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 Eridanus - a supergroup in the local Universe?We examine a possible supergroup in the direction of the Eridanusconstellation using 6dF Galaxy Survey second data release (6dFGS DR2)positions and velocities together with Two-Micron All-Sky Survey andHyper-Lyon-Meudon Extragalactic DAtabase photometry. We perform afriends-of-friends analysis to determine which galaxies are associatedwith each substructure before examining the properties of theconstituent galaxies. The overall structure is made up of threeindividual groups that are likely to merge to form a cluster of mass ~7× 1013Msolar. We conclude that thisstructure is a supergroup. We also examine the colours, morphologies andluminosities of the galaxies in the region with respect to their localprojected surface density. We find that the colours of the galaxiesredden with increasing density, the median luminosities are brighterwith increasing environmental density and the morphologies of thegalaxies show a strong morphology-density relation. The colours andluminosities of the galaxies in the supergroup are already similar tothose of galaxies in clusters; however, the supergroup contains morelate-type galaxies, consistent with its lower projected surface density.Due to the velocity dispersion of the groups in the supergroup, whichare lower than those of clusters, we conclude that the properties of theconstituent galaxies are likely to be a result of merging orstrangulation processes in groups outlying this structure. Ongoing Star Formation in the BL Lacertae Object PKS 2005-489We present VLT long-slit optical spectroscopy of the luminous BLLacertae object PKS 2005-489. The high signal-to-noise ratio and thegood spatial resolution of the data allow us to detect the signatures ofongoing star formation in an extended rotating ring, at ~4 kpc from thenucleus. We find that the ring is almost perpendicular to the radioaxis, and its total star formation rate is ~=1 Msolaryr-1. We briefly discuss the concomitant presence of recentstar formation and nuclear activity. The scaling relation of early-type galaxies in clusters. II. Spectroscopic data for galaxies in eight nearby clustersAims.We present low and intermediate resolution spectroscopic datacollected for 152 early type galaxies in 8 nearby clusters with z ≤0.10. Methods: .We use low resolution data to produce the redshiftand the K-correction for each galaxy, as well as to give their overallspectral energy distribution and some spectral indicators, including the4000 Å break, the Mg2 strength and the NaD equivalent width. Wehave also obtained higher resolution data for early type galaxies inthree of the clusters, to determine their central velocity dispersion. Results: .The effect of the resolution on the measured parametersis discussed. Conclusions: .A new accurate systemic redshift andvelocity dispersion is presented for four of the surveyed clusters, A98,A3125, A3330, and DC2103-39. We have found that the K-correction valuesfor E/S0 bright galaxies in the given nearby clusters are very similar.We also find that the distribution of the line indicators significantlydiffers from cluster to cluster. Nearby early-type galaxies with ionized gas. II. Line-strength indices for 18 additional galaxiesWe previously presented a data-set of line-strength indices for 50early-type galaxies in the nearby Universe. The galaxy sample is biasedtoward galaxies showing emission lines, located in environmentscorresponding to a broad range of local galaxy densities, althoughpredominantly in low density environments. The present addendum enlargesthe above data-set of line-strength indices by analyzing 18 additionalearly-type galaxies (three galaxies, NGC 3607, NGC 5077 and NGC 5898were presented in the previous set). We measured 25 line-strengthindices, defined by the Lick IDS "standard" system (Trager et al. 1998,ApJS, 116, 1; Worthey & Ottaviani 1997, ApJS, 111, 377), for 7luminosity weighted apertures and 4 gradients of each galaxy. Thisaddendum presents the line-strength data-set and compares it with theavailable data in the literature. The X-ray emission properties and the dichotomy in the central stellar cusp shapes of early-type galaxiesThe Hubble Space Telescope has revealed a dichotomy in the centralsurface brightness profiles of early-type galaxies, which havesubsequently been grouped into two families: core, boxy, anisotropicsystems; and cuspy (power-law'), discy, rotating ones. Here weinvestigate whether a dichotomy is also present in the X-ray propertiesof the two families. We consider both their total soft emission(LSX,tot), which is a measure of the galactic hot gascontent, and their nuclear hard emission (LHX,nuc), mostlycoming from Chandra observations, which is a measure of the nuclearactivity. At any optical luminosity, the highest LSX,totvalues are reached by core galaxies; this is explained by their beingthe central dominant galaxies of groups, subclusters or clusters, inmany of the logLSX,tot (ergs-1) >~ 41.5 cases.The highest LHX,nuc values, similar to those of classicalactive galactic nuclei (AGNs), in this sample are hosted only by core orintermediate galaxies; at low luminosity AGN levels, LHX,nucis independent of the central stellar profile shape. The presence ofoptical nuclei (also found by HST) is unrelated to the level ofLHX,nuc, even though the highest LHX,nuc are allassociated with optical nuclei. The implications of these findings forgalaxy evolution and accretion modalities at the present epoch arediscussed. Optical properties of the NGC 5328 group of galaxies*We present the results of a photometric and spectroscopic study of sevenmembers of the NGC 5328 group of galaxies, a chain of galaxies spanningover 200 kpc (H0= 70 km s-1 Mpc-1). Weanalyse the galaxy structure and study the emission-line properties ofthe group members looking for signatures of star formation and activegalactic nucleus activity. We finally attempt to infer, from themodelling of line-strength indices, the stellar population ages of theearly-type members. We investigate also the presence of a dwarf galaxypopulation associated with the bright members. The group is composed ofa large fraction of early-type galaxies including NGC 5328 and 5330, twobona fide' ellipticals at the centre of the group. In both galaxies norecent star formation episodes are detected by the Hβ versus MgFeline-strength indices of these galaxies. 2MASX J13524838-2829584 hasextremely boxy isophotes which are believed to be connected to a mergingevent: line-strength indices suggest that this object probably had arecent star formation episode. A warped disc component emerges from themodel subtracted image of 2MASX J13530016-2827061, which is interpretedas a signature of an ongoing interaction with the rest of the group.Ongoing star formation and nuclear activity are present in the projectedoutskirts of the group. The two early-type galaxies 2MASXJ13523852-2830444 and 2MASX J13525393-2831421 show spectral signaturesof star formation, while a Seyfert 2 type nuclear activity is detectedin MCG-5-33-29.Based on observations collected at European Southern Observatory, La Silla, Chile (Programme No. 65.P-252). Gemini and Chandra Observations of Abell 586, A Relaxed Strong-lensing ClusterWe analyze the mass content of the massive strong-lensing cluster Abell586 (z=0.17). We use optical data (imaging and spectroscopy) obtainedwith the Gemini Multi-Object Spectrograph (GMOS) mounted on the 8 mGemini North telescope, together with publicly available X-ray datataken with the Chandra space telescope. Employing differenttechniques-velocity distribution of galaxies, weak gravitationallensing, and spatially resolved X-ray spectroscopy-we derive mass andvelocity dispersion estimates from each of them. All estimates agreewell with each other, within a 68% confidence level, indicating avelocity dispersion of 1000-1250 km s-1. The projected massdistributions obtained through weak lensing and X-ray emission arestrikingly similar, having nearly circular geometry. We suggest thatAbell 586 is probably a truly relaxed cluster whose last major mergeroccurred more than ~4 Gyr ago. Redshifts in the Southern Abell Redshift Survey Clusters. I. The DataThe Southern Abell Redshift Survey (SARS) contains 39 clusters ofgalaxies with redshifts in the range 0.021h (while avoiding theLMC and SMC), with |b|>40°. Cluster locations were chosen fromthe Abell and Abell-Corwin-Olowin catalogs, while galaxy positions wereselected from the Automatic Plate Measuring Facility galaxy catalog withextinction-corrected magnitudes in the range 15<=bJ<19.SARS used the Las Campanas 2.5 m du Pont telescope, observing either 65or 128 objects concurrently over a 1.5 deg2 field. Newredshifts for 3440 galaxies are reported in the fields of these 39clusters of galaxies. The Centers of Early-Type Galaxies with Hubble Space Telescope. V. New WFPC2 PhotometryWe present observations of 77 early-type galaxies imaged with the PC1CCD of the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) WFPC2. Nuker-law'' parametricfits to the surface brightness profiles are used to classify the centralstructure into core'' or power-law'' forms. Core galaxies aretypically rounder than power-law galaxies. Nearly all power-law galaxieswith central ellipticities ɛ>=0.3 have stellar disks,implying that disks are present in power-law galaxies withɛ<0.3 but are not visible because of unfavorable geometry. Afew low-luminosity flattened core galaxies also have disks; these may betransition forms from power-law galaxies to more luminous core galaxies,which lack disks. Several core galaxies have strong isophote twistsinterior to their break radii, although power-law galaxies have interiortwists of similar physical significance when the photometricperturbations implied by the twists are evaluated. Central colorgradients are typically consistent with the envelope gradients; coregalaxies have somewhat weaker color gradients than power-law galaxies.Nuclei are found in 29% of the core galaxies and 60% of the power-lawgalaxies. Nuclei are typically bluer than the surrounding galaxy. Whilesome nuclei are associated with active galactic nuclei (AGNs), just asmany are not; conversely, not all galaxies known to have a low-level AGNexhibit detectable nuclei in the broadband filters. NGC 4073 and 4382are found to have central minima in their intrinsic starlightdistributions; NGC 4382 resembles the double nucleus of M31. In general,the peak brightness location is coincident with the photocenter of thecore to a typical physical scale of <1 pc. Five galaxies, however,have centers significantly displaced from their surrounding cores; thesemay be unresolved asymmetric double nuclei. Finally, as noted byprevious authors, central dust is visible in about half of the galaxies.The presence and strength of dust correlates with nuclear emission;thus, dust may outline gas that is falling into the central black hole.The prevalence of dust and its morphology suggest that dust clouds form,settle to the center, and disappear repeatedly on ~108 yrtimescales. We discuss the hypothesis that cores are created by thedecay of a massive black hole binary formed in a merger. Apart fromtheir brightness profiles, there are no strong differences between coregalaxies and power-law galaxies that demand this scenario; however, therounder shapes of core, their lack of disks, and their reduced colorgradients may be consistent with it.Based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope,obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated bythe Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA), Inc.,under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. These observations are associated withGO and GTO proposals 5236, 5446, 5454, 5512, 5943, 5990, 5999, 6099,6386, 6554, 6587, 6633, 7468, 8683, and 9107. Are radio galaxies and quiescent galaxies different? Results from the analysis of HST brightness profilesWe present a study of the optical brightness profiles of early typegalaxies, using a number of samples of radio galaxies and opticallyselected elliptical galaxies. For the radio galaxy samples - B2 ofFanaroff-Riley type I and 3C of Fanaroff-Riley type II - we determined anumber of parameters that describe a "Nuker-law" profile, which werecompared with those already known for the optically selected objects. Wefind that radio active galaxies are always of the "core" type (i.e. aninner Nuker law slope γ < 0.3). However, there are core-typegalaxies which harbor no significant radio source and which areindistinguishable from the radio active galaxies. We do not find anyradio detected galaxy with a power law profile (γ > 0.5). Thisdifference is not due to any effect with absolute magnitude, since in aregion of overlap in magnitude the dichotomy between radio active andradio quiescent galaxies remains. We speculate that core-type objectsrepresent the galaxies that have been, are, or may become, radio activeat some stage in their lives; active and non-active core-type galaxiesare therefore identical in all respects except their eventualradio-activity: on HST scales we do not find any relationship betweenboxiness and radio-activity. There is a fundamental plane, defined bythe parameters of the core (break radius rb and breakbrightness μ_b), which is seen in the strong correlation betweenrb and μ_b. The break radius is also linearly proportionalto the optical Luminosity in the I band. Moreover, for the few galaxieswith an independently measured black hole mass, the break radius turnsout to be tightly correlated with MBH. The black hole masscorrelates even better with the combination of fundamental planeparameters rb and μ_b, which represents the centralvelocity dispersion. Nearby early-type galaxies with ionized gas. I. Line-strength indices of the underlying stellar populationWith the aim of building a data-set of spectral properties of wellstudied early-type galaxies showing emission lines, we presentintermediate resolution spectra of 50 galaxies in the nearby Universe.The sample, which covers several of the E and S0 morphologicalsub-classes, is biased toward objects that might be expected to haveongoing and recent star formation, at least in small amounts, because ofthe presence of the emission lines. The emission is expected to comefrom the combination of active galactic nuclei and star formationregions within the galaxies. Sample galaxies are located in environmentscorresponding to a broad range of local galaxy densities, althoughpredominantly in low density environments. Our long-slit spectra coverthe 3700-7250 Å wavelength range with a spectral resolution of≈7.6 Å at 5550 Å. The specific aim of this paper, and ourfirst step in the investigation, is to map the underlying galaxy stellarpopulation by measuring, along the slit positioned along the galaxymajor axis, line-strength indices at several, homogeneousgalacto-centric distances. For each object we extracted 7luminosity-weighted apertures (with radii 1.5´´,2.5´´, 10´´, r_e/10, r_e/8, r_e/4 and r_e/2)corrected for the galaxy ellipticity and 4 gradients (0 ≤ r ≤r_e/16, r_e/16 ≤ r ≤ r_e/8, r_e/8 ≤ r ≤ r_e/4 and r_e/4≤ r ≤ r_e/2). For each aperture and gradient we measured 25line-strength indices: 21 of the set defined by the Lick-IDS“standard” system (Trager et al. [CITE], ApJS, 116, 1) and 4introduced by Worthey & Ottaviani ([CITE], ApJS, 111, 377).Line-strength indices have been transformed to the Lick-IDS system.Indices derived then include Hβ, Mg1, Mg2, Mgb, MgFe, Fe5270,Fe5335 commonly used in classic index-index diagrams. The paperintroduces the sample, presents the observations, describes the datareduction procedures, the extraction of apertures and gradients, thedetermination and correction of the line-strength indices, the procedureadopted to transform them into the Lick-IDS System and the proceduresadopted for the emission correction. We finally discuss the comparisonsbetween our dataset and line-strength indices available in theliterature. A significant fraction, about 60%, of galaxies in thepresent sample has one previous measurement in the Lick-IDS system butbasically restricted within the r_e/8 region. Line-strength measuresobtained both from apertures and gradients outside this area and withinthe r_e/8 region, with the present radial mapping, are completely new.Full appendix and Figs. 8 to 13 are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.org Full Tables 6, 7, 9 and 10 are only availableat the CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) orvia http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/433/497 Based onobservations obtained at the European Southern Observatory, La Silla,Chile (Programs Nr. 60.A-0647 and 61.A-0406). RCS 043938-2904.9: A New Rich Cluster of Galaxies at z=0.951We present deep I, Js, Ks imaging and opticalspectroscopy of the newly discovered Red-Sequence Cluster Survey clusterRCS 043938-2904.9. This cluster, drawn from an extensive preliminarylist, was selected for detailed study on the basis of its apparentoptical richness. Spectroscopy of 11 members places the cluster atz=0.951+/-0.006 and confirms the photometric redshift estimate from the(R-z) color-magnitude diagram. Analysis of the infrared imaging datademonstrates that the cluster is extremely rich, with excess counts inthe Ks band exceeding the expected background counts by 9σ. The properties of the galaxies in RCS 043938-2904.9 areconsistent with those seen in other clusters at similar redshifts.Specifically, the red-sequence color, slope, and scatter and thesize-magnitude relation of these galaxies are all consistent with thatseen in the few other known high-redshift clusters and indeed areconsistent with appropriately evolved properties of local clustergalaxies. The apparent consistency of these systems implies that therich high-redshift RCS clusters are directly comparable to the few othersystems known at z~1, most of which have been selected on the basis ofX-ray emission.Based on observations obtained at (1) the CTIO, operated by AURA, Inc.,under contract to the National Science Foundation, (2) the EuropeanSouthern Observatory, Paranal, Chile, and (3) the Observatories of theCarnegie Institution of Washington, Las Campanas, Chile. Companions to Isolated Elliptical Galaxies: Revisiting the Bothun-Sullivan SampleWe investigate the number of physical companion galaxies for a sample ofrelatively isolated elliptical galaxies. The NASA/IPAC ExtragalacticDatabase (NED) has been used to reinvestigate the incidence of satellitegalaxies for a sample of 34 elliptical galaxies, first investigated byBothun & Sullivan using a visual inspection of Palomar Sky Surveyprints out to a projected search radius of 75 kpc. We have repeatedtheir original investigation using data cataloged in NED. Nine of theseelliptical galaxies appear to be members of galaxy clusters; theremaining sample of 25 galaxies reveals an average of +1.0+/-0.5apparent companions per galaxy within a projected search radius of 75kpc, in excess of two equal-area comparison regions displaced by 150-300kpc. This is significantly larger than the +0.12+/-0.42companions/galaxy found by Bothun & Sullivan for the identicalsample. Making use of published radial velocities, mostly availablesince the completion of the Bothun-Sullivan study, identifies thephysical companions and gives a somewhat lower estimate of +0.4companions per elliptical galaxy. This is still 3 times larger than theoriginal statistical study, but given the incomplete and heterogeneousnature of the survey redshifts in NED, it still yields a firm lowerlimit on the number (and identity) of physical companions. An expansionof the search radius out to 300 kpc, again restricted to sampling onlythose objects with known redshifts in NED, gives another lower limit of4.5 physical companions per galaxy. (Excluding five elliptical galaxiesin the Fornax Cluster, this average drops to 3.5 companions perelliptical.) These physical companions are individually identified andlisted, and the ensemble-averaged radial density distribution of theseassociated galaxies is presented. For the ensemble, the radial densitydistribution is found to have a falloff consistent withρ~R-0.5 out to approximately 150 kpc. For non-FornaxCluster companions the falloff continues out to the 300 kpc limit of thesurvey. The velocity dispersion of these companions is found to reach amaximum of 350 km s-1 at around 120 kpc, after which theyfall at a rate consistent with Keplerian falloff. This falloff may thenindicate the detection of a cut-off in the mass-density distribution inthe elliptical galaxies' dark matter halo at ~100 kpc. Revised Rates of Stellar Disruption in Galactic NucleiWe compute rates of tidal disruption of stars by supermassive blackholes in galactic nuclei, using downwardly revised black hole massesfrom the MBH-σ relation. In galaxies with steep nucleardensity profiles, which dominate the overall event rate, the disruptionfrequency varies inversely with assumed black hole mass. We compute atotal rate for nondwarf galaxies of ~10-5 yr-1Mpc-3, about a factor of 10 higher than in earlier studies.Disruption rates are predicted to be highest in nucleated dwarfgalaxies, assuming that such galaxies contain black holes. Monitoring ofa rich galaxy cluster for a few years could rule out the existence ofintermediate-mass black holes in dwarf galaxies. Evidence for a New Elliptical-Galaxy Paradigm: Sérsic and Core GalaxiesWe fitted the surface-brightness profiles of 21 elliptical galaxiesusing both the Sérsic function and a new empirical model thatcombines an inner power law with an outer Sérsic function. Theprofiles are combinations of deconvolved Hubble Space Telescope (HST)profiles from the literature and ellipse fits to the full WFPC2 mosaicimages and thus span a radial range from ~0.02" to about twice thehalf-light radius. We are able to accurately fit the entire profilesusing either the Sérsic function or our new model. In doing so,we demonstrate that most, if not all, so-called power-law'' galaxiesare better described as Sérsic galaxies''-they are well modeledby the three-parameter Sérsic profile into the limits of HSTresolution-and that core'' galaxies are best understood as consistingof an outer Sérsic profile with an inner power-law cusp, which isa downward deviation from the inward extrapolation of the Sérsicprofile. This definition of cores resolves ambiguities that result whenthe popular Nuker law'' is fitted to the profiles of ellipticals andbulges, particularly at lower luminosities. We also find that using theNuker law to model core-galaxy nuclear profiles systematicallyoverestimates the core radii by factors of 1.5-4.5 and underestimatesthe inner power-law slope by ~20%-40% or more. Peculiarities and populations in elliptical galaxies. I. An old question revisitedMorphological peculiarities, as defined from isophote asymmetries andnumber of detected shells, jets or similar features, have been estimatedin a sample of 117 E classified galaxies, and qualified by an ad hocΣ2 index. The overall frequency of peculiar'' objects(Pec subsample) is 32.5%. It decreases with the cosmic density of theenvironment, being minimal for the Virgo cluster, the densestenvironment in the sampled volume. This environmental effect is strongerfor galaxies with relatively large Σ2.The Pec subsample objects are compared with normal'' objects (Nopsubsample) as regards their basic properties. Firstly, theysystematically deviate from the Fundamental Plane and the Faber-Jacksonrelation derived for the Nop subsample, being too bright for their mass.Secondly, the dust content of galaxies, as estimated from IRAS fluxes,are similar in both subsamples. Third, the same is true of the frequencyof Kinematically Distinct cores (KDC), suggesting that KDC andmorphological peculiarities do not result from the same events in thehistory of E-galaxies.Using the Nop sample alone, we obtain very tight reference relationsbetween stellar population indicators (U-B, B-V, B-R, V-I,Mg2, Hβ, , Mgb) and the central velocitydispersion σ0. The discussion of the residuals of theserelations allows us to classify the Pec galaxies in two families i.e.the YP or NGC 2865 family, and the NP or NGC 3923 one. Galaxies in thefirst group show consistent evidence for a younger stellar populationmixed with the old one, in agreement with classical results (Schweizeret al. \cite{Schweizer1990}; Schweizer & Seitzer\cite{Schweizer1992}). The second group, however, has normal, orreddish, populations. It is remarkable that a fraction (circa 40%) ofmorphologically perturbed objects do not display any signature of ayoung population, either because the event responsible for thepecularity is too ancient, or because it did not produce significantstar formation (or eventually that the young sub-population has highmetallicity).A preliminary attempt is made to interpret the populations of Pecobjects by combining a young Single Stellar Population with a Nopgalaxy, with only limited success, perhaps largely due to uncertaintiesin the SSP indices used.Based in part on observations collected at the Observatoire deHaute-Provence.Figures \ref{fig1}-\ref{fig3} are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.orgTable 10 is only available in electronic form at the CDS via anonymousftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/423/833 Stellar collisions in galactic centres: black hole growth and colour gradientsWe study the effects of stellar collisions, particularly on feedingmassive black holes (BHs) and colour gradients, in realistic galacticcentres. We find that the mass released by stellar collisions is notsufficient to account for the present BH mass in galactic centres,especially in bright galaxies. This study, together with the study byMagorrian & Tremaine on tidal disruption of stars by massive BHs,implies that the material for BH growth (especially in galaxies brighterthan ~109 Lsolar) can only come from othersources, for example, the mass released by stellar evolution in theinitial ~1 Gyr of the lifetime of the galaxy, or the gas that sinks tothe galactic centre in a galaxy merger. We also analyse how the colourof a stellar system is affected by collisions of stars. We find thatcollisions between main-sequence stars cannot cause observable colourgradients in the visible bands at projected radius R>~ 0.1 arcsec inM31, M32 and other nearby galactic centres. This result is consistentwith the lack of an observable colour gradient in M32 at R >~ 0.1arcsec. At even smaller radii, the colour differences caused bycollisions between main-sequence stars are at most 0.08 mag at R = 0.02arcsec. The averaged bluing caused by stellar collisions in the region R< 0.1 arcsec of M32 should not be larger than 0.06 mag in colourindex U - V and 0.02 mag in V - I. The observed bluing in the centre ofthe galaxy M31 (in a 0.14 × 0.14 arcsec2 box) must becaused by some mechanism other than collisions between main-sequencestars. Measuring Distances and Probing the Unresolved Stellar Populations of Galaxies Using Infrared Surface Brightness FluctuationsTo empirically calibrate the IR surface brightness fluctuation (SBF)distance scale and probe the properties of unresolved stellarpopulations, we measured fluctuations in 65 galaxies using NICMOS on theHubble Space Telescope. The early-type galaxies in this sample includeelliptical and S0 galaxies and spiral bulges in a variety ofenvironments. Absolute fluctuation magnitudes in the F160W (1.6 μm)filter (MF160W) were derived for each galaxy using previouslymeasured I-band SBF and Cepheid variable star distances. F160W SBFs canbe used to measure distances to early-type galaxies with a relativeaccuracy of ~10%, provided that the galaxy color is known to ~0.035 magor better. Near-IR fluctuations can also reveal the properties of themost luminous stellar populations in galaxies. Comparison of F160Wfluctuation magnitudes and optical colors to stellar population modelpredictions suggests that bluer elliptical and S0 galaxies havesignificantly younger populations than redder ones and may also be moremetal-rich. There are no galaxies in this sample with fluctuationmagnitudes consistent with old, metal-poor (t>5 Gyr, [Fe/H]<-0.7)stellar population models. Composite stellar population models implythat bright fluctuations in the bluer galaxies may be the result of anepisode of recent star formation in a fraction of the total mass of agalaxy. Age estimates from the F160W fluctuation magnitudes areconsistent with those measured using the Hβ Balmer-line index. Thetwo types of measurements make use of completely different techniquesand are sensitive to stars in different evolutionary phases. Bothtechniques reveal the presence of intermediate-age stars in theearly-type galaxies of this sample.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by AURA,Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. Lensing and the Centers of Distant Early-Type GalaxiesGravitational lensing provides a unique probe of the inner 10-1000 pc ofdistant galaxies (z~0.2-1). Theoretical studies have predicted that eachstrong lens system should have a faint image near the center of the lensgalaxy, which should, in principle, be visible in radio lenses but hasnever been detected. We study the predicted core'' images using modelsderived from the stellar distributions in nearby early-type galaxies. Wefind that realistic lens galaxies produce a remarkably wide range ofcore images, with magnifications spanning some 6 orders of magnitude.More concentrated galaxies produce fainter core images, although notwith any model-independent relation between the galaxy properties andthe core images. Some real galaxies have diffuse cores that should yieldbright core images (magnification μcore>~0.1), but morecommon are galaxies that yield faint core images(μcore<~0.001). Thus, stellar mass distributions aloneare probably concentrated enough to explain the lack of observed coreimages. Observational sensitivity may need to improve by an order ofmagnitude before detections of core images become common. Two-imagelenses should tend to have brighter core images than four-image lenses,so they will be the better targets for finding core images andexploiting these tools for studying the central mass distributions ofdistant galaxies. Redshift-Distance Survey of Early-Type Galaxies: Spectroscopic DataWe present central velocity dispersions and Mg2 line indicesfor an all-sky sample of ~1178 elliptical and S0 galaxies, of which 984had no previous measures. This sample contains the largest set ofhomogeneous spectroscopic data for a uniform sample of ellipticalgalaxies in the nearby universe. These galaxies were observed as part ofthe ENEAR project, designed to study the peculiar motions and internalproperties of the local early-type galaxies. Using 523 repeatedobservations of 317 galaxies obtained during different runs, the dataare brought to a common zero point. These multiple observations, takenduring the many runs and different instrumental setups employed for thisproject, are used to derive statistical corrections to the data and arefound to be relatively small, typically <~5% of the velocitydispersion and 0.01 mag in the Mg2 line strength. Typicalerrors are about 8% in velocity dispersion and 0.01 mag inMg2, in good agreement with values published elsewhere. Companions of Bright Barred Shapley-Ames GalaxiesCompanion galaxy environment for a subset of 78 bright and nearby barredgalaxies from the Shapley-Ames Catalog is presented. Among the spiralbarred galaxies, there are Seyfert galaxies, galaxies with circumnuclearstructures, galaxies not associated with any large-scale galaxy cloudstructure, galaxies with peculiar disk morphology (crooked arms), andgalaxies with normal disk morphology; the list includes all Hubbletypes. The companion galaxy list includes the number of companiongalaxies within 20 diameters, their Hubble type, and projectedseparation distance. In addition, the companion environment was searchedfor four known active spiral galaxies, three of them are Seyfertgalaxies, namely, NGC 1068, NGC 1097, and NGC 5548, and one is astarburst galaxy, M82. Among the results obtained, it is noted that theonly spiral barred galaxy classified as Seyfert 1 in our list has nocompanions within a projected distance of 20 diameters; six out of 10Seyfert 2 bar galaxies have no companions within 10 diameters, six outof 10 Seyfert 2 galaxies have one or more companions at projectedseparation distances between 10 and 20 diameters; six out of 12 galaxieswith circumnuclear structures have two or more companions within 20diameters. Redshift-Distance Survey of Early-Type Galaxies: Circular-Aperture PhotometryWe present R-band CCD photometry for 1332 early-type galaxies, observedas part of the ENEAR survey of peculiar motions using early-typegalaxies in the nearby universe. Circular apertures are used to tracethe surface brightness profiles, which are then fitted by atwo-component bulge-disk model. From the fits, we obtain the structuralparameters required to estimate galaxy distances using theDn-σ and fundamental plane relations. We find thatabout 12% of the galaxies are well represented by a pure r1/4law, while 87% are best fitted by a two-component model. There are 356repeated observations of 257 galaxies obtained during different runsthat are used to derive statistical corrections and bring the data to acommon system. We also use these repeated observations to estimate ourinternal errors. The accuracy of our measurements are tested by thecomparison of 354 galaxies in common with other authors. Typical errorsin our measurements are 0.011 dex for logDn, 0.064 dex forlogre, 0.086 mag arcsec-2 for<μe>, and 0.09 for mRC,comparable to those estimated by other authors. The photometric datareported here represent one of the largest high-quality and uniformall-sky samples currently available for early-type galaxies in thenearby universe, especially suitable for peculiar motion studies.Based on observations at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO),National Optical Astronomy Observatory, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., undercooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation (NSF);European Southern Observatory (ESO); Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory(FLWO); and the MDM Observatory on Kitt Peak. Low signal-to-noise spectroscopy and surface photometry of two faint galaxies in the field of NGC 7479We present low signal-to-noise spectroscopy and surface photometry oftwo small galaxies, detected in the field of the nearby asymmetricbarred spiral NGC 7479, near a prolongation of the western arm thatforms a faint tail in the disc, and selected as possible companions ofthis galaxy. The analysis was based on data obtained with the PrimeFocus Camera (PFC) at the 0.8 m telescope of McDonald Observatory, andthe Low Resolution Spectroscope (LRS) at the 9.2 m Hobby-EberlyTelescope (HET). We determined radial velocities using cross correlationwith 15 different templates, and derived integrated magnitudes, colorsand brightness profiles for each.The derived radial velocities are around 35 500 km s-1 forone galaxy and 38 000 km s-1 for the other, which clearlyindicates that both are far more distant than the nearby NGC 7479. Theabsolute magnitudes and diameters of these two background galaxies aretypical of normal galaxies, and their colors are similar to othergalaxies with similar redshifs. NGC 7479 continues to exist in isolationwith no detected companion. Evolution of massive binary black holesSince many or most galaxies have central massive black holes (BHs),mergers of galaxies can form massive binary black holes (BBHs). In thispaper we study the evolution of massive BBHs in realistic galaxy models,using a generalization of techniques used to study tidal disruptionrates around massive BHs. The evolution of BBHs depends on BH mass ratioand host galaxy type. BBHs with very low mass ratios (say, <~0.001)are hardly ever formed by mergers of galaxies, because the dynamicalfriction time-scale is too long for the smaller BH to sink into thegalactic centre within a Hubble time. BBHs with moderate mass ratios aremost likely to form and survive in spherical or nearly sphericalgalaxies and in high-luminosity or high-dispersion galaxies; they aremost likely to have merged in low-dispersion galaxies (line-of-sightvelocity dispersion <~90kms-1 ) or in highly flattened ortriaxial galaxies. The semimajor axes and orbital periods of survivingBBHs are generally in the range 10-3 -10pc and10-105 yr they are also larger in high-dispersion galaxiesthan in low-dispersion galaxies, larger in nearly spherical galaxiesthan in highly flattened or triaxial galaxies, and larger for BBHs withequal masses than for BBHs with unequal masses. The orbital velocitiesof surviving BBHs are generally in the range 102-104 kms-1 . The methods of detecting survivingBBHs are also discussed. If no evidence of BBHs is found in AGNs, thismay be either because gas plays a major role in BBH orbital decay orbecause nuclear activity switches on soon after a galaxy merger, andends before the smaller BH has had time to spiral to the centre of thegalaxy. Nuclear Cusps and Cores in Early-Type Galaxies as Relics of Binary Black Hole MergersWe present an analysis of the central cusp slopes and core parameters ofearly-type galaxies using a large database of surface brightnessprofiles obtained from Hubble Space Telescope observations. We examinethe relation between the central cusp slopes, core parameters, and blackhole masses in early-type galaxies, in light of two models that attemptto explain the formation of cores and density cusps via the dynamicalinfluence of black holes. Contrary to the expectations fromadiabatic-growth models, we find that the cusp slopes do not steepenwith increasing black hole mass fraction. Moreover, a comparison ofkinematic black hole mass measurements with the masses predicted by theadiabatic models shows that they overpredict the masses by a factor of~3. Simulations involving binary black hole mergers predict that boththe size of the core and the central mass deficit correlate with thefinal black hole mass. These relations are qualitatively supported bythe present data. Bar Galaxies and Their EnvironmentsThe prints of the Palomar Sky Survey, luminosity classifications, andradial velocities were used to assign all northern Shapley-Ames galaxiesto either (1) field, (2) group, or (3) cluster environments. Thisinformation for 930 galaxies shows no evidence for a dependence of barfrequency on galaxy environment. This suggests that the formation of abar in a disk galaxy is mainly determined by the properties of theparent galaxy, rather than by the characteristics of its environment. Redshift-Distance Survey of Early-Type Galaxies. I. The ENEARc Cluster SampleThis paper presents data on the ENEARc subsample of the larger ENEARsurvey of nearby early-type galaxies. The ENEARc galaxies belong toclusters and were specifically chosen to be used for the construction ofa Dn-σ template. The ENEARc sample includes newmeasurements of spectroscopic and photometric parameters (redshift,velocity dispersion, line index Mg2, and the angular diameterdn), as well as data from the literature. New spectroscopicdata are given for 229 cluster early-type galaxies, and new photometryis presented for 348 objects. Repeat and overlap observations withexternal data sets are used to construct a final merged catalogconsisting of 640 early-type galaxies in 28 clusters. Objectivecriteria, based on catalogs of groups of galaxies derived from completeredshift surveys of the nearby universe, are used to assign galaxies toclusters. In a companion paper, these data are used to construct thetemplate Dn-σ distance relation for early-typegalaxies, which has been used to estimate galaxy distances and derivepeculiar velocities for the ENEAR all-sky sample. Based on observationsat Complejo Astronomico El Leoncito, operated under agreement betweenthe Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas de laRepública Argentina and the National Universities of La Plata,Córdoba, and San Juan; Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory,National Optical Astronomical Observatory, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., undercooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation; the EuropeanSouthern Observatory (ESO), partially under the ESO-ON agreement; theFred Lawrence Whipple Observatory; the Observatório do Pico dosDias, operated by the Laboratório Nacional de Astrofísicaand the MDM Observatory at Kitt Peak. The Colors of Globular ClustersA compilation has been made of available data on the ratio of the numberof metal-rich ([Fe/H]>-1.0) to metal-poor ([Fe/H]<-1.0) clustersin various globular cluster systems. Among early-type galaxies of typesE, E/S0, and S0, the ratio of blue to red globular clusters is found tovary by almost 2 orders of magnitude. The data suggest that cD galaxieshave the widest range of evolutionary histories. The fraction ofmetal-rich red clusters is largest among early-type galaxies and appearsto decrease toward later Hubble types. A catalogue and analysis of X-ray luminosities of early-type galaxiesWe present a catalogue of X-ray luminosities for 401 early-typegalaxies, of which 136 are based on newly analysed ROSAT PSPC pointedobservations. The remaining luminosities are taken from the literatureand converted to a common energy band, spectral model and distancescale. Using this sample we fit the LX:LB relationfor early-type galaxies and find a best-fit slope for the catalogue of~2.2. We demonstrate the influence of group-dominant galaxies on the fitand present evidence that the relation is not well modelled by a singlepower-law fit. We also derive estimates of the contribution to galaxyX-ray luminosities from discrete-sources and conclude that they provideLdscr/LB~=29.5ergs-1LBsolar-1. Wecompare this result with luminosities from our catalogue. Lastly, weexamine the influence of environment on galaxy X-ray luminosity and onthe form of the LX:LB relation. We conclude thatalthough environment undoubtedly affects the X-ray properties ofindividual galaxies, particularly those in the centres of groups andclusters, it does not change the nature of whole populations. A synthesis of data from fundamental plane and surface brightness fluctuation surveysWe perform a series of comparisons between distance-independentphotometric and spectroscopic properties used in the surface brightnessfluctuation (SBF) and fundamental plane (FP) methods of early-typegalaxy distance estimation. The data are taken from two recent surveys:the SBF Survey of Galaxy Distances and the Streaming Motions of AbellClusters (SMAC) FP survey. We derive a relation between(V-I)0 colour and Mg2 index using nearly 200galaxies and discuss implications for Galactic extinction estimates andearly-type galaxy stellar populations. We find that the reddenings fromSchlegel et al. for galaxies with E(B-V)>~0.2mag appear to beoverestimated by 5-10 per cent, but we do not find significant evidencefor large-scale dipole errors in the extinction map. In comparison withstellar population models having solar elemental abundance ratios, thegalaxies in our sample are generally too blue at a given Mg2;we ascribe this to the well-known enhancement of the α-elements inluminous early-type galaxies. We confirm a tight relation betweenstellar velocity dispersion σ and the SBF `fluctuation count'parameter N, which is a luminosity-weighted measure of the total numberof stars in a galaxy. The correlation between N and σ is eventighter than that between Mg2 and σ. Finally, we deriveFP photometric parameters for 280 galaxies from the SBF survey data set.Comparisons with external sources allow us to estimate the errors onthese parameters and derive the correction necessary to bring them on tothe SMAC system. The data are used in a forthcoming paper, whichcompares the distances derived from the FP and SBF methods.
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