The next generation Virgo cluster survey. XII. Stellar populations and kinematics of compact, low-mass early-type galaxies from Gemini GMOS-IFU spectroscopy

Adrien Guérou, Eric Emsellem, Richard M. McDermid, Patrick Côté, Laura Ferrarese, Patrick R. Durrell, Lauren A. Macarthur, Eric W. Peng, Jean Charles Cuillandre, Stephen Gwyn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We present Gemini Multi Object Spectrograph integral-field unit (GMOS-IFU) data of eight compact, low-mass early-type galaxies (ETGs) in the Virgo cluster. We analyze their stellar kinematics and stellar population and present two-dimensional maps of these properties covering the central 5″ 7″ region. We find a large variety of kinematics, from nonrotating to highly rotating objects, often associated with underlying disky isophotes revealed by deep images from the Next Generation Virgo Cluster Survey. In half of our objects, we find a centrally concentrated younger and more metal-rich stellar population. We analyze the specific stellar angular momentum through the λR parameter and find six fast rotators and two slow rotators, one having a thin counterrotating disk. We compare the local galaxy density and stellar populations of our objects with those of 39 more extended low-mass Virgo ETGs from the SMAKCED survey and 260 massive (M > 1010 ) ETGs from the ATLAS3D sample. The compact low-mass ETGs in our sample are located in high-density regions, often close to a massive galaxy, and have, on average, older and more metal-rich stellar populations than less compact low-mass galaxies. We find that the stellar population parameters follow lines of constant velocity dispersion in the mass-size plane, smoothly extending the comparable trends found for massive ETGs. Our study supports a scenario where low-mass compact ETGs have experienced long-lived interactions with their environment, including ram-pressure stripping and gravitational tidal forces, that may be responsible for their compact nature.

Original languageEnglish
Article number70
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume804
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2015

Keywords

  • galaxies: clusters: individual (Virgo)
  • galaxies: dwarf
  • galaxies: elliptical and lenticular, cD
  • galaxies: evolution
  • galaxies: kinematics and dynamics
  • galaxies: stellar content

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