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Redistribution of Stars and Gas in the Star Formation Deserts of Barred Galaxies

Donohoe-Keyes, CE, Martig, M, James, PA and Kraljic, K Redistribution of Stars and Gas in the Star Formation Deserts of Barred Galaxies. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. ISSN 0035-8711 (Accepted)

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Abstract

Bars strongly influence the distribution of gas and stars within the central regions of their host galaxies. This is particularly pronounced in the star formation desert (SFD) which is defined as two symmetrical regions either side of the bar that show a deficit in young stars. Previous studies proposed that, if star formation is truncated because of the influence of the bar, then the age distribution of stars within the SFD could be used to determine the epoch of bar formation. To test this, we study the properties of SFDs in 6 galaxies from zoom-in cosmological re-simulations. Age maps reveal old regions on both sides of the bars, with a lack of stars younger than 10 Myr, confirming the SFD phenomenon. Local star formation is truncated in the SFDs because after the bar forms, gas in these regions is removed on 1 Gyr timescales. However, the overall age distribution of stars in the SFD does not show a sharp truncation after bar formation but rather a gradual downturn in comparison to that of the bar. This more subtle signature may still give information on bar formation epochs in observed galaxies, but the interpretation will be more difficult than originally hoped. The gradual drop in the SFD age distribution, instead of a truncation, is due to radial migration of stars born in the disk. The SFD is thus one of the only regions where an uncontaminated sample of stars only affected by radial migration can be studied.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: astro-ph.GA; astro-ph.GA
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Q Science > QC Physics
Divisions: Astrophysics Research Institute
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 06 Sep 2019 10:07
Last Modified: 06 Sep 2019 10:15
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/11310

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