CLEAR. I. Ages and Metallicities of Quiescent Galaxies at 1.0 < z < 1.8 Derived from Deep Hubble Space Telescope Grism Data
Quadri, Ryan F.
Gosmeyer, Catherine M.
Skelton, Rosalind E.
Trump, Jonathan R.
AffiliationUniv Arizona, MMT Steward Observ
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PublisherIOP PUBLISHING LTD
CitationVicente Estrada-Carpenter et al 2019 ApJ 870 133
Rights© 2019. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
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AbstractWe use deep Hubble Space Telescope spectroscopy to constrain the metallicities and (light-weighted) ages of massive (log M-*/M-circle dot greater than or similar to 10) galaxies selected to have quiescent stellar populations at 1.0 < z < 1.8. The data include twelve-orbit depth coverage with the WFC3/G102 grism covering similar to 8000 < lambda < 11,500 angstrom at a spectral resolution of R similar to 210 taken as part of the CANDELS Ly alpha Emission at Reionization (CLEAR) survey. At 1.0 < z < 1.8, the spectra cover important stellar population features in the rest-frame optical. We simulate a suite of stellar population models at the grism resolution, fit these to the data for each galaxy, and derive posterior likelihood distributions for metallicity and age. We stack the posteriors for subgroups of galaxies in different redshift ranges that include different combinations of stellar absorption features. Our results give light-weighted ages of t(z similar to 1.1) = 3.2 +/- 0.7 Gyr, t(z similar to 1.2) = 2.2 +/- 0.6 Gyr, t(z similar to 1.3) = 3.1 +/- 0.6 Gyr, and t(z similar to 1.6) = 2.0 +/- 0.6 Gyr for galaxies at z similar to 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, and 1.6, respectively. This implies that most of the massive quiescent galaxies at 1 < z < 1.8 had formed >68% of their stellar mass by z > 2. The posteriors give metallicities of Z(z similar to 1.1) = 1.16 +/- 0.29 Z(circle dot), Z(z similar to 1.2) = 1.05 +/- 0.34 Z(circle dot), Z(z similar to 1.3) = 1.00 +/- 0.31 Z(circle dot), and Z(z similar to 1.6) = 0.95 +/- 0.39 Z(circle dot). This is evidence that massive galaxies had enriched rapidly to approximately solar metallicities as early as z similar to 3.
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsHagler Institute for Advanced Study at Texas AM University; George P. and Cynthia Woods Mitchell Institute for Fundamental Physics and Astronomy at Texas AM University; Hubble Space Telescope [GO 14227]; NASA through a grant from the Space Telescope Science Institute [GO 14227, NAS5-26555]