Absorption-line Probes of the Prevalence and Properties of Outflows in Present-day Star-forming Galaxies

Type Journal Article
Names Yan-Mei Chen, Christy A. Tremonti, Timothy M. Heckman, Guinevere Kauffmann, Benjamin J. Weiner, Jarle Brinchmann, Jing Wang
Publication The Astronomical Journal
Volume 140
Issue 2
Pages 445-461
Date August 1, 2010
URL http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2010AJ....140..445C
Library Catalog NASA ADS
Abstract We analyze star-forming galaxies drawn from SDSS DR7 to show how the interstellar medium (ISM) Na I λλ5890, 5896 (Na D) absorption lines depend on galaxy physical properties, and to look for evidence of galactic winds. We combine the spectra of galaxies with similar geometry/physical parameters to create composite spectra with signal-to-noise ~300. The stellar continuum is modeled using stellar population synthesis models, and the continuum-normalized spectrum is fit with two Na I absorption components. We find that (1) ISM Na D absorption lines with equivalent widths EW > 0.8 Å are only prevalent in disk galaxies with specific properties—large extinction (AV ), high star formation rates (SFR), high SFR per unit area (ΣSFR), or high stellar mass (M *); (2) the ISM Na D absorption lines can be separated into two components: a quiescent disk-like component at the galaxy systemic velocity and an outflow component; (3) the disk-like component is much stronger in the edge-on systems, and the outflow component covers a wide angle but is stronger within 60° of the disk rotation axis; (4) the EW and covering factor of the disk component correlate strongly with dust attenuation, highlighting the importance that dust shielding may play in the survival of Na I; (5) the EW of the outflow component depends primarily on ΣSFR and secondarily on AV ; and (6) the outflow velocity varies from ~120 to 160 km s-1 but shows little hint of a correlation with galaxy physical properties over the modest dynamic range that our sample probes (1.2 dex in log ΣSFR and 1 dex in log M *).
Tags GALAXIES: EVOLUTION, galaxies: star formation
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