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  1. Abstract

    We explore how the presence of detectable molecular gas depends on the inferred star formation histories (SFHs) in eight massive, quiescent galaxies atz∼ 0.7. Half of the sample have clear detections of molecular gas, traced by CO(2–1). We find that the molecular gas content is unrelated to the rate of star formation decline prior to the most recent 1 Gyr, suggesting that the gas reservoirs are not left over from their primary star formation epoch. However, the recent SFHs of CO-detected galaxies demonstrate evidence for secondary bursts of star formation in their last Gyr. The fraction of stellar mass formed in these secondary bursts ranges fromfburst≈ 0.3%–6% and ended betweentend-burst≈ 0–330 Myr ago. The CO-detected galaxies form a higher fraction of mass in the last Gyr (fM1Gyr=2.6%±1.8%) compared to the CO-undetected galaxies (fM1Gyr=0.2%±0.1%). The galaxies with gas reservoirs have enhanced late-time star formation, highlighting this as a contributing factor to the observed heterogeneity in the gas reservoirs in high-redshift quiescent galaxies. We find that the amount of gas and star formation driven by these secondary bursts are inconsistent with that expected from dry minor mergers, and instead are likely driven bymore »recently accreted gas, i.e., gas-rich minor mergers. This conclusion would not have been made based on SFRUV+IRmeasurements alone, highlighting the power of detailed SFH modeling in the interpretation of gas reservoirs. Larger samples are needed to understand the frequency of low-level rejuvenation among quiescent galaxies at intermediate redshifts, and to what extent this drives the diversity of molecular gas reservoirs.

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  2. Abstract Observations of cold molecular gas reservoirs are critical for understanding the shutdown of star formation in massive galaxies. While dust continuum is an efficient and affordable tracer, this method relies upon the assumption of a “normal” molecular-gas to dust mass ratio, δ GDR , typically of order 100. Recent null detections of quiescent galaxies in deep dust continuum observations support a picture where the cold gas and dust have been rapidly depleted or expelled. In this work, we present another viable explanation: a significant fraction of galaxies with low star formation per unit stellar mass are predicted to have extreme δ GDR ratios. We show that simulated massive quiescent galaxies at 0 < z < 3 in the simba cosmological simulations have δ GDR values that extend >4 orders of magnitude. The dust in most simulated quiescent galaxies is destroyed significantly more rapidly than the molecular gas depletes, and cannot be replenished. The transition from star-forming to quiescent halts dust formation via star formation processes, with dust subsequently destroyed by supernova shocks and thermal sputtering of dust grains embedded in hot plasma. After this point, the dust growth rate in the models is not sufficient to overcome the lossmore »of >3 orders of magnitude in dust mass to return to normal values of δ GDR despite having high metallicity. Our results indicate that it is not straight forward to use a single observational indicator to robustly preselect exotic versus normal ratios. These simulations make strong predictions that can be tested with millimeter facilities.« less
  3. ABSTRACT The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is expected to observe galaxies at z > 10 that are presently inaccessible. Here, we use a self-consistent empirical model, the universemachine, to generate mock galaxy catalogues and light-cones over the redshift range z = 0−15. These data include realistic galaxy properties (stellar masses, star formation rates, and UV luminosities), galaxy–halo relationships, and galaxy–galaxy clustering. Mock observables are also provided for different model parameters spanning observational uncertainties at z < 10. We predict that Cycle 1 JWST surveys will very likely detect galaxies with M* > 107 M⊙ and/or M1500 < −17 out to at least z ∼ 13.5. Number density uncertainties at z > 12 expand dramatically, so efforts to detect z > 12 galaxies will provide the most valuable constraints on galaxy formation models. The faint-end slopes of the stellar mass/luminosity functions at a given mass/luminosity threshold steepen as redshift increases. This is because observable galaxies are hosted by haloes in the exponentially falling regime of the halo mass function at high redshifts. Hence, these faint-end slopes are robustly predicted to become shallower below current observable limits (M* < 107 M⊙ or M1500 > −17). For reionization models, extrapolating luminosity functions with amore »constant faint-end slope from M1500 = −17 down to M1500 = −12 gives the most reasonable upper limit for the total UV luminosity and cosmic star formation rate up to z ∼ 12. We compare to three other empirical models and one semi-analytic model, showing that the range of predicted observables from our approach encompasses predictions from other techniques. Public catalogues and light-cones for common fields are available online.« less
  4. ABSTRACT Galaxy clustering measurements can be used to constrain many aspects of galaxy evolution, including galaxy host halo masses, satellite quenching efficiencies, and merger rates. We simulate JWST galaxy clustering measurements at z ∼ 4–10 by utilizing mock galaxy samples produced by an empirical model, the universemachine. We also adopt the survey footprints and typical depths of the planned joint NIRCam and NIRSpec Guaranteed Time Observation program planned for Cycle 1 to generate realistic JWST survey realizations and to model high-redshift galaxy selection completeness. We find that galaxy clustering will be measured with ≳5σ significance at z ∼ 4–10. Halo mass precisions resulting from Cycle 1 angular clustering measurements will be ∼0.2 dex for faint (−18 ≳ $\mathit {M}_{\mathrm{UV}}^{ }$ ≳ −19) galaxies at z ∼ 4–10 as well as ∼0.3 dex for bright ($\mathit {M}_{\mathrm{UV}}^{ }$ ∼ −20) galaxies at z ∼ 4–7. Dedicated spectroscopic follow-up over ∼150 arcmin2 would improve these precisions by ∼0.1 dex by removing chance projections and low-redshift contaminants. Future JWST observations will therefore provide the first constraints on the stellar–halo mass relation in the epoch of reionization and substantially clarify how this relation evolves at z > 4. We also find that ∼1000 individual satellites will be identifiable at z ∼ 4–8 with JWST, enabling strong tests of satellite quenchingmore »evolution beyond currently available data (z ≲ 2). Finally, we find that JWST observations can measure the evolution of galaxy major merger pair fractions at z ∼ 4–8 with ∼0.1–0.2 dex uncertainties. Such measurements would help determine the relative role of mergers to the build-up of stellar mass into the epoch of reionization.« less