The properties of the star-forming interstellar medium at z=0.84-2.23 from HiZELS: mapping the internal dynamics and metallicity gradients in high-redshift disc galaxies

A. M. Swinbank, D. Sobral, Ian Smail, J. E. Geach, P. N. Best, I. G. McCarthy, R. A. Crain, T. Theuns

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature reviewpeer-review

Abstract

We present adaptive optics assisted, spatially resolved spectroscopy of a sample of nine Ha-selected galaxies at z?=?0.842.23 drawn from the HiZELS narrow-band survey. These galaxies have star formation rates of 127?M??yr-1 and are therefore representative of the typical high-redshift star-forming population. Our similar to kpc-scale resolution observations show that approximately half of the sample have dynamics suggesting that the ionized gas is in large, rotating discs. We model their velocity fields to infer the inclination-corrected, asymptotic rotational velocities. We use the absolute B-band magnitudes and stellar masses to investigate the evolution of the B-band and stellar-mass TullyFisher relationships. By combining our sample with a number of similar measurements from the literature, we show that, at fixed circular velocity, the stellar mass of star-forming galaxies has increased by a factor of 2.5 between z?=?2 and 0, whilst the rest-frame B-band luminosity has decreased by a factor of similar to?6 over the same period. Together, these demonstrate a change in mass-to-light ratio in the B band of ?(M/LB)/(M/LB)z=0 similar to 3.5 between z?=?1.5 and 0, with most of the evolution occurring below z?=?1. We also use the spatial variation of [N?ii]/Ha to show that the metallicity of the ionized gas in these galaxies declines monotonically with galactocentric radius, with an average ??log(O/H)/?R = -0.027 +/- 0.005?dex?kpc-1. This gradient is consistent with predictions for high-redshift disc galaxies from cosmologically based hydrodynamic simulations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)935-950
Number of pages16
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume426
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2012

Keywords

  • galaxies: evolution
  • galaxies: formation
  • galaxies: high-redshift
  • TULLY-FISHER RELATION
  • H-ALPHA EMITTERS
  • INTEGRAL FIELD SPECTROSCOPY
  • OPTICAL-ROTATION CURVES
  • HUBBLE-SPACE-TELESCOPE
  • SIMILAR-TO 1
  • SPIRAL GALAXIES
  • DARK-MATTER
  • STELLAR MASS
  • THICK DISK

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