Luminosity function constraints on the evolution of massive red galaxies since z ∼ 0.9

Richard J. Cool, Daniel J. Eisenstein, Xiaohui Fan, Masataka Fukugita, Linhua Jiang, Claudia Maraston, Avery Meiksin, Donald P. Schneider, David A. Wake

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

73 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We measure the evolution of the luminous red galaxy (LRG) luminosity function in the redshift range 0.1 < z < 0.9 using samples of galaxies from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey as well as new spectroscopy of high-redshift massive red galaxies. Our high-redshift sample of galaxies is largest spectroscopic sample of massive red galaxies at z ∼ 0.9 collected to date and covers 7 deg2, minimizing the impact of large-scale structure on our results. We find that the LRG population has evolved little beyond the passive fading of its stellar populations since z ∼ 0.9. Based on our luminosity function measurements and assuming a nonevolving Salpeter stellar initial mass function, we find that the most massive (L > 3L*) red galaxies have grown by less than 50% (at 99% confidence), since z = 0.9, in stark contrast to the factor of 2-4 growth observed in the L* red galaxy population over the same epoch. We also investigate the evolution of the average LRG spectrum since z ∼ 0.9 and find the high-redshift composite to be well described as a passively evolving example of the composite galaxy observed at low redshift. From spectral fits to the composite spectra, we find at most 5% of the stellar mass in massive red galaxies may have formed within 1 Gyr of z = 0.9. While L* red galaxies are clearly assembled at z < 1, 3L* galaxies appear to be largely in place and evolve little beyond the passive evolution of their stellar populations over the last half of cosmic history.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)919-936
Number of pages18
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume682
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2008

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luminosity
galaxies
composite materials
history
stellar mass
confidence
time measurement
histories

Keywords

  • Galaxies: elliptical and lenticular, cD
  • Galaxies: evolution
  • Galaxies: fundamental parameters
  • Galaxies: photometry
  • Galaxies: statistics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics

Cite this

Cool, R. J., Eisenstein, D. J., Fan, X., Fukugita, M., Jiang, L., Maraston, C., ... Wake, D. A. (2008). Luminosity function constraints on the evolution of massive red galaxies since z ∼ 0.9. Astrophysical Journal, 682(2), 919-936. https://doi.org/10.1086/589642

Luminosity function constraints on the evolution of massive red galaxies since z ∼ 0.9. / Cool, Richard J.; Eisenstein, Daniel J.; Fan, Xiaohui; Fukugita, Masataka; Jiang, Linhua; Maraston, Claudia; Meiksin, Avery; Schneider, Donald P.; Wake, David A.

In: Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 682, No. 2, 01.08.2008, p. 919-936.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Cool, RJ, Eisenstein, DJ, Fan, X, Fukugita, M, Jiang, L, Maraston, C, Meiksin, A, Schneider, DP & Wake, DA 2008, 'Luminosity function constraints on the evolution of massive red galaxies since z ∼ 0.9', Astrophysical Journal, vol. 682, no. 2, pp. 919-936. https://doi.org/10.1086/589642
Cool, Richard J. ; Eisenstein, Daniel J. ; Fan, Xiaohui ; Fukugita, Masataka ; Jiang, Linhua ; Maraston, Claudia ; Meiksin, Avery ; Schneider, Donald P. ; Wake, David A. / Luminosity function constraints on the evolution of massive red galaxies since z ∼ 0.9. In: Astrophysical Journal. 2008 ; Vol. 682, No. 2. pp. 919-936.
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