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The high mass end of the stellar mass function: dependence on stellar population models and agreement between fits to the light profile

The high mass end of the stellar mass function: dependence on stellar population models and agreement between fits to the light profile
The high mass end of the stellar mass function: dependence on stellar population models and agreement between fits to the light profile
We quantify the systematic effects on the stellar mass function that arise from assumptions about the stellar population, as well as how one fits the light profiles of the most luminous galaxies at z∼0.1. When comparing results from the literature, we are careful to separate out these effects. Our analysis shows that while systematics in the estimated comoving number density that arise from different treatments of the stellar population remain of the order of ≤0.5 dex, systematics in photometry are now about 0.1 dex, in contrast to some recent claims in the literature. Compared to these more recent analyses, previous work based on Sloan Digital Sky Survey pipeline photometry leads to underestimates of ρ(≥M)by factors of 3–10 in the mass range 1011–1011.6 M⊙, but up to a factor of 100 at higher stellar masses. This impacts studies that match massive galaxies to dark matter haloes. Although systematics that arise from different treatments of the stellar population remain of the order of ≤0.5 dex, our finding that systematics in photometry now amount to only about 0.1 dex in the stellar mass density is a significant improvement with respect to a decade ago. Our results highlight the importance of using the same stellar population and photometric models whenever low- and high-redshift samples are compared.
0035-8711
2217-2233
Bernardi, M.
54b8a017-8b86-4c7d-87b3-a2ebda0b4e56
Meert, A.
c133df67-bace-473a-81fc-ec6347160df0
Sheth, R. K.
61385f53-bd4e-460c-8e8a-6ddf36e9e388
Fischer, J.-L.
5ff9941a-b4f9-46bc-a1f6-c87a9567587b
Huertas-Company, M.
270c4419-8043-47da-8665-252f16cf5ae7
Maraston, C.
1271ebd1-70e8-4a0a-8ce6-156a86f33424
Shankar, F.
b10c91e4-85cd-4394-a18a-d4f049fd9cdb
Vikram, V.
1082eeca-f2a4-429f-aeb1-ceaac1cc0235
Bernardi, M.
54b8a017-8b86-4c7d-87b3-a2ebda0b4e56
Meert, A.
c133df67-bace-473a-81fc-ec6347160df0
Sheth, R. K.
61385f53-bd4e-460c-8e8a-6ddf36e9e388
Fischer, J.-L.
5ff9941a-b4f9-46bc-a1f6-c87a9567587b
Huertas-Company, M.
270c4419-8043-47da-8665-252f16cf5ae7
Maraston, C.
1271ebd1-70e8-4a0a-8ce6-156a86f33424
Shankar, F.
b10c91e4-85cd-4394-a18a-d4f049fd9cdb
Vikram, V.
1082eeca-f2a4-429f-aeb1-ceaac1cc0235

Bernardi, M., Meert, A., Sheth, R. K., Fischer, J.-L., Huertas-Company, M., Maraston, C., Shankar, F. and Vikram, V. (2017) The high mass end of the stellar mass function: dependence on stellar population models and agreement between fits to the light profile. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 467 (2), 2217-2233. (doi:10.1093/mnras/stx176).

Record type: Article

Abstract

We quantify the systematic effects on the stellar mass function that arise from assumptions about the stellar population, as well as how one fits the light profiles of the most luminous galaxies at z∼0.1. When comparing results from the literature, we are careful to separate out these effects. Our analysis shows that while systematics in the estimated comoving number density that arise from different treatments of the stellar population remain of the order of ≤0.5 dex, systematics in photometry are now about 0.1 dex, in contrast to some recent claims in the literature. Compared to these more recent analyses, previous work based on Sloan Digital Sky Survey pipeline photometry leads to underestimates of ρ(≥M)by factors of 3–10 in the mass range 1011–1011.6 M⊙, but up to a factor of 100 at higher stellar masses. This impacts studies that match massive galaxies to dark matter haloes. Although systematics that arise from different treatments of the stellar population remain of the order of ≤0.5 dex, our finding that systematics in photometry now amount to only about 0.1 dex in the stellar mass density is a significant improvement with respect to a decade ago. Our results highlight the importance of using the same stellar population and photometric models whenever low- and high-redshift samples are compared.

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Accepted/In Press date: 19 January 2017
e-pub ahead of print date: 23 January 2017
Published date: May 2017
Organisations: Astronomy Group

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 405466
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/405466
ISSN: 0035-8711
PURE UUID: 793203dc-e4ab-4227-859c-380ec0800834

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Date deposited: 06 Feb 2017 10:12
Last modified: 21 Nov 2021 05:30

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Contributors

Author: M. Bernardi
Author: A. Meert
Author: R. K. Sheth
Author: J.-L. Fischer
Author: M. Huertas-Company
Author: C. Maraston
Author: F. Shankar
Author: V. Vikram

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