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Presentation
Probing Stellar Populations in the Virgo and Fornax Clusters with Infrared Surface Brightness Fluctuations
Utah Valley University Engaged Learning Week (2016)
  • Zachary Gibson, Utah State University
Abstract
Surface brightness fluctuations (SBF) are a useful tool for measuring extragalactic
distances. At infrared wavelengths, SBF break the age-metallicity degeneracy and are useful for
probing the properties of the most luminous stars in a galaxy, even when individual stars are not
resolved. We present a detailed comparison of F110W and F160W SBF measurements made using the
Hubble Space Telescope WFC3/IR camera to a variety of stellar population models, including those
with solar-scaled and alpha-enhanced compositions and models incorporating convective core
overshoot for younger populations. We use these model comparisons to assess the star formation
histories of 6 galaxies spanning a wide range in color and luminosity in the Virgo and Fornax clusters,
measured as a function of distance from the galaxy center in elliptical apertures. We discuss the
implications of population variations on the fluctuation magnitudes and distance measurements.
Keywords
  • Virgo,
  • Fornax,
  • Distance Scale,
  • Galaxies,
  • Stellar Characteristics,
  • SBF,
  • Surface Brightness Fluctuations
Publication Date
Spring March, 2016
Location
Orem, UT
Comments
I won 2nd place for best oral presentation.
Citation Information
Zachary Gibson. "Probing Stellar Populations in the Virgo and Fornax Clusters with Infrared Surface Brightness Fluctuations" Utah Valley University Engaged Learning Week (2016)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/zachary-gibson/4/