Near-UV Merger Signatures in Early-Type Galaxies
Hierarchical assembly of early-type galaxies (Es and S0s) over an extended period of time will result in mixed-generation stellar populations. Here we look for signatures of composite populations in broad-band, near-ultraviolet (2500-3400 Å), high-resolution HST imaging of the cores of 12 bright early-type galaxies without obvious dust or active galactic nuclei. Near-UV imaging is a sensitive probe for the detection of younger components with ages in the range of 10 Myr to 5 Gyr. Only two galaxies have central colors (r< 0.75 re) that are consistent with a single-generation population. The other ten require a composite population.
KeywordsPoint Spread Function Active Galactic Nucleus Stellar Population Hubble Space Telescope Elliptical Galaxy
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