surveys; the catalog of groups and their membersthus provides a basis for other statistical studies of the large-scaledistribution of groups and their physical properties. The medianphysical properties of the groups are similar to those for groupsderived from independent surveys, including the ESO Key Programme andthe Las Campanas Redshift Survey. We include tables of groups and theirmembers.
|Total magnitude, radius, colour indices, colour gradients and photometric type of galaxies|
We present a catalogue of aperture photometry of galaxies, in UBVRI,assembled from three different origins: (i) an update of the catalogueof Buta et al. (1995) (ii) published photometric profiles and (iii)aperture photometry performed on CCD images. We explored different setsof growth curves to fit these data: (i) The Sersic law, (ii) The net ofgrowth curves used for the preparation of the RC3 and (iii) A linearinterpolation between the de Vaucouleurs (r(1/4) ) and exponential laws.Finally we adopted the latter solution. Fitting these growth curves, wederive (1) the total magnitude, (2) the effective radius, (3) the colourindices and (4) gradients and (5) the photometric type of 5169 galaxies.The photometric type is defined to statistically match the revisedmorphologic type and parametrizes the shape of the growth curve. It iscoded from -9, for very concentrated galaxies, to +10, for diffusegalaxies. Based in part on observations collected at the Haute-ProvenceObservatory.
|CCD calibration of the magnitude scale for the SSRS2 sample: The equatorial region|
In this paper we continue our investigation on the isophotal nature,accuracy, and uniformity of the magnitude system adopted in the SouthernSky Redshift Survey extension (SSRS2). Extending our earlier work, weexamine galaxies in the equatorial region, primarily in the declinationrange delta greater than or equal to -17.5 deg and less than or equal to0 deg, over a large range of right ascension, covering the southern andnorthern Galactic caps. For this purpose, we have obtained CCD isophotalmagnitudes in the B and R bands for 265 galaxies of differentmorphological types. Using the larger sample we confirm our earlierclaim that the mSSRS2 magnitudes are very nearly themagnitude measured within the isophote muB = 26 mag/sqarcsec, with a dispersion of about 0.30 mag. The relative zero-pointoffset between our mSSRS2 magnitudes and the CCD photometryis -0.02 mag from all data we have obtained. However, we detect avariation of the zero-point across different regions of the sky of +/-0.10 mag for regions at large angular separations. We also estimate thatthe zero-point offset between the mSSRS2 and Zwicky systemsis relatively small (approximately 0.10 mag), which should allow us tocombine the data from the SSRS2 and the CfA2 Redshift Survey.
|Infrared properties of interacting IRAS galaxies|
This paper presents near-infrared photometry and coadded IRAS data for asample of 19 interacting and merging galaxy systems selected by IRASflux and morphological criteria. The far-infrared activity LFIR/LB riseswith interaction strength. There are also changes in the far-infraredcolors: log(f12/f25) is lower and log(f60/f100) higher for stronginteractions. This behavior can be understood in the context oftwo-component models of the far-infrared emission as an increase in thecontribution of active star formation to the infrared activity. Thenear-infrared colors of the galaxies are studied, and the use of K-Lcolor excesses to search for far-infrared emission is justified. Thedistribution of infrared activity in binary galaxies is analyzed withthe help of K-L color excesses and confirmed using IRAS data. Contraryto some earlier studies, it is found that enhanced activity in bothcomponents of an interacting system is frequent. The implications ofthis behavior for the conditions necessary to trigger starbursts arediscussed. The occurrence of a significant number of systems withinfrared activity in both galaxies suggests that disturbances of thegaseous component leading to starbursts may be less sensitive to therelative orientation of the interacting galaxies than disturbances ofthe stellar component leading to prominent tidal tails.
|Optical polarization studies of Herbig Haro objects. III - HH100 in Corona Australis|
Optical linear polarization data for the HH100 nebulosity are presented.It cannot be confirmed that HH100 IRS is the sole source of excitationand illumination of the nebula, and it is suggested that there may be anadditional and/or alternative source deeply embedded within the nebulaitself.
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