The LOFAR Two-metre Sky Survey: The nature of the faint source population and SFR-radio luminosity relation using PROSPECTOR

Soumyadeep Das, Daniel J. B. Smith, Paul Haskell, Martin J. Hardcastle, Philip N. Best, Kenneth J. Duncan, Marina I. Arnaudova, Shravya Shenoy, Rohit Kondapally, Rachel K. Cochrane, Alyssa B. Drake, Gülay Gürkan, Katarzyna Małek, Leah K. Morabito, Isabella Prandoni

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Spectral energy distribution (SED) fitting has been extensively used to determine the nature of the faint radio source population. Recent efforts have combined fits from multiple SED-fitting codes to account for the host galaxy and any active nucleus that may be present. We show that it is possible to produce similar-quality classifications using a single energy-balance SED fitting code, Prospector, to model up to 26 bands of UV$-$far-infrared aperture-matched photometry for $\sim$31,000 sources in the ELAIS-N1 field from the LOFAR Two-Metre Sky Survey (LoTSS) Deep fields first data release. One of a new generation of SED-fitting codes, Prospector accounts for potential contributions from radiative active galactic nuclei (AGN) when estimating galaxy properties, including star formation rates (SFRs) derived using non-parametric star formation histories. Combining this information with radio luminosities, we classify 92 per cent of the radio sources as a star-forming galaxy, high/low-excitation radio galaxy, or radio-quiet AGN and study the population demographics as a function of 150 MHz flux density, luminosity, SFR, stellar mass, redshift and apparent $r$-band magnitude. Finally, we use Prospector SED fits to investigate the SFR$-$150 MHz luminosity relation for a sample of $\sim$$133,000~3.6~\mu$m-selected $z 0.5$. This approach makes it significantly easier to classify radio sources from LoTSS and elsewhere, and may have important implications for future studies of star-forming galaxies at radio wavelengths.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberstae1204
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2024


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