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Exploring the evolution of star formation and dwarf galaxy properties with JWST/MIRI serendipitous spectroscopic surveys

Bonato, Matteo, Sajina, Anna, Zotti, Gianfranco De, McKinney, Jed, Baronchelli, Ivano, Negrello, Mattia ORCID:, Marchesini, Danilo, Roebuck, Eric, Shipley, Heath, Kurinsky, Noah, Pope, Alexandra, Noriega-Crespo, Alberto, Yan, Lin and Kirkpatrick, Allison 2017. Exploring the evolution of star formation and dwarf galaxy properties with JWST/MIRI serendipitous spectroscopic surveys. Astrophysical Journal 836 (2) , 171. 10.3847/1538-4357/aa5c85

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The James Webb Space Telescope’s Medium Resolution Spectrometer (MRS), will offer nearly two orders of magnitude improvement in sensitivity and >3× improvement in spectral resolution over our previous space-based mid-IR spectrometer, the Spitzer IRS. In this paper, we make predictions for spectroscopic pointed observations and serendipitous detections with the MRS. Specifically, pointed observations of Herschel sources require only a few minutes on source integration for detections of several star-forming and active galactic nucleus lines, out to z = 3 and beyond. But the same data will also include tens of serendipitous 0  z  4 galaxies per field with infrared luminosities ranging ∼106 –1013 L☉. In particular, for the first time and for free we will be able to explore the LIR < 109 L☉ regime out to z ∼ 3. We estimate that with ∼ 100 such fields, statistics of these detections will be sufficient to constrain the evolution of the low-L end of the infrared luminosity function, and hence the star formation rate function. The above conclusions hold for a wide range in the potential low-L end of the IR luminosity function, and account for the PAH deficit in low-L, low-metallicity galaxies.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Physics and Astronomy
Publisher: American Astronomical Society
ISSN: 1538-4357
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 6 September 2017
Date of Acceptance: 24 January 2017
Last Modified: 07 May 2023 06:17

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