The Astrophysical Journal
We investigate the relationship between star formation (SF) and level of relaxation in a sample of 379 galaxy clusters at z < 0.2. We use data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey to measure cluster membership and level of relaxation, and to select star-forming galaxies based on mid-infrared emission detected with the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer. For galaxies with absolute magnitudes Mr < −19.5, we find an inverse correlation between SF fraction and cluster relaxation: as a cluster becomes less relaxed, its SF fraction increases. Furthermore, in general, the subtracted SF fraction in all unrelaxed clusters (0.117 ± 0.003) is higher than that in all relaxed clusters (0.097 ± 0.005). We verify the validity of our SF calculation methods and membership criteria through analysis of previous work. Our results agree with previous findings that a weak correlation exists between cluster SF and dynamical state, possibly because unrelaxed clusters are less evolved relative to relaxed clusters.
Dartmouth Digital Commons Citation
Cohen, Seth A.; Hickox, Ryan C.; and Wegner, Gary A., "Star Formation and Relaxation in 379 Nearby Galaxy Clusters" (2015). Dartmouth Scholarship. 2163.