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Dependence of Nebular Heavy-element Abundance on H I Content for Spiral Galaxies

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  • Paul Robertson
  • Gregory A. Shields
  • Romeel Davé
  • Guillermo A. Blanc
  • Audrey Wright

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jul 2013


We analyze the galactic H I content and nebular log (O/H) for 60 spiral galaxies in the Moustakas et al. (2006a) spectral catalog. After correcting for the mass-metallicity relationship, we show that the spirals in cluster environments show a positive correlation for log (O/H) on DEF, the galactic H I deficiency parameter, extending the results of previous analyses of the Virgo and Pegasus I clusters. Additionally, we show for the first time that galaxies in the field obey a similar dependence. The observed relationship between H I deficiency and galactic metallicity resembles similar trends shown by cosmological simulations of galaxy formation including inflows and outflows. These results indicate the previously observed metallicity-DEF correlation has a more universal interpretation than simply a cluster's effects on its member galaxies. Rather, we observe in all environments the stochastic effects of metal-poor infall as minor mergers and accretion help to build giant spirals.

    Research areas

  • galaxies: abundances, galaxies: evolution, galaxies: spiral

ID: 57686273