Journal Article

Galactic satellite systems: radial distribution and environment dependence of galaxy morphology

H. B. Ann, Changbom Park and Yun-Young Choi

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 389, issue 1, pages 86-92
Published in print September 2008 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online August 2008 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2008.13581.x
Galactic satellite systems: radial distribution and environment dependence of galaxy morphology

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We have studied the radial distribution of the early (E/S0) and late (S/Irr) types of satellites around bright host galaxies. We made a volume-limited sample of 4986 satellites brighter than Mr=−18.0 associated with 2254 hosts brighter than Mr=−19.0 from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 5 sample. The morphology of satellites is determined by an automated morphology classifier, but the host galaxies are visually classified. We found segregation of satellite morphology as a function of the projected distance from the host galaxy. The amplitude and shape of the early-type satellite fraction profile are found to depend on the host luminosity. This is the morphology–radius/density relation at the galactic scale. There is a strong tendency for morphology conformity between the host galaxy and its satellites. The early-type fraction of satellites hosted by early-type galaxies is systematically larger than that of late-type hosts, and is a strong function of the distance from the host galaxies. Fainter satellites are more vulnerable to the morphology transformation effects of hosts. Dependence of satellite morphology on the large-scale background density was detected. The fraction of early-type satellites increases in high-density regions for both early- and late-type hosts. It is argued that the conformity in morphology of galactic satellite system is mainly originated by the hydrodynamical and radiative effects of hosts on satellites.

Keywords: methods: observational; galaxies: formation; galaxies: general; galaxies: interactions

Journal Article.  5223 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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