Connection between dynamically derived IMF normalisation and stellar populations

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contribution


In this contributed talk I present recent results on the connection between stellar population properties and the normalisation of the stellar initial mass function (IMF) measured using stellar dynamics, based on a large sample of 260 early-type galaxies observed as part of the ATLAS super(3D) project. This measure of the IMF normalisation is found to vary non-uniformly with age- and metallicity-sensitive absorption line strengths. Applying single stellar population models, there are weak but measurable trends of the IMF with age and abundance ratio. Accounting for the dependence of stellar population parameters on velocity dispersion effectively removes these trends, but subsequently introduces a trend with metallicity, such that 'heavy' IMFs favour lower metallicities. The correlations are weaker than those found from previous studies directly detecting low-mass stars, suggesting some degree of tension between the different approaches of measuring the IMF. Resolving these discrepancies will be the focus of future work.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGalaxies masses as constraints of formation models
Subtitle of host publicationproceedings of the 311th Symposium of the International Astronomical Union held in Oxford, United Kingdom, July 21-25, 2014
EditorsMichele Cappellari, Stéphane Courteau
Place of PublicationCambridge
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages4
ISBN (Print)9781107078697
Publication statusPublished - 2014
EventInternational Astronomical Union. Symposium (311th : 2014) - Oxford, UK
Duration: 21 Jul 201425 Jul 2014


ConferenceInternational Astronomical Union. Symposium (311th : 2014)
CityOxford, UK


  • galaxies: elliptical and lenticular, cD
  • galaxies: evolution
  • galaxies: stellar content


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