Journal Article

Properties of the giant HII regions and bar in the nearby spiral galaxy NGC5430

É. Brière, S. Cantin and K. Spekkens

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 425, issue 1, pages 261-272
Published in print September 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online September 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Properties of the giant HII regions and bar in the nearby spiral galaxy NGC5430

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In order to better understand the impact of the bar on the evolution of spiral galaxies, we measure the properties of giant H ii regions and the bar in the SB(s)b galaxy NGC 5430. We use two complementary data sets, both obtained at the Observatoire du Mont-Mégantic: a hyperspectral data cube from the imaging Fourier transform spectrograph SpIOMM (Spectromètre-Imageur à transformée de Fourier de l-Observatoire du Mont-Mégantic) and high-resolution spectra across the bar from a long-slit spectrograph. We flux-calibrate SpIOMM spectra for the first time, and produce Hα and [N ii]λ6584 Å intensity maps from which we identify 51 giant H ii regions in the spiral arms and bar. We evaluate the type of activity, the oxygen abundance and the age of the young populations contained in these giant H ii regions and in the bar. Thus, we confirm that NGC 5430 does not harbour a strong active galactic nucleus, and that its Wolf–Rayet knot shows a pure H ii region nature. We find no variation in abundance or age between the bar and spiral arms, nor as a function of galactocentric radius. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that a chemical mixing mechanism is at work in the galaxy's disc to flatten the oxygen abundance gradient. Using the starburst99 model, we estimate the ages of the young populations, and again find no variations in age between the bar and the arms or as a function of radius. Instead, we find evidence for two galaxy-wide waves of star formation, about 7.1 and 10.5 Myr ago. While the bar in NGC 5430 is an obvious candidate to trigger these two episodes, it is not clear how the bar could induce widespread star formation on such a short time-scale.

Keywords: instrumentation: interferometers; H ii regions; galaxies: abundances; galaxies: individual: NGC 5430; galaxies: stellar content

Journal Article.  7005 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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