MID-infrared and visible photometry of galaxies: Anomalously low polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon emission from low-luminosity galaxies

David W. Hogg, Christy A. Tremonti, Michael R. Blanton, Douglas P. Finkbeiner, Nikhil Padmanabhan, Alejandro D. Quintero, David J. Schlegel, Nicholas Wherry

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    The Spitzer Space Telescope First Look Survey Infrared Array Camera (IRAC) near- and mid-infrared imaging data partially overlap the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), with 313 visible-selected (r < 17.6 mag) SDSS main sample galaxies in the overlap region. The 3.5 and 7.8 μm properties of the galaxies are investigated in the context of their visible properties, where the IRAC [3.5] magnitude primarily measures starlight and the [7.8] magnitude primarily measures poly cyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) emission from the interstellar medium. As expected, we find a strong inverse correlation between [3.5]-[7.8] and visible color; galaxies red in visible colors ("red galaxies̃) tend to show very little dust and molecular emission (low PAH-to-star ratios), and galaxies blue in visible colors (̃blue galaxies,̃ i.e., star-forming galaxies) tend to show large PAH-to-star ratios. Red galaxies with high PAH-to-star ratios tend to be edge-on disks reddened by dust lanes. Simple attenuation corrections inferred in the visible bring the visible colors of these galaxies in line with those of face-on disks; i.e., PAH emission is closely related to attenuation-corrected star formation rates inferred in the visible. Blue galaxies with anomalously low PAH-to-star ratios are all low-luminosity star-forming galaxies. There is some weak evidence in this sample that the deficiency in PAH emission for these low-luminosity galaxies may be related to emission-line metallicity.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)162-167
    Number of pages6
    JournalAstrophysical Journal
    Volume624
    Issue number1 I
    DOIs
    StatePublished - May 1 2005

    Keywords

    • Dust, extinction
    • Galaxies: ISM
    • Galaxies: dwarf
    • Galaxies: evolution
    • Galaxies: general
    • Infrared: galaxies

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Astronomy and Astrophysics
    • Space and Planetary Science

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    Hogg, D. W., Tremonti, C. A., Blanton, M. R., Finkbeiner, D. P., Padmanabhan, N., Quintero, A. D., Schlegel, D. J., & Wherry, N. (2005). MID-infrared and visible photometry of galaxies: Anomalously low polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon emission from low-luminosity galaxies. Astrophysical Journal, 624(1 I), 162-167. https://doi.org/10.1086/429686