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The CALYMHA survey: Lyα escape fraction and its dependence on galaxy properties at z = 2.23

J. Matthee, D. Sobral, I. Oteo, P. Best, I. Smail, H. J. A. Röttgering, A. Paulino-Afonso

We present the first results from our CAlibrating LYMan α with Hα (CALYMHA) pilot survey at the Isaac Newton Telescope. We measure Lyα emission for 488 Hα selected galaxies at z = 2.23 from High-z Emission Line Survey in the COSMOS and UDS fields with a specially designed narrow-band filter (λc = 3918 Å, Δλ = 52 Å). We find 17 dual Hα-Lyα emitters [fLyα > 5×10-17 erg s-1 cm-2, of which five are X-ray active galactic nuclei (AGN)]. For star-forming galaxies, we find a range of Lyα escape fractions (fesc, measured with 3 arcsec apertures) from 2 to 30 per cent. These galaxies have masses from 3×108 M to 1011 M and dust attenuations E(B - V) = 0-0.5. Using stacking, we measure a median escape fraction of 1.6 ± 0.5 per cent (4.0 ± 1.0 per cent without correcting Hα for dust), but show that this depends on galaxy properties. The stacked fesc tends to decrease with increasing star formation rate and dust attenuation. However, at the highest masses and dust attenuations, we detect individual galaxies with fesc much higher than the typical values from stacking, indicating significant scatter in the values of fesc. Relations between fesc and UV slope are bimodal, with high fesc for either the bluest or reddest galaxies. We speculate that this bimodality and large scatter in the values of fesc is due to additional physical mechanisms such as outflows facilitating fesc for dusty/massive systems. Lyα is significantly more extended than Hα and the UV. fesc continues to increase up to at least 20 kpc (3σ, 40 kpc [2σ]) for typical star-forming galaxies and thus the aperture is the most important predictor of fesc.

galaxies: evolution, galaxies: high-redshift, galaxies: ISM

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume 458, Issue 1, Page 449
2016 May

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Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa Universidade do Porto Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia da Universidade de Coimbra
Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia COMPETE 2020 PORTUGAL 2020 União Europeia