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Astrophysics Colloquium

Galaxy Evolution in Groups and Clusters in a Hierarchical Universe
Presented by Andrew Wetzel
California Institute of Technology

Thursday, December 19, 2013
4:00 P.M. in 169-336

Satellite galaxies in groups and clusters play a critical role in the picture of galaxy evolution. As many as a third of all galaxies are satellites, and the quenching of star formation in satellites is the dominant process in building the quiescent (red-sequence) galaxy population at low mass. I will present an observational and theoretical investigation into the evolution of star formation (and thus color) in satellite galaxies, using the Sloan Digital Sky Survey to examine satellites across a wide range of host halo masses, from massive clusters to the lowest mass dwarf galaxy groups in the local Universe. I will place these results in a fully cosmological context using a cosmological simulation to track satellite orbits and infall times, showing that the star formation histories of satellites follow a delayed-then-rapid quenching (color transformation) scenario, and I will discuss these results in light of the physical mechanisms responsible for environmental quenching. I also will examine the curious evolution of satellites that orbit beyond the virial radius of their host halo.

JPL Contact: Olivier Doré (4-0690)

SVCP Astrophysics

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