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oMEGACat I. MUSE Spectroscopy of 300,000 stars within the Half-light Radius of ω Centauri

Nitschai, MS, Neumayer, N, Clontz, C, Häberle, M, Seth, AC, Husser, T-O, Kamann, S, Alfaro-Cuello, M, Kacharov, N, Bellini, A, Dotter, A, Dreizler, S, Feldmeier-Krause, A, Latour, M, Libralato, M, Milone, AP, Pechetti, R, van de Ven, G, Voggel, K and Weisz, DR (2023) oMEGACat I. MUSE Spectroscopy of 300,000 stars within the Half-light Radius of ω Centauri. Astrophysical Journal, 958 (8). ISSN 0004-637X

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Omega Centauri (ω Cen) is the most massive globular cluster of the Milky Way and has been the focus of many studies that reveal the complexity of its stellar populations and kinematics. However, most previous studies have used photometric and spectroscopic datasets with limited spatial or magnitude coverage, while we aim to investigate it having full spatial coverage out to its half-light radius and stars ranging from the main sequence to the tip of the red giant branch. This is the first paper in a new survey of ω Cen that combines uniform imaging and spectroscopic data out to its half-light radius to study its stellar populations, kinematics, and formation history. In this paper, we present an unprecedented MUSE spectroscopic dataset combining 87 new MUSE pointings with previous observations collected from guaranteed time observations. We extract spectra of more than 300,000 stars reaching more than two magnitudes below the main sequence turn-off. We use these spectra to derive metallicity and line-of-sight velocity measurements and determine robust uncertainties on these quantities using repeat measurements. Applying quality cuts we achieve signal-to-noise ratios of 16.47/73.51 and mean metallicity errors of 0.174/0.031 dex for the main sequence stars (18 mag < magF625W < 22 mag) and red giant branch stars (16 mag < magF625W <10 mag), respectively. We correct the metallicities for atomic diffusion and identify foreground stars. This massive spectroscopic dataset will enable future studies that will transform our understanding of ω Cen, allowing us to investigate the stellar populations, ages, and kinematics in great detail.

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: American Astronomical Society; IOP Publishing
Related URLs:
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 11 Sep 2023 12:39
Last Modified: 08 Nov 2023 10:45
DOI or ID number: 10.3847/1538-4357/acf5db
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/21391
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