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Title

PMAS optical integral field spectroscopy of luminous infrared galaxies (I. The atlas)

AuthorsAlonso-Herrero, A. ; García-Marín, Macarena ; Monreal-Ibero, Ana ; Colina, Luis ; Arribas-Mocoroa, Santiago ; Alfonso-Garzón, Julia ; Labiano, Álvaro
KeywordsGalaxy: evolution
Galaxy: nucleus
Galaxies: Seyfert
Galaxies: active
Infrared: galaxies
Issue DateAug-2009
PublisherEDP Sciences
CitationAstronomy and Astrophysics - Les Ulis 506(3): 1541-1562 (2009)
AbstractContext. Luminous and ultraluminous infrared galaxies (LIRGs and ULIRGs) are key cosmological classes since they account for most of the co-moving star formation rate density at –2. It is then important to have detailed studies of local samples of their counterparts for understanding the internal and dynamical processes taking place at high-z.
Aims. To characterize the two-dimensional morphological, excitation and kinematic properties of LIRGs and ULIRGs we are carrying out an optical integral field spectroscopy (IFS) survey of local (z<0.26) samples. Methods. In this paper we present optical (3800–7200 Å) IFS with the Potsdam multi-aperture spectrophotometer (PMAS) of the northern hemisphere portion of a volume-limited (2750–5200 km s-1) sample of 11 LIRGs. The PMAS IFS observations typically cover the central ~5 kpc and are complemented with our own existing HST/NICMOS images.
Methods. In this paper we present optical (3800–7200 Å) IFS with the Potsdam multi-aperture spectrophotometer (PMAS) of the northern hemisphere portion of a volume-limited (2750–5200 km s-1) sample of 11 LIRGs. The PMAS IFS observations typically cover the central ~5 kpc and are complemented with our own existing HST/NICMOS images.
Results. For most LIRGs in our sample, the peaks of the continuum and gas (e.g., H, [N II]6584) emissions coincide, unlike what is observed in local, strongly interacting ULIRGs. The only exceptions are galaxies with circumnuclear rings of star formation where the most luminous H emitting regions are found in the rings rather than in the nuclei of the galaxies, and the displacements are well understood in terms of differences in the stellar populations. A large fraction of the nuclei of these LIRGs are classified as LINER and intermediate LINER/HII, or composite objects, which is a combination of starformation and AGN activity. The excitation conditions of the integrated emission depend on the relative contributions of H II regions and the diffuse emission to the line emission over the PMAS FoV. Galaxies dominated by high surface-brightness H II regions show integrated H II-like excitation. A few galaxies show slightly larger integrated [N II]6584/H and [S II]6717,6731/H line ratios than the nuclear ones, probably because of more contribution from the diffuse emission. The H velocity fields over the central few kpc are generally consistent, at least to first order, with rotational motions. The velocity fields of most LIRGs are similar to those of disk galaxies, in contrast to the highly perturbed fields of most local, strongly interacting ULIRGs. The peak of the H velocity dispersion coincides with the position of the nucleus and is likely to be tracing mass. All these results are similar to the properties of LIRGs, and they highlight the importance of detailed studies of flux-limited samples of local LIRGs.
Description28 pages, 6 figures, 4 tables.-- Pre-print archive.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361/200911813
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/20248
DOI10.1051/0004-6361/200911813
ISSN0004-6361
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