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Durham University

Department of Physics

Staff profile

Publication details for Professor Ian Smail

Cooke, E A, Smail, Ian, Stach, S M, Swinbank, A M, Bower, R G, Chen, Chian-Chou, Koyama, Y & Thomson, A P (2019). The submillimetre view of massive clusters at z ∼ 0.8–1.6. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 486(3): 3047-3058.

Author(s) from Durham


We analyse 850 μm continuum observations of eight massive X-ray detected galaxy clusters at z ∼ 0.8–1.6 taken with SCUBA-2 on the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope. We find an average overdensity of 850 μm-selected sources of a factor of 4 ± 2 per cluster within the central 1 Mpc compared to the field. We investigate the multiwavelength properties of these sources and identify 34 infrared counterparts to 26 SCUBA-2 sources. Their colours suggest that the majority of these counterparts are probable cluster members. We use the multi-wavelength far-infrared photometry to measure the total luminosities and total cluster star-formation rates demonstrating that they are roughly three orders of magnitude higher than local clusters. We predict the H-band luminosities of the descendants of our cluster submillimetre galaxies and find that their stellar luminosity distribution is consistent with that of passive elliptical galaxies in z ∼ 0 clusters. Together, the faded descendants of the passive cluster population already in place at z ∼ 1 and the cluster submillimetre galaxies are able to account for the total luminosity function of early-type cluster galaxies at z ∼ 0. This suggests that the majority of the luminous passive population in z ∼ 0 clusters are likely to have formed at z ≫ 1 through an extreme, dust-obscured starburst event.