I. VIMOS photometry and radial velocities across Sgr dSph major and minor axis
ASI Science data Center, via Galileo Galilei, 00044 Frascati, Italy e-mail: email@example.com
2 CIFIST Marie Curie Excellence Team
3 GEPI, Observatoire de Paris, CNRS, Université Paris Diderot, Place Jules Janssen, 92190 Meudon, France
4 Max-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik, Karl-Schwarzschild-Str. 1, Postfach 1317, 85741 Garching b. München, Germany
5 INAF – Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova Vicolo dell'Osservatorio 5, 35122 Padova, Italy
6 European Southern Observatory, Alonso de Cordova 3107 Vitacura Casilla 19001 Santiago, Chile
7 Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica, Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste, via Tiepolo 11, 34143 Trieste, Italy
8 European Southern Observatory, Karl-Schwarzschild-Str. 2, 85748 Garching bei München, Germany
9 Universitá di Roma Tor Vergata, via della Ricerca Scientifica, 1 00133 Rome, Italy
Accepted: 25 November 2009
Context. The Sagittarius dwarf Spheroidal Galaxy (Sgr dSph) provides us with a unique possibility of studying a dwarf galaxy merging event while still in progress. Moving along a short-period, quasi-polar orbit in the Milky Way Halo, Sgr dSph is being tidally dispersed along a huge stellar stream. Due to its low distance (25 kpc), the main body of Sgr dSph covers a vast area in the sky (roughly 15 × 7 degrees). Available photometric and spectroscopic studies have concentrated either on the central part of the galaxy or on the stellar stream, but the overwhelming majority of the galaxy body has never been probed.
Aims. The aim of the present study is twofold. On the one hand, to produce color magnitude diagrams across the extension of Sgr dSph to study its stellar populations, searching for age and/or composition gradients (or lack thereof). On the other hand, to derive spectroscopic low-resolution radial velocities for a subsample of stars to determine membership to Sgr dSph for the purpose of high resolution spectroscopic follow-up.
Methods. We used VIMOS@VLT to produce V and I photometry on 7 fields across the Sgr dSph minor and major axis, plus 3 more centered on the associated globular clusters Terzan 7, Terzan 8 and Arp 2. A last field has been centered on M 54, lying in the center of Sgr dSph. VIMOS high resolution spectroscopic mode has then been used to derive radial velocities for a subsample of the observed stars, concentrating on objects having colors and magnitudes compatible with the Sgr dSph red giant branch.
Results. We present photometry for 320 000 stars across the main body of Sgr dSph, one of the richest, and safely the most wide-angle sampling ever produced for this fundamental object. We also provide robust memberships for more than one hundred stars, whose high resolution spectroscopic analysis will be the object of forthcoming papers. Sgr dSph appears remarkably uniform among the observed fields. We confirm the presence of a main Sgr dSph population characterized roughly by the same metallicity of 47 Tuc, but we also found the presence of multiple populations on the peripheral fields of the galaxy, with a metallicity spanning from [Fe/H] = –2.3 to a nearly solar value.
Key words: Local Group / galaxies: photometry / galaxies: stellar content / globular clusters: individual: M 54 / galaxies: individual: Sgr dSph
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© ESO, 2010