Volume 412, Number 2, December III 2003
|Page(s)||349 - 371|
|Published online||28 November 2003|
Spectroscopic follow-up of FIRBACK-South bright galaxies
Institut d'Astrophysique de Paris (IAP), 98 bis Bd. Arago, 75014 Paris, France
2 Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI), 4 place Jussieu 75005 Paris, France
3 Institut d'Astrophysique Spatiale, Bât. 121, Université Paris XI, 91405 Orsay Cedex, France
4 Steward Observatory, University of Arizona, 933 N Cherry Ave Tucson AZ 85721, USA
Corresponding author: M. Dennefeld, firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 2 September 2003
We have performed optical spectroscopy of the brightest 170 μm sources in the FIRBACK South Marano (FSM) field. The spectroscopic sample is complete at the 4σ level. Analysis of spectra and comparison with spectra of a faint IRAS (60 μm selected) reference sample is conducted simultaneously. The sources in both samples are characterized by a predominance of emission-line spectra and moderate IR luminosities () The fraction of AGN's is low (about ) and the majority of sources are nearby (), dusty, star forming galaxies, with moderate star formation rates (a few 10 per year). The infrared emission of the FSM galaxies shows a colder spectral energy distribution than was expected. The galaxies in both samples (IRAS faint sources and FSM) are essentially undistinguishable with the available data, and seem to represent a population of closeby, cold, star forming galaxies rather neglected up to now. Although their contribution to the far-IR background seems to be low, they deserve a more detailed study on their own to assess their importance in the chemical evolution of the local universe. The contribution of fainter, presumably more distant, galaxies to the far-IR background will be discussed when we will have completed the follow-up of the fainter part of this 170 μm survey.
Key words: galaxies: infrared / galaxies: evolution / cosmology: observations
© ESO, 2003
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