Volume 553, May 2013
|Number of page(s)||13|
|Section||Galactic structure, stellar clusters and populations|
|Published online||23 April 2013|
The relation between chemical abundances and kinematics of the Galactic disc with RAVE
Astronomisches Rechen–Institut, Zentrum für Astronomie der
Universität Heidelberg, Mönchhofstr. 12–14, 69120
2 Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (AIP), An der Sternwarte 16, 14482 Potsdam, Germany
3 Sydney Institute for Astronomy, University of Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
4 Institute of Astronomy, University of Cambridge, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0HA, UK
5 Observatoire de Strasbourg, Université de Strasbourg, CNRS 11 rue de l’université, 67000 Strasbourg, France
6 Jeremiah Horrocks Institute, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, PR1 2HE, UK
7 Monash Centre for Astrophysics, School of Mathematical Sciences, Monash University, Clayton, VIC, 3800, Australia
8 Kapteyn Astronomical Institute, University of Groningen, PO Box 800, 9700 AV Groningen, The Netherlands
9 INAF Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova, Via dell’Osservatorio 8, Asiago 36012, Italy
10 University of Victoria, PO Box 3055, Station CSC, Victoria, BC V8W 3P6, Canada
11 Department of Physics and Astronomy, Faculty of Sciences, Macquarie University, Sydney, NSW 2109, Australia
12 Anglo-Australian Observatory, PO Box 296, Epping, NSW 1710, Australia
13 Macquarie Research Centre for Astronomy, Astrophysics and Astrophotonics, Sydney, NSW 2109, Australia
14 Mullard Space Science Laboratory, University College London, Holmbury St Mary, Dorking, RH5 6NT, UK
15 Department of Physics and Astronomy, Padova University, Vicolo dellOsservatorio 2, 35122 Padova, Italy
16 Department of Physics and Astronomy, Johns Hopkins University, 3400 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218, USA
17 Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, University of Ljubljana, Jadranska 19, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
18 Center of Excellence SPACE-SI, Askerceva cesta 12, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
Received: 15 May 2012
Accepted: 13 February 2013
Aims. We study the relations between stellar kinematics and chemical abundances of a large sample of RAVE giants in search of the selection criteria needed for disentangling different Galactic stellar populations, such as thin disc, thick disc and halo. A direct comparison between the chemo-kinematic relations obtained with our medium spectroscopic resolution data and those obtained from a high-resolution sample is carried out with the aim of testing the robustness of the RAVE data.
Methods. We selected a sample of 2167 giant stars with signal-to-noise per spectral measurements above 75 from the RAVE chemical catalogue and followed the analysis performed by Gratton and colleagues on 150 subdwarf stars spectroscopically observed at high resolution. We then used a larger sample of 9131 giants (with signal-to-noise above 60) to investigate the chemo-kinematical characteristics of our stars by grouping them into nine subsamples with common eccentricity (e) and maximum distance achieved above the Galactic plane (Zmax).
Results. The RAVE kinematical and chemical data proved to be reliable by reproducing the results by Gratton et al. obtained with high-resolution spectroscopic data. We successfully identified three stellar populations that could be associated with the Galactic thin disc, a dissipative component composed mostly of thick-disc stars, as well as a component comprised of halo stars (presence of debris stars cannot be excluded). Our analysis, based on the e-Zmax plane combined with additional orbital parameters and chemical information, provides an alternative way of identifying different populations of stars. In addition to extracting canonical thick- and thin-disc samples, we find a group of stars in the Galactic plane (Zmax < 1 kpc and 0.4 < e < 0.6) that show homogeneous kinematics but differ in their chemical properties. We interpret this as a clear sign that some of these stars have experienced the effects of heating and/or radial migration, which have modified their original orbits. The accretion origin of such stars cannot be excluded.
Key words: Galaxy: abundances / Galaxy: evolution / Galaxy: kinematics and dynamics / Galaxy: structure
© ESO, 2013
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