Journal Article

A universal stellar mass–size relation of galaxies in the GOODS-North region

Takashi Ichikawa, Masaru Kajisawa and Mohammad Akhlaghi

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 422, issue 2, pages 1014-1027
Published in print May 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online April 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
A universal stellar mass–size relation of galaxies in the GOODS-North region

Show Summary Details


We present scaling relations between the stellar mass (M*) and size of galaxies at 0.3 < z < 3 for half-light (R50) and 90 per cent-light (R90) radii, using a deep K-band-selected catalogue taken with the Subaru Telescope and Multi-Object Infrared Camera and Spectrograph (MOIRCS) in the Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey (GOODS)-North region. The logarithmic slope is independent of redshift in a wide mass range of M*∼ 108–1011 M, irrespective of galaxy populations (star forming and quiescent). The offset change is ≲50 per cent. Provided that optical light in the rest frame traces the stellar mass of galaxies, the universal relation demonstrates that the stellar mass was built up in galaxies over their cosmic histories in a similar manner on average, irrespective of galaxy mass. The small offset in each stellar mass bin from the universal relation shows weak size evolution at a given mass. There is a moderate increase of 30–50 per cent for R50 and R90 for less massive galaxies (M* < 1010 M) from z∼ 3 to 1, while the sizes remain unchanged or slightly decreased towards z∼ 0.3. For massive galaxies (M*≳ 1011 M), the evolution increases by ∼70–80 per cent in R90 from z∼ 3 to 0.3, though it is weaker in R50. The evolution of compactness factor, R50/R90, which becomes smaller at lower redshift, is suggestive of minor merging effect in the outer envelope of massive galaxies.

Keywords: galaxies: evolution; galaxies: fundamental parameters; galaxies: high-redshift; infrared: galaxies

Journal Article.  7652 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.