Journal Article

Galaxy environments in the UKIDSS Ultra Deep Survey

R. W. Chuter, O. Almaini, W. G. Hartley, R. J. McLure, J. S. Dunlop, S. Foucaud, C. J. Conselice, C. Simpson, M. Cirasuolo and E. J. Bradshaw

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 413, issue 3, pages 1678-1686
Published in print May 2011 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online May 2011 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Galaxy environments in the UKIDSS Ultra Deep Survey

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We present a study of galaxy environments to z∼ 2, based on a sample of over 33 000 K-band-selected galaxies detected in the UKIDSS Ultra Deep Survey (UDS). The combination of infrared depth and area in the UDS allows us to extend previous studies of galaxy environment to z > 1 without the strong biases associated with optical galaxy selection. We study the environments of galaxies divided by rest-frame (UB) colours, in addition to ‘passive’ and ‘star-forming’ subsets based on template fitting. We find that galaxy colour is strongly correlated with galaxy overdensity on small scales (<1-Mpc diameter), with red/passive galaxies residing in significantly denser environments than blue/star-forming galaxies to z∼ 1.5. On smaller scales (<0.5-Mpc diameter) we also find a relationship between galaxy luminosity and environment, with the most luminous blue galaxies at z∼ 1 inhabiting environments comparable to red, passive systems at the same redshift. Monte Carlo simulations demonstrate that these conclusions are robust to the uncertainties introduced by photometric redshift errors.

Keywords: galaxies: evolution; infrared: galaxies

Journal Article.  5721 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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