Volume 580, August 2015
|Number of page(s)||21|
|Published online||22 July 2015|
The Carina Project
1 INAF–Osservatorio Astronomico di Teramo, via Mentore Maggini s.n.c., 64100 Teramo, Italy
2 INAF-Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste, via G.B. Tiepolo 11, 40131 Trieste, Italy
3 Dipartimento di Fisica, Università di Roma “Tor Vergata”, via della Ricerca Scientifica 1, 00133 Roma, Italy
4 INAF-Osservatorio Astronomico di Roma, via Frascati 33, 00040 Monte Porzio Catone (RM), Italy
5 European Southern Observatory, Karl-Schwarzschild-Str. 2, 85748 Garching bei Munchen, Germany
6 Université de Nice Sophia-antipolis, CNRS, Observatoire de la Côte d’Azur, Laboratoire Lagrange, BP 4229, 06304 Nice, France
7 Dominion Astrophysical Observatory, NRC-Herzberg, National Research Council, 5071 West Saanich Road, Victoria, BC V9E 2E7, Canada
8 INAF–Osservatorio Astronomico di Capodimonte, Salita Moiariello 16, 80131 Napoli, Italy
9 Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, Calle via Lactea s/n, 38200 La Laguna, Tenerife, Spain
10 Departamento de Astrofísica, Universidad de La Laguna, 38200 La Laguna, Tenerife, Spain
11 Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, National Optical Astronomy Observatory, Casilla 603, La Serena, Chile
Received: 27 January 2015
Accepted: 25 May 2015
We have performed a new abundance analysis of Carina red giant (RG) stars from spectroscopic data collected with UVES (high spectral resolution) and FLAMES/GIRAFFE (high and medium resolution) at ESO/VLT. The former sample includes 44 RGs, while the latter consists of 65 (high-resolution) and ~800 (medium-resolution) RGs, covering a significant fraction of the galaxy’s RG branch, and red clump stars. To improve the abundance analysis at the faint magnitude limit, the FLAMES/GIRAFFE data were divided into ten surface gravity and effective temperature bins. The spectra of the stars belonging to the same gravity and temperature bin were stacked. This approach allowed us to increase the signal-to-noise ratio in the faint magnitude limit (V≥ 20.5 mag) by at least a factor of five. We took advantage of the new photometry index cU,B,I introduced recently as an age and probably a metallicity indicator to split stars along the red giant branch. These two stellar populations display distinct [Fe/H] and [Mg/H] distributions: their mean iron abundances are −2.15 ± 0.06 dex (σ = 0.28), and −1.75 ± 0.03 dex (σ = 0.21), respectively. The two iron distributions differ at the 75% level. This supports preliminary results. Moreover, we found that the old and intermediate-age stellar populations have mean [Mg/H] abundances of −1.91 ± 0.05 dex (σ = 0.22) and −1.35 ± 0.03 dex (σ = 0.22); these differ at the 83% level. Carina’s α-element abundances agree, within 1σ, with similar abundances for field halo stars and for cluster (Galactic and Magellanic) stars. The same outcome applies to nearby dwarf spheroidals and ultra-faint dwarf galaxies in the iron range covered by Carina stars. Finally, we found evidence of a clear correlation between Na and O abundances, thus suggesting that Carina’s chemical enrichment history is quite different from that in the globular clusters.
Key words: galaxies: dwarf / galaxies: stellar content / stars: fundamental parameters / galaxies: individual: Carina / stars: abundances
Based on spectra retrieved from the ESO/ST-ECF Science Archive Facility and collected either with UVES at ESO/VLT (065.N-0378(A), 066.B-0320(A), P.I.: E. Tolstoy) or with FLAMES/GIRAFFE-UVES at ESO/VLT (074.B-0415(A), 076.B-0146(A), P.I.: E. Tolstoy; 171.B-0520(A)(B)(C), 180.B-0806(B), P.I.: G. Gilmore).
Full Tables 2–6, and 8 are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (126.96.36.199) or via http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/580/A18
© ESO, 2015
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