Cosmic evolution of low-excitation radio galaxies in the LOFAR Two-meter Sky Survey Deep Fields

R. Kondapally, P. N. Best, R. K. Cochrane, J. Sabater, K. J. Duncan, M. J. Hardcastle, P. Haskell, B. Mingo, H. J. A. Röttgering, D. J. B. Smith, W. L. Williams, M. Bonato, G. Calistro Rivera, F. Gao, C. L. Hale, K. Małek, G. K. Miley, I. Prandoni, L. Wang

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Feedback from low-excitation radio galaxies (LERGs) plays a key role in the lifecycle of massive galaxies in the local Universe; their evolution, and the impact of these active galactic nuclei on early galaxy evolution, however, remain poorly understood. We use a sample of 10481 LERGs from the first data release of the LOFAR Two-meter Sky Survey Deep Fields, covering $\sim$ 25 deg$^2$, to present the first measurement of the evolution of the radio luminosity function (LF) of LERGs out to $z\sim2.5$; this shows relatively mild evolution. We split the LERGs into those hosted by quiescent and star-forming galaxies, finding a new dominant population of LERGs hosted by star-forming galaxies at high redshifts. The incidence of LERGs in quiescent galaxies shows a steep dependence on stellar-mass out to $z \sim1.5$, consistent with local Universe measurements of accretion occurring from cooling of hot gas haloes. The quiescent-LERGs dominate the LFs at $z
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3742-3767
Number of pages26
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 26 Apr 2022


  • astro-ph.GA
  • astro-ph.HE


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