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    The recent discovery of barred spiral galaxies in the early Universe (z > 2) poses questions of how these structures form and how they influence galaxy evolution in the early Universe. In this study, we investigate the morphology and kinematics of the far-infrared (FIR) continuum and [C ii] emission in BRI1335-0417 at z ≈ 4.4 from ALMA observations. The variations in position angle and ellipticity of the isophotes show the characteristic signature of a barred galaxy. The bar, $3.3^{+0.2}_{-0.2}$ kpc long in radius and bridging the previously identified two-armed spiral, is evident in both [C ii] and FIR images, driving the galaxy’s rapid evolution by channelling gas towards the nucleus. Fourier analysis of the [C ii] velocity field reveals an unambiguous kinematic m = 2 mode with a line-of-sight velocity amplitude of up to ∼30–40 km s−1; a plausible explanation is the disc’s vertical bending mode triggered by external perturbation, which presumably induced the high star formation rate and the bar/spiral structure. The bar identified in [C ii] and FIR images of the gas-rich disc galaxy (≳ 70 per cent of the total mass within radius R ≈ 2.2 disc scale lengths) suggests a new perspective of early bar formation in high redshift gas-rich galaxies – a gravitationally unstable gas-rich disc creating a star-forming gaseous bar, rather than a stellar bar emerging from a pre-existing stellar disc. This may explain the prevalent bar-like structures seen in FIR images of high-redshift submillimeter galaxies.

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    Slow rotator galaxies are distinct amongst galaxy populations, with simulations suggesting that a mix of minor and major mergers are responsible for their formation. A promising path to resolve outstanding questions on the type of merger responsible, is by investigating deep imaging of massive galaxies for signs of potential merger remnants. We utilize deep imaging from the Subaru-Hyper Suprime Cam Wide data to search for tidal features in massive [log10(M*/M⊙) > 10] early-type galaxies (ETGs) in the SAMI Galaxy Survey. We perform a visual check for tidal features on images where the galaxy has been subtracted using a Multi-Gauss Expansion (MGE) model. We find that 31$^{+2}_{-2}$ per cent of our sample show tidal features. When comparing galaxies with and without features, we find that the distributions in stellar mass, light-weighted mean stellar population age, and H${\alpha}$ equivalent width are significantly different, whereas spin ($\lambda _{R_{\rm {e}}}$), ellipticity, and bulge-to-total ratio have similar distributions. When splitting our sample in age, we find that galaxies below the median age (10.8 Gyr) show a correlation between the presence of shells and lower $\lambda _{R_{\rm {e}}}$, as expected from simulations. We also find these younger galaxies which are classified as having ‘strong’ shells have lower $\lambda _{R_{\rm {e}}}$. However, simulations suggest that merger features become undetectable within ∼2–4 Gyr post-merger. This implies that the relationship between tidal features and merger history disappears for galaxies with older stellar ages, i.e. those that are more likely to have merged long ago.

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  3. Abstract

    The Galactic bulge is critical to our understanding of the Milky Way. However, due to the lack of reliable stellar distances, the structure and kinematics of the bulge/bar beyond the Galactic center have remained largely unexplored. Here, we present a method to measure distances of luminous red giants using a period–amplitude–luminosity relation anchored to the Large Magellanic Cloud, with random uncertainties of 10%–15% and systematic errors below 1%–2%. We apply this method to data from the Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment to measure distances to 190,302 stars in the Galactic bulge and beyond out to 20 kpc. Using this sample, we measure a distance to the Galactic center ofR0= 8108 ± 106stat± 93syspc, consistent with direct measurements of stars orbiting Sgr A*. We cross-match our distance catalog with Gaia DR3 and use the subset of 39,566 overlapping stars to provide the first constraints on the Milky Way’s velocity field (VR,Vϕ,Vz) beyond the Galactic center. We show that theVRquadrupole from the bar’s near side is reflected with respect to the Galactic center, indicating that the bar is bisymmetric and aligned with the inner disk. We also find that the vertical heightVZmap has no major structure in the region of the Galactic bulge, which is inconsistent with a current episode of bar buckling. Finally, we demonstrate withN-body simulations that distance uncertainty plays a factor in the alignment of the major and kinematic axes of the bar, necessitating caution when interpreting results for distant stars.

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    Milky Way globular clusters (GCs) display chemical enrichment in a phenomenon called multiple stellar populations (MSPs). While the enrichment mechanism is not fully understood, there is a correlation between a cluster’s mass and the fraction of enriched stars found therein. However, present-day GC masses are often smaller than their masses at the time of formation due to dynamical mass-loss. In this work, we explore the relationship between mass and MSPs using the stellar stream 300S. We present the chemical abundances of eight red giant branch member stars in 300S with high-resolution spectroscopy from Magellan/MIKE. We identify one enriched star characteristic of MSPs and no detectable metallicity dispersion, confirming that the progenitor of 300S was a GC. The fraction of enriched stars (12.5 per cent) observed in our 300S stars is less than the 50 per cent of stars found enriched in Milky Way GCs of comparable present-day mass (∼104.5 $\mathrm{\, {\rm M}_{\odot }}$). We calculate the mass of 300S’s progenitor and compare it to the initial masses of intact GCs, finding that 300S aligns well with the trend between the system mass at formation and enrichment. 300S’s progenitor may straddle the critical mass threshold for the formation of MSPs and can therefore serve as a benchmark for the stellar enrichment process. Additionally, we identify a CH star, with high abundances of s-process elements, probably accreted from a binary companion. The rarity of such binaries in intact GCs may imply stellar streams permit the survival of binaries that would otherwise be disrupted.

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    We map the 3D kinematics of the Galactic disc out to 3.5 kpc from the Sun, and within 0.75 kpc from the mid-plane of the Galaxy. To this end, we combine high-quality astrometry from Gaia EDR3, with heliocentric line-of-sight velocities from Gaia DR2, and spectroscopic surveys including APOGEE, GALAH, and LAMOST. We construct an axisymmetric model for the mean velocity field, and subtract this on a star-by-star basis to obtain the residual velocity field in the Galactocentric components (Vϕ, VR, Vz), and Vlos. The velocity residuals are quantified using the power spectrum, and we find that the peak power (A/[km s−1]) in the mid-plane (|z| < 0.25 kpc) is (Aϕ, AR, AZ, Alos) = (4.2,8.5,2.6,4.6), at 0.25 < |z|/[kpc] < 0.5, is (Aϕ, AR, AZ, Alos) = (4.0,7.9,3.6,5.3), and at 0.5 < |z|/[kpc] < 0.75, is (Aϕ, AR, AZ, Alos) = (1.9,6.9,5.2,6.4). Our results provide a sophisticated measurement of the streaming motion in the disc and in the individual components. We find that streaming is most significant in VR, and at all heights (|Z|) probed, but is also non-negligible in other components. Additionally, we find that patterns in velocity field overlap spatially with models for spiral arms in the Galaxy. Our simulations show that phase-mixing of disrupting spiral arms can generate such residuals in the velocity field, where the radial component is dominant, just as in real data. We also find that with time evolution, both the amplitude and physical scale of the residual motion decrease.

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  6. Abstract

    Current methods of identifying the ionizing source of nebular emission in galaxies are well defined for the era of single-fiber spectroscopy, but still struggle to differentiate the complex and overlapping ionization sources in some galaxies. With the advent of integral field spectroscopy, the limits of these previous classification schemes are more apparent. We propose a new method for distinguishing the ionizing source in resolved galaxy spectra by use of a multidimensional diagnostic diagram that compares emission-line ratios with velocity dispersion on a spaxel-by-spaxel basis within a galaxy. This new method is tested using the Sydney-Australian-Astronomical-Observatory Multi-object Integral-Field Spectrograph Galaxy Survey (SAMI) Data Release 3 (DR3), which contains 3068 galaxies atz< 0.12. Our results are released as ionization maps available alongside the SAMI DR3 public data. Our method accounts for a more diverse range of ionization sources than the standard suite of emission-line diagnostics; we find 1433 galaxies with a significant contribution from non-star-forming ionization using our improved method as compared to 316 galaxies identified using only emission-line ratio diagnostics. Within these galaxies, we further identify 886 galaxies hosting unique signatures inconsistent with standard ionization by Hiiregions, active galactic nuclei, or shocks. These galaxies span a wide range of masses and morphological types and comprise a sizable portion of the galaxies used in our sample. With our revised method, we show that emission-line diagnostics alone do not adequately differentiate the multiple ways to ionize gas within a galaxy.

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    We use the Galaxy and Mass Assembly (GAMA) and the Deep Extragalactic Visible Legacy Survey (DEVILS) observational data sets to calculate the cosmic star formation rate (SFR) and active galactic nuclei (AGN) bolometric luminosity history (CSFH/CAGNH) over the last 12.5 billion years. SFRs and AGN bolometric luminosities were derived using the spectral energy distribution fitting code ProSpect, which includes an AGN prescription to self-consistently model the contribution from both AGN and stellar emission to the observed rest-frame ultra-violet to far-infrared photometry. We find that both the CSFH and CAGNH evolve similarly, rising in the early Universe up to a peak at look-back time ≈10 Gyr (z ≈ 2), before declining towards the present day. The key result of this work is that we find the ratio of CAGNH to CSFH has been flat ($\approx 10^{42.5}\, \mathrm{erg \, s^{-1}\, {\rm M}_{\odot }^{-1}\, yr}$) for 11 Gyr up to the present day, indicating that star formation and AGN activity have been coeval over this time period. We find that the stellar masses of the galaxies that contribute most to the CSFH and CAGNH are similar, implying a common cause, which is likely gas inflow. The depletion of the gas supply suppresses cosmic star formation and AGN activity equivalently to ensure that they have experienced similar declines over the last 10 Gyr. These results are an important milestone for reconciling the role of star formation and AGN activity in the life cycle of galaxies.

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  8. Abstract We present the first detailed comparison of populations of dwarf galaxy stellar streams in cosmological simulations and the Milky Way. In particular, we compare streams identified around 13 Milky Way analogs in the FIRE-2 simulations to streams observed by the Southern Stellar Stream Spectroscopic Survey ( S 5 ). For an accurate comparison, we produce mock Dark Energy Survey (DES) observations of the FIRE streams and estimate the detectability of their tidal tails and progenitors. The number and stellar mass distributions of detectable stellar streams is consistent between observations and simulations. However, there are discrepancies in the distributions of pericenters and apocenters, with the detectable FIRE streams, on average, forming at larger pericenters (out to >110 kpc) and surviving only at larger apocenters (≳40 kpc) than those observed in the Milky Way. We find that the population of high-stellar-mass dwarf galaxy streams in the Milky Way is incomplete. Interestingly, a large fraction of the FIRE streams would only be detected as intact satellites in DES-like observations, since their tidal tails have too low surface brightness to be detectable. We thus predict a population of yet-undetected tidal tails around Milky Way satellites, as well as a population of fully undetected low-surface-brightness stellar streams, and estimate their detectability with the Rubin Observatory. Finally, we discuss the causes and implications of the discrepancies between the stream populations in FIRE and the Milky Way, and explore future avenues for tests of satellite disruption in cosmological simulations. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 25, 2024

    K2 was a community-driven NASA mission where all targets were proposed through guest observer programmes. Here we provide an overview of one of the largest of these endeavours, the K2 Galactic Archaeology Programme (K2GAP), with about 25 per cent of the observed targets being allocated to this programme. K2GAP provides asteroseismic parameters for about 23 000 giant stars across the Galaxy, which together with spectroscopic stellar parameters can give age and masses of stars. We discuss in detail the target selection procedure and provide a python program that implements the selection function ( Broadly speaking, the targets were selected on 2MASS colour J − Ks > 0.5, with finely tuned adjustments for each campaign. We discuss the detection completeness of the asteroseismic parameters νmax and Δν. About 14 per cent of giants were found to miss νmax detections and it was difficult to detect Δν for RC stars. Making use of the selection function, we compare the observed distribution of asteroseismic masses to theoretical predictions. The median asteroseismic mass is higher by about 4 per cent compared to predictions. We provide a selection-function-matched mock catalogue of stars based on a synthetic model of the Galaxy for the community to use in subsequent analyses of the K2GAP data set (

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    Most dynamical models of galaxies to date assume axisymmetry, which is not representative of a significant fraction of massive galaxies. We have built triaxial orbit-superposition Schwarzschild models of galaxies observed by the SAMI Galaxy Survey, in order to reconstruct their inner orbital structure and mass distribution. The sample consists of 153 passive galaxies with total stellar masses in the range 109.5 to $10^{12} \, {\rm M}_{\odot }$. We present an analysis of the internal structures and intrinsic properties of these galaxies as a function of their environment. We measure their environment using three proxies: central or satellite designation, halo mass and local 5th nearest neighbour galaxy density. We find that although these intrinsic properties correlate most strongly with stellar mass, environment does play a secondary role: at fixed stellar mass, galaxies in the densest regions are more radially anisotropic. In addition, central galaxies, and galaxies in high local densities show lower values of edge-on spin parameter proxy λRe, EO. We also find suggestions of a possible trend of the fractions of orbits with environment for lower mass galaxies (between 109.5 and $10^{11} \, {\rm M}_{\odot }$) such that, at fixed stellar mass, galaxies in higher local densities and halo mass have higher fractions of hot orbits and lower fractions of warm orbits. Our results demonstrate that after stellar mass, environment does play a role in shaping present-day passive galaxies.

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