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MUSE Analysis of Gas around Galaxies (MAGG) - II: Metal-enriched halo gas around z ∼ 1 galaxies.

Dutta, Rajeshwari and Fumagalli, Michele and Fossati, Matteo and Lofthouse, Emma K. and Prochaska, J. Xavier and Battaia, Fabrizio Arrigoni and Bielby, Richard M. and Cantalupo, Sebastiano and Cooke, Ryan J. and Murphy, Michael T. and O’Meara, John M. (2020) 'MUSE Analysis of Gas around Galaxies (MAGG) - II: Metal-enriched halo gas around z ∼ 1 galaxies.', Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society., 499 (4). pp. 5022-5046.


We present a study of the metal-enriched cool halo gas traced by Mg II absorption around 228 galaxies at z ∼ 0.8–1.5 within 28 quasar fields from the MUSE Analysis of Gas around Galaxies survey. We observe no significant evolution in the Mg II equivalent width versus impact parameter relation and in the Mg II covering fraction compared to surveys at z ≲ 0.5. The stellar mass, along with distance from galaxy centre, appears to be the dominant factor influencing the Mg II absorption around galaxies. With a sample that is 90 per cent complete down to a star formation rate of ≈0.1 M⊙yr−1 and up to impact parameters ≈250–350 kpc from quasars, we find that the majority (⁠67+12−15 per cent or 14/21) of the Mg II absorption systems are associated with more than one galaxy. The complex distribution of metals in these richer environments adds substantial scatter to previously reported correlations. Multiple galaxy associations show on average five times stronger absorption and three times higher covering fraction within twice the virial radius than isolated galaxies. The dependence of Mg II absorption on galaxy properties disfavours the scenario in which a widespread intragroup medium dominates the observed absorption. This leaves instead gravitational interactions among group members or hydrodynamic interactions of the galaxy haloes with the intragroup medium as favoured mechanisms to explain the observed enhancement in the Mg II absorption strength and cross-section in rich environments.

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Publisher statement:This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. ©: 2020 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Date accepted:09 October 2020
Date deposited:17 November 2020
Date of first online publication:12 October 2020
Date first made open access:17 November 2020

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