The ATLAS(3D) project - V. The CO Tully-Fisher relation of early-type galaxies

Timothy A. Davis, Martin Bureau, Lisa M. Young, Katherine Alatalo, Leo Blitz, Michele Cappellari, Nicholas Scott, Maxime Bois, Frederic Bournaud, Roger L. Davies, P. Tim de Zeeuw, Eric Emsellem, Sadegh Khochfar, Davor Krajnovic, Harald Kuntschner, Pierre-Yves Lablanche, Richard M. McDermid, Raffaella Morganti, Thorsten Naab, Tom OosterlooMarc Sarzi, Paolo Serra, Anne-Marie Weijmans

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    55 Citations (Scopus)
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    We demonstrate here using both single-dish and interferometric observations that CO molecules are an excellent kinematic tracer, even in high-mass galaxies, allowing us to investigate for the first time the CO Tully-Fisher relation (CO-TFR) of early-type galaxies. We compare the TFRs produced using both single-dish and interferometric data and various inclination estimation methods, and evaluate the use of the velocity profile shape as a criterion for selecting galaxies in which the molecular gas extends beyond the peak of the rotation curve. We show that the gradient and zero-point of the best-fitting relations are robust, independent of the velocity measure and inclination used, and agree with those of relations derived using stellar kinematics. We also show that the early-type CO-TFR is offset from the CO-TFR of spirals by 0.98 +/- 0.22 mag at K-s band, in line with other results. The intrinsic scatter of the relation is found to be approximate to 0.4 mag, similar to the level found in the spiral galaxy population. Next-generation facilities such as the Large Millimeter Telescope and the Atacama Large Millimeter/Sub-millimeter Array should allow this technique to be used in higher redshift systems, providing a simple new tool to trace the mass-to-light ratio evolution of the most massive galaxies over cosmic time.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)968-984
    Number of pages17
    JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2011


    • ISM: kinematics and dynamics
    • galaxies: elliptical and lenticular, cD
    • galaxies: evolution
    • galaxies: kinematics and dynamics
    • galaxies: spiral
    • galaxies: structure


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