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Durham University

Department of Physics

Staff profile

Publication details for Professor Ian Smail

Darvish, B., Sobral, D., Mobasher, B., Scoville, N.Z., Best, P., Sales, L.V. & Smail, I. (2014). Cosmic Web and Star Formation Activity in Galaxies at z ~ 1. Astrophysical Journal 796(1): 51.

Author(s) from Durham

Abstract

We investigate the role of the delineated cosmic web/filaments on star formation activity by exploring a sample of 425 narrow-band selected Hα emitters, as well as 2846 color-color selected underlying star-forming galaxies for a large-scale structure at z = 0.84 in the COSMOS field from the HiZELS survey. Using the scale-independent Multi-scale Morphology Filter algorithm, we are able to quantitatively describe the density field and disentangle it into its major components: fields, filaments, and clusters. We show that the observed median star formation rate (SFR), stellar mass, specific SFR, the mean SFR-mass relation, and its scatter for both Hα emitters and underlying star-forming galaxies do not strongly depend on different classes of environment, in agreement with previous studies. However, the fraction of Hα emitters varies with environment and is enhanced in filamentary structures at z ~ 1. We propose mild galaxy-galaxy interactions as the possible physical agent for the elevation of the fraction of Hα star-forming galaxies in filaments. Our results show that filaments are the likely physical environments that are often classed as the "intermediate" densities and that the cosmic web likely plays a major role in galaxy formation and evolution which has so far been poorly investigated.