2019
DOI: 10.1093/mnrasl/slz138 View full text |Buy / Rent full text
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Abstract: In this letter we construct a large sample of early-type galaxies with measured gas-phase metallicities from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and Galaxy Zoo in order to investigate the origin of the gas that fuels their residual star formation. We use this sample to show that star forming elliptical galaxies have a substantially different gas-phase metallicity distribution from spiral galaxies, with ≈7.4% having a very low gas-phase metallicity for their mass. These systems typically have fewer metals in the gas p… Show more

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“…The median stellar mass of our sample is lower by ∼ 0.25 dex than that of composite ETGs. Moreover, the SFR distribution is concentrates at −0.7 < log(SFR[M ⊙ yr −1 ]) < 1.2, and the median value of metallicity estimation of SF ETGs 9 SFRs of our sample is slightly higher than that shown in Davis & Young (2019).…”
Section: Discussioncontrasting
“…Because of low-efficiency SF, our main results cannot be changed by the SFRs that are underestimated, although these ETGs may have SF at the outskirt. In ETGs, the inflow material fueling low-level SF may result in their metallicity decreasing (Davis & Young 2019), while the metallicities calibrated for the 3 ′′ aperture might be overestimated. However, these overestimating metallicities do not influence our results in statistical significant way.…”
Section: Metallicity Properties Of Star-forming Early-type Galaxiesmentioning
“…The origin of neutral gas in ETGs can be either internal (stellar mass loss or gas remaining from the galaxy formation process; e.g. Davis & Young 2019) or external (most likely accretion during minor mergers of gas-rich dwarfs; see e.g. Storchi-Bergmann & Schnorr-Müller 2019 for a review).…”
Section: Origin Of the Molecular Gas: External Accretion?mentioning
“…Given the absence of a stellar bar that could funnel gas to the centre (see Section 7.2), and as the galaxy also hosts lots of young stars that quickly return gas to the ISM (e.g. Davis et al 2016;Davis & Young 2019), stellar mass loss appears to be a viable scenario in NGC 3593. As the younger of the two stellar disc is counterrotating, this gas would itself also be naturally counterrotating.…”
Section: Origin Of the Molecular Gas: External Accretion?mentioning
“…For galaxies with a low content of native gas, such as some early-type galaxies, the external accretion of gas may provide the necessary fuel to promote one or more episodes of star formation (e.g. Kaviraj 2014, Davis & Young 2019 or to fuel an Active Galactic Nucleus (AGN) (Raimundo et al 2017). It has been shown from numerical simulations that the presence of misaligned or counter-rotating structures are associated with the flow of gas towards the nucleus and the potential fuelling of the AGN (e.g.…”
Section: Introductionmentioning