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The relation between cool cluster cores and Herschel-detected star formation in brightest cluster galaxies.

Rawle, T. D. and Edge, A. C. and Egami, E. and Rex, M. and Smith, G. P. and Altieri, B. and Fiedler, A. and Haines, C. P. and Pereira, M. J. and González, P. G. and Portouw, J. and Valtchanov, I. and Walth, G. and van der Werf, P. P. and Zemcov, M. (2012) 'The relation between cool cluster cores and Herschel-detected star formation in brightest cluster galaxies.', Astrophysical journal., 747 (1). p. 29.


We present far-infrared (FIR) analysis of 68 brightest cluster galaxies (BCGs) at 0.08 < z < 1.0. Deriving total infrared luminosities directly from Spitzer and Herschel photometry spanning the peak of the dust component (24-500 μm), we calculate the obscured star formation rate (SFR). 22+6.2 –5.3% of the BCGs are detected in the far-infrared, with SFR = 1-150 M ☉ yr–1. The infrared luminosity is highly correlated with cluster X-ray gas cooling times for cool-core clusters (gas cooling time <1 Gyr), strongly suggesting that the star formation in these BCGs is influenced by the cluster-scale cooling process. The occurrence of the molecular gas tracing Hα emission is also correlated with obscured star formation. For all but the most luminous BCGs (L TIR > 2 × 1011 L ☉), only a small (0.4 mag) reddening correction is required for SFR(Hα) to agree with SFRFIR. The relatively low Hα extinction (dust obscuration), compared to values reported for the general star-forming population, lends further weight to an alternate (external) origin for the cold gas. Finally, we use a stacking analysis of non-cool-core clusters to show that the majority of the fuel for star formation in the FIR-bright BCGs is unlikely to originate from normal stellar mass loss.

Item Type:Article
Keywords:Galaxies, Clusters, Elliptical and lenticular, cD, Star formation, Infrared.
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Publisher statement:© 2012. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved. Printed in the U.S.A.
Date accepted:No date available
Date deposited:04 September 2013
Date of first online publication:March 2012
Date first made open access:No date available

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