Herschel protocluster survey: A search for dusty star-forming galaxies in protoclusters at z = 2-3

Y. Kato, Y. Matsuda, Ian Smail, A. M. Swinbank, B. Hatsukade, H. Umehata, I. Tanaka, T. Saito, D. Iono, Y. Tamura, K. Kohno, D. K. Erb, B. D. Lehmer, J. E. Geach, C. C. Steidel, D. M. Alexander, T. Yamada, T. Hayashino

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We present a Herschel/Spectral and Photometric Imaging Receiver (SPIRE) survey of three protoclusters at z = 2-3 (2QZCluster, HS1700, SSA22). Based on the SPIRE colours (S350/S250 and S500/S350) of 250 μm sources, we selected high-redshift dusty star-forming galaxies potentially associated with the protoclusters. In the 2QZCluster field, we found a 4σ overdensity of six SPIRE sources around 4.5 arcmin (~2.2 Mpc) from a density peak of H α emitters at z = 2.2. In the HS1700 field, we found a 5σ overdensity of eight SPIRE sources around 2.1 arcmin (~1.0 Mpc) from a density peak of Lyman-break galaxies at z = 2.3. We did not find any significant overdensities in SSA22 field, but we found three 500 μm sources are concentrated 3 arcmin (~1.4 Mpc) east to the Ly α emitters overdensity. If all the SPIRE sources in these three overdensities are associated with protoclusters, the inferred star formation rate densities are 103-104 times higher than the average value at the same redshifts. This suggests that dusty star formation activity could be very strongly enhanced in z ~ 2-3 protoclusters. Further observations are needed to confirm the redshifts of the SPIRE sources and to investigate what processes enhance the dusty star formation activity in z ~ 2-3 protoclusters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3861-3872
Number of pages12
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number4
Early online date23 May 2016
Publication statusPublished - 21 Aug 2016


  • Galaxies: formation
  • Galaxies: high-redshift
  • Infrared: galaxies
  • Submillimetre: galaxies


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