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Durham University

Department of Physics

Staff profile

Publication details for Prof Tim Roberts

Rasmussen, Jesper, Bai, Xue-Ning, Mulchaey, John S., van Gorkom, J.H., Jeltema, Tesla E., Zabludoff, Ann I., Wilcots, Eric, Martini, Paul, Lee, Duane & Roberts, Timothy P. (2012). Hot and cold galactic gas in the NGC 2563 galaxy group. The Astrophysical Journal 747(1): 31.

Author(s) from Durham


The role of environmentally induced gas stripping in driving galaxy evolution in groups remains poorly understood. Here we present extensive Chandra and Very Large Array mosaic observations of the hot and cold interstellar medium within the members of the nearby, X-ray bright NGC 2563 group, a prime target for studies of the role of gas stripping and interactions in relatively small host halos. Our observations cover nearly all group members within a projected radius of 1.15 Mpc (~1.4 R vir) of the group center, down to a limiting X-ray luminosity and H I mass of 3 × 1039 erg s–1 and 2 × 108 M ☉, respectively. The X-ray data are consistent with efficient ram pressure stripping of the hot gas halos of early-type galaxies near the group core, but no X-ray tails are seen and the limited statistics preclude strong conclusions. The H I results suggest moderate H I mass loss from the group members when compared to similar field galaxies. Six of the 20 H I-detected group members show H I evidence of ongoing interactions with other galaxies or with the intragroup medium. Suggestive evidence is further seen for galaxies with close neighbors in position-velocity space to show relatively low H I content, consistent with tidal removal of H I. The results thus indicate removal of both hot and cold gas from the group members via a combination of ram pressure stripping and tidal interactions. We also find that 16 of the 20 H I detections occur on one side of the group, reflecting an unusual morphological segregation whose origin remains unclear.