CANDELS Observations of the Structural Properties of Cluster Galaxies at z = 1.62

C. Papovich, R. Bassett, J. M. Lotz, A. van der Wel, K.-V. Tran, S. L. Finkelstein, E. F. Bell, C. J. Conselice, A. Dekel, J. S. Dunlop, Yicheng Guo, S. M. Faber, D. Farrah, H. C. Ferguson, K. D. Finkelstein, B. Häussler, D. D. Kocevski, A. M. Koekemoer, D. C. Koo, E. J. McGrathR. J. McLure, D. H. McIntosh, I. Momcheva, J. A. Newman, G. Rudnick, B. Weiner, C. N. A. Willmer, S. Wuyts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

We discuss the structural and morphological properties of galaxies in a z = 1.62 proto-cluster using near-IR imaging data from Hubble Space Telescope Wide Field Camera 3 data of the Cosmic Assembly Near-IR Deep Extragalactic Legacy Survey (CANDELS). The cluster galaxies exhibit a clear color-morphology relation: galaxies with colors of quiescent stellar populations generally have morphologies consistent with spheroids, and galaxies with colors consistent with ongoing star formation have disk-like and irregular morphologies. The size distribution of the quiescent cluster galaxies shows a deficit of compact (lsim 1 kpc), massive galaxies compared to CANDELS field galaxies at z = 1.6. As a result, the cluster quiescent galaxies have larger average effective sizes compared to field galaxies at fixed mass at greater than 90% significance. Combined with data from the literature, the size evolution of quiescent cluster galaxies is relatively slow from z ~= 1.6 to the present, growing as (1 + z)-0.6 ± 0.1. If this result is generalizable, then it implies that physical processes associated with the denser cluster region seem to have caused accelerated size growth in quiescent galaxies prior to z = 1.6 and slower subsequent growth at z <1.6 compared to galaxies in the lower density field. The quiescent cluster galaxies at z = 1.6 have higher ellipticities compared to lower redshift samples at fixed mass, and their surface-brightness profiles suggest that they contain extended stellar disks. We argue that the cluster galaxies require dissipationless (i.e., gas-poor or "dry") mergers to reorganize the disk material and to match the relations for ellipticity, stellar mass, size, and color of early-type galaxies in z <1 clusters.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2012

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • galaxies: clusters: general
  • galaxies: clusters: individual: XMM-LSS02182-05102
  • galaxies: elliptical and lenticular
  • cD
  • galaxies: evolution
  • galaxies: high-redshift
  • galaxies: structure


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